Autism in a Neurodiverse World – Learn About Updated Perspectives On Autism and Current Controversies In The Field

Friday, April 14, 2023 | 8:15 am to 3:30 pm

Registration begins at 7:45 am

Sauk Valley Community College | Room 1K04 | 173 IL Rt 2, Dixon, IL

Cost for Educators & Professionals: $50  • Lunch and 6 hours of Continuing Education Credits** is included.

Cost for Consumers & Family Members: $20 • Lunch and 6 hours of Continuing Education Credits** is included.

Secure Online Registration with for this informative presentations: “Florissa Presents Autism in a Neurodiverse World”

Printable 8.5 x 14 (legal size paper) Brochure with Registration Form: Autism in a Neurodiverse World Brochure


Discover the many recent changes in the Autism Community with four engaging presentations:
• Autism in a Neurodiverse World: To ∞ and Beyond
• Introduction to Compassionate ABA
• Supporting Autistic Students within the Classroom: Best Practices to Promote Success!
• Support for Autistic Employees


Your Presenter Team for the “Autism in a Neurodiverse World” Workshop:

Kelly Flanagan, Ph.D
A Licensed Clinical Child Psychologist who serves as Clinical Director at Florissa.

Emily Padgett, Ph.D
A Postdoctoral Resident at Florissa with training in clinical and pediatric psychology at the University of Louisville School of Medicine.

Laura Gumbiner, Ph.D., NCSP
A Postdoctoral Resident and nationally certified school psychologist who has worked in both clinical and special education settings.

Amy Boss, M.A.- CC/SLP
A licensed Speech and Language Pathologist for over 25 years in private, medical, clinical, and educational settings.

Rae Bardell, MSW, M.Ed., LCSW, BCBA
A Behavior Analyst at Momentum Agencies with over 22 years experience working with people of all ages with developmental disabilities and mental disorders.


Your Schedule for the Day

8:15 – 9:45am: Autism in a Neurodiverse World: To ∞ and Beyond
Brief description: You may have heard terms like “neurodiversity, ” “high-functioning,”
“Asperger’s,” “profound autism,” and “allistic” on social media or beyond. Come to this 
presentation to learn about updated perspectives on autism and current controversies in 
the field regarding use of language, views on the “spectrum,” and support services for autistic individuals.
Learning objectives: 
1. Participants will be able to describe what is (and is not) considered autism.
2. Participants will be able to identify different ways to conceptualize autism as a spectrum.
3. Participants will be able to articulate different types of language regarding autism.

10:00am – 11:30am: Introduction to Compassionate ABA
Brief description: This presentation will go over a brief history of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA), then discuss the principles of ABA 
and the interventions ABA uses to work with people on behavior reduction and skill development. We will review some of the past 
practices and how ABA has evolved over the years regarding its treatment of neurodivergent populations. The presentation will end 
with consideration of how ABA has evolved in its practice to consider patient assent and address the need for a trauma-informed 
approach to services.
Learning objectives:
1. Participants will be able to identify at least one evidence-based behavioral strategy.
2. Participants will be able to describe components of trauma informed care.
3. Participants will be able to apply at least one strategy in their classroom.

11:30am – 12:15pm: Lunch Break — Lunch Provided

12:15 – 1:45pm: Supporting Autistic Students Within the Classroom: Best Practices to Promote Success!
Brief description: In the educational setting, our multi-disciplinary teams are essential in creating solid programs in which our Autistic
students can thrive. Learn best-practice approaches and strategies to support your student’s academic and social success, from Pre-K
to High School.
Learning objectives:
1. Participants will be able to recognize potential barriers to learning for autistic individuals.
2. Participants will learn current, best-practice strategies to support academic and social development at any age.
3. Participants will be able to articulate the value of a multi-disciplinary team during problem-solving meetings and while
implementing IEP goals and tracking progress.

2:00 – 3:30pm: Support for Autistic Employees
Brief description: Learn about neurodiversity within work settings and the benefits to employers. Characteristics of autism spectrum
disorder (ASD) and how they exhibit at work will be reviewed with consideration of the perspectives of autistic employees. Specific strategies
for employers, including hiring, management, and structure of the environment, will be presented. This presentation can help you prepare
students with autism for the transition to young adulthood and beyond.
Learning objectives:
1. Participants will be able to name core characteristics of ASD and how they may present in the workplace.
2. Participants will be able to list strengths of employees with autism.
3. Participants will be able to identify several accommodations that can support autistic employees’ success at work.

**April 14th training includes 6.0 hours of CE Credits: 6 continuing education hours (CEs) provided by IDHS for the following licensed professionals: LCPC, LPC, LCSW, LSW, Clinical Psychologist, Nursing Home Administrator, Occupational Therapist and OTA, Physical therapist and PTA, RN, LPN and APN and QIDP. 6 hours of Professional Development for Educators provided by the ROE.

This workshop has been provided by your friends at: Florissa, Kreider Services, Kreider Alliance, TAP** (The Autism Program of Illinois), and Easterseals (Serving Chicagoland and Greater Rockford). **Funding provided in whole or in part by The Autism Program of Illinois and the Illinois Department of Human Services.

P: (815) 288-1905 F: (815) 288-1935 | 144 North Court, Dixon, Illinois