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Innovative Approaches to Addressing Special Education Shortages

Tuesday, October 3, 2023 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm EDT

Innovative Approaches to Addressing Special Education Shortages

Presented by Dr. Dan Florell, Professor, Eastern Kentucky University; Tony Buckner, Director of Special Education, Newberg-Dundee Public Schools (OR); Kalyn Belsha, Senior Reporter, Chalkbeat; and Kate Eberle Walker, Chief Executive Officer, Presence

Sponsored by Presence

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The new school year has started, and despite continual alarm ringing about school staffing shortages over the past few years, positions in the critical area of special education remain unfilled—at dire cost to our students in need. Given the growing consensus that student success in school depends on holistic factors that contribute to their overall well-being, how can practitioners, policymakers, school leaders, and communities work together to fill in these longstanding gaps?

This edWebinar explores new and often-ignored strategies to reshape the future of special education support in schools. Presenters uncover a range of innovative approaches that have proven successful in addressing staff gaps while maintaining high-quality support for students’ diverse needs. This session delves into:

  • Recent data on practitioner shortages in special education
  • Lessons learned from pandemic-era virtual instruction and hybrid service delivery
  • Strategies to strengthen the practitioner pipeline
  • Tools that allow practitioners to save time, manage caseload demands, and facilitate connections with students
  • Potential policy solutions to expand practitioners’ abilities to practice across the country
  • Fiscal solutions to expand schools’ abilities to pay for more students’ services

This recorded edWebinar is of interest to elementary through high school teachers, school and district leaders, and education technology leaders.

Dan Florell

About the Presenters

Dr. Dan Florell is a Professor at Eastern Kentucky University and runs a private practice. He trained school psychologists in a graduate program for 20 years. Dr. Florell has a Ph.D. in school psychology from Illinois State University. He is a Nationally Certified School Psychologist (NCSP), licensed psychologist, and APA Fellow of Division 16. Dr. Florell is actively involved in NASP and is the NASP Historian and Online Communication Coordinator. His column, Just a Click Away, appears in the Communiqué and he writes a bi-weekly column on children and adolescent issues in the local newspaper. His main research focus is on cyberbullying, technology, telehealth, professional issues, and the history of school psychology.

Tony Buckner

Tony Buckner serves as Director of Special Education for Newberg-Dundee Public Schools in Newberg, Oregon. He began his tenure at the district as a school psychologist at Newberg High School, and a year later was named Assistant Principal at the high school. Prior to his time at Newberg HS, Tony amassed an extensive background in special education in a variety of settings. He worked at a state correctional school, as a compliance coordinator at an online academy, at the state level as an educational specialist, and as a district coordinator for outside placements. Tony‘s education background includes graduate degrees in educational leadership and school psychology from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas and the University of Portland, as well as a law degree from Hamline School of Law.

Kalyn Belsha

Kalyn Belsha is a Senior Reporter covering national education news for Chalkbeat. She previously covered education for The Chicago Reporter, Catalyst Chicago, and the suburban Chicago Tribune. She is a former Spencer Fellow in Education Reporting at Columbia University and holds a master’s degree in journalism from Northwestern University.

Kate Eberle Walker

Kate Eberle Walker is the CEO of Presence, the leading provider of teletherapy and remote evaluations for children with diverse needs. Kate is an education industry leader, author, and working mom with more than 20 years of experience leading high-profile education companies. Prior to coming to Presence in 2019, Kate was CEO of The Princeton Review and, and she led corporate strategy for Kaplan, Inc. Kate serves on several education-focused boards, including Babbel, Barnes and Noble Education, Prospect Schools, and Testing Mom. Kate is the author of the book, The Good Boss: 9 Ways Every Manager Can Support Women at Work. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband and their daughters.

Join the Supporting Students with Special Needs community to network with educators, participate in online discussions, receive invitations to upcoming edWebinars, and view recordings of previous programs to earn CE certificates.

PresenceInspired to drive solutions for the national shortage of school clinicians, Presence is unlocking the potential of schools and clinicians by removing traditional barriers to success through an elevated approach to teletherapy. As a trusted leader since 2009, Presence is innovating how schools assess and address student special education and mental health needs. By equipping the largest network of teletherapy providers with award-winning technology and end-to-end clinical support, Presence is meeting the needs of schools, students, and clinicians today—wherever they are. With almost 6 million remote evaluations and teletherapy sessions conducted throughout the U.S., schools and clinicians trust the experience and expertise of Presence, a pioneer in school-based teletherapy. Presence is teletherapy, elevated.

Teletherapy, elevated Partner with a leader in special education teletherapy since 2009


Tuesday, October 3, 2023
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm EDT
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