Frequently Asked Questions – FAQ

FAQ (21)

How much does it cost?

a. The actual cost for school age consultation and community outreach are primarily absorbed through volunteer efforts and the non- profit organization. However, your costs beyond free public recreation programs will depend on a sliding scale and what monies we can match to enroll your child in these selected opportunities. We will help you find an afterschool community activity for your child as well as make a contribution toward achieving his acceptance in the program if needed.

b. We would consider a natural scope and sequence to interventions. Before our limited funds are spent, we would hope the family could benefit from existing resources with us being considered as the last payee.

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Do you take my insurance?

Other than the ABLE-differently Program which is free for phone consult and networking, referral to other private and public resources may require health insurance. We would not be responsible for these costs.

What if I don’t live in Salt Lake City?

We reserve the option to prioritize limited consultative and financial resources with serving critically hard to reach special populations where barriers limit access to care or when other resources are unavailable such as within specific rural locations, certain schools, unique ethnic minority circumstances and and/or associated with marked and multiple disadvantages. Otherwise, our goals include eventually serving Salt Lake area and specific rural communities in Utah. These areas will be assessed on an individual need basis.

What is unique about the ABLE-differently program?

ABLE-differently provides community based service networking for families of special needs with school age children (preschool and early intervention included) who have tried other interventions and are still searching for solutions. The program advocates a team approach, generally guided by consultation only. Some parents will want to form their own working teams in the community for supporting their child especially when there are co-occurring social-emotional and behavioral concerns. We can guide you in that process as we also will work with your providers in a consultative relationship.

Is the ABLE-differently team affiliated with the University of Utah or Primary Children’s Medical Center?

The ABLE-differently Program works in collaboration with these centers for the medically rendered services but is separate and defined under Utah non- profit charitable rules and regulations.

Where can I take my child for Psychological or I.Q. testing?

If you are concerned about your child’s psychological well-being or intellectual functioning, here are some helpful points:

  • If your child is functioning below grade level, you can request that the school perform intelligence and achievement testing.
  • If your child is performing above grade level, you can ask the school or the district to test for the Extended Learning Program (ELP).
  • Some psychologists in private practice will give a complete assessment for learning and emotional well-being. Check your insurance company’s preferred provider list or the yellow pages.

What does ABLE-differently stand for?


B – Promote Behavioral RESILIENCY

L – Promote adaptive LEARNING

E – Promote healthy ENVIRONMENTS

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What is ABLE-differently’s overall mission and goals?

ABLE-differently takes a public mental health perspective and is dedicated to promoting community access to health and wellbeing integrated with related and non medical services for special needs children and their families by supporting referral information, guidance in social-emotional-behavioral consultation and education for the local and neighborhood systems of care including medical homes, schools and community recreation. Able-differently espouses a collaborative philosophy with the family at the center and includes a child strengths and context assessment and intervention expressed in searching for adaptabilities in lived experience in all memory learning environments. We have an opportunity to help the family explore other community experiences through play and other creative arts to expand the child’s story of herself as a worthwhile, esteemed and powerful person. We use an established recognized web programming to assist in these goals.

I already know what my child’s and family’s strengths are and I need to work on the problems. Now what?

Yes, we listen to problems and join with you for solutions and track the improvements. We have also learned that focusing on improvement in health and well-being can be done through building on existing strengths. How are strengths used? Strengths are verbally acknowledged and incorporated into daily routines, goals and activities that would help the problems be less stressful.

Will my child’s treatment include medication?

Use of medication is an individual decision. Each child and family is different. ABLE-differently Program can make recommendations and the family and primary care provider decides what is best for them. All medications have side effects and their use needs to be justified by observing major improvement in functioning.

What do you mean I should look up someone else to help me? I don’t have any one to go to. I am alone.

These problems are beyond what one person can handle and maintain health and well-being. When a person is alone, it is hard to think of anyone who would listen and help. However, that one person to join with you may be an adult from the school/PTA, church, neighborhood, a extended family member, a parent of one of your children’s acquaintances or perhaps even a past teacher or day-care provider.

Does my child qualify for public school services whether enrolled in Charter or private schools?

Yes. If s(he) has a disability. In addition, ABLE-differently is willing to discuss the types of support available.

Does my home-schooled or in private school enrolled child qualify for public school support?

Charter schools -Yes; Private schools – in some circumstances. We join in with parents in discussion of public school and community resources and their responsibilities.

What is my home-schooled child entitled to receive from public school services?

The Utah State Board of Education provides standards and procedures for home-schooling. Supplementary services may be provided for which parents must request and discuss their individual situation with district representatives. You may want to consider a dual enrollment early before starting home school.

As a parent, how can I learn more about what public schools provide and the rules and regulations?

Utah Parent Center
801.272.1051 Fax: 801.272.8907
Toll Free: 800.468.1160 Español: 801.272.1067

Utah Board of Education
Phone: 801-538-7500

Disability Law Center
Phone: 1-800-662-9080 (voice) or 1-800-550-4182 (TTY)

As a principal, teacher or special educator, what can the ABLE-differently program offer my school and myself?

A range of services are offered to the school:

  • Consultation for community teams
  • Consultation on children’s learning and social-emotional development
  • Information on chronic medical conditions impacting a child
  • School phone-conferencing with staff concerning complex children

What if a team already serves my child?

We also look forward to partnering with on-going teams working around the child, such as the school teams, DSPD, DCFS, or Fostering Healthy Children’s teams. Our expertise is in joining and helping to support on-going teams

Why does my child need a team?

When multiple complex issues need attention, a group can better work together over a period of time. A group with shared commitment to the child offers ongoing problem solving in an atmosphere of positive regard. When behavioral and psycho-social concerns are added to the load of what’s expressed, a multidisciplinary team sitting around the family can make a great difference.

What is a wrap-around?

A wrap-around group provides a process for highly individualized planning, which is family centered, community-oriented and strength-based aimed at helping a family meet their needs and achieve goals. Needs can be assessed and prioritized with attunement to the family and child. For additional readings go to the Team Building section.

Why does the program seek a community approach-coordinating services? Doesn’t seem very confidential to me.

Community consultation and coordination is done when a parent is ready and comfortable so that written permission is given. We are respectful of the need for privacy within the family’s life. Solutions to problems come from many sources and multiple voices. It takes a village to raise a child and many unexpected gifts can arrive from expanding family support.


We would look forward to consulting with the primary care, medical home with goal of helping to answer questions about the condition or concerns. We do not take on the role of primary care.

We also look forward to joining on-going teams working around the child, such as the school teams, DSPD, DCFS, or Fostering Healthy Children’s teams. Our expertise is in consulting and helping to support on-going teams.

What does the ABLE-differently program use from the public health model to serve families with special needs children?

Public health through its mission of promotion, prevention and protection collaborates with providers of health, mental health and education to render whole the needs for the development of children’s bodily growth, within mental and social-emotional states of well-being.