“As a family affected by Autism, it has been a privilege to have Jim involved in our lives.”
Sharon Holton, Parent
Jim has been involved in autism almost as long as I have. His understanding and knowledge stems from commitment and experience – teaching, setting up and running specialist services (including a purpose built school), working with parents and supporting school providers to improve their provisions for children with autism. He served with me for 10 years on a national accreditation committee – assessing children’s services for the quality of their autism provision.
He built up and supported a talented and committed staff team to enable excellent autism provision and shared his knowledge in training events aimed at spreading his expertise. He is a joy to listen to at training events – full of practical ideas and good humour. He is also excellent at analysing situations and helping staff problem solve and find innovative solutions. If you are looking for someone to help you develop your services for children and young people on the autism spectrum I cannot think of anyone better.
And he is nice to boot!
Rita Jordan, Emeritus Professor in Autism Studies, University of Birmingham, UK
I have been a colleague of Jim Taylor’s since 1993. In that time we have worked together, amongst other things, as Standards Body and Committee members of Autism Accreditation and Chair and Vice Chair of CoSPPA. In all those years I have always been impressed by Jim’s unique understanding of individuals in the autism spectrum and a deep commitment to improving their quality of life. Jim is never complacent, he is always striving to improve his understanding of autism and the way he supports the individuals he works with. Jim has now expanded his reach by increasing his training and consultancy therefore enabling others to continue the work that he has done to such an exceptional level for the past 40 years. It is a pleasure and a privilege to work with Jim and the professional autism community is enriched by his contribution.
Dr Jacqui Ashton Smith MBA
Executive Director of Education, National Autistic Society
Jim Taylor certainly knows autism! This guy worked in the autism field for so many years that it would be impolite to mention. Suffice to say that he has supported hundreds if not thousands of children and their families, and has a cavernous reserve of knowledge, experience, skills and humour to draw upon.
Jim’s reputation and contributions to autism go well beyond Scotland, to the rest of the UK, Europe and the US where he has given talks, trained many practitioners and provided badly needed help and advice to families. This is no more true than in Wales where Jim has, in recent years, provided great support to parents and practitioners, and trained many staff. I would therefore have no hesitation in recommending Jim to you.
Hugh Morgan OBE, FRSA, MMedSc, BA Hons, CQSW, RNMH, MIoD
Former CEO Autism Cymru & Autism West Midlands
Jim has a wealth of experience and knowledge in the field of autism spectrum disorders, I regularly use Jim to deliver training courses, speak and chair at our conferences which are attended by education, health and social care professionals. Jim is always very helpful and I greatly value his input when we are developing the content of our ASD professional development events. Its important to us as a training organisation that we keep our delegates coming back for more courses and the feedback Jim receives always ensures this.
Feedback from previous delegates:
“Refreshing, Inspiring and motivating”
“It was all very valuable information”
“ Very motivated to go back to school and do better”
“Jim’s humour is great, loved all the anecdotes, examples, and practical information which I can apply”
Carolyn Fraser, Director, Medica Cpd Ltd
As a family affected by Autism, it has been a privilege to have Jim Taylor involved in our lives. Jim is a consummate professional. His vast knowledge, experience, understanding, advice and support have been invaluable to us. Without his guidance we would have really struggled to get the correct educational support for our child. Jim’s ability to examine difficult situations and to be able to offer clear, workable, practical solutions has made a tremendous difference in our son’s life.
Jim is held in high esteem by the many families who have been fortunate enough to work with him over the years. He has touched and enriched the lives of countless young people. Not only does Jim genuinely care, he has the knowledge, ability, drive and expertise to make a real positive difference to families like ours, coping in very difficult circumstances.
Sharon Holton, Parent
Sharon offered this as a tongue-in-cheek testimonial:
Unfortunately, Jim Taylor is a shady man of dubious character. He is easily bribed by the offer of coffee, fancy biscuits, or any form of confectionery. It is noted that he has a particular penchant for Tunnocks tea cakes. Jim has an encyclopedic knowledge of tearooms within the FK postcode and beyond. He also has vast experience in all things Equis/fish supper/ice cream related. His failings many, his strengths few. However, he does do a pretty good Clive Mantel impression and can always be relied upon to sell a book or two in Morrisons on a dull Monday morning. He is nothing if not versatile. I would advise hiding valuables before his arrival and a swift frisk before he departs. You can never be too careful with those who hail from Cambuslang.
Sharon Holton, Parent
Thanks again for your work on this issue earlier in the year…it made a difference.
John Tushingham, Head of Access, Engagement and Performance, Education Services, Torfaen County Bourough Council, Wales
I have known Jim Taylor for over 20 years. We have worked together on a range of cases and issues. I admire not only his expertise in autism but also his openness to new ideas and developments. One of Jim’s greatest strengths of all is his humanity in understanding the needs of children with autism & the pressures and anxieties experienced by families. Jim is particularly skilled in working alongside fellow professionals in the local authority context as an empowering and supportive partner. And he is an informative and entertaining presenter with an extensive stock of illustrative tales and stories to suit all occasions!
Carolyn Brown, Area Depute Principal Psychologist, Psychological Service, Fife
Jim Taylor is an inspirational figure in the field of autism. His highly engaging approach draws from a diverse range of practical experience. Whether considering young people, adults and/or their families Jim offers solution focussed information in which the individual, their strengths and their needs are central. It was a privilege to work for him and learn from him.
Jayne Porter, former teacher at New Struan School
We’ve been working with Jim for 2 years. Emma is now 6 years old and it was Jim that first recognised Emma ‘had the ability to learn’. Everyone associated with Emma up until that point couldn’t see past Emma’s autism and blamed all her behaviours’ on ‘autistic traits’. Jim remains an ‘inspiration’ to us and through his wealth of knowledge he ‘inspires’ us to fight for Emma’s development.
Susan O’Donnell, Parent
Jim Taylor and I first met each other in 1998. 16 years ago! At the time I knew nothing about Jim and nothing about myself! But Jim changed that. In 2004 I started at Struan House that was soon to be New Struan and with Jim at the helm he led me on a magical and exciting 7 years changing me into a independent young man and showing and teaching me something new each day.
Today having been away from Struan for nearly 4 years, much has changed including Jim’s career. He has now set up Jim Taylor: Knows Autism and I can assure all parents and researchers out there that Jim definitely knows autism. He is a man with a strong passion for autism and for helping people with it. Jim will never stop at helping either 1 child or adult or 100 children and adults with autism. He will not rest until the job is done.
Murray MacDonald, Former pupil at New Struan School
The training and consultation we received from Jim was innovative, up to date and relevant to our workplace. The content and presentation blended theory and practice in a manner which suited the needs of our service and the participants. Without question Jim Taylor Knows Autism.
John Campbell, National Director, Autism Initiatives Ireland
Jim Taylor is an exceptional education professional. His combined experiences in specialist and mainstream educational settings have developed an unparalleled knowledge of autism and young people; leadership; educational management and extended specialist provision. This has earned him a well – deserved international reputation as an expert leader in his field.
Jim’s qualities extend far beyond these accolades, however. He has an uncompromising determination to keep the child or young person truly at the centre of any plan, discussion or proposal. This requires a willingness to listen to and respect a young person which far exceeds common-place understanding of “inclusive practice”. For Jim, it also means seeking a deep understanding of all aspects of their lives – their nature, their families, their relationships and environments; their skills and talents and their vulnerabilities. He will use this understanding to create the best possible environment for them because in Jim’s words “anything else isn’t good enough”. To compromise for any child would in Jim’s eyes be a failure.
Jim’s vast knowledge of autism extends beyond educational provision for children and young people – he knows what families also need and how best to support them too. His support and knowledge have been invaluable to us and countless other parents in the past. His kindness, good humour and compassionate concern for young people with autism and their families is just one aspect of his appeal: he knows autism like no other and is an irresistible force of nature.
Catriona Oates, Parent
Does he do after dinner speeches?
Jim’s answer: Yes!