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TEACCH (Treatment and Education of Autistic and related Communication-handicapped Children) has grown over the past three decades from a small clinic for children to an internationally recognized treatment and support modality for individuals of all ages with autism spectrum disorders. In The TEACCH Approach to Autism Spectrum Disorders, the program’s founders and their colleagues explain its methods and philosophy based on an understanding and respect for "the culture of autism."

The TEACCH program focuses on persons with autism and the development of instruction and supports based on each individual’s skills, interests, and needs. It draws from the research literature in psychology and neuropsychology to create activities and environments that are organized to emphasize meaningfulness—an approach that has proved crucial to an autistic individual’s ability to learn, comprehend, and apply learning across situations.

The TEACCH Approach to Autism Spectrum Disorders explains how:

- TEACCH targets critical areas in executive functioning, engagement, communication, and social skills.

- Strategies can be tailored to an individual’s unique developmental and functional level.

- Parents become involved in all phases of intervention as collaborators, cotherapists, and advocates.

- The program can be introduced and adapted for individuals of all ages, from preschool children to adults.

- Professionals can be trained in the program and its methods.

This progressive program offers individuals with autism, their families, teachers, and therapists both optimism and useful strategies, without minimizing the condition or its effects. All clinicians working with people with autism will find The TEACCH Approach to Autistic Spectrum Disorders a valuable resource.

As the pastPresident ofthe Israel Society forAutism, it gives me great pleasure to c- gratulate Professor Schopler and his colleagues on the publication of their new book concerning the relationship between scientific research and treatment. When we in Israel began our specifically structured education program for young children with autism, our work was based on slim to scarceknow-how andinformation, and with no experience whatsoever. Whatever information we could gather was mostly from psychological educational centers in the U.S. One of the most important and significant connections was established between the TEACCH program of North Carolina, led and conducted by the two important scholars, Professor Eric Schopler and Professor Lee Marcus, and our Israel Society for Autism. During our many encounters, seminars, and conferences, we profited enormously from all their accumulated expertise and scientific research, while perhaps it was also an important experience for them to see how a young society with very limited means was eventually shaping its educational program and arriving at some excellent results. We, ofcourse, have the highest esteem for Governor Hunt who has been following this program with so much attention and support, and we still remember his visit to Israel with distinguished representatives of the TEACCH Program. I wish the new book every success. I know it will be an enormous contribution to all those who must cope with a difficult and painful issue—autism—for whom there is no end to the need for research and continuously improving methods of care and education.
The state of North Carolina has had a longstanding concern and com mitment to the understanding and treatment of autistic, communications handicapped children and their families. This commitment found expres sion in the only comprehensive statewide program for families confronted with this disability, Division for the Treatment and Education of Autistic and related Communication handicapped CHildren (Division TEACCH). Our program staff has been privileged to respond to this commitment by developing and providing the needed services, and to engage in research informed by our clinical experience. Although many of the problems con cerning these developmentally disabled children remain to be solved, substantial progress has been made during this past decade of collabo ration among professionals, parents, and their government representa tives. The TEACCH staff has resolved to mark the effectiveness of this collaboration by holding a series of annual conferences focused on the several major issues confronting these children and their families. The conferences are held in order to bring together the best research knowl edge available to us from throughout the country, and to encourage par ticipation by the different professional disciplines and concerned parents. In addition these annual meetings form the basis for a series of books based on the conference theme. These books are, however, not merely the published proceedings of the presented papers: some chapters are expanded from conference presentations and many others were solicited from experts in the related areas of research and their service application.
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