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2020 Conference Schedule


based on industry best practices. Lessons learned from the previous day’s hands-on evacuation drills and training will also be shared.


10:45 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. | Frisco 3 ¢From Noncompliance to Compliance: Collaboration for Success Law & Policy Facilitator: Linda Bluth Panelists: Jacinta Hughes, Angela Parker & Jennie Wu This session presents an examination of Baltimore City Public Schools (BCPS) and the detailed steps utilized by the district to exit a Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE), Division of Early Intervention and Special Education Services (DEI & SES) Transportation Corrective Action Plan (TCAP). A panel discussion will present the actions taken to change systemic transportation noncompliance to compliance through system reform and collaboration. The MSDE, DEI & SES and BCPS built a successful system of transportation reform, focusing on communication and collaboration, resulting in compliance and safer transportation for children with disabilities.


10:45 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. | Ranger/Sea Biscuit/Traveller ¢Crisis Planning for Special Needs Transportation Leadership & Collaboration Presenter: Julie Jilek Transportation disaster preparedness and emergency response plans are typically designed for individuals without disabilities, and often the needs of students with disabilities are overlooked. This session will focus on how transportation carriers and school districts can work together to prepare for and respond to a variety of emergency and crisis situations, to ensure the safety of students with special needs.


2:00 p.m. – 3:15 p.m. | Frisco 1 ¢Establishing Effective Interdisciplinary Team Training Programs OT/PT/Transporter Forum Presenters: Laura Blankenship, Fred Doelker, Mariam Manary, Susan Shutrump & Chris Yarber Effective training programs are taught by team members with varied expertise using multi-faceted instructional modes. Panelists will share resources and strategies that support different learning styles and instruction that goes beyond memorization to developing vital on-the-job skills.


2:00 p.m. – 3:15 p.m. | Ranger/Sea Biscuit/Traveller ¢LRE, Mainstreaming and Curb-to-Curb Service Law & Policy Facilitator: Peggy Burns Panelists: Pete Meslin & Cathy Staggs


62 School Transportation News • MARCH 2020


The “Least Restrictive Environment” requirement under IDEA was established to ensure that students with disabilities are to be given every chance to succeed as their nondisabled counterparts, in addition to promoting lifelong independence, to the extent that is appropriate for each. For the related service of transportation, this means that strategies must be identified, arrangements must be made, and training provided throughout a student’s educational career, to eventually transition them from the curb-to-curb pick-up and drop-off service provided during their early years, to “mainstreamed” school bus boarding procedures, whenever and wherever possible. This panel, which is facilitated by a special needs transportation legal expert, brings together a transportation director, special needs trainer and a special educator to discuss strategies for introducing LRE not only into a student’s bus ride but how they prepare to board and exit the bus.


2:00 p.m. – 3:15 p.m. | Frisco 3 ¢Bridging the Gap Sponsored by Leadership & Collaboration Facilitator: Tony Corpin Panelists: Dr. Allison Blackburn, Laura Greene-Halley, Will McDermott & Lisa Riveros A panel discussion that is sponsored by First Student on providing tools for transporting students with disabilities. The panel will feature four key experts who work with students in special populations. The panel features Dr. Allison Blackburn, a behavioral psychology clinician from Cincinnati Children’s Hospital who works with students with developmental disabilities, and helps develop behavioral intervention tools and techniques. Joining Dr. Blackburn will be Lisa Riveros, director of transportation for Wichita Public Schools in Kansas; Laura Greene-Halley, director of BeSafe and Transporting Passengers with Disabilities for FirstGroup America; and Will McDermott, president of Hopewell Transportation and the former principal of Hopewell and Bridgepoint Academies in Illinois. Our panelists will discuss their experiences, and the tools and techniques they have found helpful in serving students who have developmental disabilities and behavior management struggles.


3:30 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. | Frisco 1 ¢Overcoming Perplexing Challenges in Transporting Students with Disabilities OT/PT/Transporter Forum Presenters: Laura Blankenship, Fred Doelker, Miriam Manary, Susan Shutrump & Chris Yarber In this integrative session, panelists and participants will work together to brainstorm solutions to challenging issues. Share your concerns and see what the group comes up with to answer your most difficult securement and positioning questions.


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