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Reading Public Museum Designated a Certified Autism Center

First Museum in Pennsylvania to Earn Designation

READING, P.A. - August 30, 2018 - (

The Reading Public Museum was recently designated a Certified Autism Center, which is awarded by the International Board of Credentialing and Continuing Education Standards (IBCCES) and demonstrates a commitment to an ongoing training and certification process in order to better serve individuals on the autism spectrum. Reading Public Museum is the first museum in the state to earn this credential.

Parents with children on the autism spectrum often find choosing destinations and attractions to visit a challenge due to sensory sensitivities and safety concerns. The Reading Public Museum (RPM) is the first destination to become a Certified Autism Center (CAC) in Berks County and the first museum certified in Pennsylvania. This means that visitors and families with children who have autism and other sensory disorders can enjoy the best possible experience close to home.

"The John Paul II Center is very excited to be part of the Reading Public Museum’s mission in becoming designated as a Certified Autism Center. As a school for individuals with special needs, we sometimes find it difficult to find accommodating programs outside of the classroom. The Museum has always been a special place for our students and adults and a certification of this caliber means that our many individuals, groups, programs, and families will be able to take full advantage of everything the museum has to offer. By proactively seeking this certification and offering these special services, RPM has proven they are a pioneer and an advocate for our local families," stated René Berkhammer, a Special Education Teacher and Transition Coordinator at the John Paul II Center for Special Learning.

For almost 20 years, IBCCES has been the industry leader in autism training for licensed healthcare professionals and educators around the globe. IBCCES recognized that many families with children who have special needs have limited options when looking for attractions and new experiences that can also understand and respond to some of their needs. In response, IBCCES created training and certification programs specifically for organizations such as resorts, museums, zoos, and more in the travel and hospitality industry.

The Reading Public Museum offers special sensory hours from 9 – 11 a.m. the first Monday and following Sunday of the month unless otherwise noted. Each family also receives a pre-visit packet with information to share with their child. The Museum will also make special accommodations for families if requested in advance.

"We are proud to become a Certified Autism Center for families to visit and feel comfortable, learn, and have fun here at The Museum," stated Wendy Koller, Manager of Education at The Museum.

“Our goal is to train and certify as many destinations as possible to ensure not only that there are more options for ALL families, but also to provide knowledge and evidence-based training to those organizations that are committed to serving guests with special needs and who are going above and beyond to make sure everyone has the best possible experience,” said Myron Pincomb, IBCCES Board Chairman. “We’re proud to work with premier organizations around the globe and are so excited to add Reading Public Museum to our list of Certified Autism Centers.”

While many destinations tout “autism-friendly” options, this does not necessarily indicate a true understanding of families’ requirements. More parents with children who have autism are seeking out destinations that have completed research-based training and professional review to give them peace of mind when visiting these organizations.

IBCCES also created, a free online resource for parents that lists certified destinations and connects families to other resources and each other. Each destination and attraction listed on the site has met Certified Autism Center (CAC) requirements. Reading Public Museum will also be listed with other CACs on, a partnership between IBCCES and Autism Society, to connect families and individuals with businesses and resources committed to serving individuals on the spectrum.


About Reading Public Museum

The Reading Public Museum is located at 500 Museum Road, Reading, PA 19611, and is open daily from 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. Admission to The Museum is: $10 adults (18-64), $6 children/seniors/students (w/ID) and free to Members and children three years old and under. Website:


The International Board of Credentialing and Continuing Education Standards (IBCCES) was established in 2001 to meet the training and credentialing needs of professionals who work with individuals with special needs. IBCCES has since expanded into over 42 different countries with training centers in the United States and Singapore and members across the globe. Our Certified Autism Specialist, Board Certified Cognitive Specialist, Certified Autism Travel Professional and Certified Autism Center credentials were established with the highest standards in the industry. As a result, our programs have become the benchmark for those who work with cognitive disorders around the globe. In addition, IBCCES created and hosts the annual International Symposium on Cognitive Research & Disorders. This global event brings together top neurologists, education leaders and healthcare experts with a focus on research, innovation, and collaboration. For information about training and certification, visit


Emily Moore
Manager of Marketing & Digital Media
Reading Public Museum
610.371.5850 x231

Meredith Tekin
Phone: 904.508.0135 / 904.434.1534

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