FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Monday, February 4, 2013
Inclusive Schools Capstone Contact: Ayan Islam 202.316.5538; [email protected].
(Washington, D.C.) – The District of Columbia’s Inclusive Schools Week (ISW) Planning Committee welcomed 300 parents and educators to the District’s first Inclusive Schools Capstone Event today.
The Inclusive Schools Capstone is the District’s first statewide conference on inclusive practices. Celebrated as a culminating event to the District’s 2012 Inclusive Schools Week, the conference provides tools to parents and educators to create and support classrooms inclusive of students affected by disability, race, gender, poverty language, and ethnicity.
“For thousands of DC students, an inclusive classroom can mean the difference between success and failure,” said State Superintendent of Education Hosanna Mahaley Jones. “Inclusion is more than a seat in a classroom and it is important that we provide opportunities for educators and parents to learn how to create schools that embrace every child.”
The Capstone’s 26 best-practice workshops were bookended by keynote speakers Dan Habib, director of the Emmy-nominated film Including Samuel and Lisa Dieker, a national inclusion expert. Through the collaboration of District education agencies and community organizations, the conference also featured an interactive exhibit hall with inclusion resources from DynaVox Mayer Johnson and Promethean, leading global education companies recognized for inclusive technology.
“Research shows that inclusive education benefits all students, not just those facing challenges in the classroom,” said Deputy Mayor for Education Jennifer Leonard. “I am pleased that so many stakeholders recognize the need for inclusive learning environments and have worked together to empower those who play an integral role in our students’ success.”
After the District’s most successful Inclusive Schools Week to date in 2012, the Capstone reconvenes the ISW Planning Committee comprised of the District’s education agencies including the Deputy Mayor for Education, the Office of the State Superintendent of Education, DC Public Schools, the DC Public Charter School Board, and The George Washington University. The efforts of community organizations such as Advocates for Justice & Education, Inc., the Arc of DC, the Special Education Cooperative, The State Advisory Panel on Special Education, and University Legal Services also ensured the conference’s success.
Follow the Inclusive Schools Capstone at #IncludedDC