2018 Special Education in Connecticut Summit

Please join us for the

2018 Special Education in Connecticut Summit:
Promoting Equity for Marginalized Students With Disabilities

Co-sponsored by the Klebanoff Institute and the University of Connecticut Neag School of Education

Starr Hall
The Special Education Summit has been made possible through the generous support of the Klebanoff Institute.

Event Details

Date: Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Time: 8:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m.

Cost: $15 per person. You must register in advance. Registration is FULL at this time. We are no longer accepting new registrants.

Location: University of Connecticut School of Law — 45 Elizabeth Street, William F. Starr Hall, Hartford, Conn.

Parking: You must register your vehicle online to secure free event parking; all event parking information is available here.

Advance registration is required; space is limited.

Follow the conversation on Twitter at #SpedSummit.

Overview and Purpose

This summit will provide a unique opportunity for discussion and learning among educators, family/community members, policymakers, and researchers geared toward developing effective school environments that support the needs of all students with disabilities, including those from marginalized groups, such as minority students, homeless students, immigrant students, and LGBT students. Features of effective, safe, and supportive school environments to support all students will be presented, as will strategies for using multi-tiered environments to intensify supports for students with disabilities to promote equity and maximize outcomes.  

Inspired by rich discussion among presenters, panel members, and participants, the summit will conclude with a small number of recommendations for moving the state forward in closing the achievement and discipline gaps experienced by students with and at-risk for disabilities.

The event will be open to a wide audience with an interest in special education services in Connecticut, including families, advocates, persons with disabilities, legislators, and education professionals.

The Special Education in Connecticut Summit has been made possible through the support of the Klebanoff Institute.

Program Agenda* 

8:30-9 a.m.: Registration; Coffee and Light Breakfast

9-9:30 a.m.: Welcome Remarks

  • Howard Klebanoff – Klebanoff Institute

Special Education Summit Q&A
Participants take part in a Q&A with panelists during the 2017 Special Education Summit. (Nathan Oldham/Neag School)

9:30-10:30 a.m.: Keynote Presentation: Equal Access to Opportunity — Do We Have What It Takes?

  • Renee Bradley, Deputy Division Director, U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs

10:45-11:45 a.m. — Panel Discussion: Promoting Positive and Equitable School Environments for All Students With Disabilities

Panel Moderator: David Desroches, WNPR

  • Kelly Enoch — Director of Special Services, Clinton (Conn.) Public Schools
  • Susan Freedman — Partner, Shipman & Goodwin Counselors at Law
  • Steven Hernandez — Executive Director, Connecticut Commission on Women, Children, and Seniors
  • Tamika La Salle — Assistant Professor, School Psychology, Neag School of Education
  • Marisa Mascolo Halm — Director, TeamChild Juvenile Justice Project, Center for Children’s Advocacy
  • Kiomary Sotillo — Parent Consultant, Connecticut Parent Advocacy Center (CPAC)

11:45 a.m. - 1 p.m.: Lunch

David DesRoches as panel moderator
WNPR reporter David DesRoches moderates a panel discussion during the 2017 Special Education in Connecticut Summit last May. (Nathan Oldham/Neag School)

1-2 p.m.: Breakout Sessions

Facilitated panels of researchers, practitioners, policymakers, and families that focus on effective practices to promote equity and enhanced outcomes for all students with disabilities.

Promoting High-Quality Academic Outcomes for All Students With Disabilities

Facilitator: Michael Coyne — Professor, Special Education, Neag School of Education

  • Karen Berasi — Superintendent, Suffield (Conn.) Public Schools
  • Sharon Bremner — Director of Pupil Personnel Services, East Hartford (Conn.) Public Schools
  • John Flanders — Executive Director, Connecticut Parent Advocacy Center (CPAC)
  • Courtney Spencer — Attorney, Law Offices of Courtney Spencer, LLC

Promoting Positive Behavior to Decrease Disproportionate Discipline of Students With Disabilities

Facilitator: Brandi Simonsen, Professor, Neag School of Education

  • Sarah Eagan — Connecticut Children’s Advocate, State of Connecticut Office of the Child Advocate
  • Jennifer Freeman — Assistant Professor, Educational Psychology, Neag School of Education
  • Eben McKnight — Consultant, SERC
  • Kathryn Meyer — Attorney and Director, Center for Children’s Advocacy
  • Sarah Smalley — Director of Pupil Services, Regional School District No. 4

2:10-2:30 p.m.: Closing Remarks by Howard Klebanoff of the Klebanoff Institute

(Introduction by Joseph Madaus, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, Neag School of Education)

*Subject to change

Summit Participant Bios

Find more information about the Special Education Summit’s participants, including:

Parking Information

All registrants for the Special Education in Connecticut Summit must park in Lot B at the UConn School of Law campusPlease be sure to register your vehicle online in order to reserve free parking for the event; your reserved parking will be valid only on April 24, 2018, from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m.

This event has been made possible
through the generous support of the Klebanoff Institute.

Read about the 2017 Neag School Special Education Summit.