Montana Autism Education Project News – December 2016


Upcoming Trainings:

The Birds and the Bees - Puberty, Hygiene, Safety and Sexuality for Youth with Autism Spectrum Disorder.

Kalispell - December 7th

Missoula - December 8th

Youths with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities are twice as likely as their typically developing peers to be victims of physical or sexual abuse. Information regarding puberty, hygiene, and sexuality relates to keeping children with ASD safe. Areas covered in this workshop can easily become target behaviors, objectives for IEPs, or treatment goals for youth with ASD.

Register here.


Beyond Compliance: Writing Quality Transition Plans 

Missoula – January 17th

This interactive session will:

Review the state and federal requirements related to writing transition plans for students with disabilities.

Highlight transition assessment strategies that support the development of quality transition plans.

Present strategies for increasing the efficiency and effectiveness of writing transition plans.

Provide opportunities for evaluating and writing transition plans using learned strategies. 

Find more information and register here.


CEC Conference

Missoula, February 15-17, 2017

The conference schedule and other information can be viewed here.

The OPI Montana Autism Education Project is offering a limited number of registration scholarships to the 2017 Montana CEC conference. The scholarships are only available to special education staff working in Montana public school districts. The scholarships are for the conference registration only. OPI will not provide travel reimbursement (gas, food, lodging.)

The scholarships are available for school staff from across the state. Read more and request a registration scholarship here.

2017 General & Special Education Conference - Seattle

March 8, 9, & 10, 2017

See more information here.


You can also view trainings as they are added on the OPI Montana Autism Education Project blog

Online Training in Autism Spectrum Disorders and Behavior Interventions

We offer subscriptions to an online training in autism spectrum disorders and behavioral interventions. The training provides 35+ hours of instruction in autism spectrum disorders and behavioral interventions.  The training must be completed in 90 days. OPI renewal units are available. New groups start the middle of each month. 

If you are interested in the training please go here to register.


Montana Autism Education Project recent blog posts of interest:

Visual Supports Examples – THIS IS AN AMAZING RESOURCE!!!

You can many, many examples here.  Just, “Fi” includes, “fidgeting”, “field trips”, “fire drills”, “First/Then” and more. 

Autistic Toddlers May Miss Significance of Eye Contact

“They’re looking less at the eyes not because of an aversion to making eye contact, but because they don’t appear to understand the social significance of eye contact.”

Read more here.

“Aspergers Are Us” Documentary on iTunes and Netflix

 “Aspergers Are Us” made headlines in 2011 as the first comedy troupe comprised entirely of men on the autism spectrum. Now the troupe is the subject of a new documentary, also titled “Aspergers Are Us,” which was released on iTunes and will be available for streaming on Netflix in December.

Read more here.

Parent Training May Lead To Lasting Gains

Teaching parents of toddlers with autism how to recognize and respond to their children may result in stable improvements in these children’s social communication and other autism features.

When the researchers reanalyzed their initial data using the test, they found that the children in the treatment group showed a decrease in their autism severity: They showed greater improvements in social communication and a bigger decrease in repetitive behaviors than those in the control group. These children maintained their advantage six years later, with 46 percent of them showing severe autism features compared with 63 percent of children in the control group.

Read more here.

Functional Assessment-Based Interventions

In these materials, you will find resources to help you design, implement, and evaluate FABIs in your setting with this systematic approach. These include, brief video modules introducing this systematic five-step process and implementation materials to support your efforts. 

Read more here. 

Upcoming and Archived Webinars

Anxiety and Autism – What You Need To Know

This presentation will review the ways in which anxiety may manifest in a person with autism, how those might look different from what we typically think of as anxiety, and tips for helping people with autism deal with anxiety. 

Read more here.

AT Independence in College: The QIAT-PS Student Self-evaluation Matrix

In this session, we will look at factors students must consider when attending college, including accessing available AT services and supports. A newly revised student self-evaluation matrix will be presented as a strategy for preparing students for independence with AT during the transition from high school to post-secondary education.

Read more here.

How to Improve Transition Results for High School Students with Disabilities

With heightened accountability, special educators are using a range of tools and methods that go beyond core academics and include non-academic skills, while considering student motivation and engagement. Now, there is a growing need for an organizing framework that ensures all students with disabilities are college and career ready. 

Make plans to participate as transition expert Dr. Mary Morningstar describes six academic and non-academic domains special educators can use to address transition challenges and implications for program level implementation.

Read more here.

You can find many, many more upcoming and archived webinars here.


Other items

Consultation Visits

Staff from the Montana Autism Education Project are available to provide on-site trainings, classroom-level consultations or consultations on individual students. These services are available for no charge. Please contact Doug Doty at if you are interested in scheduling a consultation visit.

OPI Has Behavioral Consultants

 The Office of Public Instruction (OPI) wishes to announce the availability of Behavioral Consultants for districts needing help in developing functional behavioral assessments (FBA) and behavioral intervention plans (BIP) for individual special education students without autism. If you are in need of a consultant, please contact Dale Kimmet via e-mail (

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Doug Doty, Statewide Coordinator

OPI Montana Autism Education Project 459-5303

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