Navigation Links
UGA grad program expands to prepare teachers to work with secondary students with autism

Athens, Ga. An innovative University of Georgia graduate program in special education that has prepared scores of Georgia teachers to work with elementary-age students with autism over the last several years has received a new 4-year, $793,000 federal grant to train teachers to work with similarly challenged secondary-age students.

Autism is a complex developmental disability that is part of a group known as autism spectrum disorders (ASD). Today, 1 in 150 individuals is diagnosed with autism, making it more common than pediatric cancer, diabetes and AIDS combined, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

"There's a need for specialized training on how to structure the classroom, how to respond to these kids when they behave inappropriately and how to design instruction that will facilitate the learning of new skills," said David Gast, a professor of special education, who co-founded the Collaborative Personnel Preparation in Autism (COPPA) program at UGA in 2003.

Gast will co-direct the new program called the Collaborative Adolescent Autism Teacher Training (CAATT) project, with Kevin Ayres, an assistant professor of special education. It will use much of the U.S. Department of Education grant to fund fellowships for up to a dozen graduate students a year to learn how to work with secondary-age students with ASD.

CAATT will work largely with teachers in three diverse school districts in rural, urban and suburban areas of Northeast Georgia.

"Our primary efforts will be in Gwinnett, Clarke and Madison counties as those are our partner districts. But if we were to get an applicant from Cobb (County) who may be a current teacher wanting to complete their M.Ed., they would be eligible," said Ayres. "We are really recruiting statewide as well as out-of-state people. We feel we will be best able to supply Gwinnett, Clarke, and Madison with new teachers when we recruit folks fresh out of their undergrad programs who are not currently teaching anywhere. These are the folks then that we can work with to get into the partner systems."

Gast and Deanna Luscre, who coordinated the ASD program for Gwinnett County Public Schools from 1996-2003, developed the COPPA program with a grant of $894,000 from the U.S. Department of the Education in 2003. The program received a second grant of $793,000 in 2007 for four more years.

The second grant allowed UGA to offer additional training in ASD to interested teachers in Clarke, Cobb and Forsyth county schools. Teachers from other school districts have also participated in one or more of the courses being offered.

"Comprehensive public school programs for students with autism must provide high quality, evidence-based intervention from birth to age 21 and to achieve this goal, schools need highly qualified teachers," said Ayres.

"Preparation and specialization in teaching secondary-age students is distinct from that of elementary-age students and this expansion is significant because it provides for the development of three new courses and two new practica addressing the unique needs of adolescents related to transition planning, community-based instruction and academic content," he said.

The new program will help put more qualified teachers into Georgia schools, which like other schools across the nation face increasing numbers of students with ASD. One Georgia school system reported eight classrooms for students with autism in 1994, today they have 180 classrooms serving those students, said Ayres.

ASD occurs in all racial, ethnic and social groups and is four times more likely to strike boys than girls. It is defined by significant impairments in social interaction and communication and the presence of unusual behaviors and interests.

The number of children diagnosed with autism has grown about 17 percent a year across the country, and could reach 4 million in the next 10 years, according to Department of Education reports.

Contact: Kevin Ayres
University of Georgia

Related medicine news :

1. Webcast Alert: Kaiser Permanente Residency Program Open House
2. School-based overweight prevention program may cut risk of eating disorders among girls
3. TriWest Creates First-of-its-Kind Partnership to Offer Military Leaders With Grief Support Program
4. Keeping Kids Healthy and Fit: The New York Kids Club Launches a Revolutionary New Fitness Program
5. Patient Advocate Foundation Launches Program to Help Uninsured Virginians with Chronic, Debilitating and Life-Threatening Illness Access Quality Healthcare
6. Johnson & Johnson Campaign for Nursings Future Joins With AACN to Offer New Minority Nurse Faculty Scholars Program
7. Concentra Expands Horizon Air Employee Health Program With On-Site Clinic
8. Clarity Imaging International, Inc. Rolls Out Mobile DEXA Program
9. HealthFitness CEO Supports Move Toward Cultural Shift, and Science-Based Health Management Programming
10. Judge Rules That Florida Disease Management Program Serving 8,000 HIV/AIDS Patients Should Be Re-bid, Says AIDS Healthcare Foundation
11. USA TODAY Continues Spirit of the USA Charity Program as Part of Newspapers 25th Anniversary Celebration
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... , ... MPWH, the No.1 Herpes-only dating community in the world, revealed that over 50% of ... than 3.7 billion people under the age of 50 – or 67% of the population ... global estimates of HSV-1 infection . , "The data shocks us highly!" said Michelle ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... DE (PRWEB) , ... November 27, 2015 , ... ... member of the well-respected Microsoft Dynamics SL User Group (MSDSLUG). Recognized as Microsoft’s ... an independent group of Microsoft Dynamics SL software users, partners, industry experts and ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. (PRWEB) , ... November 27, 2015 ... ... you start failing. Secura Consultants has prided itself for not only fulfilling the ... best income protection solutions at an affordable price and providing top-tier customer service. ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... ... CBD College is proud to announce that on November 20th, ... its Diagnostic Medical Sonography program. CBD College is honored to join this very short ... universities in the state of California make the cut. CBD College is officially the ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... November 27, 2015 , ... Dr. Thomas Dunlap ... and Dr. Tucker Bierbaum with Emergency Medicine at St., Joseph Health System’s ... STEMI and Sepsis conditions present in similar ways and require time-critical intervention to avoid ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/26/2015)... , November 26, 2015 /PRNewswire/ ... announced the addition of the  "2016 ... the Global Cell Surface Testing Market: ... report to their offering.  --> ... addition of the  "2016 Future Horizons ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... , Nov. 26, 2015 Research and ... the "Advanced Wound Care Market by Type (Dressings, ... End User (In-Patient Facility, Out-Patient Facility), and Geography - ... --> --> ... description, definition and forecast of the global advanced wound ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... , November 26, 2015 ... the "Self Administration of High Viscosity Drugs" ... ) has announced the addition of the ... report to their offering. --> Research ... addition of the "Self Administration of High ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: