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From the STEP Ahead Newsletter
Wayne Parker Memorial
Parent Advocate of the Year Award

Last November, during the LRE for LIFE conference reception, STEP presented the Wayne Parker Memorial Parent Advocate of the Year Award to FEAT Chattanooga Members, Phil and Maureen Deal. 
This was the first year for the award, in memory of Wayne Parker, who worked for STEP and helped numerous families throughout Tennessee.

Nationwide Autism Awareness and Promotion
From Karen Lippold, Cure Autism Now

  Just by purchasing a loaf of California Goldminer Sourdough bread, food shoppers across the US will help find a cure for autism.
   An innovative partnership between Cure Autism Now (CAN) and Maple Leaf Bakery began Feb. 4 and runs through April 5, 2002.  During the promotion, the purchase of California Goldminer Sourdough Bread, sold in 6,000 supermarket in-store bakeries nationwide, will help fund a CAN scientist for one year.
   Participating supermarkets nationwide include A&P, ACME, Albertson's, Bi/Lo, Big Y, City Market, Fred Meyer, Fry's, Giant Food Stores, Hannaford Food & Drug, H.E. Butt, Hy-Vee, King Soopers, Kroger, Rainbow, ShopRite, Shop 'n Save, Smith's, Super G, Tops Friendly Markets and Wal Mart Supercenters.
   Rick Anderson, Vice President, Marketing and Retail Sales, Maple Leaf Bakery, was instrumental in implementing this promotion.  "As the father of an autistic child, my family and I have first-hand experience with the daily dealings of having a child with autism.  While my son improves everyday, it is important to continue to support groups such as Cure Autism Now who are constantly working to find a cure and effective treatments.  We are proud to donate proceeds from California Goldminer Sourdough to fund a scientist's work for one year.  We hope to make our relationship with Cure Autism Now a long-lasting one," Anderson said.
   Look in your supermarket bakery for the distinctive wagon and shelf displays.  Colorful signs there promote Cure Autism Now and information about autism.  Support this corporate effort to shed light on Autism research and awareness.

      Recently Published Articles/Studies
Intensive behavioral treatment at school for 4- to
7-year-old children with autism. A 1-year comparison controlled study.

Abstract Eikeseth S, Smith T, Jahr E,
Eldevik S.   Akershus College.

This study was designed to evaluate 1 year of intensive treatment for 4- to 7-year-old children with autism. An independent clinician assigned children to either behavioral treatment (n = 13) or eclectic treatment (n = 12). Assignment was based on availability of personnel to supervise treatment and was not influenced by child characteristics or family preference. The two treatment groups received similar amounts of treatment (M = 28.52 hours per week at the child's school). Children in the behavioral treatment group made significantly larger gains on standardized tests than did children in the eclectic treatment group. Results suggest that some 4- to 7-year-olds may make large gains with intensive behavioral treatment, that such treatment can be successfully implemented in school settings, and that specific aspects of behavioral treatment (not just its intensity) may account for favorable outcomes.
Publication Types: Clinical Trial PMID: 11799654
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

        Behavior analysis and intervention
            for adults with autism.
McClannahan LE, MacDuff GS, Krantz PJ. 
Princeton Child Development Institute, USA.

This article describes a behavioral intervention program for adults with autism, suggests that preparation for adulthood should begin in early childhood, asserts that the curriculum should be just as comprehensive and evaluation criteria just as rigorous in programs for adults as in programs for children, and proposes that close examination of adults' repertoires may lead to key modifications of services delivered to children. Along the way, the authors provide some data on the progress of 15 people who are now adults and whom they have known for 15 to 25 years. Finally, the authors argue that, because of the diversity of skills and skill deficits displayed by adults with autism, a program model that prevents "falling through the cracks" must provide an array of options--from training center to supported employment.
Publication Types:  Evaluation Studies PMID: 11799656 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

President's Commission on
Excellence in Special Education,
Department of Education
Notice of Public Meeting and Hearings

This notice provides the dates and city locations of each meeting and hearing of the President's Commission on Excellence in Special Education.  Notice of these meetings and hearings is required under section 10(a)2(2) of the Federal Advisory Committee Act in order to notify the public of their opportunity to attend.
Members of the general public may observe and listen to Commission proceedings at each meeting and hearing.  The Commission may choose to provide a public comment period where members of the public may offer comments before the Commission.  The agenda of each meeting, including whether members of the general public will have an opportunity to offer comments before the Commission, will be posted on the Commission's website. 
Full Commission meetings will be held in……Nashville, Tennessee on April 18, 2002.  Task force meetings may not consist of all members of the Commission.
At this time, the exact address where meetings and hearings will be held within each city is not determined.  The Commission's Web site will list the location of each meeting and hearing as soon as locations are determined.

For further information contact: C. Todd Jones, Executive Director, at 202-208-1312 or Troy R. Justesen, Deputy Executive Director, at 202-219-0704 or via the Commission's Web site address

Summary Information: The Commission was established under Executive Order 13227
(October 2, 2001) to collect information and study issues related to Federal, State, and local special education programs with the goal of recommending policies for improving the educational performance of students with disabilities.  In furtherance of its duties, the Commission shall invite experts and members of the public to provide information and guidance.  The Commission shall prepare and submit a report to the President outlining its findings and recommendations.
Transcripts of each meeting will be available on the Commission's website as soon as possible after each meeting.

        Autism Society of America Announces
            New Outreach Course

The Autism Society of America (ASA) unveiled a new way to provide information to families who recently had a child diagnosed with autism.  Taking a page from universities and large corporations, ASA launched an e-Learning course about autism.  The course is available free of charge at the
ASA Web site: