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Transition Matters: Post-Secondary Tools for Individuals with Autism James E. Williams Jr. Regional Coordinator, Independent Living Experience Certified.

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Presentation on theme: "Transition Matters: Post-Secondary Tools for Individuals with Autism James E. Williams Jr. Regional Coordinator, Independent Living Experience Certified."— Presentation transcript:

1 Transition Matters: Post-Secondary Tools for Individuals with Autism James E. Williams Jr. Regional Coordinator, Independent Living Experience Certified Rehabilitation Counselor Doctoral Student, Educational Leadership, Lamar University MY WEBSITE: TRAN Conference Frisco. TX

2 How are we doing? Successful case closure rates for Autism are getting much better statewide (Up 58% from 2011 to 2013), but consumers with Autism are still some of the toughest to train and place in VR. Successful case closure rates for Autism are getting much better statewide (Up 58% from 2011 to 2013), but consumers with Autism are still some of the toughest to train and place in VR. At the current growth rate, DARS will be serving almost 4,000 consumers with Autism statewide in At the current growth rate, DARS will be serving almost 4,000 consumers with Autism statewide in 2015.

3 What is working? Non-profits and small businesses seem to work better and be more understanding with consumers with Autism. Non-profits and small businesses seem to work better and be more understanding with consumers with Autism. Applied Behavior Analysis can make a tremendous difference with behavior at work, school, and at home. Applied Behavior Analysis can make a tremendous difference with behavior at work, school, and at home. Deficits in social skills cannot be ignored and, many times, they are the number one reason we see our consumers lose jobs. Deficits in social skills cannot be ignored and, many times, they are the number one reason we see our consumers lose jobs.

4 Challenges with ASD Consumers Their needs and strengths are very different regardless of similarities in IQ, achievement, family support, or socio- economic status. As such, some CRP’s and counselors are really struggling with placement. Their needs and strengths are very different regardless of similarities in IQ, achievement, family support, or socio- economic status. As such, some CRP’s and counselors are really struggling with placement. ABA is very helpful, but it can’t fix every problem, so additional interventions (ASD Supports) may be needed. ABA is very helpful, but it can’t fix every problem, so additional interventions (ASD Supports) may be needed. Many counselors assume the higher-functioning consumers with ASD are the easiest to place, but many times we experience the most challenges from those individuals. Many counselors assume the higher-functioning consumers with ASD are the easiest to place, but many times we experience the most challenges from those individuals. For some consumers, if the job isn’t high-interest, they will simply stop trying or they may even directly sabotage it. For some consumers, if the job isn’t high-interest, they will simply stop trying or they may even directly sabotage it. Intellectual/Achievement ability does not equal employability, job sustainability, or amount of time to place. Intellectual/Achievement ability does not equal employability, job sustainability, or amount of time to place.

5 What is needed from the consumer? Participation Participation Self-Advocacy Self-Advocacy Self-Determination Self-Determination Motivation Motivation Understanding of the difference between modification and accommodation Understanding of the difference between modification and accommodation Willingness to address social challenges Willingness to address social challenges Understanding that failure to meet a job’s standards, regardless of disability, can and usually will lead to job loss at some point. Understanding that failure to meet a job’s standards, regardless of disability, can and usually will lead to job loss at some point.

6 Self-Advocacy “Self-advocacy is the ability to communicate one’ talents, skills and needed accommodations to others….” (Field, Martin, Miller, Ward, & Wehmeyer, 1998, p.2)

7 Integrated Self-Advocacy Curriculum Integrated Self Advocacy helps us, as professionals and family members, to provide children and adults with ASD and other conditions with safe forums for self- discovery, structured learning activities and a cumulative understanding of the many facets of self- advocacy. Integrated Self Advocacy helps us, as professionals and family members, to provide children and adults with ASD and other conditions with safe forums for self- discovery, structured learning activities and a cumulative understanding of the many facets of self- advocacy.

8 The 5 Self-Advocacy Skills Areas 1) Sensory/Environmental 1) Sensory/Environmental 2) Social 2) Social 3) Disclosure 3) Disclosure 4) Deep & Focused Interests 4) Deep & Focused Interests 5) Civil Rights/Entitlements 5) Civil Rights/Entitlements (Paradiz, 2010)

9 Self-Determination …choosing and enacting choices to control one’s life - to the maximum extent possible - based on knowing and valuing oneself, and in the pursuit of one’s own needs, interests, and values. (Campeau and Wolfman, Research on self- determination in individuals with disabilities. 1993, p. 2) …choosing and enacting choices to control one’s life - to the maximum extent possible - based on knowing and valuing oneself, and in the pursuit of one’s own needs, interests, and values. (Campeau and Wolfman, Research on self- determination in individuals with disabilities. 1993, p. 2)

10 Promoting self-determination Students who are self-determined tend to make things happen. They need to be able to: Students who are self-determined tend to make things happen. They need to be able to: Set personal goals Set personal goals Solve problems that act as barriers to achieving their goals Solve problems that act as barriers to achieving their goals Make appropriate choices based on personal preferences & interests Make appropriate choices based on personal preferences & interests Participate in decisions that impact the quality of life Participate in decisions that impact the quality of life Advocate for their own academic needs & services Advocate for their own academic needs & services Create action plans to achieve goals Create action plans to achieve goals Self-regulate & self-manage day-to-day actions Self-regulate & self-manage day-to-day actions (Simpson and Spencer, 2009)

11 MOTIVATION!!!!! Simply put, motivation is the key that unlocks the potentially enormous success of a student with a disability!!! Simply put, motivation is the key that unlocks the potentially enormous success of a student with a disability!!! What enabled me to be successful? What enabled me to be successful? MOTIVATION and AMBITOUS GOALS MOTIVATION and AMBITOUS GOALS

12 Motivating Students to Address Their Needs 1. Link needed training or services to meeting their own goals 2. Make training or services enjoyable 3. Use external rewards if intrinsic motivation is missing 4. Shore up assets and strengths before addressing challenges 5. Testimonials from successful individuals with ASD’s 6. Helping to teach others (Baker, 2005)

13 Modifications vs. Accommodations A reduction, change or limitation; a fundamental change in form or content of something. A reduction, change or limitation; a fundamental change in form or content of something. Modification Modification Accommodation Accommodation To adjust or adapt To adjust or adapt

14 What is needed from the counselor? Careful Review of Assessment Careful Review of Assessment Flexibility in Services and Delivery Flexibility in Services and Delivery Understanding the Biggest Challenge: Social Skills Understanding the Biggest Challenge: Social Skills Use of Your Best Resource: The DD Team Use of Your Best Resource: The DD Team Outside of the Box Thinking Outside of the Box Thinking

15 Careful Review of Assessment More Useful More Useful Vocational Assessment that connects interests to abilities (COPS System) Vocational Assessment that connects interests to abilities (COPS System) Social Skills Assessment (SRS2) Social Skills Assessment (SRS2) Diagnostic Assessment, if needed (ADOS2) Diagnostic Assessment, if needed (ADOS2) Adaptive Behavioral Scale (Vineland 2) Adaptive Behavioral Scale (Vineland 2) Environmental Work Assessment Environmental Work Assessment On the Job Assessments (DARS DD Team) On the Job Assessments (DARS DD Team) Less Useful Less Useful Intelligence Testing (Not Static) Intelligence Testing (Not Static) Achievement Testing (Mixed Results) Achievement Testing (Mixed Results)

16 Flexibility in Services and Delivery As an ASD Supports provider, we offer services in groups and individually because we know that some consumers will need one on one instruction and some will benefit from whole group work. It varies from client to client, need to need, and even environment to environment. As an ASD Supports provider, we offer services in groups and individually because we know that some consumers will need one on one instruction and some will benefit from whole group work. It varies from client to client, need to need, and even environment to environment.

17 Understanding the Biggest Challenge Social skills is the elephant in the room and it can’t be ignored if a consumer is going to achieve long-term job stability and have the potential for career advancement. Social skills is the elephant in the room and it can’t be ignored if a consumer is going to achieve long-term job stability and have the potential for career advancement. Some great resources on social skills are available from Social Thinking, AAPC, Future Horizons, and Jessica Kingsley Publishing Some great resources on social skills are available from Social Thinking, AAPC, Future Horizons, and Jessica Kingsley Publishing I also have several documents and links posted on my website. I also have several documents and links posted on my website.

18 Your Best Resource! The 2014 Statewide Developmental Disorders Team The 2014 Statewide Developmental Disorders Team Team Lead: Jennifer Kaut, M.Ed., BCBA Team Lead: Jennifer Kaut, M.Ed., BCBA 110 Members including VR Counselors and CRP’s 110 Members including VR Counselors and CRP’s Two Great OTJ Assessment Tools Two Great OTJ Assessment Tools Autism Level of Comfort Scale Autism Level of Comfort Scale Autism Employment Assessment Autism Employment Assessment I’ve used both with our clients and they’re very helpful! I’ve used both with our clients and they’re very helpful! Jennifer and all of the team members, including myself, are great resources and can be very helpful with problem solving, planning, and strategies. Jennifer and all of the team members, including myself, are great resources and can be very helpful with problem solving, planning, and strategies. A special thanks to Jennifer for the statistics used in slide 3! A special thanks to Jennifer for the statistics used in slide 3!

19 The Use of Social Skills Groups Sample Agenda: Week 1-Introduction to Vocational Skills Week 2-Communication: Part 1- Body Language, Active Listening, and Assertiveness Week 3-Communication: Part 2- Conflict Resolution Week 4-Communication: Part 3- Chain of Command Week 5-Appropriate Behavior: Getting Along with Your Co-Workers/Supervisors Week 6-Executive Functioning: Part 1- Time Management Week 7-Executive Functioning: Part 2- Problem Solving Week 8-Social Thinking: Part 1- Attitudes and Flexibility to Change Week 9-Social Thinking: Part 2- Friendships at Work Week 10-Social Thinking: Part 3- Working as a Team A great resource!

20 1:1 Employment Support (Community-Based) 1:1 Employment Support (Community-Based) Occurs on the job and at a client’s home Occurs on the job and at a client’s home Includes Job Coaching, Employment Partnerships, Job Searching, Vocational Evaluation Includes Job Coaching, Employment Partnerships, Job Searching, Vocational Evaluation 1:1 Independent Living Support (Community-Based) 1:1 Independent Living Support (Community-Based) Occurs at the client’s home and in the community Occurs at the client’s home and in the community Includes teaching, modeling, and skills training for tasks such as cooking, cleaning, med management, paying bills, organizing, scheduling, etc. Includes teaching, modeling, and skills training for tasks such as cooking, cleaning, med management, paying bills, organizing, scheduling, etc. Social Activities Social Activities Monthly Social/Community Events Monthly Social/Community Events Group Seminars (When Needed) Group Seminars (When Needed) Independent Living Experience-Texas

21 Our Success! o Quality of Life Rated Average or Better o ILE Clients- 94% o Nationally - 59% o Meaningfully Employed o ILE Clients - 93% o Nationally - 42% o Living Independently o ILE Clients - 95% o Nationally - 17% o Weekly Social Involvement o ILE Clients - 84% o Nationally - 46% What Makes ILE Unique?

22 Questions/Comments James E. Williams Jr. James E. Williams Jr. Phone: Phone: MY WEBSITE:

23 Resource Websites Independent Living Experience Independent Living Experience College Living Experience College Living Experience Texas Autism Resource and Research Center Texas Autism Resource and Research Center College Preparations for Students With High Functioning Autism College Preparations for Students With High Functioning Autism

24 Resource Websites PACER Center PACER Center National Center on Secondary Education and Transition National Center on Secondary Education and Transition Council for Exceptional Children Council for Exceptional Children United States Department of Education-Office of Civil Rights United States Department of Education-Office of Civil Rights ml ml ml ml

25 Resource Websites Transition Coalition-University of Kansas Transition Coalition-University of Kansas National Center for Learning Disabilities National Center for Learning Disabilities Association on Higher Education and Disability Association on Higher Education and Disability Texas Council for Developmental Disabilities Texas Council for Developmental Disabilities


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