Rob Llewellyn-Jones Clinical Centre


The Rob Llewellyn-Jones Clinical and Research Centre will enable medical and mental health professionals to join with our established trans-disciplinary teams in providing timely and appropriate support for our complex population of students.

Helen Appleton 

Helen Appleton 

National Director of Student and Psychological Services

Helen Appleton is the Director of The Assessment and Diagnostic Centre. Helen has worked at Giant Steps since 2005 focusing particularly on behaviour support, crisis management, family resourcing and working with and training other agencies in best practice techniques in working with children with autism.

Helen has a special interest in autism, developmental delays, intellectual disabilities and mental health concerns for young people. She has presented at both national and international conferences on her work with siblings of children with autism and runs an extensive sibling support program at Giant Steps.

Helen has a Bachelor’s Degree of Science majoring in Psychology and a Graduate Diploma in Psychology. Helen is also an Associate Member of APS (Australian Psychological Society).

Andrew Frakes

Andrew Frakes

National Director of Occupational Therapy Director

Andrew Frakes holds a Bachelor of Applied Science in Occupational Therapy from the University of Sydney.

Working as an Occupational Therapist at Giant Steps since 2008, Andrew has a special interest in assessing and developing programs for school readiness. He also has significant experience and training in developing plans to assist children who are having difficulty regulating their emotions.

Recently Andrew completed longitudinal training in the Assessment and Analysis of Severe and Challenging Behaviour conducted by the Institute of Applied Behaviour Analysis.

The clinic hopes to address many of the issues families face when trying to access additional support for their children.

In February 2014, Giant Steps opened this clinic – the first one of its kind within a school setting.

The clinic hopes to address many of the issues families face when trying to access additional support for their children; including struggling to find appropriate professionals who understand our unique population, long waiting times for appointments, having to take children to various unfamiliar medical settings, and trying to pull together all necessary information to present to professionals. The Rob Llewellyn-Jones Clinical and Research Centre runs onsite at Giant Steps, meaning that students do not need to be removed to medical settings for long appointments. Our visiting professionals visit the students in their classrooms or the playground to meet and observe them. The school team pulls together information about the concerns for a student, which may include incidence data, video footage, functional assessments of behaviour and input from the therapists and class team.

Mental health concerns are difficult to diagnose in an autism population and require a multi-modal approach in terms of their treatment. Every young person is different and therefore requires an individual response to the issues that arise from this process.

The Rob Llewellyn-Jones Clinical and Research Centre would not be possible without the wonderful support of The Pamela and Lorenzo Galli Charitable Trust and the Giant Steps Board, in particular Dr Rob Llewellyn-Jones and Mr Steve Anthony.

View the 2014 Clinic report.


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