The definition of autism is changing. The new definition, in the D.S.M.-5, is more strict. When it changes, many people who were previously considered autistic will no longer be eligible for the educational services that were available with their old diagnosis. This change seems like, in part, a reaction to the massive increase of cases of autism—and the financial burden on school districts with those students:
I’ve had the opportunity to volunteer at a great place in Los Angeles—The Help Group. They work with a variety of students on the autism spectrum. I am concerned that this new definition may prevent many of their students from receiving their, research based, educational benefits.