Andover Townsman, Andover, MA

September 26, 2013

Special ed workshop touts self-advocacy, disclosure

The Andover Townsman

---- — Dr. Stephen Shore, president emeritus of the Asperger’s Association of New England, visits Andover next week to present a workshop focused on enabling people with autism and other conditions to reach their potential for leading fulfilling and productive lives.

Shore’s presentation takes place Thursday, Oct. 3, at 7 p.m. at West Middle School Auditorium. Presented by the Andover Special Education Parents Advisory Council and sponsored by Olivia’s Organics, it is open to people in surrounding communities. Admission is free.

Diagnosed as a child with “atypical development and strong autistic tendencies” and deemed “too sick” for outpatient treatment, Shore, who was nonverbal until age 4, was recommended for institutionalization. With much support from his parents, teachers, wife and others, Shore is now a professor at Adelphi University in New York, where his research focuses on matching best practice to the needs of people with autism.

He will discuss the need for gaining self-awareness, communication skills and procedures to effectively educate people with disabilities on obtaining accommodations and greater mutual understanding in employment, education, relationships, interdependent living and in the community

In addition to working with children and talking about life on the autism spectrum, Shore presents and consults internationally on adult issues pertinent to education, relationships, employment, advocacy and disclosure as discussed in his books, “Beyond the Wall: Personal Experiences with Autism and Asperger Syndrome,” “Ask and Tell: Self-advocacy and Disclosure for People on the Autism Spectrum,” “Understanding Autism for Dummies” and the newly released DVD, “Living along the Autism Spectrum: What it means to have autism or Asperger syndrome.”

Beyond his position with the Asperger’s Association of New England, he is a former board member of the Autism Society and serves on the boards of the Asperger Syndrome and High Functioning Autism Association, the Autism Services Association and other autism-related organizations.