San Antonio Family’s Autism Education Efforts Lead to New State Law

by: Roseanna Garza/Rivard Report
August 29th 2019

“A patrol officer driving on a local freeway came across a young man wielding a two-by-four in the middle of the inside lane as cars zoomed quickly past. Upon approaching him, the officer, whom SAPD declined to identify, quickly recognized the youth had a cognitive impairment and was not suffering from mental health or substance abuse issues.

Using communication skills learned from the Allens, the officer talked the young man into putting the piece of lumber down, and then helped him get off the freeway and return safely home.”

-San Antonio Police Chief William McManus  (for the rest of this story, click on the link above)


Neuroscience Sheds Light on Why People with Asperger’s Syndrome Might Lack Empathy


Find you are always trying to ‘explain’ the behavior of your Asperger child or spouse? No matter how much we explain or teach or train the Aspie mind, certain neurological circuits don’t work as they do in the NT brain. The brain has a number of circuits that are all connected like Christmas lights. If one part doesn’t work right, then the rest of the circuits malfunction, too. GREAT article, by Dr. Kathy Marshack, shedding light on why people with Aspergers Syndrome lack empathy.


Autism Coming-Of-Age Documentary

Disablity Scoop
October 8, 2015

“How to Dance in Ohio” follows three young women with autism leading up to a spring formal. (Laela Kilbourn)

A film following a group of young women on the spectrum as they prepare for the social challenges of attending a dance is set to air on HBO later this month.

The documentary “How to Dance in Ohio” focuses on three Columbus, Ohio women with autism who work with a psychologist for 12 weeks leading up to a spring formal.

Marideth, 16, Caroline, 19, and Jessica, 22, open up in therapy sessions, work on their social skills and learn to dance ahead of the big day. Detailed preparations include reviewing the layout of the venue, understanding how to accept an invitation to dance and learning to touch another person.

College Student with ASD returns to his Middle School to Encourage!

Welcome Home Newspaper
June 2, 2015

RLopex-MS-on-Autismeturning to the most challenging of school-age years (Middle School) came easy for Samuel Allen as the 20-year-old recently spoke to an anxious group of parents at San Antonio’s Lopez Middle School where he attended some 8 years ago. The topics ranged from the effects of bullying to finding your ASD child’s talent/strengths.

The most candid question came at the end of the evening when Sam was asked whether the parent should reveal to their son that he was recently diagnosed with High-Functioning Autism to which Sam replied “Why would you not? How can your son fully understand himself without knowing how he is hardwired? Autism is a gift not a curse.”  The parents reaction was both tears and applause.

Technology as a social lifeline for kids with Asperger’s

Medical Press

Everyone has various skills and interests. It’s always great to read about offering an outlet and honing in on that passion. Technology was our son’s passion and eased middle school/high school social anxieties.


Housing Community for those with Disablities

March 3, 2015

It’s a concept gaining acceptance nationwide, providing a stimulating community setting for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities who are capable of living with some degree of independence. Housing Community for those with Disablities includes 132 apartments and a recreation center with pool and commercial kitchen.  “It’s been a long road; God has called me to do this,” Jack Kosik said recently at the 56-acre site that soon will be developed into a gated community for people with developmental disabilities. Already, as many as 227 parents and guardians have indicated interest in placing loved ones at Noah’s Landing, Kosik said. “We believe we’re starting a tsunami. If we do it right, this will be a national model.” No doubt!



Boy with Asperger’s Syndrome hospitalized in brutal school attack

Fox 8 Cleveland
FEBRUARY 26, 2015

So heartbreaking and yet familiar. Bullying happens at every level in life but for those on the spectrum, according to Dr. Tony Attwood, you have about a 100% chance of it happening during the school years. This 12 year old with Aspergers was beaten for sticking to what was familiar.

Boy with Asperger’s Syndrome hospitalized in brutal school attack


Hollywood and Asperger’s

The Blog
January 10th 2015

“It is important to acknowledge the role of individuals with Asperger’s Syndrome in the history of humankind.

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Remember that many famous scientists, writers, artists and innovators we admire today (such as Albert Einstein, Bill Gates, Alfred Hitchcock, Bobby Fischer and others) had traits of Asperger’s.

The world would not be the same without them. I think we should focus on understanding and supporting these people rather than ostracizing and mocking them.” -Dr. Tali Shenfield.

That said, we’ve provided a link to an article by Alex Simon titled: Hollywood and Asperger’s listing some of the best films dealing with Asperger’s Syndrome.

President Obama signs ABLE Act

Disability Scoop
December 22, 2014

If you haven’t already heard…President Barack Obama signed the Achieving a Better Life Experience, or ABLE, Act a couple weeks ago paving the way for people with disabilities to open tax-free savings accounts where they can amass more than $2,000 without losing government benefits. To be eligible, individuals must have a condition that occurred before age 26 and each person may only open one ABLE account. More in this article from Disability Scoop.



Willing and able: Hiring initiatives give hope to adults with autism

San Jose Mercury News
December 26th, 2014

20141226__1227autism~2 All of those specialized talents that are primarily unique to those with Autism are such a gift, however the workforce has yet to capitalize on these talents until recently. “We hire people in spite of autism and because of autism,” said Jose Velasco, head of SAP’s Autism at Work program in the United States. “It’s not a disability play; it’s a skills play.” Read about Joe Cintas,who until recently stocked groceries for a living in spite of his remarkable ability with numbers and patterns leading him to a career finding bugs in medical software.