CAPS stands for the Comprehensive Autism Planning System. CAPS is a planning system that provides children with ASD or related disabilities a structured schedule. Multidisciplinary teams including teachers and parents, work together to provide support the client needs to be successful. Using a comprehensive daily schedule can lead to meaningful educational, social, and communication opportunities for our clients. This means more time being spent in the classroom learning, and less time having tantrum behavior throughout the day. This structured schedule includes objectives and goals for the client and the continual development of those skills. CAPS recognizes that the needs of clients with ASD may be complex, and is a tool to make sure that these needs are met during the school day. Here are 5 reasons why to use CAPS to support clients with ASD throughout the academic school day:
Each client has his/her own CAPS that is planned by his/her own team. This ensures that the client’s unique needs are addressed and met. All of the activities that the client participates in are taken into account and provides support during the day. From preschool aged to college aged students, CAPS can be used.
Compatible with the current educational standards.
CAPS builds in efficiency, accountability, and evidence. CAPS is a simple document that provides the client’s daily schedule and the skills the client is working on including – IEP goals, common core, socially valid skills, social interactions, and hidden curriculum skills.
Ensures that research-based practice is implemented.
Evidence-based practices are embedded in the client’s daily schedule to promote progress and skill development throughout the day.
Monitors the client’s progress continuously using data as support.
Data collection is taken across all settings throughout the day. While skill development and current educational goals are being targeted, data is being collected. This helps ensure that the client is being set up for success.
CAPS can be used in multiple settings from school to home to the community. This structured flexibility means that different strategies, methods, and supports can be used depending on the client.
CAPS is a detailed daily schedule that is used to support an individual client and set him or her up for success in any environment. This schedule addresses reinforcement, structure/modification, communication, and sensory needs of the specific client. Schedules are individualized, flexible, continually monitored using data, use evidence-based practice, and are compatible with educational standards. The goal of CAPS is for the client to spend more time in the classroom, building meaningful relationships with peers, and growth.
Resources: Henry, S. A. (2013). Comprehensive autism planning system (caps) for individuals with autism spectrum disorders and .. Autism Asperger Pub.