NEWS | January 13, 2014

Distinguished lecture to explore implementing school programs for children with autism


David S. Mandell, associate director of the Center for Autism Research at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and the Center for Mental Health Policy and Services Research at the University of Pennsylvania, will present “Context Matters: Implementing Evidence-based Practices for Children with Autism in Public Schools” during the February UC Davis MIND Institute Distinguished Lecture.

David S. Mandell David S. Mandell

The lecture will be held on Wednesday, Feb. 12 from 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. in the MIND Institute auditorium, 2825 50th St. in Sacramento, Calif. The event is free and open to the public and no reservations are required.

The goal of Mandell’s research is to improve the quality of care individuals with autism receive in their communities. Many interventions for children with autism have been proven efficacious in university-based research settings. But the gap between research and community practice requires new ways of thinking about community-research partnerships and new strategies for intervention development and implementation, Mandell said.

Mandell will discuss findings from a large-scale randomized trial collaboratively conducted by the University of Pennsylvania and the School District of Philadelphia, and the development of strategies to increase the use of evidence-based practices for students with autism in public schools.

Mandell co-chaired the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania’s Autism Task Force from 2003 to 2006 and consults with the Department of Public Welfare to help them develop appropriate policies to meet the needs of families of children with autism. He currently serves as a member of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Interagency Autism Coordinating Council.

The UC Davis MIND Institute in Sacramento, Calif., was founded in 1998 as a unique interdisciplinary research center where families, community leaders, researchers, clinicians and volunteers work together toward a common goal: researching causes, treatments and eventual preventions and cures for neurodevelopmental disorders. The institute has major research efforts in autism, fragile X syndrome, chromosome 22q11.2 deletion syndrome, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and Down syndrome. More information about the institute and its Distinguished Lecturer Series, including previous presentations in this series, is available on the Web at