New Web site provides free resources for administrators to develop programs that prepare educators to teach students with autism

DENVER (Apr. 5, 2010)
Every April, organizations and individuals worldwide focus on the growing number of children with autism to foster awareness about Autism Spectrum Disorders. This educational effort is important as early diagnosis and intervention is critical for children with autism and their families.

In support of Autism Awareness Month, AutismPro encourages district and school administrators and special education teams to visit its new Autism Teacher Capabilities Web site at www.AutismPro.com/PD1. The new site promotes increased teacher effectiveness by outlining steps for administrators to create an autism-specific professional development plan for schools district-wide.

As the number of students with autism increases, administrators face the challenge of providing individualized instruction for these students with fewer financial resources. This makes a cost-effective professional development solution key to building an effective special education program.

In addition, studies conducted by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation show that teacher effectiveness impacts student learning more than any other factor under the control of school systems, supporting the belief that professional development is essential for increased effectiveness.

“Preparing educators to teach students with autism is becoming a more important issue for school districts as the number of students with autism continues to rise,” said Kevin Custer, CEO of AutismPro. “On a daily basis, one in four general education teachers works directly with a student with autism, making cost-effective, accessible professional development necessary to educate these students successfully.”

AutismPro’s new Web site includes tools that help administrators forecast the number of students in their district they can expect to be diagnosed with autism, and the cost of educating these students using information gathered from the company’s own research and analysis. The site also features resources that allow districts to assess their current level of professional development centered on working with students with autism, and lists criteria for evaluating cost-effective training tools for educators.

In addition, the new Web site features case studies and examples of district implementations of AutismPro resources, and how they have enabled district staff to instruct students with autism successfully. The availability of Web-based resources also makes AutismPro’s professional development tools less expensive for districts, and more accessible to educators.

Working closely with the Autism Society of America, AutismPro encourages participation in the organization’s unique initiatives to promote Autism Awareness Month. For a list of the Autism Society of America’s upcoming events, visit www.autism-society.com.

About AutismPro

AutismPro, provider of a 21st century response to educating students with autism, works with school districts, early intervention providers, and governments to supplement quality programs. The company’s suite of products enables administrators to build district-wide staff competency and capability, and helps educators to improve outcomes for students with autism. AutismPro has offices in Denver, Colo., and Fredericton, New Brunswick. For more information, visit www.AutismPro.com/Media.

Media Contacts

• Leise Roberts, AutismPro, 506-462-0991, lroberts@autismpro.com

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