From November to December 2020, three online conferences held in the framework of the Train-ASD project raised awareness about the importance of empowering specialist teachers to support the effective inclusion of autistic learners and shared the work of the project with a wider stakeholder audience. 


Developed and hosted by Train-ASD project partners from Greece, Romania and Belgium, the final conferences presented the project to more than 250 professionals, self-advocates, parents and autism experts from across Europe. It was initially planned to hold in-person events in Thessaloniki, Bucharest and Brussels but due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the conferences were instead held online. Participants were able to access the conferences in English, Greek, Romanian and French.

Each conference provided an overview of the project and outlined the Train-ASD curriculum, the e-Learning platform and its learning management system developed by Train-ASD partners. 


The Romanian conference

Organised by the University of Bucharest, the half-day Romanian conference brought together teachers, psychologists, speech therapists and other professionals on December 18th. The five-hour event was hosted online and was available in Romanian and English.


Among the keynote speakers was Dr. Elad Vashdi, founder of the Yael Center and main developer of the scientifically based complete developmental approach for treating children with special needs called Multi-dimensional therapy. Georgiana Mihalcea, a journalist, special education teacher and mother of an autistic teenager, also spoke at the conference and shared her experiences.


Participants expressed great satisfaction with the event and showed particular interest in learning more about the e-learning course such as how to register, how to log on to the platform, and whether we will have similar events in the future.



Final conference agenda: English version and Romanian version


The Greek conference

On December 18th the Greek conference, organised by the University of Macedonia, addressed professors from Universities across Greece in both Greek and English.


The keynote speakers included: Dr . Christina K. Syriopoulou – Delli, the Scientific Officer and project coordinator of Train-ASD; Mr. Mena Efstathiou, Co-president of the Panhellenic Scientific Association of Special Education; Mr. Lefteris Ratsiatos, Co-president of the Panhellenic Scientific Association of Special Education; And Mr. Georgios Galanis, Treasurer of the Panhellenic Scientific Association of Special Education.


At the conference, participants took part in a three-hour fruitful discussion on the need for improving teacher’s skills in working with autistic learners and had the opportunity to learn and ask questions about Train-ASD’s developed learning materials. The project received many positive comments and participants expressed their desire to have the needs of teachers more strongly reflected in government's official policy-making.


Final conference agenda: English version and Greek version


The European conference

On November 8th 2020, Train-ASD project partner, Autism-Europe held the Train-ASD international event online in conjunction with its Council of Administration meeting.


The event was attended by 37 stakeholders from 19 different countries who were members of the Autism-Europe’s Council of Administration. They represent Autism-Europe’s national and regional member associations, all of whom are in close contact with professionals in the field of inclusive education in their countries. Participants received an electronic version of the Train-ASD leaflet, and the PowerPoint presentation presented by Christine Syriopoulou right after the event. Interpretation was available in English and in French.


Read more about the event here.


The Train-ASD project partners would like to thank everyone who participated in these final conferences and spread the word to their networks about the project.