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Neurodiversity Among Youth

The Mountain Plains ATTC is proud to collaborate with the National Association of State Head Injury Administrators (NASHIA) to sponsor a training series with the of goal increasing knowledge and skills regarding individuals with brain injuries and mental health and substance use disorders. Specifically, this series will highlight individuals with SUDs and a brain injury; youth with co-occurring disorders, and justice-involved individuals with brain injuries. Implications and recommendations for assessment and treatment will be highlighted in each of the 75-minute sessions.


  • Learn how to use the Building Blocks of Brain Development to understand typical neurodevelopment and neurodiversity among youth.
  • Develop skills in applying the screening and assessment strategies of the Building Blocks of Brain Development to serve youth with co-occurring mental health and substance use disorders.
  • Examine the underlying skill deficits of "can'ts" (instead of "won'ts") which allows for antecedent management/interventions versus consequence-based management in serving youth.


Presenter: Karen McAvoy, PsyD, is dually credentialed as a clinical and school psychologist. She practiced as a Pediatric Psychologist at Seattle and Denver Childrenā€™s Hospitals and as the Director of the Center for Concussion with Rocky Mountain Hospital for Children. She also practiced as a School Psychologist for 20 years serving as Coordinator of Mental Health, Coordinator of Manifestation Determinations, and Coordinator of the Brain Injury Team at Cherry Creek School District. After 20 years on the frontlines in a school district, Dr. McAvoy then served as a consultant for an additional 10 years to the Colorado Department of Education - providing trainings to multi-disciplinary school teams across the state of Colorado on the impact of brain injury and neuro-diversity on learning and behavior.




November 12, 2020
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