Friends of Bright Futures School to host a ground-breaking autism conference

A GROUND-BREAKING conference on relationship-based approaches for autism is to be hosted this summer by Friends of Bright Futures School (FBFS).

FBFS logoFBFS, the parent/teacher association of Grasscroft-based Bright Futures School for children with autism, has organised the event for Sunday, June 4 at The Village Hotel in Ashton-under-Lyne.

Zoe Thompson, the school’s Proprietor and Head of Development, said: “Research published in The Lancet in 2016 shows how the use of a parent-led ‘social communication’ intervention decreased the severity of children’s autism.

“At Bright Futures School, we have adapted a parent-led social communication intervention called Relationship Development Intervention (RDI) to support our pupils to work on the core autism difficulties.

“This is the first conference in the UK to focus on autism interventions that use the parent/carer-child relationship in this ground-breaking way.”

Zoe, who is also a parent of a young adult with whom RDI is used, writes a blog on how this approach is used at the school to work on these difficulties.

Lottery Funded Big Lottery Fund logoThe June conference will look at how two relationship-based social communication interventions (RDI and Gentle Teaching) can be used to support people with autism.

It will also support parents to understand how to navigate education, health and social care services in order to seek to secure this special type of provision for their loved ones.

Zoe, as one of the key speakers, will be joined by Sharon Bradbrook-Armit, RDI Consultant and parent of a young adult with whom  RDI is used; Brendan Maguire, Director, Learning Together, and Gentle Teaching Consultant; David and Jayne Mallinson, parents of a young adult with whom Gentle Teaching is used and Sarah Dunn, Headteacher, Bradstow School, where Gentle Teaching is embedded into the curriculum.

Funded by Awards for All (Big Lottery Fund small grants), the conference is FREE and will take place on Sunday, June 4 at The Village Hotel, Pamir Drive, Ashton-under-Lyne, OL7 0LY from 9.30am until 4.30pm.

Tickets can be booked via Eventbrite. A refundable £30 cheque is required to secure your booking.

For further information about the event, please contact Christina Stocks at Bright Futures School on 01457 878738 or email

Bright Futures School for children with autism specialises in the provision for children with autism and brings a new approach to autism education. To find out more visit their website


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