Maintaining Good Communication Between Parents and the ABA Team
by Jaime Friedman
December 20, 2022
Parents of children with Autism and related disabilities already know there are times when they must be an advocate for their child. A child receiving ABA services also benefits from parental involvement, as parents are an integral part of the ABA team.
What are ABA Services?
Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) is a type of intervention used in Intensive Behavioral Health Services (IBHS) that applies research and evidence to treatment. That means ABA services use strategies that have been scientifically proven to be effective. ABA services also ensure that each individual receives specialized treatment based on their own strengths and weaknesses. Especially for disorders like Autism, that vary so much on a case-to-case basis, ABA helps providers address the needs of the individual.
A child’s ABA team, in general, consists of Behavioral Health Technicians (BHTs), who work with the child directly, and a Board-Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBAs) or Licensed Behavior Specialists (LBSs) in charge of overseeing the program.
To find out if your child is eligible to receive ABA services, you can find more about the Autism Screening process on our website.
A Parent’s Role with the ABA Team
One of the first steps to receiving ABA services is an assessment completed by the BCBA/LBS. During this assessment, parents participate by helping providers become familiar with the needs of their child. Parent goals are also included in the behavioral plan and parent training is provided throughout treatment. This aspect is extremely important to help the child generalize skills amongst individual’s and settings. For example, if the child is having difficulty in social situations, it may take time for them to open up to a behavioral health provider. Identifying the specific needs of an individual is an essential part of the ABA intake process, so parents are encouraged to act as advocates for their child in these situations.
Parents of children receiving ABA services are asked to contribute by tracking progress and implementing strategy outside of intervention sessions and asking questions about new behaviors that may be problematic. After initially meeting with the ABA team, a schedule of parent training will be communicated. Much like with assigning an intervention, the ABA team and the parents would determine the frequency of communications based on the child’s individual needs.
Tips for Maintaining Good Communications
Each case is different in ABA, but you can always propose new communication methods to see if they would work better for your child. In a newsletter published by The Autism Helper, one BCBA offered some templates to improve communication between parents and the ABA team. Options range from a daily Visual Home Letter to a Monthly Newsletter that parents can complete for their child. The post also included a sample log for parents to keep and document all interactions with the ABA team. That can prevent you from missing anything coming up on the schedule or from feeling like falling behind every time a change is made to your child’s treatment.
Aspire Child & Family Services specializes in the treatment of children with Autism and related disabilities by providing high quality IBHS-ABA. Contact our office to learn more: https://aspirecfs.com/contact