Northern Autism Network (N.A.N.)
Clare-Gladwin RESD is a member of the Northern Michigan Autism Network (N.A.N.). N.A.N. is a regional collaborative group comprised of representatives from the eleven northern intermediate school districts. The goal of this network is to collaborate in order to build capacity for professional development and support of best practices for students with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Representatives from Clare-Gladwin RESD attend regional meetings and serve as liaison between the regional collaborative, the ISD and the local districts to disseminate information and develop new initiatives.
Clare-Gladwin RESD offers a workshop each fall that presents an overview of the definition and behavioral, communicative, social, and learning characteristics associated with an individual with Autism Spectrum Disorder. The workshop also highlights effective practices for working with students with autism.
Clare-Gladwin RESD offers a workshop based on the START (Statewide Autism Resources and Training) model of known universal supports and effective practices in supporting student with autism and special needs in general. The workshop addresses IDEA 97 requirements and as well as strategies for modifying and providing accommodations to the general ed curriculum.
Clare-Gladwin RESD offers workshops to help individuals gain an understanding of positive behavior supports (PBS), functional behavioral assessment (FBA), and the components of an effective behavior support plan. The workshop provides information on collecting relevant data and the use of the data to guide the development of behavior strategies. The Behavior Supports workshop is based on training obtained via the START (Statewide Autism Resources and Training) grant.
Participants will be instructed on the bio-neurological differences between individuals with Asperger syndrome and typical individuals. The learning characteristics of individuals with Asperger syndrome will be discussed and the consequent implications for educating them effectively. Participants will also learn how our own backgrounds and prejudices could influence our decision-making in providing effective learning environments for students with Asperger syndrome.
Clare-Gladwin RESD is in the process of recruiting and training an ASD coach in each building within the Clare-Gladwin local and intermediate districts. The coaching model was initiated and supported by the START grant. START provides ongoing training and materials for the district’s coach leaders. The Northern Autism Network is a funnel to Clare-Gladwin RESD for some of the monies needed for training and materials for this project.
The coaching model involves training an individual in each building in effective practices for supporting students with autism. That individual heads up meetings with the team that works with the student with ASD, to plan proactive supports that will help the student achieve success in all aspects of their life. One goal of coaching is to develop capacity within the teams to effectively implement the supports necessary to improve the lives of students with ASD.