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Morning Workshop Session
11:00 AM - 12:30 PM

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(A1) Approaching AAC: Aided Language Systems and Language Modeling

(A2) Special Education and Students of Color: Helping Culturally Different Families to Negotiate the System

(A3) Transition to Adult Services

(A4) Everyday Literacy: Reading and Writing at Home with Less Stress and More Joy

(A5) An Integrative Approach to ADHD

(A6) Navigating the Maze of Special Needs Financial Planning – What Families Need to Know

(A7) An Introduction to Special Education Assessments: Learn How to Use Evaluations to Get the Right Help for Your Child!

(A8) What Happens When You and Your School Just Can’t Agree? Using Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) to Repair Relationships and Find Student-Centered Resolutions.

(A9) Harassment: Parents’ Rights and School Districts’ Responsibilities

(A10) The Perils of Puberty and Beyond: Healthy Sexuality and Youth with Disabilities

(A11) Disability and Discipline - Your Child's Rights as a Student with an IEP or 504 Plan

(A12) Transforming Tears and Tantrums - Guiding Children Through the Emotional Storms of Growing Up

(A13) Writing An IEP: Questions & Answers

(A14) Understanding Dyslexia & Improving Student Success

(A15) Developing Cooperation and Adaptability in School Aged Children

(A1) Approaching AAC: Aided Language Systems and Language Modeling

Jennifer McDonald-Peltier MS, ATP, AT Specialist, Center for Accessible Technology

Many children can't communicate (or communicate well) verbally. How do we help these students access language and communication? Gain a foundational understanding of what 'aided language' is, the power of core vocabulary, and ways to start immersing non-verbal students in accessible language-rich environments.

(A2) Special Education and Students of Color: Helping Culturally Different Families to Negotiate the System

Mary Bacon, Ph.D. Educator and Motivational Speaker, Images of a Culture

What are the reasons that some students of color who may not be appropriately identified as disabled end up in special education while others who do in fact have disabilities may not receive services to which they are entitled?  This session will provide insights into how the system works that contributes to the disproportionate numbers of students of color in special education and the disciplinary system and provides concrete ways that families can advocate for their children to ensure that their needs are being met.

(A3) Transition to Adult Services

Representatives from Support for Families, Department of Rehabilitation, The Arc San Francisco, Golden Gate Regional Center, Independent Living Resource Center San Francisco, Jewish Vocational Services, San Francisco Unified School District

Representatives from agencies that provide services to young adults and adults with disabilities will present an overview of their transition programs, including information on eligibility criteria and how to access services for youth ages 14 to 24.

(A4) Everyday Literacy: Reading and writing at home with less stress and more joy

Alexis Filippini, PhD, Executive Director, Building on the Best

Support your child's reading and writing development with less stress and more joy! Explore easy, fun ways to bring literacy into the family's everyday routines. This imaginative, interactive workshop is focused on beginning readers of any age. Families with special needs and non-English speaking families are especially welcome, though all families will discover new ideas.

(A5) An Integrative Approach to ADHD

Sanford Newmark, MD, Director, Clinical Programs Head of Pediatric Integrative Neurodevelopmental Program, UCSF Osher Center

In this session, we will discuss the reasons for the dramatic increase in the prevalence of the diagnosis of ADHD. Review the limitations of standard pharmaceutical treatment. Present the evidence for integrative interventions such as dietary changes, supplements, mind-body interventions, behavioral interventions and exercise. Take home pearls: There is repeated research demonstrating that elimination diets can be effective for a subset of children with ADHD. There is good evidence for the effectiveness of Omega-3 Fatty acid supplementation for ADHD.

(A6) Navigating the Maze of Special Needs Financial Planning: What Families Need to Know.

Ken Prodger, Certified Financial Planner (CFP®), Chartered Special Needs Consultant

This workshop will give you a clear understanding of what the special needs planning process is, and how planning now for your child’s financial and legal needs will bring you peace of mind and a sense of empowerment. Ken provides holistic financial advice regarding special needs trusts, life care planning, letters of intent, and obtaining and preserving need-based government benefits. All attendees will leave with practical steps that they can implement immediately to begin planning their child’s future.

(A7) An Introduction to Special Education Assessments: Learn How to Use Evaluations to Get the Right Help for Your Child!

Jean Murrell Adams, Esq.,  Attorney, ADAMS ESQ

Understanding special education testing is crucial to effective advocacy.  Why are assessments important to the IEP process? How do I get my child tested? When are assessments necessary? Who is testing my child? What areas are being tested? How are the tests scored? What do they mean?  How long does it take?  What should I do if I disagree with the school districts assessment? These and other questions will be addressed during this interactive parent workshop.  Participants are encouraged to bring their child’s most recent psychoeducational evaluation for review. 

(A8) What Happens When You and Your School Just Can’t Agree?  Using Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) to repair relationships and find student-centered resolutions.

Dr. John Taylor, Program Administrator for ADR, SFUSD; Mildred Browne, Ed.D. Educational Consultant, Ascendancy Solutions and Carole Conn, Director of the Public Service Programs, The Bar Association of San Francisco

In collaboration with The Bar Association of San Francisco, SFUSD’s ADR program entails a 2-hour Collaborative Conference to confidentially discuss misunderstandings, disagreements, complaints, etc. This process is voluntaryfor our families and has been successful this year, beginning in October 2016. The goal is to come to an Agreement by working together to create a positive, peaceable approach to finding student-centered resolutions. Attend this session to view a role play of what happens at an ADR meeting and learn more about repairing relationships within Special Education Services and your school site.

 (A9) Harassment: Parents’ Rights and School Districts’ Responsibilities

Attorneys from the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Civil Rights

Is your child a target of bullying, harassment or threats? Attorneys from Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights will present parents’ rights and school districts’ responsibilities under federal regulations regarding harassment by peers or school staff. The workshop will focus on federal civil rights laws that prohibit harassment against students based on race, color, national origin, sex, or disability, and what you can do if your child is being harassed or bullied for any of these reasons.

 (A10) The Perils of Puberty and Beyond: Healthy Sexuality and Youth with Disabilities

Erica Monasterio, Clinical Professor Emerita, UCSF

How will my child manage puberty? How will I manage my teen’s emerging sexuality? Youth with disabilities face some unique issues in their teen years, but have many issues that they share with their typically developing peers. As parents, the challenges that we all face in raising healthy, happy teenagers (and staying sane ourselves) can be even more challenging for parents of youth with disabilities. This session will focus on sexual development, emerging sexuality and sexually healthy youth with disabilities.

(A11) Disability and Discipline - Your child's rights as a student with an IEP or 504 plan

Bridget Claycomb, Staff Attorney and Neeraj Kumar, Fellow, Disability Rights California;

Two attorneys from Disability Rights California go over steps you can take to address your student’s behavior in his/her IEP. Come to learn for how to advocate for students facing disciplinary actions for disability-related behaviors.

(A12) Transforming Tears and Tantrums—Guiding children through the emotional storms
of growing up

Karen Wolfe, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, SF Bay Play Therapy

What if you had the tools to help turn emotional outbursts into healing moments for you and your child? This talk explains what goes on the brain and mind of a child who is stuck in their emotions and what you can do to help with the incredibly simple yet profound Hand in Hand Parenting tools. Transform the power struggles in everything from school refusal to morning routine woes, difficulty getting off devices, hearing no, and even ease bedtime fears in moments of connection, empathy, and trust.

(A13) Writing An IEP: Questions & Answers

Joe Feldman, Founder and Executive Director, Community Alliance for Special Education (CASE)

This session will provide parents and professionals the opportunity ask one of the leading Bay Area advocates questions about the IEP process and individual situations they are facing in getting appropriate special education services for their children or the children they serve. Eligibility, Independent Assessment, Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA), psychological counseling, behavioral support services, accommodations, IEP enforcement.

(A14) Understanding Dyslexia & Improving Student Success

Dr. Kathy Futterman, Consultora sobre dislexia y especialista en educación, Mt. Diablo USD & Cal State East Bay & Decoding Dyslexia CA

This workshop will cover the definition of dyslexia, discuss California legislation for serving students with dyslexia and the CA Dept. of Education’s Dyslexia Guidelines.  Topics will include identifying dyslexia in public schools and possible dyslexia-related initiatives schools and districts can implement.

(A15)Developing Cooperation and Adaptability in School Aged Children

Dominique Baudry MS.,Ed; Social Skills Group Facilitator

This workshop will provide a brief overview of what skills allow kids to navigate the social demands of school.  We will also explore how to help kids develop some of these skills with concrete, practical ideas that parents and teachers can use immediately