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At Autism Partnership, we provide a wide range of services for children and their families, as well as training for professionals who are involved in the education of children with autism.
For children local to our centres, we provide both direct, one-to-one intervention and the supervision and consultation necessary to develop and maintain an individualised intensive ABA programme. One-to-one teaching sessions can occur in our therapy centres, at home, in a nursery or school setting, and in various community locations. At the beginning of intervention, one-to-one teaching is used to rapidly develop skills. Group teaching opportunities are provided for the purpose of further developing social skills, generalising skills developed in one-to-one instruction, learning how to learn in group settings, and further developing the maintenance of appropriate behaviour in a variety of settings. We provide support for parents on how to manage challenging and maladaptive behaviour and how to maximise the child’s learning while at home.
For children who are not local to our therapy centres, we can provide ongoing consultation services to assist parents in conducting their own home or school-based ABA programmes. We can provide ABA programme services anywhere in the UK and worldwide. Children who are just beginning their ABA programmes, not progressing as well as expected, or who have especially complex learning and behavioural needs, can participate in a week-long intensive intervention with highly qualified practitioners providing the therapy.
For professionals involved in the education of children with autism, we offer comprehensive training in ABA methodology, training workshops, professional development, and consultation for developing ABA classrooms.
Every year there is a new intervention that is declared to be highly effective in educating individuals with ASD. So how does one decide which intervention to select? We are firm believers in the scientific method. It is important to separate those procedures that merely sound good, make sense, or feel right from those that actually produce positive change. This really is no different from what we would expect or want when it comes to medical intervention. If one had a life-threatening medical illness, one would not take a drug merely based on the claims of the manufacturer. The patient would look for medications that have gone through scientifically rigorous examination and have proved to be effective. That way, the patient would also know the risks associated with taking them. The same should be true for any psychological intervention, including intervention for autism.
Unfortunately, many approaches claim to be effective but lack rigorous scientific testing to support the claim. Some interventions originally produced a lot of excitement based on anecdotal evidence, but have later been shown not to have any effect, for example, secretin. Other interventions have been later shown to actually be harmful when used over a long period of time, for example, fenfluramine. Therefore, it is essential that parents be well-informed and objective when deciding on an intervention for their child.
Parents should critically evaluate the evidence for the effectiveness of an approach, look for carefully conducted scientific research, and beware of pseudoscience. What the research consistently shows is that one approach meets this scientific standard, with more than three decades of research demonstrating incredible effectiveness: Intensive Behavioural Intervention based on Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA). There is no other intervention that has been proven to be more effective or has the same amount of scientific evidence to support it. For more information, we invite you to explore research findings on the behavioural intervention of autism.
Intensive ABA Intervention
At Autism Partnership, we promote comprehensive ABA intervention designed to meet the individual needs of each child we serve. Our programmes are developed for each child to teach the critical foundation skills necessary for long-term success. Our organisation is devoted to enhancing the overall quality of life through intervention focused upon the development of improved social interaction, play and leisure skills, meaningful communication, classroom readiness, peer relationships, and improved independence. Progress is achieved through the use of specialised teaching techniques, training, and support for families, and a focus on teaching and improving appropriate behaviours.
We provide services for children with an Autism Spectrum Disorder who are undertaking an intensive ABA programme. A typical programme comprises of 15-30 hours per week of one-to-one instruction, depending on the child’s age, individual needs, and school placement.
Our individualised programmes look at each child in a holistic way, making sure that we teach all the necessary skills for successful development. Skill areas can include, but are not limited to:
All skills are taught using research-based teaching techniques to ensure that the student is learning at the maximal rate. Sessions are initially conducted in a one-to-one format, although small-group teaching and/or structured play-dates are included as soon as appropriate. Depending on each child’s needs, recommendations will also be made for different group programmes and school integration.
One-to-one teaching sessions can be provided by either Autism Partnership programme specialists, independently hired therapists, or a combination of both. Programme specialists conduct one-to-one or group intervention sessions designed to teach behaviour, communication, cognitive, play, social, and self-help skills. Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA) techniques are utilised during all interventions. Important behavioural goals are targeted, including reduction of stereotyped patterns of behaviour, increasing tolerance, coping with stress, and eliminating challenging behaviour. If necessary, programme specialists provide shadow support to children while they attend nursery, school, or activities in the community.
Programme specialists offer a direct, one-to-one intervention that ranges in frequency throughout the week. Sessions take place at our therapy centres in Leeds and London, or at the child’s home or school.
Therapy sessions are overseen by programme supervisors or consultants who provide assessment and programme development. They monitor progress and make necessary refinements in the child’s curriculum and programme plan. Programme supervisors and consultants supervise and assist staff and parents with proper programme implementation. They support all team members and parents in becoming a ‘behavioural specialist’ for the child. Programme supervisors and consultants are also involved in working with classroom staff, data analysis, report writing, the creation of Education, Health and Care Plans (EHCPs), and facilitating a team approach with schools.
Regular supervision sessions, of an average of 12 hours per month, are conducted to ensure changes to a child’s programme can be made as soon as the need arises. Additional teaching programmes can be added where necessary and a high level of consistency can be achieved between all involved in the implementation of the programme.
Director-level consultations are arranged 2-3 times per year for the intervention team – i.e. for the family and school staff to discuss your child’s progress, current areas of concern, and to review short- and long-term objectives. The consultant will provide evaluation, programme development and modification, and behavioural observations. The consultation session may also include a practical demonstration of teaching programmes.
As soon as a parent has concerns that their child is showing signs consistent with a diagnosis of ASD, we are ready to meet with your child. Following a free consultation with one of our consultants, and a recommendation of the level of provision, the child is ready to begin sessions. Regardless of when your child is diagnosed, intervention should begin as soon as possible to start to reduce the developmental gap between your child and their peers. Services can be provided for adolescents and adults, as well as young children, and are appropriate for children at all levels of functioning. The teaching techniques used and the types of skills targeted will vary depending on the age and needs of the student.
Typically, a session is 3 hours in duration; this depends on several factors, which include the child’s age, the child’s needs, and the schedules of programme specialist service times in your local area. Session times are typically 9:00 a.m. -12:00 p.m., 1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m., and 4:00 p.m. -6:00 p.m. in both locations. Each session will include breaks and play times for the child.
Services can be provided in our therapy centres in Leeds and London, in a nursery/school placement, at your child’s home, or in various community locations. The location of services should be discussed before your child begins a programme, as recommendations will vary depending on the student’s individual needs.
Who would benefit?
What does the intervention include?
Social Skills Group Sessions
Autism Partnership runs group programmes that focus on teaching social skills and group learning skills to children with ASD. Called “Social Clubs”, students attend once a week and learn a variety of social and behavioural skills that will help them interact with and learn from others. Instruction is provided on skills such as observational learning, social communication, reading social cues, and cooperative play. Additionally, these sessions allow students to practice learning within a group format and build skills necessary for pre-school or school settings.
Each group has a high staff-to-student ratio so we can meet the unique learning needs of different children. They learn through an array of group activities, such as group games, circle time, group lessons, sports, structured activities, and free play. These activities are specifically designed to facilitate social interaction and create opportunities to practice different target skills. Below are some examples of target skills that we might teach at different levels of ability:
We currently offer groups, at both our Leeds and London therapy centres, for various age ranges. Groups may be open to children who are not receiving intensive ABA programmes, as long as their skill level and needs are consistent with the other children in a group.
Training Workshops for Parents
Who would benefit?
What does the workshop include:
The workshops will be conducted by a skilled team that includes a supervisor and an experienced therapist. A summary report will be prepared and will include recommendations going forward.
Details coming soon!
Autism is the fastest-growing developmental disability in the world. Schools all around the globe are faced with the challenges of working with children with autism in mainstream and specialised classroom settings.
Children with autism can be incredibly challenging to teach and hard to manage when they exhibit challenging behaviour in a classroom. Alternatively, they can also be withdrawn, passive, and not motivated to learn or attend lessons provided. Also, they may not benefit from the many social opportunities provided in a school setting as they fail to interact or socialise with their peers. These problems can often leave teachers feeling frustrated, unprepared, and unsure about what to do to help the student. Children with autism can, however, overcome these issues with the proper support and training. Autism Partnership has created a wealth of options for schools so we can help train teachers and offer a wide range of support for students that schools may not have the resources to provide.
Our staff have years of experience working within both mainstream and special needs schools in a consultation role to nursery, primary, and secondary school classrooms. We can provide short-term consultation or ongoing support for individual children, specific classrooms, or entire schools. We emphasise practical, positive, and proactive approaches that have proven to be effective in advancing the educational progress of children with autism. We work with school personnel to provide supervision and training in the process of curriculum development and the implementation of behavioural teaching strategies.
Training in schools often includes whole staff training which includes head teachers, teachers, and classroom assistants, and even those who are not working in the classrooms we are consulting to. This ensures that the students receive a consistent approach throughout the school day.
Our school consultations focus on helping teachers and school personnel to develop educational plans that cater to the different learning needs of children with autism, incorporating the ABA approach. Our main aim is to train senior staff in the school to be able to train their own staff, making the school independent with its own training programme. Consultation would include input in the following areas:
Typically the process begins with didactic workshops followed by supervised, hands-on training. Once the workshops have been completed, ongoing supervision and classroom consultations are provided to facilitate continued support and training for teachers in classrooms.
If you have a student with autism you feel would benefit from a systematic behavioural approach, do not hesitate to direct families to us! We will meet with the family to discuss the difficulties the child is having and recommend service options accordingly.
Our supervisors are available to work with the existing supports in school to help devise behaviour plans and learning/integration programmes that cater to the specific learning needs of the child for teachers/teaching assistants in school to implement. If additional one-to-one teaching is recommended, this would be discussed with the family and teachers. Our extensively trained staff will regularly visit the school and modify programmes to ensure that your child’s progress is maximised. They will also assist and model implementation whenever necessary. Only with the collaboration of teachers, programme supervisors, and families, can we help the child to maximise their potential.
School Staff Training Proposal
Our training proposal objectives are:
Profile of pupils:
Families or schools located in areas where appropriate expertise in Applied Behavioural Analysis is not readily available benefit from regularly scheduled consultation visits from our senior staff. Our team of consultants travel nationally and internationally to provide ABA intervention and consultation.
During the initial consultation, the consultant will identify the needs of the child. The consultant will then develop a programme plan that includes an individualised curriculum to assist the child in their mastery of critical skills and programmes to address interfering behaviours.
Within each consultation visit, parents, home, and school staff receive training and supportive input on how improvements in their methodology will result in increased progress for the child. As progress is achieved, the consultant will refine the goals and curriculum.
In between consultation visits, parents and the treatment team can communicate with the consultant via email and telephone, as needed, to ensure the programme is running smoothly.
The initial consultation visit is typically three to five days. The frequency of follow-up consultation visits vary according to need, but typically occur every two to three months.
Who would benefit?
What does the consultation include?
For families interested in establishing an ABA program:
Consultation will include (but not limited to):
Individualised target programs to address:
Weeklong Intensive Start-up Workshop for Multiple Families
Who would benefit?
What does the start-up workshop include?
Intensive Intervention for Overseas Families
Who would benefit?
o For overseas families who are interested in having Autism Partnership (AP) staff to provide daily home/school-based intervention for a fixed intensive term.
o For overseas families who are in the process of hiring independent therapists to provide home/school-based intervention but would like to get an ABA program up & running in the meantime with highly skilled Autism Partnership (AP) staff.
What does the intervention include?
o 30 hours per week of ABA intervention to be conducted by a senior behaviour therapist across settings as necessary – i.e. school/home/community, etc.
o 6 hours per day from Mon-Fri. o Fixed-term of a 3-month minimum to a 6-month maximum.
o Monthly consultations from APUK consultant – for at least 2 days per month.
o Training independent therapists & school staff.
o Parent support.
o Option to renew term for another 3-6 months with another highly skilled AP therapist.
o A Board Certified Behaviour Analyst (BCBA) certification and/or a Master’s degree in Applied Behaviour Analysis.
o A minimum of 20 years of ABA experience working with a variety of individuals in a variety of settings.
Senior Behavior Therapist Credentials/Qualifications: o An undergraduate or postgraduate degree in Psychology, ABA or a related field.
o Direct-line work experience of a minimum of 5 years with a variety of individuals and across settings.
Student Training Workshop
Who is this workshop for?
What does the workshop include?
4-Week Accelerate Program
Who would benefit?
What does the intervention include?
Senior Therapist Credentials/Qualifications: