What does the Autism Circuit Endorsement mean to you?
You have worked hard. The Autism Circuit team likened the program to a Master’s level course that spanned three semesters for Cohort 1 and two semesters for Cohort 2. Someone has asked what this endorsement will allow her to do; what will she now be able to complete with the endorsement.
The Autism Circuit Academy endorsement is a visible sign of accomplishing the work you did to become skilled in the implementation of the evidence-based practices (EBPs) identified by the National Professional Development Center for Autism Spectrum Disorder. The paragraph on your endorsement states what you had to do to earn the endorsement and 60 CEUs: watch 28 webinars, provide evidence of implementation of each of the 28 EBPs with students, and collaborate in a statewide professional learning community (PLC). The endorsement does not expand the scope of your profession, whatever it is, but does demonstrate your commitment and accomplishment in professional growth.
Completion of the program is similar to finishing a course in Udemy or Skillcraft or the Certified Autism Specialist course from IBCESS. The CEUs you earned from the Autism Circuit program are accredited by the Texas Education Agency (TEA). It is not an accredited degree, and it is not a license or certificate from the state. The state of Texas does not issue any licenses or certificates for autism training. The Commissioner’s rule related to autism states that all educators working with a child with autism must be trained; however, TEA does not specify what kind of training or how much training an educator needs. Schools are responsible for training educators to effectively and appropriately implement programs for students with autism. A license or certificate is not required. Your endorsement from Region 13 and TEA is a visible sign that you are equipped to effectively and appropriately implement programs for students with autism.
Applications are being accepted for the next Autism Circuit cohort! Spread the word to your colleagues. The deadline to apply however, is this Wednesday, June 15th. Here is the link to the online application: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/ACApp2016
I personally want to thank you all for your commitment to education and for the time and effort you gave to the Autism Circuit. The feedback we have received has shown that the program was successful by several measures. Many shared they feel they are better teachers overall because of what they learned, not just from the Autism Circuit team, but from each other in our Professional Learning Community. I truly enjoyed reading your posts in the discussion forums almost every day since January, 2015, when cohort 1 started. Our students in the state of Texas will benefit from your hard work. Though we have not met face to face (yet), I feel I have gotten to know so many of you personally, and I will miss you! On behalf of the Autism Circuit team, Ann, Cyndi, Tate, and I, we wish you the best of luck in your future years as educators. Our paths will cross again.