Sessions Available through September 26th
Recorded sessions will be available through September 26th for those who register.
- Opening Keynote: Disability as Possibility, Hari Srininvasan, Self-advocate
- Building Success for All & Live Q&A, Bert Moore, Director of Special Education and Title Services, Kansas State Department of Education
- Breakout Sessions
- Starting Off Strong: Empowering Families During Early Childhood & Elementary
- Raising Expectations Through Person-Centered Planning: Empowering Families & Youth During the Transition to Adulthood
- Equity, Diversity and Inclusion …Where Do Families with Disabilities Fit?, Tamara Huff, Project Coordinator, Kansas Parent Information Resource Center (KPIRC)
Opening Keynote: Disability as Possibility
Hari Srinivasan describes himself as a minimally speaking autistic student at UC Berkeley. He is majoring n Psychology, minoring in Disability Studies minor and is a member of Phi Beta Kappa and Haas Scholar. He is a student journalist for the Daily Californian, student instructor for a class on autism, research assistant at the UC Berkeley Lab and was the first nonspeaking president of the student body, Autism: Spectrum At Cal. Hari is a Board member and Whistleblower Compliance Officer at the Autistic Self Advocacy Network and on the Council of Autistic Advisors for the Autism Society of America. He also enjoys creative writing and poetry. Disability as Possibility – Join Hari as he shares insights gathered through his personal experience of autism and discusses his research on the impact of labeling and expectations on life outcomes for students and youth with disabilities. He challenges professionals, educators, and providers to be game changers – adopting a growth mindset, an emphatic discipline, and an approach of ‘equity of access’ to support and guide students and youth with disabilities to create their own personal agency and long-term quality of life. Through that understanding and ability to see ‘disability as possibility’, opportunities are born from those possibilities so students and youth can take detours, challenge the sinkholes, pave new roads, and persevere.
Building Success for All
Bert Moore, Director of Special Education and Title Services, Kansas State Department of Education
Join Bert as he shares an overview of the Kansas State Department of Education’s initiatives. He will share information about how these projects will prepare all students for lifelong success. These initiatives will ensure that staff and students have the supports they need and that families are engaged in their child(ren)’s education.
Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion…Where Do Families with Disabilities Fit?
Tamara Huff, Project Coordinator, Kansas Parent Information Resource Center (KPIRC)
By creating the capacity to appreciate and value individual differences, we all benefit. Diversity, equity, and inclusion are not just about race, ethnicity, gender, and age. We also have to embrace the individual differences that all individuals possess. Disabilities and discrimination are often packaged together, this session will highlight the importance of advocating for equity and inclusion for all diverse abilities.
Supporting Children Who Have Challenging Behaviors – Darla Nelson-Metzger, Program Director, Families Together, Inc. – In this presentation, Darla will discuss how the needs of children with challenging behaviors can supported and prevented using de-escalation interventions, positive behavioral supports and simple prevention strategies for home.
Starting Off Strong: Empowering Families During Early Childhood – Corey Yarrow, Family Health & Education Resource Specialist, Families Together, Inc. – This session will take a close look at the role of the family in IEP development for early childhood, with a focus on ages 5-8. Participants will explore LifeCourse framework tools to gain an understanding of how a person-centered approach can positively impact the process and help create an individualized program that both supports and challenges their child.
Raising Expectations Through Person-Centered Planning: Empowering Families & Youth During the Transition to Adulthood – Leia Holley, Program Director Families Together, Inc. – For so many youth who have disabilities, their vision of a good life is driven by the availability, and/or eligibility, for adult services. Join Leia as she provides an overview of the transition to adulthood process and how to engage youth In preparing for their future using person-centered planning. Walk away with ideas, strategies, and resources for using person-centered planning to create an Individualized Education Program (IEP) that truly reflects the youth’s vision for a good life.
Let’s Talk Employment: Working Without Losing Important Benefits – Madeleine Bowens, Working Healthy program Manager, Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE), and Erin Sanders-Hahs, STEPS Program Manager, KDHE – In this training, Madeleine will share information about how working can affect your disabilities benefits and how work incentives support your journey to employment. Erin will provide information on how the new Supports and Training for Employing People Successfully (STEPS) program can assist individuals in gaining and maintaining employment.
Navigating Pre-Employment Transition Services (Pre-ETS) – Brent Thompson, Pre-ETS Wichita Region Manager, Rehabilitation Services Pre-ETS, and Tracey Larsen, Pre-ETS West Region Manager, Rehabilitation Services Pre-ETS – Pre-ETS offer students with disabilities an early start at career exploration and preparation for adult life. Beginning at age 14, students with disabilities can receive Pre-ETS services. During this session you will learn how Pre-ETS counselor work with students, their schools and community partners to enrich transition to adulthood planning and support students with gaining knowledge and experiences necessary so they may make informed decisions about their future. An overview of the families role during the Pre-ETS process will also be shared. Topics covered through Pre-ETS include: career exploration; work-based learning experiences; exploration of education and training programs for after high school; workplace readiness training to develop social and independent living skills; and self-advocacy. This is an invaluable session for families and anyone who works transition age youth as they prepare for employment.
Engaging Families & Youth in the Transition to Adult Healthcare – Tami Allen, Co-Executive Director, Families Together, Inc. – The transition from pediatric to adult health care systems can be overwhelming for parents and youth but is especially challenging for youth with intellectual disabilities or other special health care needs. In this workshop we will share strategies and tools for preparing for transition from pediatric to adulthood health care. We will also visit about how meeting health needs and preparing for this change can be a part of the Individualized Education Plan (IEP). Throughout this session we will explore ways to engage youth in their health care process.
The Power of Positive Childhood Experiences – Lesli Girard, Co-Executive Director, Families Together, Inc. and Jane Groff, Executive Director Kansas Parent Information Resource Center – Join Jane and Lesli as they provide a brief overview of Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) and share new research on the impact of Positive Childhood Experiences (PCEs) for children from birth through adolescence. Christina Bethell of Johns Hopkins University, one of the major researchers on PCEs, defined a positive childhood experience as “feeling safe in our families to talk about emotions and things that are hard and feeling supported during hard times.” You’ll hear from three families as they share how they create positive childhood experiences for their children.