• Promoting good practice <BR/>in autism
  • Promoting good practice <BR/>in autism
  • Promoting good practice <BR/>in autism
  • Promoting good
    practice in Autism
    Enhancing the knowledge, skills and understanding of teachers
    and other professionals in England, Greece and Italy.
    Enhancing the knowledge, skills
    and understanding of teachers
    and other professionals in
    England, Greece and Italy.

Methodology - Timetable

Methodology


This program has as theoretical framework the theory of communities of practice (Lave and Wenger, 1991, Wenger, 1998), which requires the creation of a ‘collaborative relationship learning among people who find it useful to learn together and from each other for a particular sector’ (Wenger et al., 2011, p. 2).

Accordingly, and in an effort to avoid any kind of ‘persistent disconnection between research and practice’ (Parsons and Kasari, 2013, p. 1), the program uses participatory and collaborative methodology with emphasis on the co-creation of knowledge (Parsons et al., 2015). The collaborative education and training model adhere to the objectives of the Autism Education Trust of Great Britain and the initial training material was produced by the University of Birmingham.

Plan of the Program


The program is implemented in 4 stages:

1. December 2014 – May 2015

Research in England, Greece and Italy to assess current practices in children’s education and treatment with autism between the ages of 5-10 years old.

2. May 2015 – January 2016

Translation, adaptation and pilot implementation of the training program of the Autism Education Trust –Developing Good Practice in Autism.

3. January 2016 – September 2016

Open call for the implementation of the program in schools and morning / afternoon mental health settings.

4. September 2016 – June 2017

a) Application training and selection, training and monitoring of selected training centers.

b) The research team will translate, adapt and implement the pilot tools of the Autism Education Trust Good Practice in Autism: Competency Framework, Guidelines for Professionals and Autism Standards for Good Practice in School units or Mental Health settings. These are two tools that each can be used by any professional / teacher in order either to reflect / evaluate the quality of educational work and his / her competence (Competency Framework), or to allow the School Director or the Director of a school unit or a mental health setting to evaluate the practical framework of his/her setting based on the standards of good practice and to formulate an action plan to improve them (Autism Standards).

Training

Understanding autism

Level 1: General Information / Awareness for Autism: Aims at teachers without children with autism in their classroom or other school staff (administrative, auxiliary).

After the end of Level 1 training you will be able to:

  • recognize the four main areas of development which one should take into account when engaging with children with autism.
  • realize the importance of understanding a child with autism as well as its strengths and weaknesses.
  • identify key areas to considerate in order to help children with autism build relationships with their peers and school staff.
  • recognize that many children with autism can be extremely sensitive to visual and tactile sensations, sounds, tastes and smells and this can affect both their emotional state and the learning process.

Developing a good practice for autism

Level 2: Practice for Teachers Education (general and special education), who have children with autism in their classroom.

Level 2b: Advanced Training Level for those teachers or specialists who have already completed the introductory level and wish to deepen in knowledge, skills and techniques relevant to the Standards of Good Practice and its application in educational practice.
Maximum Number of Participants per group: 30 people

After the end of Level 2 training you will be able to:

  • expand your knowledge and develop your understanding as far as good practice for autism is concerned
  • enhance your practice when working with children in the spectrum.

Developing a good practice for autism

Level 3: Directors of Education and School Advisors on Good Practices in Autism and the Promotion of Good Practice in Autism at school / district level.
Maximum Number of Participants per group: 30 people

After the end of Level 3 training you will be able to:

  • Evaluate and improve your understanding and knowledge about autism.
  • Appreciate the needs of the staff (school, institution).
  • Evaluate the overall practice of your school, institution.

Developing a good practice for autism

Level 4: Advanced Level of education for those experts, teachers, principals or school counselors who have completed level 2 or 3 and who with the appropriate guidance and assessment process can become trainers and support the school in the implementation and personalization of education.
Maximum Number of Participants per group: 15 people

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The research team

  • Scientific co-coordinator for Greece: Katerina Laskaridis, BSc. M.Ed, PhD Candidate University of Birmingham.
  • Scientific Consultant: Dr. George Karantanos, Child psychiatrist, PhD, University of Athens
  • Consultant Expertise in Autism: Katerina Mpakopoulou

ELENI ANGELIDI

ELENI ANGELIDI

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ELENA GIOUROUKOU

ELENA GIOUROUKOU

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SOFIA KAPNOGIANNI

SOFIA KAPNOGIANNI

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MARIOS KOUKOUNARAS-LIAGKIS

MARIOS KOUKOUNARAS-LIAGKIS

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AIKATERINI SERETI

AIKATERINI SERETI

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KATERINA SOFIANOPOULOU

KATERINA SOFIANOPOULOU

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ZOZEFINA TZONAKA

ZOZEFINA TZONAKA

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Dr KATINGO HADJIPATERAS-GIANNOULIS

Dr KATINGO HADJIPATERAS-GIANNOULIS

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Collaborations - International meetings

Collaborations

ACER

ACER

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AUTISM EDUCATION TRUST

AUTISM EDUCATION TRUST

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GENIUM

GENIUM

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UFFICIO SCOLASTICO PER LA LOMBARDIA

UFFICIO SCOLASTICO PER LA LOMBARDIA

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UNIVERSITA CATTOLICA DEL SACRO CUORE / UNIVERSITY OF MILAN

UNIVERSITA CATTOLICA DEL SACRO CUORE / UNIVERSITY OF MILAN

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International meetings

 

Our international meetings include educational group meetings, meetings at special education schools and educational evenings open to the public where the current education system and the implementation of the program in the three countries is presented

  • The 1st  International Scientific Meeting was held in England at the University of Birmingham in February 2014. The purpose of the meeting was the acquaintance between the Scientific Groups of the three countries and the beginning of their cooperation. In this meeting we had the opportunity to meet and work with Dr Damian Milton, adult with autism and advisor of the English Research Group.
  • The 2nd  International Scientific Meeting was organized by the Aikaterini Laskaridis Foundationin June 2015. Research Collaborators from the University of Birmingham and the University of Milan met in Piraeus with school directors and Special Education teachers, representatives of administrative and support services. Educational visits at the 2nd Primary School of Agios Ioannis in Rendi and the Special School for Autistic children in Piraeus were organized and there was a discussion with the Director of Primary Education of Piraeus, School Advisors and the Director of the KEDDY of Piraeus.

Also, in 4 June 2015 a workshop entitled ‘From school to society: School inclusion in Greece and the challenge of good practise’ was organized, where the first results of the research were presented. For more details, see here (in Greek).

  • The 3rd International Scientific Meeting was held in February 2016 in Milan and was organized by the Uficcio Scolastico de Monza e Brianza. During this meeting, training sessions for groups of three countries were held in order to assess and investigate the long-term implementation and sustainability of the program. The groups discussed the pilot implementation of the program in Greece and Italy.

One should note, that apart from the Greek scientific team, teachers, principals and representatives of institutions of Mental Health from Greece participated in this meeting.

Results of the first phase

  • October 2014- June 2015: Completion of research on the training needs and attitudes on the integration of children with autism for teachers and other professionals.
  • September 2015 – January 2016: Completion of translation and adaptation of training materials.
  • February 2016: Start of cooperation with Mrs. Catherine Bakopoulou, adult with autism and director of the Greek Scientific Group. Mrs. Bakopoulou consults the group, configures the educational material in its strengthening of the role of adults with autism. Read her interview here.
  • May 2016: Completion of the pilot training applications.
  • June 2016: Training Application Start.

If you have any further questions regarding "Promoting good practice
in autism"

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Collaborations


Promoting good practice <BR/>in autism
Promoting good practice <BR/>in autism
Promoting good practice <BR/>in autism
Promoting good practice <BR/>in autism
Promoting good practice <BR/>in autism
Promoting good practice <BR/>in autism
Promoting good practice <BR/>in autism

Eleni Angelidi is a psychologist with a MEd in autism and a trained art-therapist with a specialisation in the use of drama and play for children with autism. She has been working in Greece since 2006 in private diagnostic, therapy and rehabilitation centers. Since 2011 she also keeps a private practice in Athens, where she holds individual and group sessions for children and adolescents with a variety of developmental and emotional issues and also provides parent counselling. Since 2012 she has also been leading training seminars and workshops regarding the use of play and drama in the education and therapy of children with developmental disorders and works as a supervisor of other professionals in several cities in Greece.

Elena Giouroukou obtained a BA in Psychology in the Panteion University in 1999. The same year she started a postgraduate course in “Neuroscience of Psychiatric and Neurological Diseases” in the Institute of Psychiatry, King's College University, London and obtained the MSc title in 2000. Awarded a scholarship by the Alexander Onassis Foundation, she started her PhD in the department of Psychological Medicine of the Institute of Psychiatry, King's College University, London. She obtained her PhD title in 2005. The title of her thesis is: Neuropsychological and Behavioural Profile of Adults Born Very Preterm. Since 2005, she has been working as an external associate in the Child and Adolescent Psychiatry University Department of the “Agia Sophia” Children's Hospital, particularly in the “Autism and Pervasive Developmental Disorders Clinic”, where she participated in the study: “International Collaborative Molecular Genetic Study of Autism and Milder Phenotypes”, as a research assistant doing both administrative work and data collection. Since 2007, she has started her own private practice as a psychologist. Her main clinical interest lies in autism spectrum disorders interventions, particularly in CBT for adolescents and adults with autism spectrum disorders. The academic year 2006-2007, she worked as a part-time psychologist in a public special education school with children with autism spectrum disorders.

Sofia Kapnogianni studied Psychology in Swansea, Wales and has acquired an MSc in Child Development in the Institute of Education, University of London. She has been trained in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for children, adolescents and adults in a four year course by Institute of Behaviour Research and Therapy in Athens. During her stay in UK she worked and received training by the Early Autism Project of London, she was trained in TEACCH and in EarlyBird Plus psychoeducational program for parents with children in the autistic spectrum. In Athens she was trained in learning difficulties in the one year program by ΕΨΥΠΕ and has attended plenty of seminars and congresses in her field. She works with Aikaterini Laskaridi Foundation in the Psychoeducational Programs domain, she is an instructor in a psychoeducational programme for adult depression in IBRT. She runs her private practice in Halandri , Athens since 2005 and is a scientific collaborator in a private therapeutic centre. She is one of the cowriters of the book for professionals in psychology “Beat Depression”, writer or scientific articles and presenter in congresses in Psychology.

Marios Koukounaras-Liagkis studied Theology at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki- BA, MA, PhD and Greek Philology at the Democretian University of Thrace. He is a Lecturer in Religious Education at National and Kapodistrian University of Athens (NKUA), School of Theology since 2013. He worked as a Religious Education teacher from 2003 until 2012. He worked as a Consultant to the Minister of Education and Religious Affairs during 2007 – 2009. He worked from 1989 until 2007 as a journalist and broadcaster in several radio stations. He attended a number of seminars about Theatre/Drama in Education-Applied Theatre and he has a professional Theatropedagogical Team applying T-i-E projects at Primary and Secondary schools. He has organized and implemented (or applied) numerous of Educational Projects in cooperation with Public and Private Organizations. He has been working since 2008 as a teacher trainer in seminars which were organized by Universities, Ministry of Education, European and National Organizations. His scientific interests focused on Religious Education (learning and teaching), Curriculum design, Teacher’s professional development, Constructivism and Intercultural Education, Human Rights Education, Autism Education.

Aikaterini Sereti is a special educator with over 20 years of service. She has cooperated with the Psychiatric Department of St Sophia Children's Hospital and participated in an educational program for special educators and Therapists in Linden Bridge School for Autism and Social Communication difficulties, in Surrey, England. She has received training in the TEACCH approach by the medical department of the University of South Carolina. Since 1992, she has worked at the Pedagogical Institute and different diagnostic and rehabilitation centers, offering assistance/ providing intervention to children with pervasive developmental disorders in the autism spectrum. She has participated in European programs that targeted upgrading education terms for people with autism in the primary and secondary levels of education. She has been working with other professionals, offering supervision and counseling regarding the education of children with autism.

Katerina Sofianopoulou is a psychologist (MSc), with training in Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy of children. She has been trained in cognitive-behavioral Drama for children with autism and in specific learning disorders (difficulties). Her scientific activity includes participation in research programs, announcements at conferences and writing articles on issues related to the cognitive behavioral treatment of children and therapeutic video games. She has cooperated with the Children Psychiatric Clinic of St Sophia Children's Hospital and the Mental Health Center of Peristeri. Since 2013 she has been working as a psychologist at Aikaterini Laskaridis Foundation, (on) implementing mental health programs in primary and secondary levels of education. Since 2014, she has been collaborating with private centers and professionals, offering cbt treatment to children and adolescents, diagnosis and rehabilitation of specific learning difficulties, parental counseling and CBD for children with autism.

Zozefina Tzonaka is a primary school teacher with over 35 years of service. She has been a former director of a Primary School and has worked for two years in a State Center for Diagnosis, Differential Diagnosis and Support (KEDDY). Since 2012, she has been working as a scientific consultant and supervisor of the Therapeutic Centre for Children "Frontizo". She holds a Master in Social Psychiatry and Child Psychiatry and she is specializing in developmental disorders and learning disabilities. Her scientific activity includes writing books and articles, announcements at conferences and participation in research projects and training workshops on issues related to specific developmental disabilities and learning difficulties. Her interests extend to the art of theater in education: she has organized numerous plays in schools and authored books on the introduction of theater in primary education.

Dr Katingo Hadjipateras-Giannoulis (PhD., MSc., C.Psychol., AFBPsS) is a Chartered Clinical Psychologist and an Affiliate Fellow of the British Psychological Society, with membership of the Clinical and Neuropsychological Divisions. She is registered with the HCPC in the UK. She has worked both in the UK National Health Service and in private practice for over 25 years. Through her work in National Specialist teams in the UK, she gained specialist knowledge and skills in Neurodevelopmental and Autism Spectrum Disorders. She was recently invited to be a member of the Scientific Network for Autism in Greece. She is a part-time instructor at the American College of Greece, where she teaches on both the Undergraduate and Graduate Psychology degree courses. She was an Honorary Lecturer at the Institute of Psychiatry in London. She has presented in many conferences in the UK and in Greece and, as part of her clinical practice, she provides consultancy work to a variety of schools (parent, teacher and student training). From 1997 until 1999, she was a member of a team of British National Health Service professionals involved in the development of Psychology services for children in orphanages and family centres in Romania.

The Education and Research Center for Autism (ACER) is a research center of the School of Education, University of Birmingham. The ACER has extensive research experience in educational practices and interventions for both children and adults. It collaborates with governmental and non-profit or independent operators in the health sector, social services and education.

The Education Institute for Autism (AET) was founded in 2007 by the Ambitious about Autism (formerly known as Tree House), the Council for Children with Disabilities (Council for Disabled Children, CDC) and the National Autistic Society (National Autistic Society, NAS) and it is largely supported from its establishment by the government. Approximately 100,000 people have been trained throughout England in this program since 2012. AET’s mission is to ameliorate the education of young people with autism, which occurs through the:

  • recognition and promotion of qualitative and effective educational practices for autism
  • provide training to support effective practice
  • disseminating of information on evidence-based good practices / interventions / services to the local government officials and professionals
  • provision of network professionals and policy-makers for the development of prevention and of services

AET is in a unique position to carry out such activities due to its:

  • independence
  • effort for the collaboration between voluntary organizations, schools, local authorities and universities
  • active involvement of people with autism in the work and management of the AET
  • focus on practical activities in educational environments

Genium is an innovative creative and advisory firm in the UK. Since its foundation, it has collaborated with various organizations that work on special educational needs, in order to produce educational materials and websites.

The Ufficio Scolastico Territoriale di Monza e Brianza is a sector of the Italian Ministry of Education. It has been involved with the promotion and implementation of specific training activities and good practices in school inclusion of students with autism and with other special needs.

The Research Center for Disability and Marginalization (CeDisMa - Centro Studi e Ricerche sulla Disabilità e Marginalità) is based on the Department of Education at the University of Milan in Italy. The main objective of the center is to develop pedagogical knowledge to help teachers, educators, trainers, facilitators and social workers deal with special education and disability.