Emory Autism Center 2020 Summer Conference has ended
The Emory Autism Center’s Monarch Summer Conference is for anyone involved with the education of individuals diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) including educators, vocational providers, behavior specialists, school administrators, paraprofessionals, speech and occupational therapists, rehabilitation counselors, school psychologists, parents, family members, mental health providers, families of individuals with ASD, and individuals with ASD.

We are featuring 25 sessions with top notch speakers in education and transition for students with ASD. Please identify the appropriate track (parent, education, transition) that will fit your interests/needs in order to identify sessions to attend.

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Parent [clear filter]
Wednesday, July 15

1:15am EDT

6A Toilet Training Individuals with ASD: Strategies for Success
The process of developing a successful toileting routine can be uniquely challenging for children with ASD.  This presentation will describe practical strategies for achieving toileting independence.  In addition, a comprehensive toilet training procedure designed to teach any aged individual how to master toileting skills will be described.  Freedom from pull-ups will open a world of new opportunities for inclusion and independence.

Learning Objectives:
1. Participants will be able to identify the importance of toilet training and common barriers for success
2. Participants will be able to describe prerequisite skills for toilet training.
3. Participants will be able to develop an understanding of two evidence-based techniques for toilet training.


Sharon Hynes, M.Ed., BCBA

Emory Autism Center
Sharon Hynes, MEd, BCBA, received her bachelor’s degree in Psychology at the University of Massachusetts and her Master’s degree in Curriculum and Instruction, with an emphasis in Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA), from Arizona State University. She has worked with individuals with... Read More →

Wednesday July 15, 2020 1:15am - 2:15am EDT
Downstairs 6C

1:15pm EDT

6A Overview of the Diagnosis Criteria and Assessment of Autism
This presentation will explain the diagnostic criteria of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) as specified by the American Psychiatric Association (DSM-5, 2013) and the difference between the diagnosis of ASD per the DSM-5 and special education eligibility of ASD in the school systems. An introduction to the screening and detection of ASD will be described. The presentation will share an overview of the diagnostic evaluation models used in Emory Autism Center’s Child Autism Assessment and Screening Clinic and the Teen and Adult Assessment Program.

Learning Objectives:
  1. Participants will be able to describe the prevalence and characteristics of ASD in the United States.
  2. Participants will be able to define the diagnostic criteria for ASD as specified by theDSM-5 and the criteria used in the school systems for Autism eligibility.
  3. Participants will be able to identify guiding principles of developmental and comprehensive approaches to the assessment of autism.


Allison Schwartz, PhD

Assessment Postdoctoral Fellow, Emory Autism Center
Before coming to the EAC, I worked as a school psychologist in the DeKalb County School District. Previous positions included school psychology positions and internships at a GNETS program and several schools and school systems in Georgia and New York, working at the Marcus Autism... Read More →

Wednesday July 15, 2020 1:15pm - 2:15pm EDT
Downstairs 6A
Thursday, July 16

10:15am EDT

6A Family Engagement: Unraveling the mysteries and sharing secrets!
Participants will learn how to put real family engagement into practice as well as how to locate resources for support in Georgia. Participants will learn about dispute/conflict prevention options that will lead to greater outcomes for students.

Learning Objectives:
1. Participants will be able to list 2 resources that help with family engagement.
2. Participants will be able to identify 2 barriers to family engagement.
3. Participants will be able to locate dispute prevention resources.

avatar for Sharon Jones, BS Ed.

Sharon Jones, BS Ed.

Program Specialist, Georgia Department of Education
I am a Family Engagement Specialist with the GaDOE and I work with agencies and families in Georgia to support families of students with disabilities. I have been an advocate for families for over 20 years and use my experiences raising a child with autism and working in a school... Read More →

Thursday July 16, 2020 10:15am - 11:15am EDT
Downstairs 6A

1:00pm EDT

6A Introduction to the IEP/504 Process
This presentation will provide a brief overview of the IEP/504 process, including definitions of the continuum of services and appropriate accommodations. We will also discuss the definitions of the IEP and 504 plan, as well as their similarities and differences. In addition, the presentation will highlight who is eligible for an IEP versus a 504 plan and how to be an active participant before, during, and after the meetings.

Learning Objectives:
1. Participants will be able to identify the differences between the IEP and the 504 plan.
2. Participants will be able to identify who is eligible for an IEP vs. a 504 plan.
3. Participants will be able to identify ways they can be an active participants before, during, and after meetings.


Lindsey B. Coker, M.Ed.

Educational Resource Coordinator, Anna Shaw Children's Institute
I graduated from the University of Alabama with a degree in Elementary Education in 2008, after completing my student teaching in Geelong, Australia. Once returning to the States, I became a special education paraprofessional and went on to receive my Masters of Education from the... Read More →

Thursday July 16, 2020 1:00pm - 2:00pm EDT
Downstairs 6A

2:15pm EDT

6C Supporting Families: Education and Collaboration through the IEP Process
About 1 in 6 students are now diagnosed with a developmental disability. Federal law requires schools to provide special education services in the form of an individualized education program (IEP) for students with disabilities. When parents and school districts have different ideas about the services that special education students should receive, disagreements can lead to disputes.  The best way to avoid misunderstandings with parents is to have ongoing, clear lines of communication from the beginning.  Effective communication is essential for building school-family partnerships. 
This session will engage its audience and discuss strategies for building partnerships with parents and ways to support them because their role in their student’s learning is essential. Educators and district leaders attending this session will learn strategies for effective IEP and ways to avoid conflict. Families that attend will understand the IEP process and their rights as a parent of a student with a disability. Come learn these tools and so much more as we focus on parents, educators and student success.

Learning Objectives:
1 Participants will be able to quote research on student learning. This learning is enhanced by the involvement of parents and families in their children’s educationprocess.
2. Participants will be taught a minimum of three strategies to prevent conflict and build positive school-family partnerships.
3. Participants will list one benefit to understanding the perspective of others and strive for a shared goal with positive outcomes both for families and school districts.


Karen Barineau, Ed.S.

Educational Consultant, Karen 4 Kids
Karen Barineau, Ed. S. has been working in the field of special education for over 30 years. Currently, she is an Educational Consultant and President of Karen 4 Kids (K4K) LLC.  She advises school and district employees on strategies to improve classrooms that have students with... Read More →

Thursday July 16, 2020 2:15pm - 3:15pm EDT
Downstairs 6C

3:30pm EDT

6C Why Problem Behaviors Occur and What to Do About Them
This presentation will provide an overview of why problem behaviors occur and how they
work for those who use them; what triggers problem behaviors and makes them continue;
and general ways to prevent, teach replacements for, and reduce problem behaviors.

Learning Objectives:
1. Participants will be able to explain the difference between what a behavior looks like and how it functions-and why that is important.
2. Participants will be able to name the 4 ways that a behavior can function.
3. Participants will be able to specify several ways to prevent and to respond to problem behaviors.


Charles Coleman, MEd, BCBA

Emory Autism Center
Charles Coleman, MEd, BCBA, is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst with the BehaviorSupport and Skill Building Program at the Emory Autism Center. He has workedcollaboratively with individuals with autism of all ages and their families for over 23 years,providing both intensive and... Read More →

Thursday July 16, 2020 3:30pm - 4:30pm EDT
Downstairs 6A