2023 Pennsylvania Department of Education (In-Person) Conference

44. Mikayla’s Voice

Hershey Lodge and Convention Center Google Maps

Session Dates

Thursday March 02, 2023 3:30 PM - 4:30 PM - Hershey Lodge and Convention Center


“Miss Kim” and Mikayla’s Voice co-presenters share their own unique stories to promote inclusive opportunities for all kids and show how Mikayla’s Voice does disability awareness differently. For almost nine years, Mikayla and her mom traveled across the commonwealth presenting inclusion assemblies to over 35,000 students sharing the book “Our Friend Mikayla,” their own personal stories, and an invitation to be Mikayla’s Voice for inclusion and kindness. After Mikayla passed, Kim knew she could continue to share her family’s personal story, but felt it was important for students to meet someone with a disability. Mikayla’s story cannot be viewed as an exception. Lots of people enjoy full, rich, inclusive lives. She enlisted the help of other children and young adults with disabilities who share their challenges and struggles, strengths and successes. They welcome any and all questions leading to further thoughtful discussion.

Quinn is on the cross-country team at Misericordia University, Sara is studying to be an equestrian barn manager and therapeutic riding instructor, Holden is the author/illustrator of “The SpOt,” and Logan competes in USA Powerlifting. They introduce themselves as they would like to be seen and share things about themselves that make them proud. We all have challenges and insecurities. No one wants these pointed out first, or to be defined by them. You can’t possibly teach everything about every disability because everyone with a disability is different, so we don’t even try. Rather, the focus should be on everyone’s interests and talents as the foundation for genuine connection and friendship.

Target Audience

General education and special education administrators and teachers, paraprofessionals, school psychologists, professional development staff, and families of students with disabilities are encouraged to attend.

Topics Covered: Special Education Law

Reasonable efforts will be made to accommodate individuals who have special needs as addressed by the Americans with Disabilities Act and who need assistance at this event. Contact: Debra Jordan at (610) 878-7224 or djordan@pattan.net.

Event Info

Event Type:



Kimberly Resh

Event Contact:

Content Contact:

Barbara Gilligan
(800) 441-3215 ext. 7247

Additional Info

By registering for the PDE Conference, you authorize PDE/BSE/PaTTAN to record and edit into the program and related materials your name, likeness, image, voice and participation in and performance on film, tape or otherwise for use in the above program or parts thereof. You agree that the Program may be edited and otherwise altered at the sole discretion of the producer and used in whole or in part for any and all broadcasting, non-broadcasting, audio/visual, and/or exhibition purposes in any manner or media, in perpetuity.

Inclement Weather: The conference will take place rain or shine, regardless of weather conditions.