Kansas City Autism Training Center (KcATC)
The Kansas City Autism Training Center is committed to helping people on the autism spectrum fulfill their potential through ethical, evidence-based treatment, education, and training. The KcATC promotes state-of-the-art services and provides them to Kansas City area children with autism spectrum disorder and their families. KcATC is the only organization delivering behavioral services to children with autism in the Kansas City area that has typical peer models present all day.
This center is a fully incorporated and approved 501(c)3 charitable, not for profit organization. It is governed by a volunteer Board of Directors. It retains a volunteer professional advisory group which is composed of professional individuals with specialized training in the behavioral treatment of children with autism. Members of the Clinical Advisory Board participate based on their national and international reputations as experts in behavior therapy and developmental disabilities.
KcATC Direct Autism Services provides 20-35 hour treatment plans for children ages 2.5 to 12 diagnosed with autism. They design and provide interventions that employ applied behavior analysis (ABA) and are individualized for each child. The goal is that every child served at the center make socially valid changes that are important to the child and his/her family that results in the child being able to succeed in a less restrictive environment. For this reason, they provide parent training, ensuring skills learned on-site transfer to the home, and they support inclusion experiences both in schools and the community.
The center breaks important skills into small steps. They measure progress daily. Parents and staff take joy in the daily changes that occur in their students. The changes that they see in clients within months of enrollment are increased approach to adults and peers and increases in requisites to learning. Because they insist on parent training at enrollment, parents report being better able to interact with their child and to deal with the challenges associated with raising a child with an autism spectrum disorder.
Even though some children with autism begin intervention speaking, some of them do not have any functional communication. Even though some children have many maladaptive behaviors, some children do not. Success is defined differently for each child. The center is committed to each child meeting his or her own potential. Many alumni will be included in typical educational settings with and without support. Other clients’ success will be defined by increased family involvement, greater independence, and minimal maladaptive behavior.
The treatment that KcATC provides consists of discrete trial sessions separated by short play breaks. During work sessions, the providers follow highly detailed procedures and record the child’s responses on each presented trial. During play breaks the children are taught play skills and encouraged to interact with their peers and staff members.
Because of the intensive nature of an ABA program, the cost of a program like this is quite high. Some insurance companies are beginning to pay for some of the costs of therapy. Unfortunately, this typically only covers the cost of the overseeing psychologist and does not cover the cost associated with the teachers that work directly with the child. However, there are some programs available for funding assistance. These funding agencies differ from area to area. The best resource is to contact your local chapter of the American Autism Society for funding information.
Depending on the child and the family lifestyle, treatment hours may be divided between the child’s home and the Kansas City Autism Training Center. Children may be treated in their own homes at least part-time in order to promote the generalization of their skills to the home environment and to facilitate the involvement of the family in treatment.
Parents are involved in direct treatment to the extent that their own schedules and family life allow. They are taught the discrete trial procedures by staff and follow the same written programs. Typically, family members are responsible for no more than three or four of the full forty hours of treatment each week. More commonly, parents extend and complement the formal work sessions by requiring their child to use the new skills in more natural situations.
As the day school program of KcATC, Astra Day School provides a solid, scientific culture of trained learning specialists and a core belief that every child has the right to learn to their greatest potential. Astra’s close ties to behavioral science lead to a unique focus on reinforcement and motivation for every student. All programming is assent-based, meaning that learners are not coerced into participation; teachers stay alert to levels of participation, which leads to high-interest lessons.
Astra Day School is a service provided by KcATC which offers intensive one-on-one therapy to children on the autism spectrum, as well as two preschool classrooms which enroll both typically developing students and students with special needs.
Typically, the measure of success is whether the child has acquired skills sufficiently to benefit from their home school district’s services. However, parents of children with autism also measure success in other ways. Parents call KcATC when their child has his first sleepover, or gets invited to a birthday party, participates in his first school concert, or reports that he has a best friend. The social skills programming at KcATC is pivotal to achieving these milestones that parents of typical children take for granted.
- Address: 10842 McGee Street, Kansas City, MO 64114
- Phone: (816) 708-0540
St. Louis & Kansas City
Serving all communities in St. Louis / Metro East and Kansas City, Autism Speaks is dedicated to promoting solutions, across the spectrum and throughout the life span, for the needs of individuals with autism spectrum disorder and their families. The company does this through advocacy and support, increasing understanding and acceptance of people with autism, and advancing research into causes and better interventions for autism spectrum disorder and related conditions.
- Address: 9200 Olive Boulevard, Suite 202 St. Louis, MO 63132
- Phone: (314) 989-1003
- Email: [email protected]
Beaverton Autism Clinic/ BlueSprig Kansas City Clinic
They are in a great location being in Kansas City and the community offers lots of great resources for clients and their families. They care about every family that reaches out to them and they want to be the ones that help connect clients to those resources. The staff is passionate about what they do and it shows! They truly care about the progress they make with clients and their families.
They are the largest provider of ABA therapy services in Texas and the team of highly skilled Board Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBAs) and Registered Behavior Technicians (RBTs) is dedicated to providing the very best compassionate, individualized treatment for every child. They provide ADOS-2 assessments in order to assist in diagnoses and offer social skills as well as parent training. They accept most major insurance plans and welcome you to schedule a no-charge consultation and personal tour.
- Address: 7 E. Gregory Blvd., Kansas City, MO 64114
- Phone: (816) 474-3995
Kansas City Regional Center
The Regional Office is the community-based services delivery agency administered by the Department of Mental Health, Division of Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities. The primary mission is to provide, within the limits of available resources, a comprehensive array of services for persons with developmental disabilities living in Bates, Cass, Clay, Lafayette, Jackson, Johnson, Platte and Ray counties in Missouri.
Kansas City Regional Center serves as the primary access point to the mental health system and provides assessment services, service coordination, individual habilitation planning, purchase of prescribed services (POS), and client advocacy.
Eligibility for services developmental disabilities, such as mental retardation, cerebral palsy, head injuries, autism spectrum disorder, epilepsy, and certain learning disabilities; conditions must have occurred before age 22, with the expectation that they will continue; people with these disabilities must be substantially limited in their ability to function independently; and live in Bates, Cass, Clay, Jackson, Johnson, Lafayette, Platte, or Ray counties.
- Address: 821 East Admiral Boulevard, P.O. Box 412557 Kansas City, MO 64141
- Phone: (816) 889-3400
- E-mail: http://www.dmh.mo.gov/kcrc
Sherwood Autism Center
The center educates, equips, and empowers children and adults with autism spectrum disorder as well as other developmental disabilities in order to promote independence in family and community life.
It started in 1974 when Debbie Wood and two other psychology students were working with a boy in a local psychiatric hospital. They had been taking turns, working with him day and night for eight months. When it came time for the hospital to discharge him, there weren’t any schools for him to attend that could offer him the individualized services he needed to continue to learn and thrive. They were going to send him home without services. From there, the students founded Sherwood with six students in a church basement. They used a combination of their last names to create the name and drew toothpicks to see who would be the executive director.
At that time, it was the first agency to provide specialized education and support services to individuals with an autism spectrum disorder in the Kansas City area. Today, Sherwood provides high-quality services for both children and adults with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and a wide range of developmental disabilities.
The philosophy behind that “there has to be something better” still drives us today. We constantly seek to find the most effective methods and resources available to help the individuals we serve.
A special education program that the center provides is a comprehensive, school program that operates 220 days a year, including an eight-week extended school year during the summer. Students, ages between 5-21, are referred to this program through their public school districts when a specialized school environment is recommended for the success of the student.
The program operates Monday to Friday from 8:15 am to 2:30 pm during the regular school year and from 8:15 am to 1:30 pm during the extended school year. Services are provided in a small staff to student ratio (1:1 to 1:6) determined by the level of behavior support needed. Each student has an Individualized Education Plan (IEP), that identifies individualized goals and objectives that determine to program.
Programming emphasis may include activities of daily living, modified physical education, community-based instruction, functional academics, music therapy, occupational therapy, pre-vocational skills, speech, and language therapy, social skills, and transition services.
Through participation in group and independent skill-building activities, participants are given the opportunity to increase skills in communication, independent living, following directions, positive interactions with peers and co-workers, volunteer opportunities, self-advocacy, task completion, computer skills, and workplace etiquette.
- Address: 8030 Ward Parkway Plaza Kansas City, Missouri 64114
- Phone: (816) 363-4606 / (816) 822-1988 / (816) 333-3344 / (816) 333-3377
- E-mail: [email protected]
Family First Center for Autism and Child Development
The center Development opened in Kansas City in 2010. Since then, it has been the mission to serve families with the highest quality of therapeutic services while maintaining a fun, friendly, and interactive environment for children with autism to learn and thrive.
They have designed the center to provide all of the essential tools to help the kids thrive in many aspects of their daily lives. The atmosphere is warm and inviting, with a perfect blend of timeless essentials and integration of the newest technology.
Family First provides intensive Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) for children and adolescents who have been diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder. They recognize that the needs of each child may be very different. The programs are designed with your child in mind making sure they are targeting their specific needs. Core areas that are addressed within programming may include language development, social skills development, behavior management, and functional living skills.
All of the therapy is provided in individual rooms in order to eliminate distractions. Social skills development is often addressed on a larger scale, group format that may include developmentally similar peers as well as peer models. Targeted skills are taught systematically with the end goal of having the behavior or skill generalize into the home and community environments.
All of the therapy rooms are video monitored for educational, training and safety purposes. They use their video monitoring system to aid in ongoing supervision and feedback for their staff and as a tool for parent training. In addition, it has been exciting to watch children self-monitor their progress at the center by reviewing their own performance through the video system.
- Address: 5863 NW 72nd Street, Kansas City, MO 64151
- Phone: (816) 984-8280