Students (young and older) respond to instruction in the way that is expected of them. If taught as if they are slow, students will conform to that perception. Imagine what would happen if we treated all students, from the earliest years through their post-secondary studies, as if there were geniuses inside, simply waiting for recognition.
If a school district's plan to address autistic elopement is merely to wait for it to happen and call police, they are planning for tragedy. After consulting with both local law enforcement and Jerry Turning of Police and Autism: Bridging the Gap, here's a protocol I'm suggesting to my child's school district.