Schedule a Private Tour
We invite you to schedule a tour of our wonderful facilities and interact with our dedicated clinical team. We’ll share helpful information about our unique Center-Based Model services as you explore the center itself. Throughout the tour, our team will gather the necessary documents needed to request an authorization for assessment from your insurance. Please note that we cannot move forward in the process without these pieces of information. Please bring the required documents (insurance card, a referral from your child’s doctor, and a full diagnostic report) with you during your visit as they are used to determine the amount of hours your child might need for ABA therapy, the specific goals to teach, and whether our center would be the right fit for your child’s needs.
Take a Virtual Tour
We are experts in providing individualized solutions and are dedicated to transitioning children out of specialized services into traditional schools and social environments.
What is autism and how does ABA therapy work?
Florida Autism Center
Start here. Go anywhere.
Dr. Matthew Busick: Center Director – Tallahassee
FAC provides both ABA therapy and private school services.
We have children who come to us for one or both of those services.
If your child’s preschool aged then they’re not old enough yet to participate in our school services.
However they would be a perfect candidate for our early intervention services.
If your child is at least indergarten age and you’re interested in school services with FAC, then there’s an opportunity to coordinate care so that your child gets both their school services and their ABA therapy services all wrapped into one.
Dr. Kerri Peters: Center Director – Gainsville
The school program matches to the best of their ability the curriculum for the Florida sunshine state standards and the common core curriculum.
We’re able to use applied behavior analysis to teach the goals and the core curriculum that is provided for the Florida State Standards.
And so we’re able to use smaller ratios at the Florida Autism Center to get most of the clients up to their academic level so that we can hopefully transition them back into their school placement.
Dr. Matthew Busick
Some of the things we’re going to want to find out the parents is any other services that your child might be receiving that may be speech that may be occupational therapy.
It’s very important to us that we try to coordinate our care with those other service providers so that everyone’s on the same page.
While we aim to be clinically excellent and experts on ABA, we recognize and value the fact that you will always be the expert on your particular child and we will not be able to provide as quality of service without that collaboration.
Chrystin Bullock: Founder – Florida Autism Center
We want our families to be involved and I always tell parents that it’s great if your child comes here and does these beautiful wonderful things for me but if you take them home and they don’t still persist and doing things and we missed the mark.
So we want our parents to enjoy these successes with us and to be a part of that.
To do that we bring our parents in sometimes weekly but at minimum monthly and they sit down with us.
We go through the program, we talk about what problems they are having at home, what strengths are we having, and what new things are we seeing that we’re really pleased with.
And then we talk about how do we make it better.
How do we make it even better how do we make your life easier at home.
How do we take the things that we’re doing here and make them functional and useful in your day-to-day life.
Dr. Matthew Busick
Something that’s great about having your child come to a Center to receive their ABA services is you can get the best of both worlds.
So your child will have a one-to-one therapist available with them at all times, but we’re also going to structure their day and their activities around group activities so that they do get that very important peer socialization component.
Dr. Kerri Peters
This is the point is for where we discuss particular skill deficits and skills that are related to your child.
So we’ll talk about the family’s eating habits, the child’s eating habits, any allergies, any medical conditions, or medical needs that your child might have.
We also discuss sleeping habits and daily routines so that we can develop a treatment that is specific to your family and your child.
Dr. Matthew Busick
Because we structure the child’s day and restructure their activities we embed opportunities for them to work on a variety of daily living skills that are going to help with their functional independence.
So a perfect example of that is toileting or toilet training.
That’s a problem that we see often, and a request that we receive often from our parents is ‘please can you help me with toilet training’ and the answer is yes absolutely we can.
That’s something that we have great interventions for.
We do incorporate meals into the regular daily schedules of each child so usually that means a morning and afternoon snack and a lunch in the middle of the day.
We do not provide the food but we help with food preparations.
We’re very conscious and aware of who have any specific food restrictions, or special diets, or food allergies.
It’s also another opportunity for socialization: so we group kids together, they eat lunch together, they talk to each other, they help each other out.
Everyone pitches in together.
A therapy session will typically look like a child arriving in the door, and a therapist comes out to greet them, and they exchange a few words with their parents, take them back into a therapy room or they’ll sit down at a little table, and they will do some tasks together one-on-one.
The tasks that they do will be based upon the child’s program which has been created based on the assessment of what are the child’s current skills and what do we want the child to be able to do.
So they’ll work together for a few minutes and then they’ll take a break to play, and then they’ll come back to the table work together a little bit more.
Usually about an hour they’ll be with one therapist and then they’ll go see someone new to keep kind of a fresh perspective and keeps everything moving along and exciting for everyone.
The child may come and do some social skills with them.
So there may be certain times during the day where we say let’s bring everybody together in one room and we sing songs, and we read stories, and we do the things that you would see in more of a typical preschool classroom.
But when we do that each child in that classroom still has a one-on-one person to guide them through these group activities and make sure that they’re getting the most out of it that they can.
So throughout the day a child would have a schedule that they’d follow: time one-on-one, time spent in a group, more time spent one-on-one, new therapist to see.
It’s an ever changing ever moving kind of day to keep it really fresh for all of our kids.
So most of what we do is one-on-one therapy here; so when you look at a classroom here what you’re going to see is not 20 or 30 children in a space.
You’re going to see two maybe three children each with their own little table with their own little station.
You’re going to see a therapist and a child sitting together, and working together, and laughing together, and then taking breaks to socialize with the other kids in the room.
So you’re really going to see that individualized attention, and that time on this child, and what does this child need.
Dr. Kerri Peters
Florida Autism Center has created their own data collection system and in doing so we’re able to collect live data.
It really is a way to guide the progress and to kind of know if we’re on the right track.
We can see daily if we are making the strides that we want to make and we can adjust our program accordingly if we look at the data that we’re collecting.
So each of the staff members has a computer and the system has all of the programs and all of the data from all of the previous days and keeps track of changes across time.
And the therapist is able to collect accurate and reliable data by using the data collection system.
In addition it has a Parent Portal, so parents are able to log in from home and see how their children are doing at the center that day.
It’s really important to have live data collection because it improves the accuracy of the data so you get a better picture of what the children are doing, what they’re getting correct or incorrect, or how much problem behaviors they’re having.
Because the therapists are not having to rely on their memory of events that happen, they are able to immediately plug in the data, and it graphs automatically, and it leaves little room for human error.
We spent a lot of our day with the children teaching them appropriate place skills, and teaching them how to interact with their environment in an age-appropriate manner.
And so we have a lot of natural environment teaching that happens at the Florida Autism Center and in doing that we give them access – we give all of the children access to the types of activities that they would see in a lesser restrictive placement.
We teach them how to interact with toys, and we teach them how to interact with other peers interacting with the activities that have available for them.
We also use play as an opportunity to teach social skills, and to teach appropriate behavior when children take their toy, or children aren’t sharing with them, and how to take turns.
We have recess time where we’re able to work on gross motor skills while they’re engaged in play.
And we can enrich their environment in such a way that their environment matches what they would likely transition back into should they transition back into their general education placement.
For a lot of the children and a lot of the families some of these real-world situations that they are supposed to are really difficult for them.
So for example haircuts, or going to the dentist, or going to the grocery store, those all might be problem areas for the family or for this child.
So what we do is individualize our therapy to allow them access to practicing the skills that they need to go to the dentist.
So we’ll set up an environment at the clinic that looks just like their dentist’s office.
We’ll go to the dentist’s office and see how they do at a dentist’s visit.
And then we’ll try and teach them the skills in their day-to-day therapy, and then we’ll go back with them to the dentist and see if the skills that we’re teaching them actually generalize to be the setting that is necessary to succeed in.
We hope you are able to learn a little bit more about the Florida Autism Center and all of the services that we provide.