W-20: School-Based Autism Assessments
9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
It is increasingly important for school psychologists to conduct legally defensible autism assessments due to the rising rates of autism in schools, the need for early intervention, and the associated legal costs. First, this workshop will discuss legal trends, as well as several Office of Administrative Hearings (OAH) cases that examined whether assessments were legally defensible. The results of a survey that gathered information about California school psychologists’ practices and procedures for school-based autism assessments will be reviewed. The participants will learn the components of a comprehensive autism assessment, including recommendations provided by the NASP Best Practices series, guidelines for conducting observations and interviews, and the strengths and weaknesses of autism-specific rating scales/structured observation methods.
Dr. Angela Davis, NCSP, is a fifth-year school psychologist for Bonita Unified School District. In her current position, she supports several SELPA classrooms designed for students with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). She recently completed her doctoral dissertation on autism assessment.
Dr. Jeanne Anne Carriere is the Director of the Educational Assessment Team with the Center for Autism & Neurodevelopmental Disorders and a Clinical Assistant Professor in the Counseling & School Psychology Program at Chapman University. Her practice and research interests include effective report writing, comprehensive autism assessment, and parent education.
Dr. Kelly Kennedy is an associate professor and associate dean at Chapman University. As a school psychology trainer, she is dedicated to helping new and veteran school psychologists craft best practices that help them effectively, efficiently and legal support the students, teachers and families they serve.
Strand: C, Topic: 1, Skill Level: II
NASP Domain: II