Military Family Looking for Autism Services

[deleted account] ( 18 moms have responded )

My son (4 years old) was recently diagnosed with severe autism... took a while to get the diagnosis because of having to fight the system, etc. I'm wondering if any of you out there live near a military base (an Air Force Base would be best) or know someone in the military who is recieving great services. We are searching for a place/new base to move to because there are very limited services here...we've been authorized to get ABA and a special education school that deals with autism, but we just have to find a place to go to... I'm trying to find as much info as I can before we have to commit to one place or the other. We are currently considering San Antonio, TX... I've heard that a school there accepts Tricare (the military insurance). The school I was told about was called the village of hope (I believe it recently had a name change to the center of hope)... does anyone have any input on this as well? Thanks in advance.

MOST HELPFUL POSTS

Julianne - posted on 09/03/2010

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Hawaii has been wonderful for us. My oldest was diagnosed when she was 3 and was in school 4 months later. you want to live out in town rather than on base and the military hospital has been wonderful in getting the diagnosis and helping us with the paperwork for efmp. at my daughters school they have speech, OT, and PT staff right on campus and they work with her on a weekly basis. she is a completely different kid then she was 3 years ago. We are due to transfer and i will be sad to leave this place and all the support we have found.

Melissa - posted on 09/04/2009

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What base are you currently stationed at? My son was 4 when he was diagnosed with autsim, I am active duty Air Force. I am stationed at Scott AFB, IL. We had to work with the school on base to get an IEP, and at the same time his doctor on base refered us to a developmental specialist. We got the diagnosis in Feb of 2008. My son start school on base in their special education program that following month. I have been working since then to get ABA therapy for him. I finally have an appointment with an ABA therapist for this coming Monday to do an initial appointment. There is extra insurance that you can get through Tricare called ECHO, you have to be enrolled in the EFMP program to qualify. You need to talk to a case manager at your local base hospital. They are responsible for helping you get enrolled in ECHO and getting the therapy started. Also the school districts are required to provide the necessary the necessary therapy (speech, phycial therapy, and occupational therapy). I have had to fight for the services for my son, but once they have gotten started, I have seen a big improvement. I am hoping that being able to finally get the ABA therapy, will make an even bigger difference.

Abigayle - posted on 09/02/2010

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I RESIDE IN GEORGIA AT STEWART. OUR SON HAS RECIEVED FROM TWO POSTS THE FOLLOWING WILL BE WHAT HE HAS RECIEVED AND PARTS OF THE EDUCATIONAL CURRICULUM. WE LIVED IN TEXAS THEY DID THE LEAST FOR MY CHILD...CALIFORNIA WAS ABOUT THE SAME. GERMANY AND HERE WAS THE BEST. WE RECIEVE THE ABA THERAPY IN SCHOOL CURRICULUM. TRICARE DOES APPROVE IT IF WE NEEDED IT BUT WE GET THE SAME THERAPY WITHOUT THE INSURANCE BY GOING TO A DODEA SCHOOL. MY SON WENT FROM VIOLENT BEHAVIOR SELF INFLICTED AND HURTING OTHERS; DISLOCATED A TEACHERS JAW AND BLACKENED EYES. HAS HAD DODDS SCHOOL IN GERMANY CLEAR A WHOLE ROOM OUT PRACTICALLY EMPTY WITH NO ONE BUT HIMSELF AND HIS TEACHER. HE DIDN'T EVEN GET TO WORK ON ACADEMICS HALF THE TIME AND WHEN HE STARTED THE SECOND YEAR IN THE SPEC ED CLASS AS A KINDERGARTNER AGAIN I WAS LOSING HOPE AND HAD LOOKED INTO THE AUTISM SCHOOL IN TEXAS AS WELL BUT!!!!!!!!!!!!
HE HAS JUST STARTED SECOND GRADE: HIS TEACHER ALL EXP WITH AUTISM FOR MANY YEARS FROM NC. HAS GONE A YEAR AND A HALF NOT ONE TANTRUM, VIOLENT EPISODE, NO MEDICATION, NO SELF INFLICTING BEHAVIORS, NO RUNNING OFF, NO LOCKING HIMSELF IN ROOMS, IN CARS, OR ME OUT WHERE MP'S HAD TO COME...NOTHING. HE HAS A QUIET ZONE HE HAS NEEDED A HANDFUL OF TIMES ONLY. HE IS CURRENTLY GRADE LEVEL IN ALL ACADEMICS IN ONLY ONE YEAR OF CATCHING HIM UP, MAKES EYE CONTACT, NO LONGER RETURNS TO GIBBERISH LANGUAGE AND IN OUR WORLD 95 PERCENT OF THE TIME, NO MORE SLEEP PROBLEMS, FLEXIBLE SCHEDULES WITH MILD TRANSITION WARNINGS VERBALLY. YOU CAN TALK AND REASON WITH HIM...HE HASN'T BEEN TALKING LONG PROBABLY SIX YRS OLD AND IS EIGHT. HE HAS HIS FIRST TWO BEST FRIENDS...FIRST FRIENDS EVER, HAS WALKED TO AND FROM THE BFF HOUSE DOWN FIVE HOUSES BY HIMSELF. I CAN LET HIM PLAY ON THE PLAYGROUND RIGHT OUTSIDE MY BACKYARD GATE, HE DOES CHORES, GETS HIMSELF DRESSED, LEARNED HOW TO USE A MICROWAVE, CLEAN HIS ROOM BETTER THAN I CAN, CHANGES HIS BROTHERS DIAPERS, NO ROCKING, NO WIERD FETTISHS LIKE HOLDING FIVE RED VINES IN EACH HAND FOR NO REASON, CAN CARRY ON A SOCIALLY ACCEPTABLE SHORT CONVERSATION, IS ABOUT NOW AT BEING ABLE TO PERFORM TWO TASKS GIVEN TO HIM, LESS REPEATING PHRASES, NO MORE HEAD BANGING, DOESN'T GRIND HIS TEETH AND THE BEST AND MOST AMAZING THING HE JUST DID YESTERDAY THAT BROKE ME DOWN TO TEARS I NEVER THOUGHTMY AUTISTIC CHILD WOULD EVER DO

HE, INSTEAD OF FREAKING OUT AND BEHAVING VIOLENTLY BECAUSE HE COULDN'T VERBALIZE HIS EMOTIONS, BECAUSE OF ONE YEAR IN DODDS DODEA SCHOOLS; HE VERBALIZED HIS FEELING OF SADNESS WHILE THE TEARS CAME DOWN...TOLD ME IN A QUIET BUT VERY STEADY SPEECH THAT HE THOUGHT HIS BIO DADDY DIDN'T LOVE HIM ANYMORE AND THAT HE WAS ANGRY. I ASKED WHY...HE SAID THAT HIS DAD NOW, HIS STEPDAD, DOESN'T HAVE TO BE HIS DAD BECAUSE HE DOESN'T LIVE HERE AND MIGHT WANT TO DIVORCE U, BUT HE STILL LOVES ME AND STILL SEES ME AND STILL TAKES ME PLACES AND TOLD ME HE WILL ALWAYS BE MY DAD....SO I AM ANGRY AT MY DADDY THAT DOESN'T SEE ME. I ASKED IF HE UNDERSTOOD THAT HIS OTHER DAD LIVED IN CA AND WE LIVED IN GA AND HE HAD TO TAKE CARE OF HISOLDER BROTHER. HE THEN TOLD ME THAT HE HASN'T SEEN HIS DAD FOR TWO YEARS AND IF HE LOVED HIM HE WOULD COME BACK. HE TOLD HIS DAD ALL OF IT AND HIS DAD SAID HE COULDN'T RIGHT NOW AND HIS SON WIPED HIS TEARS, CALLED TO TELL THE DAD HERE I LOVE YOU AND HAS BEEN FINE SINCE.

YOU WILL BE SURPRISED AT WHAT THE MILITARY DID FOR ME; YOU ARE ABLE TO GET EVERYTHING AND MAYBE MORE I NEVER USED...AND GET THE RESULT YOU DIDN'T THINK YOU WOULD.

I am on an Army Post Fort Stewart, GA; but this is what we have here or we had stationed in Mannheim Germany. Fort Hood, Texas wasn't part of the DoDEA district so some things wouldn't be applicable. These we have should be similar to what you would get on an Air Force post but yours will probably be a little better....lol....Air Force bases in my opioion are the best family orientated and have the highest standards.

EFMP: Exceptional Family Member Program; provides many services such as respite care.

DoDEA Curriculum Special Education: Autism Spectrum Disorder guide developed especially by DoDEA called "the Best Practices Guide" includes techniques and strategies proven to work for Autism but also benefits other disorders.

Contact Info for the DoDEA Headquarters
DoDEA Special Education Coordinator
4040 North Fairfax Drive
Arlington, VA 22203
(703) 588-3147

PARTNERSHIPS IN EDUCATIONAL COMMITTEE: part of school's programs

MILITARY CHILD EDUCATIONAL COALITION (MCES): provides workshops and community members throughout school year.
PARENT TO PARENT TRAINING INITIATIVE
Workshop Leaders with professional and personal expertise who share research educational practical ideas; proven techniques; and solid resources.
ARMY COMMUNITY AND SUPPORT CENTER

TRICARE PRIME MILITARY HEALTH INSURANCE:
Provided us with extensive authorized providers in Child Clinical Psychology; Child Psychiatry; provided allowances to utilize several physcians to get second opionons
Provided me coverage in CA under Standard Tricare with ADHD/Autism Specialty Services Clinic
Child Neuropsyciatrist had been authorized in our area.

SPEC Support Groups: Special Needs Exceptional Child

EFMP had post physcians in the pediatric clinic flagged as more experienced in special need children so that when making an appointment we would get a more knowledgable doctor.
EFMP sponsered summer camps free of charge for all registered through the program; special needs children were also able to participate in sports teams and they provided the necessary support team that the child would need that assisted the child to play on a regular team

Respite Care program provided forms for any person you wanted to be your caregiver to fill out and become certified and would get paid by the program to provide your child care. This helped when your child had a good attatchment and felt comfortable with the person and they would be allowed to be the caregiver and you still got it free of charge for those hours alloted every month

Deployed Spouses recieved free registration for sports, were allowed to travel on MAC flights at soldiers status if lived overseas; and provided resources

USO when overseas has extensive information and you would be able to get referred to what services the outside community offered. They provide military paid interpreters as well.

Discrete Trial Training: Each trial has 4 parts: presentation of instruction, child response, consequences and a
short pause.
One specific training method within ABA is referred to as "Discrete
Trial Training (DTT)" and can be effective when applied to a particular skills and behavior.
Some instructional objectives lend themselves quite well to a DTT approach.
taught through a 10-trial session in which the trial is identically presented and practiced with
consequences for successful trials

Structured Teaching2

Psychotherapies

Sensorimotor Therapies

TEACCH program

School personnel who may lead, assist and support educational programs for students with
ASD include:
- General education teachers to instruct students with ASD on working and learning with
their peers
- School psychologists and counselors to conduct social skills groups and help families
cope with the challenges of ASD
- Speech-language therapist to work on pragmatic language and generalization skills
- Career work experience teachers to provide job training opportunities and support for
positive vocational behaviors
- Special education teacher develops and implements the student’s Individualized
Education Program (IEP

- Paraprofessionals to support the special education program

The Case Study Committee (CSC) including parents and all potential service providers

The CSC follows the DoDEA Extended School Year (ESY) guidance in
planning for ESY for students with ASD and this should be considered in
determining intensity of service needs.

early intervention (birth to 3 years) services

Educational and Developmental Intervention Services (EDIS):
The EDIS Clinic is responsible for the medically related service providers who work with
DoDDS. DDESS schools work with a variety of community-based medical providers. An EDIS
Point of Contact (POC) or Service Coordinator for each child is typically assigned following the
review of the school's referral questions. The coordinator receives and distributes relevant
information among the EDIS service providers, as well as to the school and other departments
within the medical facility (when involved), and to the parents.

Pediatrician/Developmental Pediatrician

Mental Health Providers (Psychiatrist, Psychologist, Social Workers)
Mental health providers also play an integral role in the diagnostic process. Following the
school’s eligibility determination, these EDIS providers might also be indicated on IEPs of
children with ASD to deliver services related to mental health and family issues. Such
providers routinely obtain relevant data from the school, medical providers, and family to
help guide in intervention services for the child. EDIS mental health providers reciprocally
provide information back to the school, although confidentiality issues must be considered if
requested by the family. Mental health therapists formally review the child’s progress on
goals and objectives at the annual IEP review, and other scheduled reviews.
Occupational and Physical Therapists
These therapists provide evaluation and treatment services as indicated in the assessment
referral and IEP, respectively. Information about the child's functioning relative to these
services are obtained and shared reciprocally. Occupational and Physical Therapists
formally review progress at the annual IEP and other times as needed.
DoDEA Resource Personnel:
Personnel positions vary within and among DoDDS and DDESS schools, but a number of
personnel are available to assist parents and educators. General statements and/or bullets about
roles and collaboration activities can be outlined as follows:
DSO Special Education Coordinator
􀂉 provides guidance on requirements of DoD Instruction 1342.12
􀂉 trains staff on special education/EDIS procedures
􀂉 overseas all special education programs
􀂉 assists in problem solving

DoDEA Area Autism Consultant
provides expertise on assessment, educational planning and strategies, and programming
for students with autism

communicates with all agencies (family, school, community providers

helps coordinate services for students with PDD and autism
􀂉 reviews assessment reports and current programs and services
􀂉 offers appropriate recommendations for program modifications as needed
􀂉 meets with multidisciplinary CSC teams as requested

Special Educators/Case Manager (after eligibility)
If the child is determined eligible to receive special education services, a Case Manager is
assigned. This individual is typically the primary Service Provider for the child, as
indicated on the IEP. The Case Manager is responsible for coordinating subsequent
communication and CSC meetings to address ongoing or new issues related to the child's
educational and developmental functioning. As with the CSC Chairperson during the
assessment phase, the Case Manager gathers and disseminates information from school
personnel, EDIS, and the family, relevant to the child's program. Typically the Case
Manager also coordinates services provided to a student by regular educators and
paraprofessionals.
School Nurse
The School Nurse is the POC between the school and the EDIS/MTF in cases that involve
administering medication or ongoing medical issues that require monitoring within the
school. The School Nurse engages in ongoing dialogue with parents and the MTF
providers, and can share medical information relevant to the child's educational functioning
with school providers, if the parents give their consent.
Teacher of the Emotionally Impaired (Behavior Management Specialist)
This provider can deliver direct services and/or consultation on behavioral/emotional issues.
The Behavior Management Specialist adheres to the same guidelines as special education
teachers, regarding collaborative networking relevant to the child's educational and
developmental functioning.
School Psychologist
School Psychologists provide evaluation services regarding intellectual functioning and
learning styles, as well as social, emotional, and behavioral issues. These providers share
reports of their assessments and observations with the CSC team, and can be included on the
IEP for direct services or consultation as needed. The School Psychologist adheres to thesame guidelines as special education teachers, regarding collaborative networking relevant
to the child's educational and developmental functioning.

School Counselors
School Counselors provide direct service and consultation regarding social, emotional, and
behavioral issues. School Counselors share reports of their observations as well as maintain
a reciprocal communication with all relevant parties (i.e. EDIS, families, and other
educators).
ASD

Develop Basic Teaching Areas
Group Area: This is where small or large group activities take place. This can be a small
group table area eating snacks and reading, or it can be the large group circle time area.
Play Area: There can be multiple play areas such as a block area or toy center. For older
students this play area can be referred to as a leisure area.
Transition Area: This is where the students’ individual daily schedules are located. This
can be an individual student’s desk, a table or a wall.
Work Areas:
• One-to-one teaching area: used for direct teacher instruction.
• Independent work area: used for independent work activities. This is not an area for
teacher instruction time. The work presented to a student should be work that he
knows how to complete independently.
In the typical preschool classroom for children with disabilities (PSCD), the room
arrangement may be based on the strategies outlined in the Creative Curriculum. The child with
ASD can function well in this environment with minimal changes. The most notable change
would be the addition of an individual teaching and child work area.

Schedules are a communication tool that should be a part of the classroom structure to
help children with ASD

Functional Behavior Analysis (FBA).

What is an FBA?
The FBA is a process to assist in determining the causation of the behavior. It requires
identification of the behavior, the antecedents (or activities that occur immediately before
the behavior) as well as the consequences (activity that happen immediately after the
behavior) for behavior. It identifies the motivations for behavior, assesses the function of
the behavior, and helps to determine possible acceptable replacement behaviors. The
steps for completing an FBA are contained at the end of this section.

behavioral interventions: Proactive strategies

Differential Reinforcement of Other Behaviors (DRO)

Teaching about emotions – Teaching emotions in a visual way

Relaxation techniques

Reactive strategie


Behavioral Contracts – The development and use of behavioral contracts

Punishment – Punishment is often an instinctual response by adults working with
children with ASD for maladaptive behavior. Punishment, however, has some
drawbacks that cause this method to be less effective when trying to reduce unwanted
behaviors for children with ASD. Before trying punishment remember the following
points:
• In order for it to be successful, it must be administered after every occurrence.
• While it may stop a behavior immediately, it is not effective in the long term, so
it has the potential to be overused and abused.
• The purpose is not always understood by the child and can elicit fear and
aggressive behavior.
• Children learn from imitation and may begin to imitate punishment towards
himself or peers.
• Punishment must take place immediately following the target behavior.
• It does not introduce any replacement behavior.

What can I do with my child who can fly into a rage without any apparent warning?
Some individuals with ASD appear to fall into a “rage cycle”. This rage cycle has been
called a “Neurological Storm.” The cycle has three stages: rumbling, rage, and recovery.
a. Rumbling stage – During the rumbling stage the student may exhibits signs that they
are beginning to become upset. Some are subtle signs, such as tapping of his feet,
heavy breathing, staring into space, etc. Others are more overt, such as yelling out,
saying he is not feeling well, picking on other children, etc.
Strategies that can be used:
􀀹 Antiseptic Bouncing – have the student do an errand, thus allowing him to remove
himself from the stressful situation.
􀀹 Proximity Control – The adult moves physically close to the child.
􀀹 Signal Interference – The adult may provide the child a signal to show that they are
aware of the situation.
􀀹 Touch Control - Lightly touching the student to show you are there to help. Touch
can not always be tolerated by a student with ASD.
􀀹 Redirection – Redirect the child to another less stressful activity.
􀀹 Home Base – A predetermined location where the student can be sent to relax.
􀀹 Walk and Don’t Talk – Go for a walk around the building without conversing
b. Rage stage – During the rage stage a student can act impulsively, emotionally, and
sometimes explosively or may withdraw, unable to verbalize or unable to act in a
rational manner. There is no way to stop this stage once it begins except to ride out
the storm.
Strategies that can be used:
􀀹 Do stay calm. Use restraint, only if necessary, minimize verbal input, use visual cues
􀀹 Do ensure that other children are not endangered
􀀹 Don’t raise your voice, insist on having last word, add demands, backing child
into a corner. These will only escalate the behaviors.

c. Recovery stage – During the recovery stage you may see a sullenness, where the
student expresses regret for his actions; a total withdrawal where they don’t talk, or a
complete denial that anything has happened.

Direct Instruction is an effective method of teaching new skills

Social Skills Groups

Classroom Wide Approaches such as a Lunch Bunch or Friends Club are other methods
that will encourage appropriate social skills and peer involvement. Peer training is an
effective method to increase social interactions of students with ASD. Educating peers on
the characteristics of ASD and providing suggestions for how they can best interact with
individuals with ASD is necessary. The student can also be paired with a peer buddy.
(See attached sample)
h. Incidental Teaching is a method of instruction that is employed in natural environment
(classroom, playground, etc) with the goal of strengthening functional social and
communication skills.

Department of Defense Autism Clinical Pathway1

Level One Routine Developmental Surveillance
performed by all providers at every well-child visit with questionnaires such as
The Ages and Stages Questionnaire, The BRIGANCE ® Screens, The child
Development Inventories and the Parents Evaluation of Developmental Status
Absolute Indications for Immediate Evaluation included in Level One ¶2

Refer to EDIS (and DoDDS if >36 months

Level Two Diagnosis and Evaluation of Autism ( ¶ 1-2 )
Evaluations
EDIS DoDDS
Expanded Medical & Neurological Evaluation ( ¶ 3 )
Specific Evaluations to Determine Developmental Profile:
Speech-Language-Communication Evaluation ( ¶ 4 )
Cognitive Assessment ( ¶ 5 )
Occupational Therapy Assessment ( ¶ 6 )
Neuropsychological, Behavioral & Academic Assessment ( ¶ 7 )
Assessment of Family Resources and Functioning ( ¶ 8 )
Level Two Expanded Laboratory Evaluation if indicated

Checklist for Autism in
Toddlers (CHAT), the Pervasive Developmental Disorders Screening Test (PDDST), or,
for older verbal children, the Australian Scale for Asperger’s Syndrome.

Adaptive functioning should be assessed for any child with a mental handicap.
Recommended instruments include the Vineland
Adaptive Behavior Scales and the Scales of Independent Behavior-Revised.
6. Screening and full evaluation for sensorimotor skills (including assessment of gross and fine
motor skills, praxis, sensory processing abilities, unusual or stereotyped mannerisms, and the
impact of these components on the autistic person’s life) by qualified professionals (occupational
therapists or physical therapists with expertise in testing persons with autism) should be
considered. An occupational therapy evaluation is indicated when an autistic individual is
experiencing disruptions in functional skills or occupational performance in the areas of play or
leisure, self-maintenance through activities of daily living, or productive school and work tasks.
The occupational therapist may evaluate these performance areas in the context of different
environments, and through activity analysis, the contributions of performance component abilities
(e.g., sensory processing, fine motor skills, social skills) in goal-directed everyday routines.
7. Neurophychological, behavioral, academic, and cognitive assessments (to include
communication skills, social skills and relationships, educational functioning, problematic
behaviors, learning style, motivation and reinforcement, sensory functioning, and self-regulation)
should be performed.
8. Assessment of family functioning should be performed to determine the parents’ level of
understanding of their child’s condition and offer appropriate counseling and education. The need
for (and availability of) various social services to provide respite and other supports should be
assessed. Professionals should assess family resources and family dynamics (in relation to
parenting and behavior management strategies).
9. Re-evaluation at least within a year of initial diagnosis and continued monitoring is an
expected aspect of clinical practice, because relatively small changes in developmental level
affect the impact of autism in the preschool years.

Existing managed-care policy must change as follows:
♦ Extremely brief well-child visits must increase in duration, with appropriate
compensation, to permit the implementation of routine developmental screening as
recommended above.
♦ Short specialty visits must also increase in duration, with appropriate
compensation, to permit the use of appropriate diagnostic instruments, as
recommended above.
♦ Autism must be recognized as a medical disorder, and managed care policy must
cease to deny appropriate medical or other therapeutic care under the rubric of
“developmental delay” or “mental health condition”

Public awareness and dissemination activities regarding the signs and symptoms of
autism must occur throughout communities, to provide information to parents,
childcare workers, health care settings, and community centers. Small, attractive fliers
targeting symptoms, needs, and outcomes of very young children and also older
children should be developed and disseminated widely, in collaboration with the
national autism societies and associations, schools, health, and allied health agencies
which need to join in this concerted effort.
Other Recommendations
4. Increased education of health-related and education-related professionals about autism

This conversation has been closed to further comments

18 Comments

View replies by

Jo - posted on 03/05/2011

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We're just starting this process with our daughter too. EFMP is mandatory for all chronic conditions, even things like migraines and depression. Making sure to get him enrolled in that will make a big difference. They canhelp you figure this stuff out and talk to the Chaplain if things get crazy, sometimes they can pull strings to get certain things done more compassionately for the family.

Magen - posted on 09/11/2010

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I am stationed at Langley AFB in VA and my son was diagnosed here. We have a wonderful DAN dr and the Newport News public schools have autism programs (we LOVE the one he is in his teachers are GREAT). I do have to get a referal to my doc as he is assigned to the Langley hosptial but they never give me any trouble about getting a referal. I also know Luke AFB has a ton of resources. Google the services you want find out where they are clustered then find the closest AFB. Good luck!

[deleted account]

It looks like there's a lot of great information on here, but I didn't see if anyone meantioned homesteading. If you find somewhere with great services, you may be able to apply to stay there even if your husband gets restationed. I'm not sure if the AF does that, but the navy does. I also second what the previous mom said about WA. There aren't many services here and the school system isn't great to begin with. Good luck to you!

Abigayle - posted on 09/03/2010

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Recordings now available for purchase - DVD and full online access
Online access to recordings is free for registered attendees - login with your registration ID and last name.
If you wish to purchase individual recordings - browse to the specific session, and click Purchase Access

Autism Society National Conference Archive Recordings from 2005-2009
Autism Society's 41st National Conference on Autism Spectrum Disorders
Autism Society National Conference

The Autism Society recognizes that families and individuals living with an autism spectrum disorder have a range of issues and needs. The National Conference of the Autism Society is the only conference that addresses the range of issues, including early intervention, education, employment, behavior, communication, social skills, biomedical interventions and others, across the entire lifespan. Bringing together the expertise and experiences of family members, professionals and individuals on the spectrum, attendees are able to learn how to more effectively advocate and obtain supports for the individual with ASD. The ultimate goal is to empower family members, individuals on the spectrum and professionals to make informed decisions.

Contact Information:

Autism Society National Office
4340 East-West Hwy, Suite 350
Bethesda, MD 20814
Main #: 301.657.0881 x9010
Fax #: 301.657.0869
Business Hours: 9:00 am to 5:00 pm EST
General Conference Questions

Sarah Mitchell
301.657.0881, ext. 9010 (phone)
conference@autism-society.org
Exhibits, Sponsorships & Advertising:

Meg Ellacott
530.239.3883 (fax)
302.260.9487 (phone)
ellacott@autism-society.org
Media Information:

Carin Yavorcik
cyavorcik@autism-society.org


http://asa.confex.com/asa/2010/webprogra...

Stephanie - posted on 08/25/2010

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We are in Norfolk. My daughter was diagnoised last June, I got her in EFMP then ECHO and started her ABA in Aug. I got lucky though when we moved here, and there was no room at the MTF's here. So all my kids see civilian docs. But I keep hearing alot of good things about Texas. When my hubby retires in 2 yrs we are thinking about moving there with all the Autism resources. Norfolk public schools have been helpful in getting the IEP process down and not painfully lol. Her ABA center is AMAZING!!! If anyone is coming here i recommend Mea' Alofa Autism Support Center. Good Luck and keep fighting!

Rachel - posted on 08/25/2010

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Awww thats great... He has made some great progress.. Thanks so much. We have that appointment tomorrow morning and hopefully start getting some answers and help.. Utah is very sticky state- they are so anti-tricare from what we are finding and that becomes exhausting trying to find services I will note what you said and take things to the meeting tomorrow to find out exactly how the AF side works. Thanks again...

Stephany - posted on 08/25/2010

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It's my understanding that you will be assigned an EFMP category or score (I can't remember what it is called) depending on the severity of the disability, ranging from 1 to 6. I believe that autism automatically starts at 4, and can go all the way to 6. This category primarily determines which level of support you need and, thus, which bases you are eligible to be stationed at (at least that's the case in the Navy). First get into the EFMP, then register for ECHO, then look at bases.
The local school district (wherever you end up) is legally required to provide you with at least some services. We're in Oregon and we are SPOILED with a program here, but I've heard of some pretty awesome stuff in other states, too. Check in with them to see what they offer, then I'd call local universities to see if they have early-intervention programs as well. Lastly, look into schools/programs/clinics/etc. that requrie payment but may be subsidized by insurance (ECHO and/or tricare).
Best of luck! it's a lot of work and a lot of red tape, but it is totally worth it! When we started all of this about 2 1/2 years ago my son hated to be touched, didn't make eye contact, would hide under and behind furniture, and when he did talk it made no sense at all. Now (at age 4 1/2) he plays with other kids, has full conversations, makes full eye contact, and seeks me out just to cuddle. He's a different kid. HTH!

Rachel - posted on 08/25/2010

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We are currently in the same situation. We are a military family currently stationed at Hill and finding NO services or very limited services. We have a appt tomorrow to get EFMP and try/push to get restationed elsewhere with good services. My 8yr old was just diagnosed and its been an ongoing battle. It took us almost 7mths to get testing completed here.

What bases are HIGHLY recommended for Autism services? He already has an IEP and attends speech. We started neurofeedback but not sure if its helping or making it worse.

We have looked at Vandenberg, Scott, Andrews, Wright-Patt and still having a hard time finding info on good areas - any help is appreciated.

Thanks
Rachel

Mary - posted on 02/18/2010

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We are stationed at Andrews AFB. We get ABA serviecs in our home through ECHO. We see a Dev Ped at the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda. My son also attends a social skills class for ASD kids at the NNMC every week. There are weveral bases in the DC/MD/N VA area.

Nicole - posted on 02/17/2010

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oh and do not get stationed and mccord washinton is rated least arizona and wisconson are the only states i know of that offer outstanding services we live in tacoma by fort lewis and we are on a 12 month waithing list to se a psyc we are moving to wisc for my boys sake

Nicole - posted on 02/17/2010

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if you can get stationed in wisconson thier reated number onw in autism and special needs programs they even have stat paid respite how nice is that

Kristen - posted on 02/11/2010

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My AF friend has a 6 y/o that she's raised here in Kaiserslautern, Germany and she likes the services/schooling provided for her son with autism. You can't even tell that he has it. He speaks well. She actually is stationed at Ramstein AF base.

Lynn - posted on 10/17/2009

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My Son has had great services at Tinker AFB,Ok and Langley AFB,VA, Lackland AFB,TX and He is good service at Peterson AFB,Co. He is 18 now and gets great service with his charter school...

Tracy - posted on 09/04/2009

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i live near new river ais station in jacksonville nc.my 8 yro son was diagnosed at 3 and they have great services out here.

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