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Delaware Assistive Technology Initiative

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Vol. 10, No. 3 Summer/Fall 2002

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Inclusion Works!

This year's Inclusion Conference, scheduled for Thursday, November 14, brings outstanding speakers from all over the country to Ruddertowne in Dewey Beach. Kathie Snow, the keynote speaker, is a wife, mother, author, and advocate of innovative thinking about children and adults with disabilities. In her opening talk, titled Living Real Lives, she will explore the fact that too many children and adults with disabilities live their lives as "clients of the system" instead of "citizens of their community." She will suggest that only when we move from dependence on the service system to interdependence in the community will we ensure real lives for people with disabilities.

No More Fighting!

Snow will also offer a full-day session titled No More Fighting!, in which she will bring a new perspective to the often contentious Individualized Education Program (IEP) planning process. Snow says it is time to make the IEP process fun, productive, and beneficial for all. She will demonstrate that when parents and educators practice proactive and cooperative advocacy, everyone wins.

Fostering Literacy and Language Development Among Students with Disabilities

This workshop will be presented by literacy expert Dr. Karen Erickson, an associate professor and coordinator of the Center for Literacy and Disability Studies at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Dr. Erickson will introduce a framework for understanding the critical link between literacy and language, and will guide attendees in applying research-based best practices to literacy instruction. She will also discuss the ways in which assistive technologies can be used to support literacy and language learning.

Building Effective Supports for Successful Educational Experiences

This workshop will explore the necessity for clear and focused IEPs, tailored related services, and paraeducator supports. The presenter, Dr. Susan Edelman from the University of Vermont, is also the Social Services Director for the Vermont I-Team, an interdisciplinary team that provides technical assistance, training, and family support related to children with intensive educational needs. Dr. Edelman's workshop will provide attendees with sound guidance and a variety of strategies addressing educational services and supports.

Utilizing Principles and Practices of Positive Behavior Supports

This workshop will provide both background and implementation strategies related to the conduct of Functional Assessments and the development of Positive Behavior Support (PBS) plans. The presenter, Margaret Lang, has worked with and within school districts in Louisiana for more than 20 years. First as a classroom teacher, and now as a provider of training and technical assistance, her expertise relates to inclusion and enhanced outcomes for students with disabilities in the context of overall school improvement. The workshop will discuss the relevance of PBS in building environments that address the diverse needs of all students.

Conference Details

The Inclusion Conference will be held from 8 a.m. until 3:15 p.m. on Thursday, November 14. It is open to educators, parents, policymakers, and all others interested in the educational success of students with disabilities. To facilitate educator attendance, the Delaware Department of Education will provide financial support for substitutes. In addition, a block of rooms at the Marina Suites has been reserved for the convenience of attendees who are coming from a distance and would prefer to spend the night before the conference (November 13) in Dewey Beach. Suites are $39 + 8% tax; to reserve a room, contact the Marina Suites at (302) 227-1700 and reference the Inclusion Conference. Conference registration is $20, and registration materials and additional information can be obtained by contacting DATI by phone at 800-870-3284 or 302-645-4358, by fax at (302) 651-6793, by TDD at (302) 651-6794, or via email.

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