Adam is 13 years old. He has come a long way since first starting with ABS at 3 years old. He made great progress at ABS learning how to talk, use the potty, and ask for things to get his needs met. He never would have made this kind of progress in a traditional special education pre-school.By 7 years old he was ready for first grade in our school district. He received OT and speech all through elementary school and although he never did grade level work, his teachers made him part of the classroom. I was disappointed that he could not attend ABS in the summer because his district did not have an adequate year round program. Middle school was hard because the public school wanted to focus on academics yet could not manage to teach Adam basic conversation skills or simple life skills like learning facetime, opening lunch containers or fastening a seat belt. By this time inclusion with peers was not beneficial to him, and there was no real approach or curriculum for teaching the functional skills that we thought were important. We went back to ABS for 6th grade and are really pleased with his progress. He is more independent with dressing, household chores and has even started to initiate conversations with his sisters for the first time. His comprehension and vocabulary are improving. The physical space of the school is ordinary but the teachers, therapists, methods, and materials that they use are special. Adam is thriving, and he likes school.
I have always been, and continue to be, very pleased with ABS and how it has assisted me and my family. Before ABS, my daughter was very combative and explosive. Her behavior caused others to be fearful for their safety. She had a negative effect on the learning environment because of her lack of compliance and unpredictable level of violence. Since attending ABS, she has learned that negative behaviors will get her nothing and positive behaviors will open the door to many of the things she wants. She is much more compliant. Her behavior is much more predictable and stable. Her ability to communicate her wants and needs has also increased and improved. Thanks to the introduction of an IPad, her ABS teachers and therapists not only taught her how to use it, but held her to the expectation that she will use it consistently and across environments. My daughter is now a pleasure to be around. She is funny and engaging. I’ve always LOVED her; now, because of ABS, I also LIKE her.
My son Samuel was diagnosed with autism in 2006 at the age of 3 and when I was told that he would probably never leave my home and not be able to be independent I was DEVASTATED. I did not know what autism was and so I immersed myself in research and advocacy for my son. The fist place that made me feel like there was hope was ABS. Samuel attended there after finding out about the Ohio Autism scholarship and Alicia Cachat was his teacher.
Although we moved around a lot due to my husband’s career, we always came back to Ohio and I found out that Alicia Cachat was now Director of the ABS center in West Chester. I was ELATED! Samuel would be reunited with his first teacher and ABS! Samuel has experienced many levels of education in the public school system but nothing compares to ABS.
The staff is genuinely invested in your child and works diligently and patiently with them to help them excel in their individualized education plan. They are also very helpful behind the scenes if you need extra assistance with resources or referrals. I would HIGHLY recommend ABS as a first choice for autism education, therapy and social enrichment I am so happy that my son is ‘home’ again with ABS.
ABS has been a blessing for our family. Our son was experiencing emotional and behavioral issues. After trying multiple other options we found ABS. ABS has a focused approach we have seen much success with. Our son has made huge improvements. ABS staff have been phenomenal with their support and communication. But most of all our son loves it there. He said to us soon after starting “They know how to take care of me”.
When I think of ABS West Chester, I feel overwhelming gratitude for the staff, the program, for the services provided, and for the dedication to my child and family. We came to ABS WC after touring multiple centers in two states. We came searching for a team, for people who “get it,” and found all of those things and more! We were offered teaching methods, behavioral plans, and a program structured to support my son. I found a collaborative team of professionals, program flexibility, understanding, and a dedication to my son’s success which mirrored my own. The director and her staff are fiercely committed to their families. This dedication, the program, and staff have been instrumental in my son’s personal and academic growth. I will always be grateful for the opportunity to have my ABS team.