35. "All Really Means All": The Why-What-How of Inclusion for Students with Cognitive Disabilities

Speakers: Terri Vandercook, Ph.D., Gail Ghere, Ph.D.; Jessica Bowman, Ph.D.; Jennifer Sommerness, Ed.S.

Session Handouts *These speakers will be presenting virtually.
**This session is available for in person and virtual attendance.

There is a huge research-to-practice gap related to the inclusion of students with significant cognitive disabilities. Despite strong evidence of positive outcomes from inclusive education, students with significant cognitive disabilities continue to be educated primarily in segregated settings. Removing the barriers to implement inclusive education means weaving together the resources and supports to address the "why, what and how" of inclusive education. The TIES Center, the national technical assistance center on inclusive education with a particular focus on students with significant cognitive disabilities, will share resources related to the why, what and how of inclusive education and how they can be used to support system change that builds inclusive education systems.

Credits: Act 48, ASHA

Audience: Special Education Teachers; Teachers who work with students who are blind or visually impaired; Teachers who work with students with hearing loss; Teachers who work with students who are Deaf-Blind; Teachers/other professionals who work with students who have sustained traumatic brain injury; Speech Therapists; General Education Teachers; Supervisors/Administrators; Assistive Technology Specialists; Occupational Therapists and/or Physical Therapists; Orientation and Mobility Specialists; School Counselors and/or School Psychologists; Parents, Guardians, Family Members; Paraprofessionals

Speakers' Bios:
Terri Vandercook
is the assistant director of TIES Center. She has worked with and learned from individuals with significant developmental disabilities, their families, and team members for 40 years. Themes throughout her career have been the active belonging, participation, and learning (inclusion!) of each child in her or his community. Her areas of focus include inclusive schooling, collaborative teaming, instruction of students with significant cognitive disabilities, and teacher training.
Emailvande002@umn.edu Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/people/TIES-Center/100063636039909/?ref=br_rs 
Websites: https://tiescenter.org/ and https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC8eEk3rOjCrhdjCWu3WIbBQ


Gail Ghere
is a Researcher with the TIES Center. In her role, she provides technical assistance and develops resources on effective inclusive education systems, Multi-tiered Systems of Support (MTSS) that are inclusive of students with significant cognitive disabilities and application of research-based practices that lead to positive outcomes for students with disabilities. Prior to joining the TIES Center, she had 40 years of experience in preK-12 education as a related service provider, inclusion coach and Director of Special Education.
Email: ghere002@umn.edu

Jennifer Sommerness is a Researcher with the TIES Center where she develops resources and provides guidance and technical assistance at the state, district, and school levels to improve inclusion and engagement of students with significant cognitive disabilities within general education classrooms and activities. She began her education career as a teacher of students with significant cognitive disabilities and has been an independent educational consultant, with an emphasis on practice-level professional development, and access and engagement of the general education curriculum for students with the most extensive support needs.
Email: jsomm@umn.edu