Department of Education

The benefits of an AET partnership


AET offers face-to-face training programmes and practical resources for all those working with children and young people on the autism spectrum in early years, schools and post 16 settings up to the age of 25.

Developed by autism education specialists, the AET training programme is delivered by our network of training partner ‘hubs’ who hold a licence for the exclusive right in a local authority area or institution.

Our partners include: local authority outreach services, teaching/specialist schools, colleges, universities, early years providers, voluntary and private sectors and multi-academy trusts.


Over 1 in 100 people are on the autism spectrum and the number of children receiving an autism diagnosis is rising. This is presenting challenges for all those concerned with education, including local authorities, in ensuring appropriate provision. The purpose of Autism Education Trust (AET) is to provide support in meeting these challenges.


Our 360˚ holistic approach offers an evidence-based support programme consisting of:

  • Good Autism Practice Standards against which schools, early years and post 16 settings can audit their provision and plan improvement
  • a Competency Framework for practitioners to self-assess their practice and to plan CPD
  • a modular face-to-face training programme
  • a range of practical resources, including the widely recognised AET Progression Framework
  • communities of practice on international, national, regional and local level
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As a not-for-profit organisation, we make the cost of our licences as accessible as possible whilst maintaining the highest level of quality.

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We offer training programmes for each of the three education phases – Early Years, School and Post 16.
Local authorities may purchase a licence for each phase in each local authority area – subject to meeting our quality requirements.


The cost of an AET licence reflects the size of the territory. As a not for profit programme, we are able to make the cost of our licenses as accessible as possible whilst maintaining the highest level of quality. The average cost of an Early Years or Post 16 license is £2,000 and a School license £6,000 per annum. To reduce cost and administration, we encourage our partners to hold joint licences and offer a discount to those who take this up. For detailed licence charges click here.


The context, motivation and financial arrangements of our partners is very variable and reflective of the diverse education sectors that we support.
The principal reasons organisations become AET partners are:
  • They share our vision for autistic young people and want to improve educational access, experience and outcomes
  • They recognise the need to build capacity within education settings for autistic children and young people to reduce the need for specialist services
  • They identify an opportunity to engage with and support both settings and practitioners in that capacity building process
  • They recognise the added value being an AET partner brings to their enterprise in giving access to:
    • A comprehensive and holistic programme founded on current research and broadly accepted values and principles of good practice
    • A programme that is nationally recognised and supported by the Department for Education
    • Very high-quality materials which are systematically reviewed and updated
    • Regional and national communities of practice
    • Excellent value for money
  • The opportunity to secure a financial return on their investment in a licence
A local authority may invest in an AET license to support capacity building within mainstream education settings in their area and commissions a service (outreach service, teaching school, advisory service, etc). Depending on the context and within AET pricing structures, that partner may provide some or all training free of charge or may charge end users.


Ultimately, our aim is that our programme supports the maximum number of education settings and practitioners and delivers our vision for autistic children and young people. We very much welcome the opportunity to secure new partnerships in new areas and, should you wish to explore a partnership, we would be delighted to discuss further. Please contact: [email protected] or request a call back.






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