working with children with autism

New school an option for kids struggling with autism (Article by T&G)

jdufresne

Teacher Josh Dufresne works with student Alyjah Ortiz, 5, on his schoolwork at the Center for Applied Behavior Instruction. (T&G Staff/CHRISTINE HOCHKEPPEL)

 

WORCESTER — Children and adolescents with autism, particularly those with behavioral issues who are struggling in a local public school setting, have a new option available to them: the Center for Applied Behavioral Instruction.

The private school, which received its unanimous approval to operate from the Worcester School Committee in November, is already up and running with two students, and several more referrals in process.

The school accepts students from the city of Worcester as well as from districts within a one-hour radius of the school.

Founder and executive director Jeffrey Robinson is currently in the process of preparing the required documentation to obtain final approval from the state Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.

Mr. Robinson, who co-founded the school with Brian Doyle, has been affiliated with the Worcester Public Schools for nearly two decades, and has provided services to students with autism through his company, Behavioral Concepts, Inc. Mr. Robinson has a doctorate in special education from Boston College, while Mr. Doyle has a doctorate in education from Nova Southeastern University, and a specialist degree in special education from Simmons College.

Located on in a former storage space on Greenwood Street, the school occupies one-third of 15,000- square-foot building leased by Behavioral Concepts, which is the parent company of the school. The school currently has four classrooms and a gymnasium, and operates with a staff of two teachers, a teacher’s aide, a nurse, psychologist and several therapists, and can serve between 25 and 29 students.

Read More Article By: T&G – Sandy Meindersma CORRESPONDENT)

Visit CABI’s (Center For Applied Behavioral Instruction) website here: www.cabiautism.org

 

BCI welcomes interns from Endicott College

Before she was BCI's Senior Training Coordinator, Jessica Stott did an internship with us as an undergrad.

Before she was BCI’s Senior Training Coordinator, Jessica Stott did an internship with us as an undergrad.

While BCI recently announced an internship program with Fitchburg State University, we have similar relationships with Worcester State University and Quinsagmond Community College. In fact, many of our staff members have either done their undergraduate or graduate work at those schools. Endicott College in Beverly, Massachusetts is another school with which we are developing a strong relationship.

Just recently, Endicott College student Glenna Macgowan completed a six-week internship at BCI. She is a sophomore from Grafton, Massachusetts majoring in Liberal Studies/Education, with a concentration in Autism and ABA.

During her six weeks, Glenna met her internship requirements by participating in new hire training, attending a senior management meeting and conducting numerous observations with ABA Therapists/Clinical Coordinators. The observations were completed within classrooms (Worcester Public Schools & BASICs program), within student’s homes and the community.

Glenna’s supervisor during her internship was BCI Senior Training Coordinator Jessica Stott. An Endicott College alum, Jessica also did an internship at BCI during her undergraduate days. In fact, her photo and testimonial are used in some of Endicott’s promotional materials about internship opportunities.

College students interested in applying for an internship at BCI during the fall semester of 2014 can send a cover letter and resume to info@bciaba.org or by snail mail to: Behavioral Concepts, Inc., 345A Greenwood Street, Worcester, MA  01607, ATTN: Dr. Jeffrey Robinson.

Behavioral Concepts, Inc. (BCI) offers internship program with Fitchburg State University

WORCESTER, MA…

Behavioral Concepts, Inc. (BCI), a company of behavioral clinicians specializing in the care of children with autism in Central Massachusetts, recently announced a partnership relationship with Fitchburg State University as it pertains to the company’s internship program. As part of the agreement, BCI and the University will partner to help recruit Fitchburg State undergraduates for its fall and spring internship programs.

“There’s been a very strong connection with BCI and Fitchburg State over the years. We were involved in the development of the BCBA course track and two of our staff, Dr. Brian Doyle, the director of our BASICS program, and Erik Lerdal are adjunct faculty as well,” said Dr. Jeff Robinson, BCI founder and director of BCI. “With the demand for board certified behavior analysts at an all-time high, our internship program is a great way to show undergrads a career path in a growing field.”

BCI interns typically are college students with aspirations of being a clinical coordinator or therapists. BCI interns have most often been psychology, education, special education and criminal justice, though all majors are welcome to apply. Students must receive course credit to participate in BCI’s internship program.

In addition to Fitchburg State University, BCI has similar relationships with Worcester State University and Quinsigamond Community College. In addition to a one-semester internship, BCI offers a year-long fellowship program for Worcester State University students.

“We’re in the business of teaching very important skills to children with autism. Yet the learning is certainly not limited to our students. I think as instructors and clinicians, we learn every bit as much from our students as they do from us,” said BCI Founder and Director Dr. Jeffrey Robinson. “For a college student who wants to be in that kind of environment, I can promise you will get quite a bit more out of this experience than course credits.”

College students interested in applying for an internship at BCI during the fall semester of 2014 can send a cover letter and resume to info@bciaba.org or by snail mail to: Behavioral Concepts, Inc., 345A Greenwood Street, Worcester, MA  01607, ATTN: Dr. Jeffrey Robinson.

College and universities interested in internship opportunities for their undergraduates should also contact Dr. Robinson at info@bciaba.org or by calling 508-363-0200.

About Behavioral Concepts, Inc. (BCI)

Founded in 2002, BCI provides educational, behavioral, consultative and assessment services to children with autism and their families. These services are based on the principles of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) and are tailored to the unique needs of the individuals BCI works with. It’s BCI’s goal to maximize student potential, increase independence and enhance our clients’ quality of life within their home, school and community.

BCI’s main care center is located at 345A Greenwood Street, in Worcester, Massachusetts. BCI operates its BASICS services at 100 Hartwell Street in West Boylston, Mass. The BASICS program is a sub-contract arrangement between Behavioral Concepts, Inc. and the Central Massachusetts Special Education Collaborative. BASICS provides services to children aged 7-22 with autism and maladaptive behaviors. BCI’s Corporate Offices are located in Mansfield, Mass.

For complete information, visit http://bciaba.org or to arrange a consultation with a BCI clinician, please call (508) 363-0200.

Why 2013 represents a year of advances for children with autism and ASDs

WORCESTER, MA…

While this time of year is known for Top (fill in the blank) lists, perhaps none are quite as meaningful as the 10 Big Autism Stories for 2013 published by Autism Speaks, an international autism science and advocacy organization.

This year’s inspirational Top 10 featured amazing stories, including Susan Boyle revealing her ASD diagnosis  and the New Jersey high school football player with autism who won an unprecedented fifth year of eligibility and became the first varsity football player in the U.S. with autism to play in a championship game (and contribute to that win). Yet to local experts like Dr. Jeff Robinson, founder of Behavioral Concepts, Inc., a company of behavioral clinicians specializing in the care of children with autism in Central Massachusetts, the list represents more than the noteworthy accomplishments of a select few.

“The Autism Speaks list demonstrates what people with ASDs are capable of, but it also represents the beginnings of a transformation of how our society sees children with ASDs,” said Robinson. “With one in 88 children being diagnosed with an ASD, that means there is a very strong likelihood that someone we know or are related to has an ASD. That, combined with the efforts of awareness groups like Autism Speaks and organizations like BCI, has created a level of acceptance that’s growing and will continue to grow in 2014.”

Based in Worcester, Mass, at its new location at 345A Greenwood Street in Worcester, and with offices in Mansfield and West Boylston, Mass., BCI provides much needed services to children with autism and their families. BCI instructional programs are delivered using discrete trial training, task analysis, and systematic prompting procedures implemented by ABA therapists who have successfully completed pre-service training, on-site, and quarterly evaluations by their clinical supervisors.

Instruction is provided across a variety of domains, included by not limited to: Activities of daily living, functional and augmentative communication, functional academics and community outings and safety awareness. Social skills groups with peer models are also offered as part of BCI’s services. A heavy emphasis is placed on generalization and maintenance of skills, in addition to family training, so that families may implement the supports and carry-over skills in the home.

BCI accepts Harvard-Pilgrim, Blue Cross Blue Shield, United Behavioral Health, Tufts, Aetna and coverage from other major health care providers. For questions about programs offered by BCI, please visit www.bciaba.org or call 508-363-0200.

About Behavioral Concepts, Inc. (BCI)

Founded in 2002, BCI provides educational, behavioral, consultative and assessment services to children with autism and their families. These services are based on the principles of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) and are tailored to the unique needs of the individuals BCI works with. It’s BCI’s goal to maximize student potential, increase independence and enhance our clients’ quality of life within their home, school and community.

BCI’s main care center is located at 345A Greenwood Street, in Worcester, Massachusetts. BCI operates its BASICS services at 100 Hartwell Street in West Boylston, Mass. The BASICS program is a sub-contract arrangement between Behavioral Concepts, Inc. and the Central Massachusetts Special Education Collaborative. BASICS provides services to children aged 7-22 with autism and maladaptive behaviors. BCI’s Corporate Offices are located in Mansfield, Mass.

For complete information, visit http://bciaba.org or to arrange a consultation with a BCI clinician, please call (508) 363-0200.

Behavioral Concepts, Inc. (BCI) completes move to new location at 345A Greenwood Street in Worcester, MA

WORCESTER, MA…

Behavioral Concepts, Inc. (BCI), a company of behavioral clinicians specializing in the care of children with autism in Central Massachusetts, recently completed the relocation of its Worcester care center to 345A Greenwood Street in Worcester, Massachusetts.

“They say there’s no place like home. But when you have outgrown your current home like we had at 170 Goddard Memorial Drive, then that mantra becomes there’s no place like a new home,” said BCI Founder Dr. Jeffrey Robinson. “We are delighted to be moved into our new space, which we know will better serve our current students and accommodate two very special projects BCI will undertake—the opening of a pre-school and a private day school.”

The day school, to be called the Center for Applied Behavioral Instruction (CABI), is tentatively scheduled to open in early 2014, pending approval from the Worcester School Committee.

The preschool, the Accelerated Learning Academy, will open in the fall of 2014. Students at the Accelerated Learning Academy will be taught using behavioral teaching methodology.

“These two schools will provide parents and families of children with autism spectrum disorders additional options for their education and care,” said Robinson.

Through its host of services and programs, BCI helps children with autism and autism spectrum disorders develop their learning skills and social skills. In addition, BCI works with families of children with autism and ASDs to alert them to services provided by the school system and by their health insurance.

As for the new location, a grand opening celebration is planned for later in 2013 or early 2014. BCI’s corporate offices are located in Mansfield, Massachusetts.

If you have questions about programs offered by BCI, please visit www.bciaba.org or call 508-363-0200.

About Behavioral Concepts, Inc. (BCI)

Founded in 2002, BCI provides educational, behavioral, consultative and assessment services to children with autism and their families. These services are based on the principles of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) and are tailored to the unique needs of the individuals BCI works with. It’s BCI’s goal to maximize student potential, increase independence and enhance our clients’ quality of life within their home, school and community.

BCI’s main care center is located at 345 Greenwood Street, in Worcester, Massachusetts. BCI operates its BASICS services at 100 Hartwell Street in West Boylston, Mass. The BASICS program is a sub-contract arrangement between Behavioral Concepts, Inc. and the Central Massachusetts Special Education Collaborative. BASICS provides services to children aged 7-22 with autism and maladaptive behaviors. BCI’s Corporate Offices are located in Mansfield, Mass.

For complete information, visit http://bciaba.org or to arrange a consultation with a BCI clinician, please call (508) 363-0200.

Behavioral Concepts, Inc. (BCI) launches online enrollment

WORCESTER, MA…

Behavioral Concepts, Inc. (BCI), a company of behavioral clinicians specializing in the care of children with autism in Central Massachusetts, recently unveiled an online enrollment function on its website, www.bciaba.org.

The new feature enables applicants to start the enrollment process by providing basic contact and insurance information online. That includes parent/guardian information, patient information (including diagnosis, with space for additional details) and insurance information (ID, Policy/Group, co-pay, deductible, etc.). Once completed, the form can be securely submitted online.

“There aren’t many children, ASD or not, who want to get in the car, travel for several minutes and then sit around and watch their parent or guardian fill out paperwork,”  said BCI Founder Dr. Jeffrey Robinson. “The new online enrollment gives parents and guardians the option to fill out the initial paperwork in the privacy of their own home without making the trip.”

Adds Robinson, “This is not to say we don’t encourage people to visit and check us out in person. But for convenience sake we wanted to give them that option.”

Based in Worcester, Mass, currently at 170 Goddard Memorial Drive and soon-to-be relocated to 345 Greenwood Street in Worcester, and with offices in Mansfield and West Boylston, Mass., BCI provides much needed services to children with autism and their families. BCI instructional programs are delivered using discrete trial training, task analysis, and systematic prompting procedures implemented by ABA therapists who have successfully completed pre-service training, on-site, and quarterly evaluations by their clinical supervisors.

Instruction is provided across a variety of domains, included by not limited to: Activities of daily living, functional and augmentative communication, functional academics and community outings and safety awareness. Social skills groups with peer models are also offered as part of BCI’s services. A heavy emphasis is placed on generalization and maintenance of skills, in addition to family training, so that families may implement the supports and carry-over skills in the home.

BCI accepts Harvard-Pilgrim, Blue Cross Blue Shield, United Behavioral Health, Tufts, Aetna and coverage from other major health care providers.

For complete information, visit http://bciaba.org or to arrange a consultation with a BCI clinician, please call (508) 363-0200.

About Behavioral Concepts, Inc. (BCI)

Founded in 2002, BCI provides educational, behavioral, consultative and assessment services to children with autism and their families. These services are based on the principles of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) and are tailored to the unique needs of the individuals BCI works with. It’s BCI’s goal to maximize student potential, increase independence and enhance our clients’ quality of life within their home, school and community.

BCI’s main care center is located at 170 Goddard Memorial Drive, in Worcester, Massachusetts. BCI operates its BASICS services at 100 Hartwell Street in West Boylston, Mass. The BASICS program is a sub-contract arrangement between Behavioral Concepts, Inc. and the Central Massachusetts Special Education Collaborative. BASICS provides services to children aged 7-22 with autism and maladaptive behaviors. BCI’s Corporate Offices are located in Mansfield, Mass.

For complete information, visit http://bciaba.org or to arrange a consultation with a BCI clinician, please call (508) 363-0200.

Behavioral Concepts, Inc. (BCI) finds new home at 345 Greenwood Street in Worcester, MA

Behavioral Concepts, Inc. will be moving to 345 Greenwood Street in Worcester. BCI is a company of behavioral clinicians specializing in the care of children with autism in Central Massachusetts.

Behavioral Concepts, Inc. will be moving to 345 Greenwood Street in Worcester. BCI is a company of behavioral clinicians specializing in the care of children with autism in Central Massachusetts.

WORCESTER, MA…

Earlier this year, Behavioral Concepts, Inc. (BCI), a company of behavioral clinicians specializing in the care of children with autism in Central Massachusetts, celebrated its 10th anniversary. The latest chapter of the Worcester, MA –based will involve a new home as the company will relocate its Worcester care center to 345 Greenwood Street, Worcester, MA at the end of October.

“We have grown substantially since our beginnings. With more than 160 people on staff and the demand for our services increasing dramatically, relocating really wasn’t a choice,” said BCI Founder Dr. Jeffrey Robinson. “With our new location, we have the space we need to better serve our current students and the growth we anticipate over the next several years.”

BCI is currently hiring full- and part-time Board Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBA) to accommodate the anticipated growth at the new facility.

Currently, it’s been reported that one in every 88 children is diagnosed with an ASD. Through its host of services and programs, BCI helps children with autism and autism spectrum disorders develop their learning skills and social skills. In addition, BCI works with families of children with autism and ASDs to alert them to services provided by the school system and by their health insurance.

“Our social skills program is a great example of how we can help children with ASDs affordably,” said Robinson. “We’re the only company in the area that offers a social skills program that’s covered by insurance.”

The program is a three-hour session on Saturday mornings, from 9:30 to 12:30. Topics covered include:

  • Teamwork
  • Eye Contact
  • Transitions
  • Bullying
  • Emotions
  • Appropriate Play
  • Teen Relationships
  • Sportsmanship
  • Food Tolerance
  • Language Building
  • Role Playing Social Scenarios
  • Initiating and Reciprocating Peer Interaction

“This program has been so successful we’ve offered it during the summer. With insurance helping out, more and more children have been able to benefit,” said Robinson. “With our new facility, we should be able to enhance this program and make it available to more students as we hire additional BCBAs.”

As for the new location, a grand opening celebration is planned for later in 2013. BCI’s corporate offices are located in Mansfield, Massachusetts.

If you have questions about programs offered by BCI, please visit www.bciaba.org or call 508-363-0200.

About Behavioral Concepts, Inc. (BCI)

Founded in 2002, BCI provides educational, behavioral, consultative and assessment services to children with autism and their families. These services are based on the principles of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) and are tailored to the unique needs of the individuals BCI works with. It’s BCI’s goal to maximize student potential, increase independence and enhance our clients’ quality of life within their home, school and community.

BCI’s main care center is located at 345 Greenwood Street, in Worcester, Massachusetts. BCI operates its BASICS services at 100 Hartwell Street in West Boylston, Mass. The BASICS program is a sub-contract arrangement between Behavioral Concepts, Inc. and the Central Massachusetts Special Education Collaborative. BASICS provides services to children aged 7-22 with autism and maladaptive behaviors. BCI’s Corporate Offices are located in Mansfield, Mass.

For complete information, visit http://bciaba.org or to arrange a consultation with a BCI clinician, please call (508) 363-0200.

Worcester college students begin internship and fellowship program at Behavioral Concepts, Inc. (BCI)

Carolyn Collamer

Jennifer Schmuck

WORCESTER, MA…

Four students currently enrolled at colleges in Worcester recently began internship and fellowship programs at Behavioral Concepts, Inc. (BCI), a company of behavioral clinicians specializing in the care of children with autism in Central Massachusetts. Those students including Carolyn Collamer, Jennifer Schmuck and Julia Squiers of Worcester State University and Rosemary Cruz of Quinsigamond Community College.

Collamer, a senior from Dracut, Mass., Schmuck a senior from Ashby, Mass. and Squiers, a senior from Millbury, Mass., will be part of the year long fellowship program. As part of that program, they will experience the following:

  • Attend week-long comprehensive training for ABA techniques, jargon and methods as well as BCI specific staff requirements. Training culminates in an exam that must be passed in order to begin child specific orientation.
  • Attend and pass 8 hour CPI (non-violent crisis prevention and intervention) training.
  • Shadow Staff for complete sessions with a variety of clients.
  • Implement skill acquisition programs.
  • Implement Behavior Management Guidelines (BMGs) and/or Behavior Support Plans (BSPs)
  • Collect and graph data on skill acquisition goals.
  • Collect data on rates of behavior.
  • Participate in weekly/bi weekly supervision with Clinical Coordinator

As an intern, Cruz, a sophomore from Jefferson, Mass., will participate in many of these activities but only for the fall semester.

“The number of children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders over the past dozen years has escalated dramatically. With that increase comes the need for training and grooming the next generation of clinicians and behaviorists,” said BCI Founder and Director Dr. Jeffrey Robinson. “That future demands that our fellowship and internship program be very focused so that these young people are trained appropriately and can be active participants in working with our students.”

BCI interns typically are college students with aspirations of being a clinical coordinator or therapists. BCI interns have typically been psychology, education, special education and criminal justice, though all majors are welcome to apply.

About Behavioral Concepts, Inc. (BCI)

Founded in 2002, BCI provides educational, behavioral, consultative and assessment services to children with autism and their families. These services are based on the principles of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) and are tailored to the unique needs of the individuals BCI works with. It’s BCI’s goal to maximize student potential, increase independence and enhance our clients’ quality of life within their home, school and community.

BCI’s main care center is located at 170 Goddard Memorial Drive, in Worcester, Massachusetts. BCI operates its BASICS services at 100 Hartwell Street in West Boylston, Mass. The BASICS program is a sub-contract arrangement between Behavioral Concepts, Inc. and the Central Massachusetts Special Education Collaborative. BASICS provides services to children aged 7-22 with autism and maladaptive behaviors. BCI’s Corporate Offices are located in Mansfield, Mass.

For complete information, visit http://bciaba.org or to arrange  a consultation with a BCI clinician, please call (508) 363-0200.

Julia Squiers

Rosemary Cruz

 

BCI Fellowship Program with Worcester State University

College interns have been part of BCI’s culture for the past several years. Many of those interns came from Worcester State University. While a typical internship lasts a semester, we wanted to create a program that provided greater benefit to the interns. The end result was a fellowship program we developed with WSU.

Currently, we have three Worcester State University students participating in the yearlong fellowship program. Here’s a checklist of what participants in the fellowship program will experience:

  • Attend week-long comprehensive training for ABA techniques, jargon and methods as well as BCI specific staff requirements. Training culminates in an exam that must be passed in order to begin child specific orientation.
  • Attend and pass 8 hour CPI (non-violent crisis prevention and intervention) training.
  • Shadow Staff for complete sessions with a variety of clients.
  • Implement skill acquisition programs.
  • Implement Behavior Management Guidelines (BMGs) and/or Behavior Support Plans (BSPs)
  • Collect and graph data on skill acquisition goals.
  • Collect data on rates of behavior.
  • Participate in weekly/bi weekly supervision with Clinical Coordinator

How to prepare your ASD child for middle school

WORCESTER, MA…

For children leaving grade school, entering middle school can be a very trying time and a difficult adjustment. For children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD), that transition poses more challenges than the average student could imagine.

“For children with ASDs, going to school is a habit. When it’s time to move on to a new school, that means the habit needs to be altered and that’s not as easy as explaining to them that this year they will be going to a new school,” said Dr. Jeff Robinson, Ph.D., founder of Behavioral Concepts, Inc. (BCI), a company of behavioral clinicians specializing in the care of children with autism in Central Massachusetts. “The process of transitioning children with ASDs really needs to begin well before the school year.”

Robinson recommends several steps to help parents of children with ASDs help their middle school-age children make the transition to their new school:

  • Write a social story or series of stories to help the student prepare for the change
  • Allow the student to have as many visits to the new school as needed
  • Practice a walking route to classes and opening and closing their locker
  • Identify important areas such as: bus stop, homeroom, bathrooms, cafeteria, gym, etc.
  • Review the yearbook to familiarize with faculty and school activities during the year
  • Take the student to parent-teacher orientation
  • Practice scripts so the child knows where to get help and requesting for a quiet place to calm down (practice routes)
  • Prepare the student that each teacher has different rules and procedures

“While preparing your child is one thing, it’s important to communicate to administration and faculty at the new school that you have an ASD child attending middle school next year and would like to set up a time to meet and go over some things,” said Dr. Robinson. “That’s actually one of the reasons we formed BCI 10 years ago was to work with schools to ease the transition of ASD students at all grade levels.”

Based in Worcester, Mass and with offices in Mansfield and West Boylston, Mass., BCI provides much needed services to children with autism and their families. BCI instructional programs are delivered using discrete trial training, task analysis, and systematic prompting procedures implemented by ABA therapists who have successfully completed pre-service training, on-site, and quarterly evaluations by their clinical supervisors.

Instruction is provided across a variety of domains, included by not limited to: Activities of daily living, functional and augmentative communication, functional academics and community outings and safety awareness. Social skills groups with peer models are also offered as part of BCI’s services. A heavy emphasis is placed on generalization and maintenance of skills, in addition to family training, so that families may implement the supports and carry-over skills in the home.

BCI accepts Harvard-Pilgrim, Blue Cross Blue Shield, United Behavioral Health, Tufts, Aetna and coverage from other major health care providers.

For complete information, visit http://bciaba.org or to arrange a consultation with a BCI clinician, please call (508) 363-0200.

About Behavioral Concepts, Inc. (BCI)

Founded in 2002, BCI provides educational, behavioral, consultative and assessment services to children with autism and their families. These services are based on the principles of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) and are tailored to the unique needs of the individuals BCI works with. It’s BCI’s goal to maximize student potential, increase independence and enhance our clients’ quality of life within their home, school and community.

BCI’s main care center is located at 170 Goddard Memorial Drive, in Worcester, Massachusetts. BCI operates its BASICS services at 100 Hartwell Street in West Boylston, Mass. The BASICS program is a sub-contract arrangement between Behavioral Concepts, Inc. and the Central Massachusetts Special Education Collaborative. BASICS provides services to children aged 7-22 with autism and maladaptive behaviors. BCI’s Corporate Offices are located in Mansfield, Mass.

For complete information, visit http://bciaba.org or to arrange a consultation with a BCI clinician, please call (508) 363-0200.