Track: Innovative Practices in Disability Disciplines

Humanity vs. Human Nature:  Addressing Confirmation & Implicit Bias

Human bias is part of being human.  If our goal is to make decisions and interact with people in an unbiased manner, then how do we recognize and address our own biases?  This presentation incorporates psychological and sociological research regarding how and why humans develop bias, and provides practical tips for overcoming bias.  Emphasis will be place on how bias may impact individuals in the criminal justice system.

Key Learning Outcomes

  1. Recognizing the different types of bias to which humans are susceptible.
  2. Understanding the potential impact of bias to individuals in the criminal justice system.
  3. Identifying steps to recognize our own biases and how to not allow them to unduly impact our judgment and actions.

The Power of Positives: Implementing Targeted Social Emotional Supports

There is increasing and compelling evidence that good social-emotional health is a critical component for the achievement of positive life outcomes. There is additional evidence that teaching effective social-emotional skills is as important as teaching academic skills and teaching them should begin early! However, children with challenging behaviors may not always be included in early childhood settings where they can benefit from good social-emotional support. This session will focus on the implementation of advanced tiers of positive behavior supports in the early childhood setting.

Key Learning Outcomes

1. Overview of the Pyramid Model
2. Identifying the Importance of Teaching Social Emotional Skills
3. Implementation of Social Emotional Skills: Developing Friendship Skills, Enhancing Emotional Literacy Skills, Controlling Anger and Impulse, and Problem Solving

Presentation Materials

High Leverage Practices & Literacy for Students with Complex Needs

What is “functional literacy?” If we look at where we want students with complex needs to be by adulthood, what skills do we need to focus on in Kindergarten? How about all the years in between? Students with complex needs will use literacy to learn about their world, to entertain themselves and to direct their care. This session addresses High Leverage Practices in instruction including #11 Identifying learning goals, #12 Systematically designing instruction, #13 Adapting curriculum, #15 Scaffolding supports, and #16 Using explicit instruction. A focus on backwards planning for literacy from graduation to Kindergarten will be addressed.

Key Learning Outcomes

1) Identify and prioritize long and short term literacy goals.

2) Recognize the need to make strategic decisions about content coverage.

3) Explore strategies to make instruction explicit.

Project Update: Elevating Refugee Perspectives about Access to Disability Services in Arizona

There is significant linguistic and cultural diversity within the population of refugees with disabilities in Arizona. In this panel discussion, we will identify the specific challenges in service access for refugees with disabilities in our state. Panel members are collaborating with the Sonoran Center in the project titled, Elevating Refugee Perspectives about Access to Disability Services in Arizona.

Key Learning Outcomes

Attendees at this session will be able to:

1. Identify 3 barriers to disability service provision for refugees with disabilities in Arizona
2. Describe resources available for refugees with disabilities in Arizona
3. Use the information and resources provided to create linkages for refugees with disabilities.

Presentation Materials

Supported Employment to Success the Arizona VR Way…Simplified!

Supported Employment can be a success for all disabilities in meeting the Employment First Goal and meeting WIOA Federal and Arizona VR definitions.  This session will touch upon educating, implementing, and understanding philosophical information in using Supported Employment within Vocational Rehabilitation Job Development and Retention Services through examples of successes, discovery, and touchpoints. It will teach, simplify, and give knowledge and understanding of Supported Employment through Vocational Rehabilitation Services that will make Arizona an Employment First State for all disabilities.

Key Learning Outcomes

1. Participants (Vocational Rehabilitation Counselors and Supervisors, Providers, Community Agencies, Clients and Guardians/Parents) will have a clear understanding of supported employment and the potential for successful results when using a proven methodology.

2. Participants gain a better understanding of what is required WIOA Federal guidelines, VR Policy and Procedure, and Employment First.

3. Participants gain an understanding of the importance of ongoing Collaboration and Communication between VR Counselors, Providers and Clients (Guardians when applicable).

Addressing Barriers to Comprehensive Training: Access for Clients with Coexisting Cognitive Disorders

Clients enrolled in training programs often have more than one disability, which can complicate established processes and may create barriers to learning. It is important to view individual cases holistically to identify and address those barriers as quickly as possible. In this session, we will focus on clients who have secondary cognitive disabilities and are receiving comprehensive services for the blind and visually impaired and those with combined vision and hearing loss. We will discuss functional issues clients may face in this environment, and explore the accommodations instructors can adopt to ensure clients have equal access to services.

Key Learning Outcomes

1. Have a greater understanding of how a cognitive disability may impact client access to comprehensive training programs.
2. Identify accommodations that can be implemented to address access concerns.
3. Gain insight into the importance of identifying, understanding, and addressing coexisting disorders.

Presentation Materials

Adaptations for Using a Parent-Implemented Autism Intervention with Traditionally Underserved Populations

The PLAY Project autism intervention is a parent-mediated model that has been implemented on a large scale, but its effectiveness with traditionally underserved families had not been evaluated. For this study, PLAY Project Consultants’ (PPCs’) perspectives were obtained on using PLAY with children with or at-risk for autism whose families are rural-dwelling, culturally diverse, and/or low-resourced (“traditionally underserved families”). Furthermore, the study aimed to determine what adaptations could be made when using the PLAY Project, according to PPCs, to facilitate its implementation and increase its effectiveness for traditionally underserved populations. Results of this study may inform adaptations to the PLAY Project intervention and a variety of autism interventions, which may be helpful for serving the broader population of children with autism and their families.

Key Learning Outcomes

1. Participants will gain knowledge about barriers and facilitators that influence outcomes of interventions for traditionally underserved families (TUF), as reported in the literature.
2. Participants will learn about the development of mixed-methods study to investigate barriers, facilitators, and adaptations for an autism intervention.
3. Participants will learn about the results of the study, including barriers and associated adaptations, as perceived by PLAY Project Consultants, to using a parent-implemented autism intervention with TUF.

Educational Rights of Students with Special needs under the IDEA and 504

Provide general information regarding the education rights of students with special needs under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and Section 504 on graduation requirements and transition services.

Key Learning Outcomes

1) Acquire knowledge of federal and state legal requirements regarding transition and graduation of students with disabilities
2) Acquire knowledge of dispute resolution options for students with disabilities
3) Learn where to find and how to use self-advocacy resources relating to these topics

Presentation Materials

Pathways to Further Education Employment and Independent Living through Benefits Management

Adults and youth with disabilities struggle with the thought of entering and/or returning to work. Many individuals do not realize that benefits do not end; actually, they just shift. There are numerous work incentives that assist individuals to achieve financial wellness and independent living. Pathways to Further Education Employment and Independent Living through Benefits Management illustrates discusses some of the untapped resources that can support your decision to take that first step. It will include much needed information regarding Social Security rules, Social Security benefits, healthcare, and employment. We will provide information on how you can gain free access a Community Work Incentives Coordinator that can help with this transition to employment and/or post secondary education.

Key Learning Outcomes

1. Learn about savings programs that will allow one to save earned income and not count as resources against one’s Social
Security cash benefits while working.
2. How to retain healthcare benefits when one has returned to work.
3. Learn about work incentives and safety nets that can be used when considering employment without losing one’s benefits.
4. Learn about savings accounts specifically for individuals with disabilities.
5. Learn about post secondary education and how to fund it.

Ready, Set, Work! The Winning Formula for Competitive Integrated Employment!

This presentation is called “Ready, Set, Work! The Winning Formula for Competitive Integrated Employment!” It talks about how people with disabilities can find and keep jobs that are right for them. It explains how job coaches and other supports can help people with disabilities find jobs they like and do well at. The presentation talks about how employers can be more inclusive and help people with disabilities succeed at work. This presentation is for people who work with people with disabilities, employers, and people who want to make workplaces more diverse and welcoming.

Key Learning Outcomes

1. After attending the session, participants will be able to identify effective strategies for matching people with disabilities to job opportunities that fit their skills and strengths.
2. After attending the session, participants will have an increased understanding of the importance of providing job coaching and ongoing support to help people with disabilities succeed in their jobs.
3. After attending the session, participants will be able to describe the benefits of diversity and inclusion in the workplace, and identify effective ways to engage and support employers in promoting competitive integrated employment for people with disabilities.

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