Special Education Directors,
Please see below for the IDEA Conference offerings in May:
May 4, 2021 from 4:00–5:00 p.m.
Imagining a Great Life for Your Son or Daughter: The Role of Employment
Presented by Sean Roy and Chris Tiffany
It may be difficult for families of youth with significant disabilities to imagine employment as part of their future. However, we know that employment is possible for all people, regardless of level of disability. The secret is for families to see employment as a possibility and to find the right supports to help each youth to be successful. This session will describe why paid employment in the community is so important to a person leading a “great life.” Common concerns will be addressed, and suggested actions will be provided so that families can embark on a clear path toward finding a meaningful job for their child.
May 6, 2021 from 2:45–4:00 p.m.
Facilitating Student Work Experiences: Tools, Strategies, and Collaborating Part 1: Practical Strategies for Discovering Strengths and Engaging Families
Presented by Sean Roy and Chris Tiffany
Research suggests that meaningful work experiences in high school are a significant predictor of employment success for adults with disabilities. Providing individualized work experiences to students requires effective collaborations and the engagement of families and employers. Engagement of families and employers is consistently reported to be the biggest challenge in the transition process. This webinar series will offer real-world strategies reinforced by activities and shared tools that will help attendees to improve the quality of student work experiences and increase family and employer involvement. Improving work experiences for students with disabilities requires interagency teams to embrace the possibility of competitive employment for all and for those teams to have practical tools and strategies that fit into current schedules and workloads. This session will provide foundational information on Employment First and on supporting students to reach their employment goals. An understanding of the employment process will be established, and the Positive Personal Profile (PPP) will be introduced as the driver of the process. Aspects of effective family engagement will be outlined, as will the use of the structured family interview to build partnerships and gather information.
May 13, 2021 from 2:45–4:00 p.m.
Facilitating Student Work Experiences: Tools, Strategies, and Collaborating Part 2: Engaging Employers and Setting Interagency Roles
Presented by Sean Roy and Dale Verstegen
Research suggests that meaningful work experiences in high school are a significant predictor of employment success for adults with disabilities. Providing individualized work experiences to students requires effective collaborations and the engagement of families and employers. Engagement of families and employers is consistently reported to be the biggest challenge in the transition process. This webinar series will offer real-world strategies reinforced by activities and shared tools that will help attendees to improve the quality of student work experiences and increase family and employer involvement. The one piece of facilitating work experiences that makes educators and employment professionals uncomfortable is speaking with employers. All too often, students are placed into work experiences based on existing relationships with businesses or by using a “place and pray” approach. This session will illustrate a new model of engaging employers that is based on existing employer networks and learning about their labor needs and goals (rather than jumping directly to asking for something). In addition, the importance of clarifying interagency roles within a Job Development Plan will be discussed.
May 18, 2021 from 4:00–5:00 p.m.
Assistive Technology Services at Arizona Colleges and State Universities
Presented by Michael Buckley
Entering college or a university is a big step for a student. Navigating available assistive technology (AT) services can make that step harder. In the first part of this session, you will learn about the general availability of assistive technology in higher education. During the second part, specific details of AT services in county colleges and state universities will be presented. The intent of this presentation is to give you practical information that you can use as you prepare for and start the next stage of your education.
May 27, 2021 from 2:45–4:00 p.m.
Finding Success Through Resilience
Presented by Derek Clark
Derek Clark’s inspiring program provides insight and specific tools that will assist professionals in connecting with vulnerable and grieving youth. Professionals will gain understanding and knowledge about childhood responses to traumatic experiences as well as how to ask questions that build trust and shape futures. Every professional working with challenging youth has a purpose: to build a relationship of trust, to help them to reclaim their dignity and self-worth, and to know that their past mistakes do not have to infect their future. Derek will give participants insight into his personal childhood journey of 13 years in the foster care system and the key reasons why he did not turn out to be an addict, incarcerated, or dead. He will take you down his road of hate, anger, mistrust in adults, violent tendencies, rejection, lack of love, child abuse, and the memories that haunted his life. He believes that by changing the way you look at youth you can significantly impact their lives.
You can register by selecting sessions listed above or please visit the IDEA Conference web page
- The Professional sessions will take place on Thursday afternoons from 2:45–4:00 p.m.
- Youth and Family sessions will take place on Tuesday afternoons from 4:00–5:00 p.m.
- Participants must register 48 hours in advance to guarantee needed accommodations.
If you have questions, please email the conference inbox.