Information and Events for Parents & Guardians

The Pennsylvania Department of Education, Bureau of Special Education is pleased to announce the following conference opportunity:

2024 PA Community of Practice Transition Conference
Charting YOUR Course
July 31, 2024 – August 1, 2024

Virtual and In-Person Opportunities Available

Penn Stater Conference Center
215 Innovation Boulevard
State College, PA 16803

The primary purpose of this two-day conference is to expand the capacity of youth, family members, schools, and community partners regarding specific issues related to effective employment and post-secondary educational practices, development of healthy lifestyles, and the utility of assistive technology, resources, supports, and services available to youth and families.

Conference Features

Accommodations, Supports and Resources Expo, Reception & Raffle
This interactive, hands-on expo is designed for participants to learn about specific assistive technology, resources, supports, and services available to youth. Participants will gather valuable information from transition partners, conference presenters, and community agencies. As part of the expo, on Wednesday afternoon, there will be a raffle of items provided by members of our PA Secondary Transition Community of Practice and our vendors.

Youth & Family Team Sessions
Throughout the years, youth/young adults, and families have benefitted from the sessions held at the transition conference. Based upon feedback, the planning team has developed a team approach where youth and family members (or a supporting adult) attend sessions together. These sessions include youth development activities, to help youth plan for adult life, with the support of their family (or supporting adult).

Feature Presenters

Dr. Peg Dawson, Ed.D. NCSP

Peg Dawson, Ed.D., NCSP, received her doctorate in school/child clinical psychology from the University of Virginia. She worked as a school psychologist for 16 years in Maine and New Hampshire, and since 1992 has worked at the Center for Learning and Attention Disorders in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, where she specializes in the assessment of children and adults with learning and attention disorders. She has many years of organizational experience at the state, national, and international level, and served in many capacities, including president, of the New Hampshire Association of School Psychologists, the National Association of School Psychologists, and the International School Psychology Association. She is the author of numerous articles and book chapters on a variety of topics, including retention, ability grouping, reading disorders, attention disorders, the sleep problems of adolescents, the use of interviews in the assessment process, and homework. Along with her colleague, Dr. Richard Guare, she has written several books for parents and professionals on the topic of executive skills, including Smart but Scattered and Smart but Scattered Teens. Peg is the 2006 recipient of the National Association of School Psychologists’ Lifetime Achievement Award.

Loretta Claiborne
CIO Chief Inspiration Officer for Special Olympics, Inc
Special Olympics Athlete since 1970

Loretta, a Special Olympics athlete, woman of faith, and a gifted motivational speaker shares her life story that carries a heart-felt message of acceptance and hope worldwide for all people with different abilities. Loretta was born with physical and intellectual disabilities and did not walk or talk until four years old. Doctors told her mother that Loretta belonged in an institution because she would never survive in the "regular" world. Her mother refused and chose to raise her the same as her other children. Despite her [different] abilities, which led to years of strife, she credits Special Olympics as the positive force that turned her life around. Early on, Loretta discovered a passion for running and has completed 26 marathons including the Boston Marathon (x2) with her personal best of 3:03. Some of her noted accolades include Disney Production “The Loretta Claiborne Story”, the 1996 ESPY - Arthur Ashe Award for Courage, 3 Honorary Doctorate degrees (Quinnipiac University, Villanova University, and York College), and was recently recognized as USA Today’s 2023 Women of the Year. Her life's contributions are immeasurable. Loretta shares her message with many world leaders, including 5 US Presidents, The Pope, The Royal Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, Warren Buffett, Oprah, and many other influencers; she continues to champion worldwide inclusion for all persons with different abilities.

General Information

The Penn Stater Conference Center is reserved for conference staff and scholarship recipients only. Hotels in State College that are close to the conference center are listed in the brochure.

Registration Fees

In-Person Registration Fee:  The In-Person registration fee is $150.00. Payment may be made by credit card, check, or money/purchase orders.

Virtual Registration Fee:  The virtual registration fee is $75.00. Payment may be made by credit card, check, or money/purchase orders.

Payment Options:

Credit card payment – The PaTTAN registration system is equipped to process payments made by credit card. Credit card payments are entered online as part of the registration process.

Check or money/purchase order payments - Make check or money/purchase orders payable to INTERMEDIATE UNIT 1 and send to the attention of the Business Office, PaTTAN West, 3190 William Pitt Way, Pittsburgh, PA 15238. Email purchase orders to [email protected]. Checks or money/purchase orders must include registrants(s) full name(s).

In-Person Payment Deadline:
Please note that if your registration fee is not received by July 15, 2024, you will be required to submit payment at the registration desk prior to registering and receiving your conference materials. (Parents of children with disabilities and youth/young adults are exempt from this charge.)

Virtual Payment Deadline:
Payment must be received prior to July 15, 2024, to ensure access to the virtual platform. Online access to the conference will not be available to participants who have not submitted payment.

If you are unable to attend the conference you must cancel your registration by July 15, 2024, by contacting Paula Quinn via email at [email protected], or your registration fee will not be refunded.


All participants should register for this PaTTAN-sponsored event by visiting our website at: Click the training calendar, go to July, and click on the name of the conference.

For questions about registration, contact:

Paula Quinn, PaTTAN West, [email protected]
Pam Ranieri, PaTTAN West, [email protected]

For questions about conference sessions, contact:

Lisa Bolla, PaTTAN West, [email protected]

Youth and Family Scholarships

The PA Office of Vocational Rehabilitation (OVR) and PaTTAN are pleased to offer a limited number of in- person and virtual youth/young adult and family/caregiver scholarships to Pennsylvania residents who have transition aged youth between the ages of 14-21, with a current IEP, a 504 Plan or self-disclose that they have a disability. Scholarships will be awarded through an application selection process. Please address all fields of the application fully, as the Conference Committee will carefully review each application. Scholarship opportunities for families from underserved and underrepresented communities will be given preference.

Eligibility to Apply:

Scholarships are available to all of the following conference attendees:

• Transition-aged youth with a current IEP, a 504 Plan or self-disclose that they have a disability between the ages of 14-21 accompanied by an adult (family member/ caregiver) - Scholarships will not be awarded if the student is age 22 or older or will turn 22 before July 31, 2024.

• Family member or caregiver of a transition-aged youth between the ages of 14-21, with a current IEP, a 504 Plan or self-disclose that they have a disability (youth NOT attending).

• Youth Ambassadors who work collaboratively with teachers, Local Education Agencies (LEA) Transition Coordinators and OVR, PaTTAN, and Bureau of Special Education (BSE) staff to improve the transition of students with disabilities from school to postsecondary education or an employment outcome.

Important Information:

• To be eligible for a scholarship from the Office of Vocational Rehabilitation (OVR), there must be an OVR-244 (Pre-ETS Request) on file or an open case with OVR.

• Please Note: If an OVR-244 is not currently on file or an open OVR case, then a referral to OVR is required to receive a scholarship. Any questions, please reach out to Melissa Wert-Thrush at [email protected].

Each Scholarship Covers:

1. Registration Fee - For either in-person or virtual registration.

2. Lodging - For those traveling 50 miles or more to the conference, the cost of one, double occupancy hotel room for July 30 & 31, 2024 will be paid.

3. Conference Meals - Continental breakfast and lunch on July 31 and August 1st will be provided. All other meals will be the responsibility of the conference attendee.

Scholarships do not include travel expenses; all conference attendees will need to provide and pay for their own transportation.

Conference registration and session attendance is required to participate in conference amenities. Childcare is NOT provided.

Application Process and Deadline:

- To apply for a youth and family scholarship, go to:

- Scholarship applications must be submitted by June 5, 2024.

- If more than one youth/young adult with a disability will be attending in-person, per family, a separate application must be completed for each youth/young adult.

- Preference will be given to first-time applicants.

- Scholarship notifications will be sent no later than June 7, 2024.

Summer Camp
Summer Camp Gifting Brochure 2024.pdf
2024 Summer Camp Gifting Program Application.pdf

The Bureau of Special Education sponsors a toll-free Special Education ConsultLine to serve families and advocates who have questions or concerns about their child’s special education program or who are seeking information and resources related to special education.
The ConsultLine can be reached via phone (1-800-879-2301), email ([email protected]), or through the Office for Dispute Resolution (ODR) website (

PVSD - COVID19 Special Education Letter - March 30 .pdf

parent resources.pdf
parent resources-cdc.pdf

Parent Resources to use during COVID 19
LVPM OTA Lesson Planner 2020.03.23.xlsx
LVL Memo.pdf

Speech and Language
100 Free TpT products for Speech Therapy Home Packets.pdf
Earth Day Scavenger Hunt.pdf

Physical Therapy Activities to Practice at Home
Physical Therapy Activities to Practice at Home.docx

Occupational Therapy
Fine motor1.jpeg          Fine motor2.jpeg          Fine motor3.jpeg
Fine motor4.jpeg         Fine motor5.jpeg          Fine motor6.jpeg
Spring Home Packet - FREE.pdf 

Adolescent Social Skills Program for Autistic Youth : Adolescent Social Skills Participants Dissemination Flyer Nov 2014.pdf

HEART Flyer.pdf

Community of Practice:  Supporting Families Throughout the Lifespan
Invitation to Participate
CoP Session Invite.docx

Community Eligibility Provision - FREE lunch and breakfast
Free Lunch and Breakfast.pdf

Effective Communication By School Districts
effective communication -2.pdf

Video You Should Watch

BrainSTEPS Brain Injury School Re-Entry Program

Community And Residential Empowerment Services
Community Based Day Programs
Grand Opening Flyer.pdf
New Image.JPG
Grand Opening Flyer-1.docx

Beginning June 2016
Admission Criteria.pdf

Finally, the College Board makes it easier for Students with Disabilities to get SAT Accommodations
College Board and SAT Accommodations, December 2, 2016.pdf

ODP News
February 2017 ODP News.pdf

Special Needs Art Class & Acrylics for Special Needs
The Art Establishment_Special Needs classes-1.pdf

Anthracite Center for Independent Living
CC Disability Action Crew.doc

CHIP school_flyer_english_spanish.pdf

504 Plans
504 Plans In Service.pptx

Specially Designed Instruction (SDI)
Specially Designed Instruction.pptx

Gifted Education.pptx

About and How to For Parents.docx

Child Find Notices
Child Find - FERPA 2018 8.5 x 11.pdf
Child Find - FERPA 2018 8.5 x 11 - SPANISH.pdf
Special Education Services Notice 2018.doc
Special Education Services Notice 2018 - SPANISH.doc

Family Reference Guide

School Flyer Letter.pdf
CHIP School Flyer.pdf

PBS Learning at Home

Care Star
Community to Home Flyer.pdf
Community to Home Referral Form.pdf
Regions Map.PNG

PA State Bio Collection
Letter to parents re PA State Police Bio Form.docx
PSP Lehighton Biographical Information Form.pdf


Try this calming technique:

Act 55 of 2022 Student Enrollment Notification Form
for the 2022-23 School Year 
Act 55 Student Grade Level Retainment Notification Form-fillable.pdf

Due Process Parent Guide


Alcohol Rehab Help

"Resources for Parents of Children With Disabilities," published by Speech Pathology Masters Programs. This guide offers an extensive list of supportive resources for parents of children with disabilities. It includes resources regarding autism spectrum disorder, deaf and hard of hearing children, and speech and language disorders. The guide also includes resources for parent support groups and financial assistance information.
Transition Academy
Social Club
For Students with Disabilities
Transition Academy.pdf


From: HS, Secretary's Office <[email protected]>
Subject: Shapiro Administration Urges Medical Assistance, CHIP Recipients to Update Contact Information Ahead of Imminent Federal Changes Impacting Renewals




February 6, 2023  


Shapiro Administration Urges Medical Assistance, CHIP Recipients to Update Contact Information Ahead of Imminent Federal Changes Impacting Renewals  


Harrisburg, PA - The Shapiro Administration and the Department of Human Services (DHS) is urging anyone enrolled in Pennsylvania’s Medicaid program, also known as Medical Assistance (MA), to make sure their contact information is correct so they can receive timely updates about their benefits. Under new federal law, continuous MA eligibility will be separated from the public health emergency and will end on April 1, 2023. By keeping contact information up-to-date, recipients of MA and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) will receive timely, necessary updates about their coverage and benefits so they are ready when it is time to renew their coverage. 


These changes come following passage of the federal Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2023, and will force states to resume normal MA renewal determination processes after April 1, 2023. 


“Recent federal law changes Medicaid renewal guidelines, and we need everyone to be aware of those and know what they need to do to stay covered. In order to keep as many Pennsylvanians covered as possible, DHS needs the most accurate information available in our system so that when it is time to complete their annual renewal, Pennsylvanians can submit their renewal quickly and easily,” said DHS Acting Secretary Val Arkoosh. “Take the time now to ensure that your information is correct so when your renewal is due, you have what you need to avoid a potential disruption in coverage.” 


The Department of Human Services, along with other agencies across the Commonwealth, are undertaking an aggressive, multi-pronged outreach plan to reach Pennsylvanians and inform them of the upcoming changes. Outreach to MA recipients has already begun and will continue to include mail, text, email, and phone calls to make certain they are aware of the federal action affecting their benefits. DHS is also planning coordinated broad public communications via social media, community stakeholders, and press channels to notify the public of this change for MA recipients. This social media outreach – primarily for individuals to keep contact information up-to-date to receive information on time – has been ongoing for months now. 


Changes to Federal Policy 


The federal public health emergency in response to the COVID-19 pandemic allowed for individuals to continue to remain enrolled in MA even if they became ineligible based on regular eligibility criteria, except in rare circumstances. This is also known as the MA continuous coverage requirement. On December 29, 2022, President Biden signed the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2023 into law, which affects continuous MA coverage requirements. 


No one will lose their health coverage without having an opportunity to complete a renewal, and renewals will be completed over 12 months. Renewals due in March 2023 will be the first affected by the end of continuous coverage. If a person is found ineligible for their current coverage or does not complete their renewal on time, their MA coverage will end. Pennsylvanians who are no longer eligible for MA will be referred to other sources of affordable medical coverage like CHIP and Pennie®, the commonwealth’s health and dental insurance marketplace, so they have no lapse in quality, affordable health care. A schedule and examples of communications that MA and CHIP households will receive leading up to their renewal is available from DHS here


Prepare for Renewals 


Information about when a person’s annual renewal is scheduled can be found on COMPASS or on the myCOMPASS PA mobile app. Anyone can set up a COMPASS account at and, if they have a mobile device, can download the myCOMPASS PA mobile app for free. Instructional videos on downloading and using the myCOMPASS PA app are available on DHS’s YouTube channel. Those without computer or mobile access can call DHS’ Customer Service Center at 1-877-395-8930 or 215-560-7226 in Philadelphia, Monday – Friday, 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., or visit their local County Assistance Office


Keep Contact Information Up-To-Date to Receive Updates 


Pennsylvanians whose contact information or personal circumstances have changed can use COMPASS to make the following updates to their case file at any time: 

  • Changes to the number of people living in your household 
  • Changes to your email address 
  • Changes to your phone number 
  • Changes to your mailing address 

COMPASS also allows users to sign up to receive e-notifications about their benefits. Keeping information up to date will help Pennsylvanians receive reminders about their annual benefit renewal quickly so they can prevent an avoidable lapse in coverage or services. 


Additionally, DHS encourages Pennsylvanians to opt-in to text messages to receive information about their benefits. The texts read:  


“The PA Dept of Human Services would like to text you important messages about your benefits. Carrier rates may apply. To Opt In, please reply ‘YES.’” 


If you receive a text like this from the number 1-833-648-1964, it is not a scam. Messages sent by DHS via text will never ask you for personal information, and you should not provide it. These are intended to be reminders about your benefits and other important information about programs administered by DHS and the federal government.  


DHS will provide additional information on the end of continuous coverage and other benefits affected by changes to the federal public health emergency in the coming weeks. For more information on the end of continuous coverage for MA and CHIP, visit   


For more information on health insurance options available to Pennsylvanians, visit


MEDIA CONTACT: Brandon Cwalina, 


# # #

Substance Abuse & Addiction in The Elderly


Pregnancy Effects on Teeth
Eating Disorders
PA Family Network
Advanced Waiver, December.pdf
Caregiver Support Group, December.pdf
Dad's Support Group, December.pdf
Peace of Mind Planning, December.pdf
Safety in the Community Siblings, December.pdf
Technology Virtual Summit, Flyer.pdf
Transitions Through Lifespan, December (1).pdf
Usar LifeCourse para planificar y resolución de problemas, Diciembre.pdf
Using LifeCourse to Plan and Problem Solve, December.pdf