This article was written in collaboration with HDC’s K-12 Initiatives Director Julie Riley, M.Ed., BCBA, LBA, and HDC Director Philip Wilson, Ph.D.
Human Development Center’s Louisiana Autism Spectrum and Related Disabilities (LASARD) project has nearly tripled the number of school districts it collaborates with over the past two-years; going from about 10 districts to over 25 school systems across the state this 2021-22 school year. The HDC LASARD project is proud to serve “traditional” districts and charter systems from Webster and Morehouse in the northern part of the state, to Concordia in the east, to Jeff Davis in the southwest, and to Tangipahoa and ReNEW charters in the southeast.Read more >
Ms. Ali Kowitz recently joined the staff of HDC’s K-12 Educational Initiatives as an educational facilitator. Ali coaches special educators and regular education teachers to better serve students, including those with disabilities in several school districts across South Louisiana (i.e., Iberville, East Baton Rouge, ReNEW-New Orleans, and Belle Chasse Academy). According to Ms. Julie Riley, HDC’s K-12 Education Initiatives director, “Ali may have only been in this role for three-months, but her expertise in instructional strategies and transition has added greatly to our team.” In fact, Ali has already developed professional development materials focusing on instructional strategies and accommodations/modifications to assist students with disabilities function within school-wide and classroom norms. Happily, these strategies work for students of all abilities!
Nicole Williams of Families Helping Families NOLA is asking urgently for parents of children with special needs to sign up for this webinar happening 1 PM TODAY.
The LASARD Project is posting resources and short videos/webinars to their Facebook page LASARD Facebook page to support parents who are now “teaching” at home. These resources are appropriate for families with younger kids as well as adolescents.
The Louisiana Autism Spectrum and Related Disabilities (LASARD) Project has been selected for inclusion in the Louisiana Department of Education’s Partnership for Success Guide as an approved vendor for the 2020-2021 school year. The Partnership for Success Guide provides school systems with a list of partners that can provide professional development to build the capacity of educators to deliver specialized supports often required to support the unique needs of students with disabilities. Only ten vendors from across the US are included in this guide. LASARD facilitators are in the process now of meeting with districts and schools across the state to promote their partnership services and offer support as needed.
HDC’s LASARD project was highlighted in the Developments Newsletter. The article describes how LASARD improves outcomes for students with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and related disabilities by developing a pool of highly effective educators across the state. Read the article here: https://www.aucd.org/template/news.cfm?news_id=13899&id=17
Developments is a newsletter for Autism CARES legislation grantees, published by AUCD’s Interdisciplinary Technical Assistance Center on Autism and Developmental Disabilities (ITAC) in partnership with AMCHP’s State Public Health Autism Resource Center (SPHARC). Its purpose is to share news, activities, events, research, and accomplishments across grantee areas – research, training, and state implementation.
To subscribe to the Developments Newsletter, click here: https://www.aucd.org//itac/template/page.cfm?id=831
At HDC, we are deeply saddened to learn about the passing of our friend and former Louisiana Autism Spectrum and Related Disabilities (LASARD) facilitator Stephanie Payne. Stephanie was a valuable member of the LASARD team who approached her work with wit and compassion. The insights and engaging stories she shared are as unforgettable as her depth of knowledge and keen sense of humor. Her ability to connect with people was uncanny, and her passion contagious. Her smile, laugh, and hugs will always be remembered, and her footprint on all we do at LASARD endures.
Louisiana Autism Spectrum and Related Disabilities (LASARD) is a project of HDC under its K-12 Education Initiative.