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Unique Pathways hosts a free monthly informational session at the Grapevine Library for the special needs community.  Monthly topics rotate and often include special guest speakers.  Visit Grapevine Library's monthly calendar at the below link and search for the group name (Connections: Special Needs Parent Group) to find the next session time!


Texas Autism Society events - from sensory-friendly AMC movie days, estate planning (to care for ASD family member future needs), to driver-readiness info seessions for parents of teens with ASD.

We Rock The Spectrum is an open-play gym/birthday party event venue, especially for ASD kids!  Music, art classes also available.


Ollibean: Financial assistance for low-income families with children on the ASD spectrum.

Lend4Health: Interest-free micro-loans for obtaining ASD healthcare.


Learn the basic components of an IEP Plan (from

Learn the basic components of a 504 Plan and how it differs from an IEP Plan (from

The Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) - access to and privacy of your child's school records

Texas-specific educational information, resources and laws regarding special needs children. 


  • ABA: Applied Behavior Analysis – A method of teaching designed to analyze and change behavior in a precisely measurable and accountable manner. Also called behavior modification. Skills are broken down into their simplest components and then taught to the child through a system of reinforcement.

  • Adaptive Skills – (Functional Skills) – those used in daily living such as eating, dressing and toileting. Self-Help Skills.

  • ADHD - A biological condition that causes hyperactivity, impulsiveness, and attention problems.

  • Aphasia – Loss of ability to use or understand words.

  • Apraxia – A disorder of voluntary movement, consisting of partial or total incapacity to execute purposeful movements, without impairment of muscular power, sensibility and coordination. The person has difficulty sequencing movements in the service of a goal. May be specific to speech.

  • ASD: Autism Spectrum Disorder – Term that encompasses autism and similar disorders. More specifically, the following five disorders listed in DSM-IV: Autistic Disorder, Asperger’s Disorder, PDD-NOS, Childhood Disintegrative Disorder, and Rett’s Disorder.

  • Autism – A disability; characterized by severe language and communication deficits, lack of normal relatedness, bizarre movement and self-stimulatory patterns, lack of normal handling of toys and other objects, and lack of most normal functional skills. Life Long developmental disability, neurological disorder affecting brain function.

  • Behavioral Disorders - A pattern of disruptive behaviors in children that lasts for at least 6 months and causes problems at school, at home, and in social settings.

  • BSP: Behavior Support Plan/(BIP) Behavior Intervention Plan – Multi-component behavior intervention plans, with multiple layers of support, are in fact the best way to establish effective and comprehensive strategies for addressing challenging behavior. All interventions should be selected based on the results of the Functional Behavioral Assessment and intervention, designed to promote the acquisition of new skills and to decrease problem behaviors. Specific strategies include changing elements of students’ environment to promote positive behavior, teaching new skills to replace problem behavior, and to increase social and academic competencies. The training also focuses on several methods for using positive consequences to strengthen desirable behavior.

  • DD: Developmental Delay – A child who acquires skills after the expected age in achieving cognitive, adaptive, physical, communication and social skills.

  • Developmental Disorder - A group of psychiatric conditions originating in childhood that involve serious impairment in different areas.  These disorders comprise developmental language disorder, learning disorders, motor disorders, and autism spectrum disorders.  

  • Early Intervention Services -Applies to children before the age of 3 who are discovered to have or be at risk of developing a handicapping condition or other special need that may affect their development (physical, cognitive, communication, social development). Early intervention consists in the provision of services such children and their families for the purpose of lessening the effects of the condition. Early intervention can be remedial or preventive in nature–remediation of existing developmental problems or preventing their occurrence. Early intervention may focus on the child alone or on the child and the family together. Early intervention programs may be center-based, home-based, hospital-based, or a combination. Services range from identification–that is, hospital or school screening and referral services–to diagnostic and direct intervention programs. Early intervention may begin at any time between birth and school age; however, there are many reasons for it to begin as early as possible.

  • IDEA: Individuals with Disabilities Education Act – Federal legislation (Public Law 105-17) passed in 1997 as a reauthorization of the Education of the Handicapped Act (EHA) passed in 1975. Provides mandate and some funding for certain services for students who have disabilities.  

  • IEP: Individualized Education Plan – A yearly education plan written by teachers, therapists, psychologists, etc. and the child’s parents for school age children with disabilities for someone who needs special education. The IEP addresses the student’s needs and the educational supports and services required to meet those needs.

  • Inclusion – Disabled children receive services in their home school and are placed in the same classroom with nonhandicapped children. The practice of educating all or most children in the same classroom, including children with physical, mental, and developmental disabilities. Inclusion classes often require a special assistant to the classroom teacher.

Explore these and more helpful definitions at


We believe

behaviors are communicative and symptomatic of the disorders affecting a child.

We believe

a diagnosis does not define a child; nor dictate who they will become.

We believe

in the foundation of the family. 

We believe

in a holistic approach to our therapeutic services advocating that one size does not fit all. 

We believe

in developmentally appropriate and empirically-based interventions.

We believe

in an inclusive learning environment in the home, school, and community settings. 

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