Aug / 21

What Does “Equal Access” in Education Mean? [IEP 042]

IEPcontent Podcast 0

Our 4th Annual Panel Discussion and Silent Auction is set for Thurs, Sept. 13th, 2018 and we’d love for you to join us (if you’re in Southern California). Our topic is “Building the bridge between school, learning, and mental health.” To buy your tickets, visit our registration page here: www.bit.ly/IEPpanel

If you’d like to add items to the event swag bag or to be a sponsor, email us at admin[at]iepcalifornia[dot]org

Also, be sure to join our new Facebook Group.

In today’s episode, as we celebrate the 54th anniversary of the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, we are taking a look at the various ways students with special needs are being denied equal access to education.

Full show transcript at the bottom of this post. 

What We Discuss in this Episode:

  • What the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibited
  • When the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”) was signed into law and what it established
  • What are “reasonable accommodations” under the ADA?
  • Why the “perception” that people living with disabilities are “less than” is what needs to be changed
  • Why physical barriers aren’t the only issues when it comes to access
  • When it comes to education, what does equal access mean?
  • The role of assistive technology in helping students with special needs
  • How certain discipline of students who are misbehaving can affect access to learning
  • The problem with lack of support during make-up days
  • Why the question of, “Are all children going to be able to access this?” is what should be asked anytime a school is implementing a new program

Resources Mentioned:

American with Disabilities Act

IDEA

California Dept. of Education Office of Equal Opportunity

Thank you for listening!

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Full Show Transcript

Vickie  Brett:                     Welcome to the Inclusive Education Project. I’m Vickie  Brett.

Amanda Selogie:              I’m Amanda Selogie. We’re two civil rights lawyers on a mission to change the conversation about education, civil rights, and modern activism.

Vickie  Brett:                     Each week, we’re going to explore new topics which are going to educate and empower others.

Amanda Selogie:              And give them a platform to enact change in education and level the playing field. Hi everyone. We are happy to have you guys, we hope you’re enjoying your summer. It’s officially August for us.

Vickie  Brett:                     Yes.

Amanda Selogie:              July was packed with a lot, which it was so busy we didn’t even realize that it was our four-year anniversary.

Vickie  Brett:                     Work anniversary.

Amanda Selogie:              We always joke that Vickie  got married twice in 2014, because we went to Ecuador for her wedding, to her husband Maury.

Vickie  Brett:                     I did literally get married.

Amanda Selogie:              She literally got married, and then we “got married” in starting the business, so those anniversaries coincided in July. We realized it kind of came and went, and we realized we needed to celebrate, so we’re going to be celebrating in August.

Vickie  Brett:                     I think that’s fine.

Amanda Selogie:              I think so too, four years is a pretty big deal.

Vickie  Brett:                     Yeah, with Selogie and Brett and with our nonprofit just around that. That anniversary is a different time, that one’s in October, but that’ll be nice because our event will have come and gone at that point, so getting a lot of great stuff. We’ve been talking about this event that we’re going to be having in September, it’s September 13th, so this is your kind of save the date reminder, so a panel discussing the crossover, you know the bridge between mental health, learning, and school. We have a lot of great experts which we’ll be teasing out, doing kind of spotlights on each of the speakers and the moderator, but we’re also doing a silent auction. We’re also trying to make it fun, so we’ll have a bar, have the appetizers.

We’re getting a lot of great stuff, we just got a signed baseball from the Angels, we got a couple, I think, what’s the Anaheim Hills golf course who’s giving us passes for brunch?

Amanda Selogie:              I wonder if we’re going to get, we’ve gotten some trips before donated.

Vickie  Brett:                     Yes, we have gotten some trips, maybe we’ll tease those out.

Amanda Selogie:              I mean, we’ll have to tease out some good items that you might want to come and bid, you get a little something for yourself and you donate to a good cause. By the time this pod episode airs, the registration for buying tickets should be up on our website. Go to our Facebook page, our Instagram will have information on how to do that as well, and we’ll share the URL. Right now it’s August 3rd, and we’re hoping to have that ready in the next couple days.

Vickie  Brett:                     Yeah, by the time this drops, you guys probably have it, but if you don’t know about our Facebook group, that URL, it’s Facebook.com/group/ieppodcast. A lot of our information will be within that group, and then of course also on all of our social media pages, mainly like Facebook and Instagram, so it’s pretty exciting.

Amanda Selogie:              Yeah, it is. We’re getting some really great sponsors that will be there, so if you’re interested in being a sponsor, having a booth there, putting information into your swag bags for everyone that comes to the event, or you want to be involved in some way, please send us an email, admin, A-D-M-I-N@IEPCalifornia.org, or send us a message on Facebook and we’d be happy to have you. For anyone who’s planning on coming to the event, there’s going to be some great people that you’ll be able to network with, connect with, get more information about their organizations, how they might be able to help you, mutual assistance if you’re another organization in the area.

It’s going to be not just a great learning opportunity and a little bit of fun, silent auction, but an opportunity to really meet other people in the community, from other parents to providers and teachers and educators, so please please please save the date, and we’d love to have you. Again, if you want to be a sponsor, we’d be happy to have you. Yeah, we’re pretty excited, and as the weeks go on, you’ll learn more information about it. Speaking of anniversaries, it turns out, what were we saying? That there’s a lot of anniversaries of legislation in July?

Vickie  Brett:                     Yeah, one of the big ones celebrating 54 years this past 2nd of July, even though we’re in August, was the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Signed into law by President Johnson, and you know we’ve talked about this candidly, and I’m not trying to do a lecture here, but just as a bit of a background, it was discrediting discrimination based on race, religion, sex, national origin. It was a major civil rights landmark, and actually for US labor law as well, because they were trying to prohibit unequal application of voter registration requirements, which was a big deal, obviously racial segregation in schools, in employment, public accommodations.

When you think of the Civil Rights Act, you think of public accommodations, you think of school segregation. What’s interesting is that was in 1964, and then flash forward to 1990, actually July 26th, and George H.W. Bush signed into law, so July 26th, 1990, the Americans With Disabilities Act, and [crosstalk 00:05:42]-

Amanda Selogie:              Which is crazy that it took that long.

Vickie  Brett:                     I know, but I mean look at what they had in the Civil Rights Act, they had race, religion, sex, national origin, right?

Amanda Selogie:              Yeah.

Vickie  Brett:                     That’s all people were thinking about at that point, and then yeah, in 1990 … We’ve talked about the ADA before, we had had a pod where we were talking about some changes that congress wanted to make.

Amanda Selogie:              Well, particular members of congress, not all of them.

Vickie  Brett:                     Right right right, but yeah, it was proposed. We’ve kind of given a rundown on that, so obviously it prohibits discrimination based on disability, or trying to afford protections for those that had been discriminated against. I think in our last pod that had aired, we were talking about the straws, like the [crosstalk 00:06:22] versus this and that and the other thing, and it’s just trying to, “What are the similar protections that we need for Americans with disabilities?” A couple of those things are reasonable accommodations to employees with disabilities and accessibility.

We’re going to be mainly focused on accessibility, but I just wanted to give a little bit of background of like what reasonable accommodations are. Obviously when we talk about accommodations in IEPs, we’re talking about, and different people have different ways of approaching accommodations, we had a whole pod on accommodations, so here’s a more general sense of making an adjustment in the system to make fair the same system, so everyone [crosstalk 00:07:03]-

Amanda Selogie:              Right, in that one picture, it’s giving the different step stools so that everyone can see over the fence. It’s that tool to get you to the same place that everyone else is, that equity.

Vickie  Brett:                     “Means necessary and appropriate modification and adjustments, not imposing the disproportionate or undue burden where needed, in a particular case, ensure to persons with disabilities enjoyment or exercise on equal basis with others of all human rights and fundamental freedoms.” That’s just taken from the convention on the rights of persons with disabilities through the United Nations, and that’s how they kind of parceled out what it was. Most of the time, what Amanda and I deal with in sections of the ADA and the IDEA was accessibility.

Amanda Selogie:              Right, and I think when we go back to, “Why did it take so long for the ADA when we come about?”, when we talk about discrimination and preventing discrimination, I think that what happened for so long, and this is why we feel our pod is so important, is that perception, the perception that people with disabilities are human as well. While the Civil Rights movement gave rise to that being the case for people of all races and religion and national origin, it took a little bit longer for I think people to realize there were still people that were born with Downs syndrome and born with intellectual disabilities that were put into institutions, that people were giving them up as children because they were told that they were not the same, that they were not equal, that they were not going to have the capabilities.

Some of them, and that’s why the IDEA came about, was because we had these kids not even being allowed to come to school in the first place. The ADA came about to really look at giving that access, so a lot of times you think of the ADA access as, “Well, we need that wheelchair ramp, so that way someone in a wheelchair can get to a facility.”

Vickie  Brett:                     When we think of access, we think sidewalk.

Amanda Selogie:              We think of physical barriers, physical barriers to enter a facility, enter a room, be present in a room, like the bathroom stall. You can’t get in, but also you can’t sit down if there’s not enough room. When we talk about education, we’re not just talking about the physical barriers. The ADA is very specific as to that equal access to the education, so equal access to the curriculum. For instance with that, a lot of times we’re talking about someone who is blind or deaf and hard of hearing, so they cannot read the book because they cannot see. The access to them, if they’re not given some kind of interpreter, transcription, or braille, they are not getting access to that book, that curriculum that’s in there.

If a lecture is being done verbally, someone who’s deaf or hard of hearing can’t get that lecture. They need to be able to then read it.

Vickie  Brett:                     Right, direct access, like what is not assisted, and then indirect, so like we are constantly talking about assisted technology. A lot of times in our IEPs, we come across this one part where it’s like, “Does this child have assisted technology?”, and it’s usually the box is check marked “no”, and-

Amanda Selogie:              There’s never been an assessment.

Vickie  Brett:                     Yeah, and there’s never been an assessment. Some districts will argue like, “Well, if the child doesn’t have any need for it, so why would we even assess?”, but it’s like, “Well, we don’t know what we don’t know, and sometimes it’s useful to assess in order to see what would be helpful,” because yeah, in the first grade, a word predictability program for a child with dyslexia could do so much, and that is a form of assistive technology, because maybe not all first graders are not on computers, but this child needs it, and I’ve seen that happen [crosstalk 00:10:57]-

Amanda Selogie:              Well, and what we hear a lot is, “Well, if we give them the technology, then it’s going to discourage them from using traditional modalities.” For instance, we give them a keyboard to type their written work, these schools think, “Well, we’re going to discourage learning how to hand write.” Well, let’s say a child is living with cerebral palsy, and they have a lot of trouble with fine motor, and so hand writing is very difficult for them. You tell a parent with that child that, “We don’t want them to learn how to do a keyboard, because then they’re not going to ever get better.” Well, at the end of the day, there’s two arguments I have for that.

One is, so what? Because we have technology in our everyday lives, and for education it’s most important that they get the content, that they get the content out and they get the content in. If that’s what’s getting them to learn, then that’s the important part. Then the second thing is, sometimes like fine motor difficulties, you could work every day all day on practicing the handwriting, and some kids are never going to get to be able to because the physical impairments that they have with their fine motor skills may not get to the point where they can write legibly, so it may be an accommodation that they need to be able to type. We have so many technological advances that allow us to get to that point, so we need to be utilizing what’s going to be appropriate for that child.

Vickie  Brett:                     I’ll give you a situation in reverse, where I had the parent say, “No, if we get him on a keyboard …”, and it’s not a child with a physical disability, they don’t have CP, they have, for instance, dyslexia. We’re getting into 8th grade, and the district is offering assistive technology and a keyboard and all this stuff, and the parent is like, “Well, my kid can’t write, and I need her to focus on this,” and the district is now just saying, “Well, they’re not going to want to focus on this anymore.” Oftentimes, the argument that I get back from the district is that, essentially like the kid incapable of writing, it takes them two and a half minutes to write legibly, where it takes other kids a minute to write.

You’re dealing with something where it’s like, “Yeah, practice makes perfect, but we’re also trying to give that child access to the general education curriculum, and if giving her assistive technology in the form of her laptop is going to get her at that same level, it’s sometimes really hard for parents.” I get it, like sometimes it’s really difficult to explain. We’re in the 8th grade, and your child is behind because the district didn’t do what they were supposed to do, 100%, however, if we’re moving forward to try and get the child to maintain in the gen ed setting, this is what we have to do. It’s difficult, because we get that argument all the time, “Oh, their writing is sloppy,” they’re able to do it.

OT is not supposed to just get you to perfect handwriting, they’re able to do it, it just might take them longer, but what’s the point if all the 8th graders are already on the second chapter, [crosstalk 00:14:07]-

Amanda Selogie:              Well, and not only that, but I mean it goes to the child [inaudible 00:14:10]. They take longer, so they feel like they’re not smart enough, and they’re dealing with two battles. They’re dealing with writing as a challenge because of the content, but then writing as a challenge because of the physical issue. We need to be looking, if we’re creating a writing goal, what is the purpose behind that writing goal? Is it to establish better writing in content, or is it penmanship? Because that’s either a fine motor, or that’s an academic.

Vickie  Brett:                     It’s just refocusing. Sometimes I’ll just tell the parent like, “Well, at the end of the day, I get it, but the only thing that I use to write are my signature on the checks I cash all the time,” I’m just kidding, I have direct deposit, I don’t cash anything at the bank anymore, but my signature, okay? Like let’s just get a signature, and writing is important, totally understand, however, the way that the future is and the way that everybody has their tablets and they’re doing everything, you’re not making them stick out one and two. They may need to have a little bit more time to practice the keyboard, so that they can-

Amanda Selogie:              They need to practice technology, because when we talk about access in the community, that there are a lot of times where they need to be able to use a touchscreen, they need to be able to use a computer, because how often now, I mean even you go to the bank, it’s a touchscreen, right?

Vickie  Brett:                     I know, yeah. Remember I was telling you about that, we were talking about our last pod, or one of the pods, I forget, where there’s like a McDonald’s on your way to Vegas, and you go up to the counter and it’s all touchscreens.

Amanda Selogie:              Yeah, so I mean that’s a situation where if we don’t help them practice now, that access, then they’re going to have difficulty with access. That’s kind of what we’re looking at in terms of are they able to access the curriculum. Then we also have access in a sense that if a child is being disciplined in a way that is inappropriate, they’re being denied access to learning. For example, we have a big epidemic right now going on with behaviors, with some school districts who are very sensitive to behaviors, over-sensitive, and some that are under-sensitive. We have those districts where the behaviors of the child are out of control and they’re not being handled, and they’re not learning because they’re wilding out in the classroom, they’re having to leave the classroom to decompress, they’re having to go into decompression rooms, and so what’s happening? They’re losing content.

We’ve got that, we’ve got these school districts that don’t affect it as much, they go, “No no no, we’re doing fine.” Parent goes, “We need ADA,” so we have that end of the spectrum, where a child’s behaviors are to a certain extent, and in some cases, the child needs to be in a residential treatment center or in a non-public school, a more restrictive environment, and the school is not wanting to handle it because they don’t recognize the behaviors as severe. Then the other side of the spectrum is kids where they are having behaviors that are a lot more minimal, and they’re getting exaggerated.

We’re getting students who are getting suspended and facing expulsion for things that should never be a suspendable action. We have kids who, now, under the IDEA, we always talk about how in order for a child who has a disability to be expelled or suspended more than 10 days, you have to have what’s called a manifestation determination meeting. There’s procedures in place, because to discipline a student that has a disability the same way as a typical student is not appropriate, because the majority of the time, when the student who is living with the disability is acting out or having a behavior, it’s a manifestation of their disability, meaning they don’t have control over those actions.

We should not be disciplining them, it’s so inappropriate to discipline them for something they have no control over, because one, I mean what example are we setting? Two, they’re not going to learn from that because they can’t control it, they need to learn to control the behavior first. We’ve got these students who are being disciplined from that, but so they’re being suspended, sometimes parents are being called and said, “You need to pick up Johnny from school,” and they’re not being suspended, then they’re facing expulsion. There’s an epidemic of school shootings right now, so anytime there’s any threat, a student says something, and we know our kids with high-functioning autism and Asperger’s, they do have a propensity to mimic things or say things that they don’t really mean, but it’s misconstrued, and the school automatically says, “Well, we’ve got to worry about a school shooting.”

Vickie  Brett:                     They’re using it as a form of a punishment to deny the disability.

Amanda Selogie:              Right.

Vickie  Brett:                     We’ve had pods where we’ve talked about all of that.

Amanda Selogie:              All of that, when a student is inappropriately suspended, they’re being denied access. What are they being denied access? Well, they’re not able to come to school, so they’re not able to get the content, they’re missing out on that. If they miss out on the content for four days of their suspension, then they’re going to be catching up when they come back, and so they’re probably being denied further along. They’re being denied access to extracurricular activities that happen, so if there’s a field trip that day. If they’re part of a team the day they get suspended or removed from class, they’re not able to play in that game.

We’re denying them the opportunity that every other student has, and the reason that they got denied was because of their disability. Those are all the things that the ADA prohibits in schools.

Vickie  Brett:                     I’d seen an article talking about the accessibility in youth sports, so there was a child a couple years ago, he had dwarfism, and he was gotten cleared, he was like seven, to wrestle. There was this program that he had joined, I think was like in Colorado, and the department of justice had to get involved, because for their Pike’s Peak Wrestling League, for the lower end competitions, his weight and size obviously was that of the six and under, even though he was seven, but he was like 35 pounds, and kids that are in the eight and under are up to 45 pounds, and he’s like the size of a five-year-old, six-year-old. Everything was fine on the lower levels, and then they got to their championships, and this is when the department of justice had to get involved, because they were like, “No, he needs to be in the eight because of his age.”

I think they ended up getting into a settlement agreement outside, where this league was going to, in reaching that in the future, you know kids with disabilities like this child will have to go through, you know, “We’ll publicize that we’re non-discriminatory, we’ll include procedures for handling requests for modified policies for wrestlers with disabilities, we’ll train employees on the ADA requirements,” and things like that. We oftentimes get that from parents, like, “Well, can they just get trained? This is what I want, and I don’t want this to involve children who are being forwarded.” What is interesting about the Individuals With Disabilities in Education Act and the due process complaints that we bring, there have been some movement with some cases where an OH judge may think that they have discretion for certain screenings, but sometimes we’ll hear that from parents, “I don’t want this to happen again.”

It’s an individualized complaint, because we’re basing it on an individualized education program of that child. Now, if it hits something very specific with your child, yes, we may be able to get some training to deal with this type of child with Downs syndrome with this particular auxiliary disability on top of that, and we could get that done, but this is where the ADA section five [crosstalk 00:21:51], those [crosstalk 00:21:53] come in.

Amanda Selogie:              Right, because now we’re talking, so we’ve gotten a lot before, parents come to us saying, “I want to do a class action, because my child is not being allowed to go to this after school program or this extracurricular activity,” and I know that there are other parents like that. We see oftentimes, I’ve seen some middle schools, and I think some elementary schools too, where if you miss a day of school, you can make up the credit so that it’s like you didn’t have an absence by going to a Saturday program, so you can make enough credits. The problem is, is that a child with limiting disability who needs either support or maybe an aide, oftentimes they’re not allowed to go to those programs because the school says, “Yeah sure, you can go, but we’re not providing you those supports,” or a child who needs an aide, “We’re not providing the aide.”

The parent realizes, “Well, my child cannot benefit from this or go if there’s not an aide, or if these supports are not in place, so therefore they’re being denied.” If it’s essentially a policy where no IEP services are provided during this, then that’s something that’s happening the same, even if the individualized accommodations may be different from child to child, the denial of access is the same for all students living with disabilities within that district. That would be an opportunity to, say, maybe do a class action, but it’s that idea that we’re not talking in this instance, “Okay, well if Johnny wasn’t allowed to go to the Saturday program because he wasn’t able to go,” we’re talking about, “No, Johnny just wasn’t able to go, he should’ve been able to go.” The other kids in the school were able to go.

If a typical child is able to do something that a child with a disability is not able to do, that is discrimination, full, final, that’s what it is. A lot of these schools will say, “Well no, it’s a general policy, we say that no one gets aides.” Well, it’s like, “Well, a typical child doesn’t need an aide, so it actually is discriminatory.” That’s where we’re looking at with the discrimination side of section 504 and the ADA, and then the access is that they’re not able to go to it. It works hand in hand, because we’re looking at, the harm is that they’re being denied access.

Vickie  Brett:                     I mean, the California department of education, they have an office of equal opportunity, so they’re just dealing with gender, sex, religion, they’re dealing with not just disabilities. That’s why we oftentimes try to find within our complaints a way to, obviously, bring it up or even pursuing federal complaints. There have been so many cases, because we’re ruled by case law, law is just one thing, and then it gets interpreted through case law, so it has to be a very specific set of facts, it has to kind of run the mold, so that you’re not just, you know for this particular child, I’m sure he was not the only one.

Obviously, once you get the department of justice involved, I think that people start to pay attention. That happened just a couple of years ago, you know 2015 and it’s like it was 2015, “How is this still happening?” To everybody else it was common sense like, “Oh, well he’s the size of a six-year-old, you know like yeah, he’s mentally seven, but he’s not 45 pounds. Up against an eight-year-old, that’s not fair.” It was just kind of trying to put him on that equal footing.

Amanda Selogie:              Yeah, and I think it goes back to the idea that a lot of people don’t think ahead to, “This might be a problem.” They kind of wait until someone says, “This is a problem for me,” and then people realize, “Oh, we need to factor this in.” Where we hope to change the conversation and get people’s minds to go is that, when you’re starting an organization or you’re starting a program, this should be something that you think about from the start, from the get-go, “Are all children going to be able to access this?”

Vickie  Brett:                     This is not as black and white, and like I get it, we have to have rules and regulations, but if there is a disability on the table … We’ve seen this too when a girl wants to play football for a high school, and they’re like, “Girls don’t play football,” and it’s just like okay, that has to do with gender and sex. I could go off on that, but in this context, everybody that we know, and I think anybody in general will at least know someone with a disability, we say that all the time. It may not be at the forefront, but like Amanda was saying, it’s like it should be taken into consideration. You may not have a child with dwarfism come into your thing, but it’s like, “Oh, it’s just very … [crosstalk 00:26:33]”

Amanda Selogie:              It’s just that common sense.

Vickie  Brett:                     Taking it into consideration.

Amanda Selogie:              Right, take a second. If you’re an educator out there, you’re an administrator, and you’re considering implementing a new program, a running club for example, our trainer that we go to, he does a running club with his daughter’s elementary school. All of the students come and they do, I think it’s like once a week or something like that he runs with them, and then they have a race that they sign up for. Let’s say when that school said, “I want to do this running club,” the first thing that they think that they should be thinking about is, “Are we going to be able to provide access to all children in our school? If not, how can we make it happen?”

I mean, just from the get-go, that really should be one of those questions. If it’s something where you need to take a step back and get some help on how you would provide that access, that’s okay. You don’t have to have all the answers from the beginning, as long as you’re asking the questions.

Vickie  Brett:                     We’re thinking about this stuff because we live in it. We’ve gotten some feedback with the last episode that from where we are right now, it was the straw one, where it was like, “Oh, that was interesting,” and I was like, “It was interesting because we were just talking about an article and we were just going back and forth, or it was interesting because it was just a hot topic and you’re seeing a different perspective?” I think it was a combination of all of that, and that was the whole point of us doing the podcast, is to kind of bring this stuff to you. If it sounds preachy, it’s not, it’s just like we live in it, and so we just want to bring it to your attention, get you to start thinking about it.

I mean, if you don’t, we’re not saying you’re going to get a lawsuit, and it’s going to be at your front door, it’s just like, no no no. I think for the most part, if the lower level people were like, “Hey yeah, let them do it,” and then it’s like we get to this federation, and all of the sudden they were just trying to be very black and white, and it’s just like we don’t live in a black and white world.

Amanda Selogie:              Right, and it’s just food for thought, it’s something to start thinking about. We think about being kinder to one another, we think about all of that. Look, we’re not perfect, like what you said, we live in this world, and so that’s why we think about it all the time, but it’s not like we came out of the gate being perfect in the way that we talk about it. You’ll hear us trip up, we like to say “people living with disabilities”, but there’s often times we say “a person with a disability”, and so we catch ourselves sometimes. Don’t think that like, “Oh, well I don’t see it in every sense all the time, I don’t normally think about it,” it’s okay. It’s okay, but if we can start getting you thinking about it more, that’s what’s important.

Vickie  Brett:                     Yeah, that was a good one. I think they’re all good.

Amanda Selogie:              I know, yeah, I mean I think it’s important topics. I think this was something, because it was interesting that the anniversary came about, and even though it was, what, we said it was 28 years, the ADA has been in, because 1990?

Vickie  Brett:                     Yeah, yeah yeah yeah yeah.

Amanda Selogie:              Not like a Hallmark 50th anniversary or something like that, but it is important for us to talk and think about what’s the purpose behind some of these laws. Oftentimes people think, “Oh, the law’s control is too much, or they don’t control enough.” You think back to the purpose behind them, I think it helps people understand why they were put in place.

Vickie  Brett:                     Or just to see a different perspective, which is hopefully what we’re offering. Maybe it’s the same perspective as you, I don’t know, but at least we’re giving you some food for thought on any level. Yeah, I think we did a lot in the intro about our event, and I think that that’ll be fun.

Amanda Selogie:              Stay tuned for future episodes, we’ll be doing our spotlights on our panelists, we’ll do some spotlights on our sponsors for the event. We’re also going to do it on social media as well, so if you’re like, “Oh, maybe I want to go, but I want to see who’s going to be there,” one little sneak peek I can say about the tickets is we will have a VIP ticket where, if you’re really interested in getting to know the panelists, there will be a meet and greet with the panelists, so that’s going to be-

Vickie  Brett:                     And early bird, actually, registration too, and all proceeds are going to the Inclusive Education Project, because we are a 501c3, and I think that that’s important when you hear, “Oh, well where do these proceeds go?” [crosstalk 00:30:45]

Amanda Selogie:              Tell them where the money does go. It goes to IEP, but-

Vickie  Brett:                     With our nonprofit, we provide advocacy services to low income families.

Amanda Selogie:              For free.

Vickie  Brett:                     Throughout the southern California area for free, and with the use of law school students for the advocacy component. If a complaint needs to be filed, obviously that’s turned over to attorneys. Obviously you know two attorneys already that work for the Inclusive Education Project, Amanda and I, and we have some independent contractors that are attorneys in the area of special education as well that may not necessarily be in so Cal that we work with, so we have a good network of attorneys. In the last year, we helped so many families on the advocacy level, and we really wanted to kind of step it up, obviously we put on workshops and presentations for the community at large. I speak Spanish, so sometimes presentations are in Spanish, sometimes we have interactive presentations that Amanda and I do, and those proceeds obviously go towards-

Amanda Selogie:              All of that.

Vickie  Brett:                     The advocacy, the presentations, everything. It’s with pride that we say that all proceeds go to that, because a lot of times, I think you could use 90% for costs and things like that, and we have that handled, but all proceeds from this event will be going directly to the families in need. We hope that you guys are able to make it, and that you’re here next week.

Amanda Selogie:              We’ll talk to you later.

Vickie  Brett:                     Bye.

Amanda Selogie:              Bye.

 

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