These links are provided as a service. However, the Thompson Center cannot guarantee the accuracy of the content.
Roadmap to the Future
This website provides links to resources that will help individuals with autism and their families prepare for the transition into adult life.
Acronyms and Abbreviations
Used in special education and gifted education.
Missouri Division of Special Education
Part of the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE), the Division of Special Education administers state and federal funds to support services for students and adults with disabilities. The division works with other state and local agencies to coordinate the First Steps Program, which provides early intervention services for infants and toddlers with disabilities and local school districts to improve services for students (ages 3-21) with disabilities. It also provides financial and technical support for approved Sheltered Workshops in Missouri.
- Parent’s Guide to Special Education in Missouri — Overview of the special education process in Missouri.
- Missouri Special Education Laws and Regulations — Includes the Standards and Indicators Manual where you can find the details of Missouri’s special education process, rules and regulations and the Missouri State Plan for Special Education, the plan Missouri must submit to the federal government on how they will oversee the special education process in school districts throughout the state.
- First Steps Program — Early intervention services for children birth to age 3
- Early Childhood Special Education (ECSE) — Special education and related services for preschool age children (ages 3 to 5)
- Effective Practices — Coordinates various programs designed to meet the special needs of children, youth and adults with disabilities in the areas of professional development, state school outreach coordination, state improvement grant management, technical assistance and parent training.
- State Schools for the Severely Handicapped — A statewide public school system serving Missouri students between the ages of 5 and 21 with severe disabilities
- Missouri School for the Blind (MSB) — MSB is unique in that it offers expertise, resources and services 24 hours a day. MSB is a day school with a residential component serving over 1,200 children between the ages of 0-21 at either its center base in St. Louis or through its outreach services effort.
- Vocational Rehabilitation — Help with planning transition from high school to work, higher education and adult life.
Families for Home Education
Missouri law and information on home-schooling.
Missouri Association on Higher Education and Disability College Guidebook
Helps students with disabilities achieve access to post-secondary education institutions and find success once they are enrolled
National Center on Secondary Education Transition (NCSET)
Offers a wealth of information for parents and professionals that support transition-aged adolescents. Find out state-specific information and how to contact your local resources.
The Pop-up IEP
Practice for that upcoming Individual Education Plan (IEP) meeting.
Functional Behavioral Assessments
What are they and what are their components?
No Child Left Behind (NCLB) A Parent Guide
This guide is designed to give parents, grandparents and other caregivers ideas and tips that will improve their children’s potential for success in school. These ideas also help create a joyful family life and positive connections between parents and children; parents and parents; and parents and their children’s schools.
Assistive Technology Training Online Project (ATTO)
Provides information on assistive technology (AT) that helps students with disabilities learn in elementary classrooms – AT basics, AT decision making, tutorials, resources and more!
U.S. Department of Education Online Publication Ordering System
Free educational publications from the U.S. Department of Education.
Produced by the Families and Advocates Partnership for Education (FAPE), you can find quick handouts on a variety of special education topics that are easy to understand.
Parenting advice, child development and family reference
Use Visual Strategies
Students with autism spectrum disorders and lots of other students with behavior or communication challenges tend to be visual learners. They understand what they see better than what they hear. They benefit from the use of visual strategies. Information on using visual strategies to enhance communication in children with autism/PDD. Contains links to books and other aids as well as a list of workshops and events.
Bridges 4 Kids
Building partnerships between families, schools and communities. Information on using visual strategies to enhance communication in children with autism/PDD. Contains links to books and other aids as well as a list of workshops and events.
Autism Institute on Peer Relations and Play
Focus is on advancing local, national and international efforts to develop inclusive peer play programs following the Integrated Play Groups (IPG) model. The IPG model supports children of diverse ages and abilities on the autism spectrum in natural play experiences with typical peers and siblings within school, home, community and therapy settings. List of resources included.
Association for Behavior Analysis
Listing of local Association Chapters. Mission is to develop, enhance and support the growth and vitality of behavior analysis through research, education and practice. Newsletter and other information.
Special education law
Parents, educators, advocates and attorneys come to Wrightslaw for accurate, reliable information about special education law and advocacy for children with disabilities. Wrightslaw includes thousands of articles, cases and free resources on dozens of special education topics.
A huge listing of special education related sites.
U.S. Office of Special Education and Rehabilitation Services
A division of the U.S. Department of Education, OSERS provides information on current programs and initiatives as well as a guide to understanding special education law.
- Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) — Federal office that oversees how special education and IDEA are done in each state.
Office for Civil Rights (OCR) (U.S. Department of Education)
Federal office that handles education discrimination complaints.