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Please Register Here:  https://2018f2fconference.eventbrite.com

FREE registration available to first 150 family members/youth with disabilities that pre-register

3 CEUs (no ethics) available for social workers/licensed professional counselors

3 CPE credits for educators

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Saturday, January 27
 

9:30am

The Texas ABLE Program
Limited Capacity seats available

The Texas ABLE Program was created by the state to encourage and assist individuals and families to save and pay for disability-related expenses to maintain an eligible individual’s health, independence and quality of life. The Texas ABLE Program allow eligible individuals with disabilities to create tax advantages ABLE accounts- to save funds up to $14,000 per year for disability-related expenses without losing eligibility under Supplemental Security Income (SSI), Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), Medicaid and certain other means-tested public benefits.

Speakers
LF

Linda Fernandez

Texas Comptrollers Office
AM

Anna Mallett

Texas Comptroller's Office
will provide at later date


Saturday January 27, 2018 9:30am - 10:30am
Room 605

9:30am

Learning Differences and the Effects on the Family & Sibling Relationships
Limited Capacity seats available

Neuro-diversity places many burdens of stress, trauma, discontent, co-dependency and dysfunction within the family unit. Let's talk about best practices tools to re-discover joy and peace within the family, and identify tools for positive family communications and effective interventions available.

Speakers
GY

Gayle Y. Fisher, M.Ed., Ed.Tech.

Founding Co-Facilitator, GettingSorted.com, SpecialNeedsSibs.org, OurTrainingCenter.org, IfWeLearnDifferently.com
I am a mom of two very different learners, an educator and an author. I teach at LSC-M Academy of Lifelong Learning, help to run 2 non-profit organizations, write eBooks, blog and present workshops on learning differences in the community. In a former lifetime, I was a corporate... Read More →


Saturday January 27, 2018 9:30am - 10:30am
Room 606

9:30am

Making Progress with Feeding: Are you on the right track?
Limited Capacity seats available

Feeding and swallowing problems can be found in children with a wide variety of disabilities. We will review some helpful and not so helpful methods to help kids eat safely, efficiently and independently.

Speakers
TS

Tiffany Spinos, MCD,CCC/SLP

SLP, Private Practice
Tiffany Spinos, MCD,CCC/SLP received her Master's Degree in Speech-Language Pathology. Mrs. Spinos has practiced in the specialized area of pediatric feeding disorders for 15 of her last 20 years in the field in hospitals, outpatient clinics, home health and in schools. She has p... Read More →


Saturday January 27, 2018 9:30am - 10:30am
Room 208

9:30am

Parents Guide to Social Media
Limited Capacity seats available

Discussion on social media apps, hidden apps, online dangers, how to spot,  what to watch for, safety settings & laws.

Speakers
MS

Michelle Sacks

Program Manager, Crime Stoppers of Houston
Michelle Sacks, Program Manager at Crime Stoppers of Houston. Michelle is responsible for the development and maintenance of prevention and awareness programs that emphasize personal safety, anti-victimization and how to safely and anonymously report crimes and potential dangers... Read More →


Saturday January 27, 2018 9:30am - 10:30am
Room 212

9:30am

Comprensión y uso de su centro comunitario
Limited Capacity seats available

Centros comunitarios de "MHMR" han estado en Texas desde 1965, pero pueden ser uno de los menos comprendidos recursos para individuos con discapacidad intelectual o trastorno de autismo y sus familias. Las funciones y servicios en estos centros han cambiado con el tiempo, sin embargo, cada centro está especialmente diseñado para atender las necesidades en la zona de Texas que sirven, y cada rincón de Texas está asignado a un centro comunitario. Esta presentación explicará el sistema de centros comunitarios, lo que hacen y lo que no hacen, y cómo acceder y maximizar los servicios para personas de todas las edades.

Speakers
MQ

Maria Quintero-Conk, Ph.D.

IDD Authority Services Psychologist, Tri-County Behavioral Healthcare
Maria Quintero-Conk, Ph.D. is a licensed psychologist and leader in developmental disabilities. Dr. Quintero-Conk graduated with a Doctorate in Psychology from Utah State University. She has applied her knowledge of mental health and developmental disabilities to create programs... Read More →


Saturday January 27, 2018 9:30am - 10:30am
Room 210

9:30am

Discipline for Students with Disabilities
Limited Capacity seats available

This presentation will review the mandates of IDEA regarding discipline for students with disabilities. We will discuss when a manifestation determination is necessary, what counts as a disciplinary day of removal, and what disciplinary options are available when the behavior is caused by the disability or not caused by the disability.

Speakers
GG

Ginger Gates, Ph.D.

Director of Special Education, Region 4 Special Education Solutions
Ginger Gates, Ph.D., is currently the Director of Special Education at Region 4 Education Service Center in Houston, Texas. As a school psychologist in both Texas and Louisiana, she has dedicated her career, of over 30 years, to expanding opportunities for students with disabilit... Read More →


Saturday January 27, 2018 9:30am - 10:30am
Room 604

9:30am

The ARD Process
Limited Capacity seats available

This workshop will provide an overview of the ARD Process so that parents will be prepared to participate at every stage of the process. Participants will gain an understanding of the ARD meeting agenda, as well as their procedural rights and responsibilities. 

Speakers
AE

Ana Esparza

Regional Coordinator, Partners Resource Network-TEAM Project
Regional Coordinator for Partners Resource Network-TEAM Project for 5 years.


Saturday January 27, 2018 9:30am - 10:30am
Room 206

9:30am

The Speech-Literacy Connection
Limited Capacity seats available

Literacy intervention has become popular in the field of speech-language pathology within the last decade. However, most of the literacy interventions used by speech-language pathologists and other educational specialists are designed for the dyslexia population, with minimal to no consideration for potential concomitant speech, language, or learning difficulties. Because speech, language and literacy are closely related, it is important for children to develop early speech and language skills to improve literacy skills at school, home and work. The presenter will share simple activities to promote literacy in children with speech/language delays.

Speakers
JS

Jillian Sheehy, M.C.D., CF-SLP

SLP, The T.E.A.M Approach
Jillian Sheehy is a CF-SLP at The T.E.A.M. Approach, a private pediatric clinic in Houston, Texas. She received her B.S. from Texas State University and her M.C.D. from Auburn University. Ms. Sheehy's areas of interest include early childhood intervention, language development, o... Read More →


Saturday January 27, 2018 9:30am - 10:30am
Room 603

9:30am

An Innovative Social Skills and Sex Education Curriculum
Limited Capacity seats available

Several years ago we were asked to create an innovative curriculum on sex education and relationships for people with all types of disabilities by The Arc of Blair County (PA) due to the increasing risk of individuals to go to jail for sexual behaviors and of being victimized. This curriculum was written and has seen significant positive results. This curriculum is unlike anything else out there and can help people throughout the lifespan. This session will talk about puberty, sexual expression, relationships, rights, and how to reduce sexually inappropriate behaviors. This will be an interactive presentation going over different ways to present information to individuals and why it's so important. Participants will leave with some tools that they can take back to use in family homes, group homes, and day programs, as well as knowledge of this exciting curriculum.

Speakers
BD

Brandon Delgado, M.A.

Licensed Psychological Associate, Michelle Garcia, Psy.D. & Associates, PLLC
#N/A
MG

Michelle Garcia, Psy.D.

Clinical Psychologist, Michelle Garcia, Psy.D. & Associates, PLLC
Dr. Michelle Garcia is a Psychologist with many years of experience working with individuals of all ages and a wide variety of diagnoses. She, as well as her practice, provide Psychological and Neuropsychological testing, consultation, behavioral intervention, and trainings. The... Read More →


Saturday January 27, 2018 9:30am - 10:30am
Room 611

9:30am

Yes Work is The Goal: Understanding SSA Work Incentives
Limited Capacity seats available

In this easy to understand/"tell it like it is" presentation, family members and self advocates will be become knowledgeable on Social Security and health insurance benefits; the impact of working on benefits; and work incentives available in order to make well-informed decisions about working in a community-based competitive-wage job after graduation. The trainer is a credentialed WISA.

Speakers
MH

Michelle Howard-Herbein

Executive Director, The Arc of Greater Houston
Michelle Howard-Herbein, Executive Director, The Arc of Greater Houston, holds an MSW from Indiana University. She has over 30 years of experience in managing community-based organizations for persons with disabilities in Indiana, Virginia, and Texas. She regularly provides train... Read More →


Saturday January 27, 2018 9:30am - 10:30am
Room 602

11:00am

Functions- Why Does My Kid Do That
Limited Capacity seats available

Parents will learn the following: why behaviors occur, functions of behavior, types of reinforcement, interventions and replacement behaviors for inappropriate behaviors.

Speakers
AB

Adrienne B. Thompson, M.Ed.

Behavior Specialist, Katy ISD
Adrienne B. Thompson has worked in the field of Special Education for over 25 years. She is a graduate of Our Lady of the Lake University of San Antonio with a B.A. in Speech Language Pathology and The University of St. Thomas with a M.Ed. in both Special Education and Educationa... Read More →


Saturday January 27, 2018 11:00am - 12:00pm
Room 611

11:00am

Life after 18
Limited Capacity seats available

Estate Planning, guardianship, surrogate decision making agreements and Able Act. These are just a few of the topics which will be discussed . Along with a question and answer session. Kim has been servicing the population for 20 years with her expertise in these areas.

Speakers
KH

Kimberly Hegwood

Owner, Attorney, Hegwood Law Group
Kim Hegwood knows the importance of establishing a legacy for you and your loved ones. Seeing her grandparents struggle with the ins-and-outs of Social Security, estate and protection planning, elder law and other bureaucracies associated with the aging process, Kim experienced f... Read More →


Saturday January 27, 2018 11:00am - 12:00pm
Room 605

11:00am

Executive Functioning 101
Limited Capacity seats available

Executive functioning refers to the complex cognitive processes needed to manage attention, planning, organizing, and more. Executive functioning abilities are impacted in a wide variety of psychological and medical conditions. If someone in your family struggles with time management, prioritization, organization, and attention, this session is for you!

Speakers
NM

Natalie Montfort, PhD

Licensed Clinical Psychologist, The Stewart Center at The Westview School
see prior submission


Saturday January 27, 2018 11:00am - 12:00pm
Room 604

11:00am

Interveciones Positivas de la Conducta
Limited Capacity seats available

Este taller ayudará a las familias a entender el propósito de las evaluaciones de comportamiento e intervenciones positivas enfocadas en las conductas que sirven un propósito específico para el estudiante. Se discutirán: el uso de las consecuencias positivas versus los castigos para cambiar de comportamiento, y lo que establece IDEA 2004 con respecto a las intervenciones positivas de la conducta.

Speakers
CU

Celia Ulloa

Regional Coordinator, Partners Resource Network - TEAM Project
Celia Ulloa is a Regional Coordinator for Partners Resource Network TEAM Project, located in Houston, Texas. Partners Resource Network is a non-profit Parent Training Information Center, funded with a grant from the US Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs... Read More →


Saturday January 27, 2018 11:00am - 12:00pm
Room 206

11:00am

4 + 1 a Person Centered Thinking skill that guides respectful conversations and can help gain positive results in an IEP meeting.
Limited Capacity seats available

In this session you will learn how to use the 4 + 1 skill to focus on an issue and come up with an action plan to help you present your needs during an IEP meeting.

Speakers
AD

Aimee Day

Program Coordinator, Texas A&M University
Aimee Day graduated from Texas A&M University with a B.S. in Biomedical Science in 2001. She is the mother of two boys who are adventurous, funny, kind and have a disability. Her career changed from veterinary medicine to supporting families and individuals with disabilities afte... Read More →


Saturday January 27, 2018 11:00am - 12:00pm
Room 212

11:00am

Inclusion: Who's In?
Limited Capacity seats available

Do you have students that you deal with? Don't deal, but rather, build relationships! Instead ask, Who's in? Learn inclusion classroom strategies and social supports to help build relationships and maintain predictability and stability for your students.

Speakers
AT

April T Giauque

Special Education Transition Teacher, Pieced-Together
April T Giauque is the mother of 9 children 5 of which have special needs: 4 Autism, 2 who are Deaf, and 1 of her deaf children has Autism. April has her Masters degree in Special Education. April is the author of BASE: Building Advanced Social Education, which is an interactive... Read More →


Saturday January 27, 2018 11:00am - 12:00pm
Room 603

11:00am

Special Education Graduation for Parents and Students
Limited Capacity seats available

Speakers
TR

Townsley Raposa

Education Specialist, Region 4 Special Education Solutions
Townsley Raposa is an education specialist at Region 4 ESC that specializes in providing training and technical assistance in transition planning for students with disabilities. Townsley is also a former special education administrator and high school teacher.


Saturday January 27, 2018 11:00am - 12:00pm
Room 208

11:00am

10 minutes for talking and listening - activities to increase speech and language skills at home
Limited Capacity seats available

Participants will learn research based activities for increasing listening and communication skills with their children that are quick and fun. Research shows that when learners are engaged and attentive it helps form memories and increases learning. Learn some activities that can be adapted for different age levels to practice speech, language, and listening skills at home.

Speakers
KW

Katy West

SLP, Private Practice
Katy is a Speech Pathologist certified by the American Speech Language Hearing Association. She has worked in a variety of school settings for over 20 years and has an 8 year old son who has Down Syndrome.


Saturday January 27, 2018 11:00am - 12:00pm
Room 606

11:00am

CANCELLED - Then and Now
Limited Capacity seats available

We will be talking about our lives---then and how it is now. We were both institutionalized for many years. Roger, from age 12, in a San Antonio State School, and Candi from age 8 in Port Arthur, Texas. Then came a number of Group Homes until finally, freedom: Candi in 2004 and Roger 2016. We both now are under the Consumer Directed Services program and live in our own home and hire our own staff. Combined with new technology, our worlds have opened to living life to the fullest!

Speakers
RW

Roger Williamson

Self Advocate, Self Advocate
Roger is a graduate of Partners in Policy Making, an advocacy program for parents who have children with disabilities and self-advocates. He has presented at functions to share his story in an effort to help others deeply understand the impact of living with disability.
CY

Candi Yarbrough

Self Advocate, Self Advocate
Candi Yarbrough is a self-advocate, attended college, and is a member of Phi Theta Kappa, International Honor Society for two year students. She is a graduate of Partners in Policy Making, an advocacy program for parents who have children with disabilities and self-advocates. She presents at functions to share her story... Read More →


Saturday January 27, 2018 11:00am - 12:00pm
Room 210

11:00am

Yes Work is The Goal: Understanding SSA Work Incentives
Limited Capacity seats available

In this easy to understand/"tell it like it is" presentation, family members and self advocates will be become knowledgeable on Social Security and health insurance benefits; the impact of working on benefits; and work incentives available in order to make well-informed decisions about working in a community-based competitive-wage job after graduation. The trainer is a credentialed WISA.

Speakers
MH

Michelle Howard-Herbein

Executive Director, The Arc of Greater Houston
Michelle Howard-Herbein, Executive Director, The Arc of Greater Houston, holds an MSW from Indiana University. She has over 30 years of experience in managing community-based organizations for persons with disabilities in Indiana, Virginia, and Texas. She regularly provides train... Read More →


Saturday January 27, 2018 11:00am - 12:00pm
Room 602

12:30pm

Parent Involvement in Applied Behavior Analysis
Limited Capacity seats available

Applied behavior analysis therapy (ABA) is a well-known, scientifically proven intervention for increasing functional skills in children with autism or developmental delays. While children can make great gains with ABA therapy, the children who make the most gains are the ones who have parents who are actively involved in their child’s therapy. For many parents of children with autism, participation in a home-based behavioral intervention program may seem overwhelming but it doesn’t have to be. Being actively involved doesn’t mean you need to observe every session and/or attempt to run discrete trials. Parent involvement is about carrying over the skills your child is learning in therapy and then practicing them during your child’s everyday routine. CARE will explain the basics of parent involvement so that you feel comfortable and confident in guiding your child toward success!

Speakers
JA

Jennifer Alsdorf, BCBA

BCBA, C.A.R.E. (Collaborative Autism Resources and Education), LLC
Jennifer Alsdorf, M. Ed., BCBA is a behavior analyst for Collaborative Autism Resource and Education (CARE) and oversee training and support for BCBAs, technicians, and interns. Jennifer received her Master's degree in Low Incidents Disabilities and Autism from Sam Houston State... Read More →
AS

Amanda Smith, BCBA

C.A.R.E. (Collaborative Autism Resources and Education), LLC
#N/A


Saturday January 27, 2018 12:30pm - 1:30pm
Room 611

12:30pm

Guardianship Reforms: A legal explanation to self-determination in the real world
Limited Capacity seats available

This training will focus on alternatives to guardianship such as supported decision-making and supports and services which could be utilized to avoid the necessity of a guardianship. To prepare students with disabilities for supported decision-making and other alternatives to guardianship, educational programs must be developed to help students maximize their self-determination and engage in meaningful decision-making. The presentation will include: 1) An overview of guardianship reforms in Texas and nationally, self-determination and supported decision-making as an alternative to guardianship including the means to avoid the necessity of obtaining a guardianship for persons with disabilities and its ability to enhance the self-determination and independence of persons with disabilities; 2) The necessity of developing individual education plans designed to train students with disabilities on self-determination and decision-making as part of transition services; and 3) Recommendations on how alternatives to guardianship can be incorporated into transition planning including access to supports and services.

Speakers
JM

Jeffrey Miller, JD

Policy Specialist, Disability Rights Texas
Jeffrey S. Miller, JD Jeff has held various policy related positions at Disability Rights Texas (DRTx) starting in 2006, including work in the areas of health care access, community integration, and special education. He is currently a Policy Specialist focusing various issues in... Read More →


Saturday January 27, 2018 12:30pm - 1:30pm
Room 605

12:30pm

Dollar Store Activites for Preschoolers
Limited Capacity seats available

It doesn't take a fancy toy for preschoolers to learn skills that will help them gain the knowledge they need. You can make many fun and engaging activities out of things you find at a dollar store or in your cupboards. Come and collect activities for motor skills as well as math and literacy skills.

Speakers
SH

Sonja Hollan

Preschool Education Specialist, Region 4 Special Education Solutions
Sonja received her undergraduate degree from University of Iowa and her masters degree from University of Houston. She taught preschoolers to 5th graders as a teacher in the public schools, She soon realized that working with the littlest learners was her passion. Now she gets to... Read More →


Saturday January 27, 2018 12:30pm - 1:30pm
Room 210

12:30pm

Inclusion Classroom: Got Social Skills?
Limited Capacity seats available

Social skills: many students modify their social behavior to fit the social scene, yet other students miss the social clues completely! Students on the Autism Spectrum need social skills! Learn how to teach social skills in visual and concrete ways that are effective and Fun!

Speakers
AT

April T Giauque

Special Education Transition Teacher, Pieced-Together
April T Giauque is the mother of 9 children 5 of which have special needs: 4 Autism, 2 who are Deaf, and 1 of her deaf children has Autism. April has her Masters degree in Special Education. April is the author of BASE: Building Advanced Social Education, which is an interactive... Read More →


Saturday January 27, 2018 12:30pm - 1:30pm
Room 603

12:30pm

Usando el Pensamiento Centrado en la Persona para guiar conversaciones respetuosas y obtener resultados positivos en la reunión del IEP.
Limited Capacity seats available

En esta sesión, aprenderá cómo usar la habilidad 4 + 1 para enfocarse en un problema y elaborar un plan de acción para ayudarlo a presentar sus necesidades durante una reunión del IEP.

Speakers
AD

Aimee Day

Program Coordinator, Texas A&M University
Aimee Day graduated from Texas A&M University with a B.S. in Biomedical Science in 2001. She is the mother of two boys who are adventurous, funny, kind and have a disability. Her career changed from veterinary medicine to supporting families and individuals with disabilities afte... Read More →


Saturday January 27, 2018 12:30pm - 1:30pm
Room 212

12:30pm

Supporting Language Through Play
Limited Capacity seats available

Join us as we explore play strategies to support receptive and expressive language for young children with special needs.

Speakers
KP

Kristina Parr

Preschool Education Specialist, Region 4 Special Education Solutions
Kristina Parr is a preschool education specialist with Region 4 Education Service Center in Houston, TX. Kristina has worked in the field of special education for 20 years. During her teaching career, Kristina was a speech therapist, an assistive technology specialist, and a PPCD... Read More →


Saturday January 27, 2018 12:30pm - 1:30pm
Room 208

12:30pm

An Immersive Approach to Transition - Elevating and Managing Stress for Better Results
Limited Capacity seats available

Transition is too often defined as a series of tasks rather than an organic whole. Immersion strategies help to build a more functional skill set while increasing transferable experiences.

Speakers
SA

Scott Adams

Co-Founder, Executive Director, Advance
Scott Adams is the Co-Founder and Executive Director of Advance, LLC, a transition program located in Midtown Houston, specializing in transitioning students with social and learning differences into independent life paths. He previously was a founding faculty member and principa... Read More →


Saturday January 27, 2018 12:30pm - 1:30pm
Room 606

12:30pm

CANCELLED: Then and Now
Limited Capacity seats available

We will be talking about our lives---then and how it is now. We were both institutionalized for many years. Roger, from age 12, in a San Antonio State School, and Candi from age 8 in Port Arthur, Texas. Then came a number of Group Homes until finally, freedom: Candi in 2004 and Roger 2016. We both now are under the Consumer Directed Services program and live in our own home and hire our own staff. Combined with new technology, our worlds have opened to living life to the fullest!

Speakers
RW

Roger Williamson

Self Advocate, Self Advocate
Roger is a graduate of Partners in Policy Making, an advocacy program for parents who have children with disabilities and self-advocates. He has presented at functions to share his story in an effort to help others deeply understand the impact of living with disability.
CY

Candi Yarbrough

Self Advocate, Self Advocate
Candi Yarbrough is a self-advocate, attended college, and is a member of Phi Theta Kappa, International Honor Society for two year students. She is a graduate of Partners in Policy Making, an advocacy program for parents who have children with disabilities and self-advocates. She presents at functions to share her story... Read More →


Saturday January 27, 2018 12:30pm - 1:30pm
Room 206

12:30pm

Personal Support Networks: Enriching Life in the Present & Providing for the Future
Limited Capacity seats available

The best guarantee of a safe and secure future for a person with a disability is to have caring, committed friends, family members, acquaintances and supporters actively involved in his or her life. A personal network is a group of people who voluntarily commit to support a person who is at risk of being isolated and vulnerable by reason of their disability. Texas Parent to Parent (TxP2P) has a new program called Texas Network Connections (TxNC). This program (modeled after the PLAN personal network program in Vancouver, B.C.) helps families explore, develop and maintain personal support networks for their loved ones (https://www.txp2p.org/services/texas-network-connections). Launched in Austin in 2016, Texas Network Connections is now expanding statewide. Come learn more about personal networks and how to get a personal network started for yourself, your son or your daughter!

Speakers
DS

Denise Sonleitner

Texas Parent to Parent: Texas Network Connections Program
Denise Sonleitner lives in Austin with her husband, Steve, and son, Maverick. Her daughter Ava Linn also lives close by. In early 2010, with the support of friends, family, and transition champion Rosemary Alexander, Denise set up a personal network for Maverick, known as 'MavMen... Read More →


Saturday January 27, 2018 12:30pm - 1:30pm
Room 602

12:30pm

The Birds and the Bees: Hygiene, Puberty, Sexuality, and Safety in Youth with Developmental Disabilities
Limited Capacity seats available

Youth with autism spectrum disorder and other developmental disabilities often need direct instruction about hygiene, puberty, and sexuality. These topics are critical to personal safety. An individual is never too old or young to begin or continue their learning in these areas. This session will cover practical strategies and lessons learned from work with hundreds of families.

Speakers
NM

Natalie Montfort, PhD

Licensed Clinical Psychologist, The Stewart Center at The Westview School
see prior submission


Saturday January 27, 2018 12:30pm - 1:30pm
Room 604