The Department of Exceptional Student Education

Autism Spectrum Disorder

 

Dr. Susan Mochen

Program Planner


The School District of Palm Beach County

3378 Forest Hill Blvd, A-203
West Palm Beach, FL 33406
Telephone: 561-434-8630

Fax: 561-434-8384

Email: susan.mochen@palmbeachschools.org

Staff Directory

Area 1 Michael McGinty 561-434-8630

Area 2

Joanne Bennett

561-434-8374

Area 3

Janine Waisley

561-422-9324

Area 4

Darrin Moshe

561-366-6077

Area 5 Michelle Beatty 561-434-8630

Program Description
The School District of Palm Beach County is committed to excellence in education and preparation of all our students with Autism Spectrum Disorders. We provide a range of services at a variety of school along with a continuum form Pre-K through High School.

Programming and Elements and definition

6A-6.03023 Exceptional Student Education Eligibility for Students With Autism Spectrum Disorder.

(1) Definition. Autism spectrum disorder is a condition that reflects a wide range of symptoms and levels of impairment, which vary in severity from one (1) individual to another. Autism spectrum disorder is characterized by an atypical developmental profile with a pattern of qualitative impairments in social interaction and social communication, and the presence of restricted or repetitive patterns of behavior, interests, or activities, which occur across settings.

(2) General education interventions and activities. Prior to referral for evaluation the requirements in subsection 6A-6.0331(1), F.A.C., must be met.

(3) Evaluation. In addition to the procedures identified in subsection 6A-6.0331(5), F.A.C., the district shall conduct a full and individual evaluation that addresses the core features of autism spectrum disorder to include deficits in social interaction, social communication, and restricted or repetitive, patterns of behavior, interests, or activities. An evaluation for determining eligibility shall include the following components:

(a) Behavioral observations conducted by members of the evaluation team targeting social interaction, social communication skills, and restricted or repetitive patterns of behavior, interests, or activities, across settings;

(b) A social/developmental history based on an interview with the parents(s) or guardian(s);

(c) A psychological evaluation that includes assessment of academic, intellectual, social-emotional, and behavioral functioning and must include at least one (1) standardized instrument specific to autism spectrum disorder;

(d) A language evaluation that includes assessment of the pragmatic (both verbal and nonverbal) and social interaction components of social communication. An observation of the student’s social communication skills must be conducted by a speech language pathologist;

(e) A standardized assessment of adaptive behavior; and

(f) If behavioral concerns are present, a functional behavioral assessment is conducted to inform behavioral interventions on the student’s individual educational plan.

(4) Criteria for eligibility. A student with autism spectrum disorder is eligible for exceptional student education if all of the following criteria are met:

(a) Evidence of all of the following:

1. Impairment in social interaction as evidenced by delayed, absent, or atypical ability to relate to individuals or the environment;

2. Impairment in verbal or nonverbal language skills used for social communication; and

3. Restricted or repetitive patterns of behavior, interests, or activities.

(b) The core features identified in subparagraphs (4)(a)1., (4)(a)2., and (4)(a)3. of this rule, occur across settings.

(c) The student needs special education as defined in paragraph 6A-6.03411(1)(kk), F.A.C.

Rulemaking Authority 1003.01, 1003.57, 1003.571 FS. Law Implemented 1003.01, 1003.57, 1003.571 FS. History–New 7-2-79, Formerly 6A-6.3023, Amended 7-1-07, 12-15-09, 4-1-15.

 

PUBLIC SCHOOL PROGRAMMING FOR CHILDREN WITH AUTISM SPECTRUM DISORDER

  • Pre kindergarten thru age 22
  • Elementary - Each self contained classroom staffed with 1 teacher, 1 classroom assistant, and 1 half day speech/language pathologist
  • Middle/high - Each self contained classroom staffed with 1 teacher, 1 classroom assistant and at least 1 period per day with a speech/language pathologist

FUNCTIONAL BEHAVIOR ASSESSMENT

 

Functional Behavior Assessment (FBA) is a team process utilized to gain information about an individual.  The individual should be demonstrating extreme or continuous behaviors that are dangerous to himself/herself, or others.  The behavior may also severely disrupt the learning environment.  The information gathered during the FBA process is utilized to develop an individual Behavior Intervention Plan.

 

The process consists of three components:
            Records reviews
            Interviews
            Data collection

 

Once all the information has been gathered, the team meets to develop a hypothesis statement which will assist with identifying the function of the behavior.  Once that has been determined, the team will determine what replacement skills should be taught and how they are going to teach them.

 

1. Functional Behavior Assessment (FBA) is a team process utilized to gain information about an individual.  The individual should be demonstrating extreme or continuous behaviors that are dangerous to himself/herself or others.  The behavior may also severely disrupt the learning environment.  The information gathered during the FBA process is utilized to develop an individual Behavior Intervention Plan.
    
2. To start the process, a team will be convened, consent from a parent must first  be determined.

 

3. The team may consist of anyone who knows the student.  People may also participate via the interview process without actively being part of the team.

 

4. At the initial meeting, the team will identify the target behavior, define the
goals of intervention and assign roles and responsibilities.

 

5. The process consists of three components:  Record reviews
                                                                            Interviews
                                                                            Data collection

 

6. Once all the information has been gathered, the team meets to develop a Hypothesis statement which will assist with identifying the function of the behavior.  Once that has been determined, the team will then determine what replacement skills should be taught and how they are going to teach them.

 

7. Data collection will continue during the implementation of the BIP and determine the success of the plan.

 

8. The team will meet periodically to monitor and evaluate the plan.  The plan should be modified as needed.

 

PowerPoint Presentation for Functional Behavior Assessment (FBA) and How to Develop an Individual Behavior Intervention Plan (BIP) (.pdf)

 

ASD Endorsement www.florida-ese.org/asdendorsement/

Masters Program

Masters Programs Brochure 2013 (.pdf)

ASD-IND Potential Student Invitation (.pdf)

 

FIU Opportunity to earn Master's degree and the ASD Endorsement

PREPARE Flyer  (.pdf)

 

Autism Resources


Autism-info.com


www.autism.fau.edu


www.unlockingautism.org


http://www.autism-society.org

FBA/BIP Manual

 

Photos of Classrooms

Ideas of Physical Structure for an ASD Classroom (.pdf)