Governor's Developmental Disabilities Council
Click here to view the SIM Power Point
Margie Boudreau and Anne Denham of the Center for Applied Special Technology (CAST) brought us a great workshop November 5 on Universal Design for Learning (UDL). UDL has a high potential for solving many of our problems in making information available in inclusionary ways for persons with disabilities. UDL is more of a philosophy than a cook-book for how to design web pages, handouts, Power Points, and tests, but UDL has implications for all of those and more. Thank you, Margie and Anne.
The IRIS Center trainers gave us a tremendous professional development opportunity March 4-6, 2010 in Little Rock. The IRIS site is so complete, most universities could provide the information needed to license instructional specialists just from the site itself. We will be doing a lot of linking to IRIS in the near future.
The Arkansas Department of Education, after receiving a grant from the Governor's Developmental Disabilities Council (DDC), began hosting a series of Deans' Symposiums in 1994. The Dean's symposia were originally conceived as a communicative tool for college/public school administrators of education in the state of Arkansas and a means for exchanging communication with key state department officials and public school administrators on various topics with a concentrated effort on inclusion for children with developmental disabilities. The stated purposes were:
Formation of a dean's network, based on the philosophy of inclusion, which would serve to continue a collaborative vision of education for all students and educational settings, and
These purposes have continued to drive the Symposium now for a decade and a half. Deans' Symposiums are held typically twice per year and are held at various university campuses around the state. From 1994 to 2008, the format for these meetings gradually became more flexible. Faculties from schools of education were increasingly sent to the Deans' Symposia instead of attendance being made by deans only. Meetings in recent memory have included vice presidents for academic affairs and provosts. The Deans' Symposia have provided a forum by which the three constituencies could safely divulge weaknesses and shortcomings, compare notes about professional challenges that each face, and arrive at simultaneous solutions to problems.
Ongoing research indicates that we have made progress on all three above outcomes. We are communicating more, and communicating more effectively, about issues related to both regular and special education. The two are no longer worlds apart, but are interrelated and amiable.
If you have questions about the Symposium, feel free to contact Martha.firstname.lastname@example.org , Arkansas Department of Education, Special Education.
Martha Kay Asti
Arkansas Department of Education
State Program Development
1401 West Capitol, Suite 450
Little Rock, AR 72201
Email: Dr. Sid Womack, webmaster
The pictures below are representative of various groups and people and at different Symposia.