A CONFERENCE featuring world-class speakers is to be held in the North-East to give education professionals a greater understanding of autism and neurodiversity.

The one-day conference is being staged in the stunning setting of Wynyard Hall this Friday (July 12) in partnership between Stockton on-Tees Borough Council and the North East Autism Society.

Renowned professors and experts will be sharing the latest information and knowledge around autism and neurodiversity with specific reference to mainstream education settings.

The speakers are Dame Christine Lenehan OBE, Professor Amanda Kirby, Gareth Morewood, Joanna Grace, Trigger Pritchard, and Kieran Rose.

Dame Christine Lenehan has been Director of the Council of Disabled Children since 2003 and is Co-Chair of the Children and Young People’s Health Outcomes Forum. She also serves on the board of Healthwatch England and was a board member of the “Every Disabled Child Matters” campaign.

Professor Amanda Kirby will give a personal insight into the challenges relating to neurodiversity as a parent of a child with ADHD, Dyslexia, and DCD.

Gareth Morewood is a prolific writer on Special Education Needs and Disability, with a particular interest in autism and emotional regulation. He has been a Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator for almost 20 years and has shaped provision in schools and local authorities around the world.

Joanna Grace is an international sensory engagement and inclusion specialist, author, trainer and founder of The Sensory Projects.

Tigger Pritchard has more than 30 years of experience working alongside individuals with autism, intellectual differences, and learning disabilities.

Kieran Rose is a writer, consultant, trainer and public speaker, with a background in primary education and Special Educational Needs. He has two autistic children and was diagnosed and was diagnosed autistic himself in 2003.

Jonathan Raiseborough, an autistic young adult from Darlington, will also be talking about his life and how he came to be the illustrator of a children’s book about the importance of accepting difference.

The conference starts at 9am and finishes at 4pm. Tickets are £150 plus VAT per delegate. For more information contact Joanne Vance on 01642 527393 or joanne.vance@stockton.gov.uk