• Attallah Piazza with blue lights for Autism Awareness month in April

The Center for Autism

»The Center for Autism & Developmental Disorders


Together we can find the solution!

As the rates of children with autism and neurodevelopmental disorders increase, so does the need for a comprehensive approach to intervention.  Because children spend so much of their time in school settings, it is important that professionals in all disciplines work collaboratively to provide these youth and their families with much needed intervention and support.

In response to this growing need, Chapman University’s College of Educational Studies and the Center for Autism & Developmental Disorders have come together with partners, parents, educators, and schools to actively address this issue as a community.

This collaboration will involve a two-pronged approach, providing both support and educational opportunities, specifically designed to meet the needs of individual students, families, and schools.  To this end, we have developed two cutting edge programs: Families And Schools Together (F.A.S.T), and the Chapman Ability Project (C.A.P).

We are incredibly excited to help negotiate this uncertain terrain, to see all viewpoints, promote flexibility, and advocate for the best interests of the child. Our goal is to work together with ALL team members to create quality outcomes for youth with autism and neurodevelopmental disabilities throughout Southern California.

This important endeavor would not be possible without the vision, passion and generosity of our partners and cofounders. In addition to Chapman University's College of Educational Studies, other founding members of the the Center for Autism & Developmental Disorders are The William & Nancy Thompson Family Foundation, Children and Families Commission of Orange County, the UC Irvine School of Medicine, and Children's Hospital of Orange County.

  • Upcoming Events
  • Families And Schools Together
  • Chapman Ability Project
  • balloonsThe Center for Autism & Neurodevelopmental Disorders Celebrates its Grand Opening with a Family Day

    Please join the Center for Autism and Neurodevelopmental Disorders for its Grand Opening on Saturday, May 10th, 2014 from 11:00am - 3:00pm at 2500 Red Hill Avenue, Suite 100; Santa Ana, CA 92705.

    The Center for Autism & Neurodevelopmental Disorders will be hosting a Saturday Open House for all families, community members and supporters of our center. We'll have games, activities and delicious food! Come see us in the new space, meet all our providers and check out our new treatments and services!  Please RSVP by clicking here.

    More Information

    About the Center for Autism & Neurodevelopmental Disorders
    Originally founded in 2001 (as For OC Kids), The Center for Autism is home to a team of experts in the field of autism and neurodevelopmental disorders. In late 2012, in a first-of-its-kind public/private partnership, the William & Nancy Thompson Family Foundation (Thompson Family Foundation) and the Children and Families Commission of Orange County provided $14.8 million to create a new vision.

    The aim is to create the nation’s premier center for evaluation, treatment, education and research for the wide range of autism spectrum disorders, providing help and hope to children and families affected by autism. When fully staffed, The Center will offer a complete range of diagnostic and treatment services to children, adolescents and young adults from birth to age twenty-two.

    This ambition and determination is reflected in the Center’s alignment of major partners in autism for this venture, including UC Irvine, Chapman University College of Educational Studies, and CHOC Children’s.

  • The Families And Schools Together (F.A.S.T) program offers support to families and schools, using a cohesive multi-disciplinary approach to intervention. We work together to increase communication among all team members; develop strong collaborative relationships; and share resources and expertise. This approach allows us to enhance services in all settings and ultimately improves outcomes for the youth we serve.
  • Developing great educators and clinicians is an important part of creating a better system of care for children and youth with special needs and their families. Equally important is further developing the competency of those professionals currently in the education and clinical service delivery systems. The Chapman Ability Project’s (C.A.P.) mission is to advance the expertise of educators, service providers, community members and parents working and living with children with neurodevelopmental disorders. C.A.P. will provide high quality trainings, certificate programs, and educational opportunities designed to enhance the knowledge and skills and strengthen the practice of those serving our youth in the schools and in clinical settings.
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