The 8th Annual ABI Conference was a great success, with over 400 parents, educators, artists and inclusion advocates in attendance.

Thank you to all the volunteers, sponsors and presenters who made the day possible, as well as each participant who spent the day with us, and the helpers back at home who made it possible for us all to be there. It is incredible to see the passion and skills of such a large group come together to make change that will help all children, all schools and all communities. We hope you have had a chance to look through the resource disc you received in your registration packet. Visit our Resources Page to find downloadable resources from conference sessions, presenters, and more.

“Universal Design for Learning: Teaching to meet the needs of all learners”

Presented by Tracey E. Hall, Ph.D.

All students have a right to participate and progress in the general education curriculum. The principles and practices of Universal Design for Learning guide the design of flexible instructional goals, assessments, methods and materials that consider from the outset the diversity and natural variability of learners in any educational setting. This presentation will introduce the framework of Universal Design for learning and applications to instruction.

Tracey Hall is a Sr. Research Scientist at CAST, a nonprofit educational research and development organization that works to expand learning opportunities and outcomes for all individuals through Universal Design for Learning (UDL). She has been an advocate for persons with disabilities for over 20 years. She began her career as a special education teacher, conducts research on instruction and assessment, and has been a professor with a focus on design and assessment. Her current work at CAST focuses on the development of sound instruction based on the framework of UDL to meet the needs of all students.

“What’s Worth Working For? Focusing on what leads to a full life.”

Presented by Connie Lyle O’Brien, M.S.W.

Confusion has grown over the years about what supports people to have a full life in the community. Parents and people with disabilities have taught themselves that services are the answer to all the problems. Good services are extremely important, but services are not the destination. This session will offer ideas about what’s really worth working for and examples of what can happen when there’s clarity of needs.

Connie has spent thirty years learning what it takes to support people with disabilities to live, work, learn, worship and have fun as full participants in community life. Along with her husband and partner, John O’Brien, and other members of the Responsive Systems Associates network, Connie has collaborated in the development of person-centered planning methods in a group context, developed methods for teaching the principle of normalization through PASS, assisted people in implementing citizen advocacy programs, created Framework for Accomplishment, an intensive learning experience for improving service program quality; and co-authored a variety of articles and manuscripts to assist program developers to build more competent communities.

Special National Guest Presenter

Joy Smiley Zabala, Ed.D, ATP, is the Director of Technical Assistance for CAST and the National Center on Accessible Instructional Materials. Dr. Zabala is an internationally acclaimed educator with over 25 years of leadership in assistive technology (AT) Universal Design for Learning (UDL) and accessible instructional materials (AIM). She is a strong supporter of Universal Design for Learning as the foundation for the educational participation and achievement of all students and of AT and AIM as complementary supports for those students who require them for active participation and achievement in UDL environments. She is the developer of the SETT Framework and a founding member of the QIAT Community. www.joyzabala.com

Dr. Zabala will be presenting “Accessible Instructional Materials: Keys to inclusive access, participation and achievement for all” (session #1) and “Accessible and inclusive tools: UDL techniques for successful classrooms” (session #2).

Special Closing Speaker

“Disability Forward: Arriving at Home in the Disability Movement Nationwide”

Presented by Amber Smock

Amber Smock is the Director of Advocacy at Access Living of Metropolitan Chicago, a cross-disability Center for Independent Living led by and for people with disabilities who want to live fully-engaged and self-directed lives. Access Living promotes justice and independent living at the local, state, and national levels. Smock oversees public policy and organizing campaigns around housing, closing institutions, health care, youth/education, women/girls, employment, Latino issues, and other cross-disability issues. She is the media chair for National ADAPT and co-founded Feminist Response in Disability Activism (FRIDA). Amber is respected in the disability civil rights movement as a dedicated and talented agent of change. She is herself Deaf, wears hearing aids, and uses both American Sign Language and spoken English. She is the 2012 Paul G. Hearne Leadership Award recipient from the American Association of People with Disabilities.

Session 1a: Keeping your eye on the prize; How to balance rights and relationships to have a full life
Presented by Connie Lyle O’Brien

Session 1b: Bienvenidos; Tips and tools for advocating for your child at school and in the community (Spanish Session)
Presented by Gabrielle Bolivar, ED OrFirst; & Mirsa Lopez, parent & community trainer

Session 1c: Understanding the IEP; Rights and testing
Presented by Chris Shank, Attorney

Session 1d: The key to inclusive best practices; Strategies for increasing student participation and success
Presented by Patti McVay & Laurie Pachl

Session 1e: Accessible instructional materials: Keys to inclusive access, participation and achievement for all
Presented by Joy Smiley Zabala, Director of Technical Assistance at CAST and the National Center on Accessible Instructional Materials; and Laura Petschauer, Oregon Department of Education

Session 1f: Living a Whole Life; Employment starts with the end in mind
Presented by Darla Helt, Clark County Parent Coalition Coordinator

Session 1g: Power of collaboration and team-building; Preschool and kindergarten classes that embrace all students
Presented by Dr. Ruth Falco Ph.D., Director, Research Center on Inclusive & Effective Educational Practices, Portland State University

Session 1h: Having real friends and community connections; Successful social inclusion for our children
Presented by Ann Donaca-Sullivan, M.Ed. Concordia University; Stephanie McBride, M.Ed. Portland State University; & Sue Wilcox, Portland Public Schools

Session 2a: Accessible and inclusive tools: UDL techniques for successful classrooms
Presented by Tracey E. Hall, Sr. Research Scientist at CAST; & Joy Smiley Zabala, Director of Technical Assistance at CAST and the National Center on Accessible Instructional Materials

Session 2b: Bodies in motion
Presented by Mary Williams, Occupational Therapist

Session 2c: Behavior in the early years; Alternatives to exclusion, resources and ideas for when the going gets tough
Presented by Stephanie Hunter, Positive Behavior Support Specialist, OTAC

Session 2d: Discovering and Marketing Your Child’s Gifts and Strengths; person centered thinking for success in the early years (birth-5)
Presented by Dave Andrews, M.S. Supervisor MESD; & Chris Cvitanich, M.S. ECSE Teacher MESD

Session 2e: Pursuit of a College Experience
Presented by Todd Dunn & Jay Dunn

Session 2f: History of Disability and Diversity
Presented by Dean Westwood, Instructor, OHSU School of Medicine. M.S.W.

Session 2g: We Dance, We Sing, We Play All Day; Creating inclusive early childhood environments that are fun for everyone
Presented by Cindy Ryan, Assistant Professor of Early Childhood Western Oregon University

Session 3a: Behavior Beyond Definition, Thinking about behavior in a very different way at school
Presented by Patti McVay

Session 3b: Realizing inclusive education through empowering parents
Presented by Alicia Delashmutt, Kindergarten Inclusion Cohort Coordinator

Session 3c: Get Out and Get Involved! Accessing community recreation and arts opportunities
Presented by Bonnie Doyle, Lisa Gearing & Jamie Burch

Session 3d: Understanding the Potential of the iPad and Technology in the Classroom; Advocacy and student centered goal development
Presented by Tom Keating, Ph.D.; & Tobias Rickard, M.S.

Session 3e: Employment; Real life, real dreams, an employee tells how
Presented by Eleanor Bailey, Community Advocate

Session 3f: Raising a Visionary; Helping a child to be a self-directed adult
Presented by Roberta Dunn, Executive Director, FACT

Session 4a: Foundations under the dreams; employment, homes and future planning
Presented by Joe Wykowski, Executive Director of Community Vision

Session 4b: IEP Workshop- Writing inclusive IEPs that drive inclusion
Presented by Michael Bailey, President, National Disability Rights Network

Session 4c: “Ask Susana”; Rights and laws (Spanish session)
Presented by Susana Ramirez, Special Education Advocate, Parents in Action Founder

Session 4d: Universally designing behavior supports in general education settings
Presented by Sheldon Loman, Ph.D., Assistant Professor Portland State University

Session 4e: Inclusive literacy for all; Tools and techniques
Presented by Shar Powell, AT Resource Specialist; & Nancy Jo Vogel, Trainer OTAP Coordinator

Session 4f: The role of paraprofessionals in enhancing student progress in the classroom
Presented by Dr. Regina Moreno, Ed.D College of Education; Director of Special Education Programs

Session 4g: Pathfinders: Doing person centered planning in a group
Presented by Connie Lyle O’Brien

Session 4h: Successful inclusion in preschool; Team presentation with real examples of things that work
Presented by Holly Ingram

Arc of Cowlitz County
Campbell Group
Center on Inclusion
Community Vision
Concordia University
DSAMC
FACT
Holland Knight
MESD
Portland State University
The Standard
United Cerebral Palsy
Urban Photography
Wells Fargo
Inclusive Childcare Project
Small Comfort Chocolates
and the generous contributions and in-kind support of numerous others.

Feedback from the 2013 ABI Conference

“Enjoyed the opportunity to be “Real” with families and educators. Speaking always brings a lot to the table and opens new ways to approach situations”

“Great to watch how ABI has grown over the years. Lots of hard work and dedication is evident.”

“What makes All Born (In) unique (in my opinion the best anywhere) is its cross disability emphasis and alliance with self advocacy. It is what real community organizing looks like!”

“Look at how many MORE people are learning how to write successful IEPs this year. Education is so important!”

“Just the shot in the arm we needed! Thank you Angela, NWDSA and all the strong leaders and advocates who help shine the light… So grateful.”