There needs to be a lot more emphasis on what a child can do instead of what he cannot do.
Dr. Temple Grandin, Autism Speaks
AUTISM CONNECT EARLY
Ashton's Place has developed our own early intervention programme which we plan to implement in specific child care centres on the Gold Coast. It is named the ACE (Autism Connect Early) Programme. These child care centres will cater to children on the autism spectrum and will ensure that the programme content is relevant to the individual child.
Individual plans will be developed for each child using the Guidelines for Good Practice for children with autism.1
Ashton's Place plans to implement effective models of practice to ensure we have a programme that is relevant and one that meets the needs of the individual child and their families.
Research has identified that:
"...no one program will suit all children with autism and their families...there is growing
evidence that intensive developmental and combined programs are also effective."
(Guidelines for Good Practice, 2012)
KEY ELEMENTS FOR EARLY INTERVENTION
As per the Guidelines for Good Practice, we can define key elements which are necessary for effective intervention. These include:
Autism-specific curriculum content focusing on attention, compliance, imitation, language, and social skills;
Highly-supportive teaching environments, which deal with the need for predictability and routine, and with challenging behaviours, obsessions, and ritual behaviours;
Support for children in their transition from the preschool programme;
Support for family members via partnerships with professionals involved in treatments;
Teachers who are appropriately trained to deliver these programmes; and
Clinical professionals who are appropriately trained to deliver quality programmes.
INDUSTRY CONSULTANT INPUT
We have sought input from specially trained consultants, who provide the following input into the implementation of our
With the support of industry trained professionals, including early intervention programme consultants, speech therapists, and occupational therapists, we will ensure that our programme provides:
A staff training programme aimed at developing an environment that supports autistic children, including both physical aspects as well as programme ideas to provide adequate support;
Environmental follow-up to ensure training session ideas have been implemented where possible and to welcome any further suggestions;
Further training for identified staff, be it by smaller specific training sessions with industry professionals from proven early intervention models or further development of their qualifications through higher education;
A staffing model that is effective in producing programmes that deliver positive outcomes for families and children; and
Industry trained professionals will provide ongoing consultation with Ashton's Place to give advice and guidance on the implementation of the ACE Programme in the child care centres that have been identified for delivering the programme.
ACE Programme now taking enrolments
We are excited to announce that the ACE Programme is now taking enrolments. Ashton's Place has partnered with the University of New England and Imagine Childcare & Kindergarten Nerang to deliver a quality early intervention program for children on the autism spectrum. Our specially-trained educators will ensure content delivered is relevant to the individual child, and help these children grow in confidence and capability. For more information or to enrol, please download a copy of our ACE Programme Enrolment Form below:
1 Early Intervention for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders: 'Guidelines for Good Practice' 2012, Margot Prior and Jacqueline Roberts