UT Southwestern and Children's Health℠ Center for Autism Care: Educational Support

About 90% of children with a neurodevelopmental disability – challenges with speaking, moving, learning and social skills – get some form of special education services at school. As a parent, it can be confusing to know what steps to take to ensure your child gets the right testing and services. That’s where we come in.

Children’s Health℠ is home to neurodevelopmental disability (NDD) specialists who have deep experience caring for kids with these conditions and working with schools. We offer educational support, where our team reviews school and medical records, with a referral. Then we provide any necessary recommendations tailored to your child’s needs.

What is the Center for Autism Care: Educational Support?

Educational support is a service offered by the Center for Autism Care, where we review school and outside evaluations and give parents recommendations and referrals as part of their appointment with the pediatric neurodevelopmental disabilities (NDD) specialist.

These reviews may detail what kind of school testing a child needs and make suggestions about how to change the classroom environment for them. We may recommend additional testing or classroom modifications and services to help a child succeed in school. For example, if your child struggles to pay attention or sit still in the classroom, we might suggest that the child sit near the teacher during a lesson or have frequent movement breaks.

We also review records for clinic visits and provide recommendations when needed for children with many types of neurodevelopmental disabilities. This includes children with autism spectrum disorder, ADHD and anxiety. Our specialty is supporting children with delays in areas such as language, learning, cognition (brain function) and social skills, as well as associated behavioral or emotional challenges. We also see children with chromosome abnormalities such as fragile X syndrome, Down syndrome and Pitt-Hopkins syndrome.

What are the benefits of the Center for Autism Care: Educational Support?

When needed, we provide parents with a letter on Children’s Health letterhead, detailing the need for additional school testing or services. A letter from our center helps provide medical and psychological diagnoses for help with school settings and services.

What can I expect with the Center for Autism Care: Educational Support?

What can I expect before the Center for Autism Care: Educational Support?

Before your appointment, we’ll ask you to send us your child’s medical and school reports. The school records needed include the Full and Individual Evaluation (FIE) and the ARD/IEP, a report that details eligibility determination(s), placement and services.

Having the medical and school records before the initial visit allows us to complete a thorough review. They also help in making the most from the visit with your specialist. The first visit takes about an hour. Additional follow-up visits are 30 minutes.

What can I expect during the Center for Autism Care: Educational Support?

During your appointment, our team might recommend additional testing from their school or connect your child with other support services.

What can I expect after the Center for Autism Care: Educational Support?

We are available for consultation if you have any questions about the testing, placement or services your child received from their school.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is a neurodevelopmental disabilities (NDD) specialist?

    A neurodevelopmental disabilities (NDD) specialist has extensive training and experience in understanding how a child’s brain works. They know how to diagnose and treat developmental disabilities, genetic conditions, nervous system conditions and nerve/muscle disorders. These specialists often work with a team of experts that may include therapists, rehabilitation specialists and school specialists to help provide the best care for your child.