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Archive for FAQs

Does ABA Learning Centre provide Behaviour Interventionists?

ABA Learning Centre only provides Behaviour Interventionists (BIs) for our centre based programs.  For home programs, our consultants may have a BI on another home team that is looking for more clients, but we cannot guarantee it.

ABA Learning Centre  recommends that families hire private BIs to work with their children, if they are running services from home. The reason for this is a private BI will have a lower billing rate than a BI that you hire through an agency. An agency will have a ‘cost’ of having an employee as they have to pay their vacation pay, EI, etc. and the cost of having that employee will be built into their billing rates. You will be able to get more hours of intervention from a private BI per month because usually they are at a lower bill rate. Parents can explore several options to advertise the position. Some of these options include: posting ads on community bulletin boards, college and university bulletin boards, or internet job postings such as Indeed and Craigslist.

The Program Manager or Program Supervisor working with your child can assist you with the process of screening and hiring a BI to ensure that you are hiring a knowledgeable individual. They can also then train that private BI on your child’s intervention program. When you employ BIs yourself, you are responsible for obtaining criminal record checks, registering and paying WCB premiums, etc.

Applying for services from ABA LC

If you wish to apply to ABA LC for your child, please complete the intake form on at www.abacentre.ca  and forward it to Joseph Carpenter at joseph@abacentre.ca or by fax to 604-232-9515. By filling out the intake application you are NOT under any obligation to use services from ABA Learning Centre. The intake application gives us some basic information about your child, their learning levels, your goals for them and your geographical area so that we can match you up with an appropriate Program Manager. The intake application will also give us some context and insight into your child so that we can discuss the appropriate programs that we would be able to offer. Any information submitted is kept confidential. Your intake application will be reviewed within three business days and you will be notified if there is an ABA LC Program Manager in your area who has room on their caseload, and their availability to meet with you. When you have submitted your intake application with ABA Learning Centre, you will book an intake meeting, a free information session. You will be meeting a representative from ABA Learning Centre and the Program Manager that would potentially be working with your child. At the time of the intake meeting we will discuss the fees associated with the program that you choose is the best fit for your child.

Where do I go from here?

Autism Information Services BC(AIS BC) is the organization responsible for providing information to parents whose children have had a diagnosis of ASD.  Parents should contact AIS BC to gather information on all types of therapy for children diagnosed with ASD. Contact AIS BC at 1-844-878-4700 or email AutismInformation@gov.bc.ca

How long will it take before my child will speak/use the potty/stop throwing tantrums?

No professional can or should give you absolute guarantees about any aspect of your child’s development or behaviour. We will use the science of ABA to collect data which informs our decisions and to select techniques and strategies to assist you child in acquiring effective behaviours and skills for independence. We will use the regular team meetings as a time to share information, raise questions and concerns, and plan intervention strategies. You can expect your child to show progress in the areas of his/her goals over time and we will monitor the progress with regular data collection. Our aim is to help your child to realize his or her full potential, and find ways to interact with, and thrive in, the world.

We do encourage parents to make functional life skills a high priority. It is very important that children are toilet trained, can feed themselves and can put on jackets and shoes before they enroll in schooling. So, depending on your child’s age, these should be made the priority objectives (at 4 years of age minimum). Tantrums are “normal” for many two year olds and four year olds without autism so it is important for your PM to do functional assessments to determine appropriate interventions to eliminate tantrums that may be the result of communication, frustration, “control”, etc. and you may be asked to actively participate in providing supports and consequences when the issue of tantrums is being addressed.

How do a hire a BI?

Generally parents have an option to hire their own BI or they may be referred to BI’s associated with and trained through the ABA Learning Centre if any are available. If the family hires privately, they are solely responsible for advertising the position, interviewing the potential interventionists and requesting a criminal record check. Parents can explore several options to advertise the position. Some of these options include: posting ads it on community bulletin boards, college and university bulletin boards, or internet job postings sites such as Indeed or craiglist.

Does your organization have a set-up fee?

ABA Learning Centre does have a set-up fee for most of their programs (usually excluding Social Skills programs); however, which program your child is participating in and the age of your child will reflect what that set-up fee is. When you have submitted your intake application with ABA Learning Centre, you will book an intake meeting, a free information session, and a representative from ABA Learning Centre will discuss all program fees with you at that time. All set-up fees are 100% covered by the Autism Funding.

Can I save money by having a team meeting once every two months?

No!  (Not for children under the age of six) The team meeting is a vital and mandatory part of the program, for the reasons outlined above. You are an essential part of your child’s team, and you need to be kept knowledgeable about the program, and have an opportunity to contribute your experience and knowledge of your child to the team. When we devise a BPI for your child, we are designing a program that includes the hours of intervention that fit your budget, time for program development, data collection and analysis, and team meetings to communicate and ensure progress of your child. None of these activities is optional.  It is important that you understand the meetings are intended to ensure you and all the team members understand the programs, intervention strategies and progress as well as address any concerns that may arise during the month.

How does your fee structure work?

If you are participating in a home program, the team that would be assisting you from ABA Learning Centre would work with you to find times for sessions that work with both your and the schedule of the Program Manager or Program Supervisor. The charge for our Program Managers, Program Supervisors and Student Program Supervision is based on an hourly rate. This rate varies from $70/hr to $150/hr, depending on the qualifications and experience of each individual.

We attempt to place PM/PS within specific geographic regions to reduce the time spent traveling. If your home is more than 30 km from the office of ABA LC or from the location of the home of the PM/PS, there may be an additional charge to cover travel expenses. If you, and your BIs are able to attend team meetings at the Richmond office, it does eliminate the need to charge for any travel time for the PM/PS.

If you are participating in a centre-based program you would have a flat monthly rate for services that would vary depending on the program that your child would be participating in. Ultimately, our goal is to work with you to keep program management fees as low as possible in order to maximize individual therapy hours while maintaining the quality and integrity of the program.

How much will my program cost? What is the average cost of a program?

Once again, your program will be an individualized treatment plan for your child.  We do not use a ‘one size fits all’ approach. We will do our best to work with your budget; however, it is simply not possible to give you a decision regarding costs before meeting your child, discussing your goals and obtaining some baseline data through assessment. A similar life example might be: if you buy a pre-fabricated sofa at IKEA, you know from the price tag how much it will cost you. If you wanted a custom-made piece of furniture, you would have to make lots of decisions and provide lots of information to the carpenter before he could give you a quote. We will ask you what your budget allows each month for your child’s program and then we will tell you the hours of service we can provide within that budget. We are sensitive to the fact that many parents are limited to their child’s Autism Funding for services and we can work within the funding amounts to provide a quality program for your child.

What will the family receive after the ABLLS-R, VB-MAPP, or ESDM assessment has been completed?

For children under the age of six years old, upon completion of the assessment parents will be provided with the testing protocol (record booklet) containing criterion – referenced information regarding the child’s current skills, and the Behavior Plan of Intervention (BPI) developed by the Program Manager or Program Supervisor who has been assigned to work with the child. The BPI lists educational objectives based on the assessment of the learner’s current level of abilities. The plan contains current information of each objective, explanation of the teaching procedures, materials that are required to implement the program, and mastery criteria. A BPI is usually a plan for the first six months of the child’s program but, should the child be a rapid learner, the plan may be revised monthly at the regular team meeting. The rate at which the BPI is adapted and continued to be developed will depend on a child’s learning level. For example if a child masters skills quickly, then his or her BPI will be updated and changed more frequently than a child who may take longer to master the skills. BPI’s are usually completed within 4 – 5 weeks of a program beginning; however, the more available a family is for the Program Manager Program Supervisor to meet with the child, the faster the BPI will be completed. Assessments to update the programs for a child are planned and are an integral part of the monthly services. Typically, an ABLLS-R or VB-MAPP will be updated at a minimum, annually. You will be provided graphs which illustrate the mastery of objectives with each update.