COVID-19: How UCEDDS and LEND programs can partner with state and local special education systems during this, and future pandemics

AUCD Webinar –

COVID-19: How UCEDDS and LEND programs can partner with state and local special education systems during this, and future pandemics
Tuesday, May 12, 2020

Time: 3:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. ET
Location: Webinar

John Eisenberg, Executive Director of The National Association of State Directors of Special Education will highlight what is currently happening across the country to support students with disabilities in schools, and he will discuss recommendations on how UCEDD and LEND Programs can be instrumental in helping state and local systems deal with the many obstacles faced by service providers. He will also provide some tips and strategies that participants can use immediately and in the future.

To register:


Covid Connections


As we started to stay at home and isolate, the UCEDD and the Cross Disability Lifespan Alliance began hearing from members of the disability community who wanted to connect with each other, to share experiences, and maybe just have some fun!!  After surveying the Alliance membership, the Covid Connections Calendar was developed for May 2020. Click the link to go to the Calendar.


The Calendar provides an opportunity for both informal and formal conversation There is also a cooking class, a sign language class and meditation.


Groceries and kitchen items needed for the cooking class can be found by clicking this link.   The recipe is for Chicken Piccata.  Please join us to make your dinner and have some fun. See the calendar for the date and time. ​


Here are a few things to know:

  1. Registration  – You do not need to preregister for any of the events on the calendar unless you need a sign language interpreter. Please contact Daria Smith at if you need a sign language interpreter.
  2. Connecting to Zoom – Below is the link to use for any of the  Covid Connections events.  This link should work for all the May Covid Connections activities.

Topic: CT Cross Disability Alliance’s Covid Connections


Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 751 181 4142

Find your local number:

If you have ideas for or would like to facilitate Covid Connection Events, please let us know.  We welcome ideas and help

In Our Shoes

In Our Shoes

In Our Shoes: Providing Person-Centered Healthcare to Persons with Disabilities.

On Feb 26th The UConn UCEDD, CT LEND program, and medical/dental student Disabilities Interest Group (DIG) provided an interactive panel discussion titled "In Our Shoes: Providing Person-Centered Healthcare to Persons with Disabilities.​" Panelists Chris Blake, Molly Cole, Linda Barry and  Keith Mullinar shared their expertise, experiences, and perspectives about how future healthcare providers can improve healthcare for persons with disabilities and their families.

Building a Great Life for Everyone in our Communities

building a great life conference

POSTPONED : A Conference for People with Disabilities, Parents, Caregivers, Family Members and Providers

New date will be in the Fall 

Keynote Speakers:

Dr. Erik Carter, Professor of Special Education, Vanderbilt University

Erik Carter, Ph.D., is a Conrelius Vanderbilt Professor of Special Education at Vanderbilt University. His research and teaching focuses on evidence-based strategies for supporting access to the general curriculum and promoting valued roles in school, work, community, and congregational settings for children and adults with intellectual disabilities, autism, and multiple disabilities.

Ricky and Donna Thorton, Self-Advocates, Maryland

Ricardo and Donna Thorton met when they were teenagers at the Forest Haven Institution for people with developmental disabilities in Laurel Maryland. They had both been placed in institutions at an early age. They petitioned the DC government to allow them to marry and move into an apartment of their own and they were married in 1984. Defying the odds, they went on to have a son and successful careers. Ricardo retired as a library aid at the Martin Luther King Memorial Library and Donna retired as a housekeeper for Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. They now enjoy spending time with their three grandchildren. They are frequent speakers at conferences across the country. Their story was the subject of a made for TV movie in 2003, "Profoundly Normal".

  • Presentations and Workshops on a variety of topics.
  • Light breakfast and lunch will be provided.
  • There is registration fee for this conference.
  • Please contact Disability Rights Connecticut at 860-297-4300 to arrange for a sign language interpreter.

Sponsored by:

Disability Rights Connecticut; UConn Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities; Connecticut Council on Developmental Disabilities; Connecticut Office of Early Childhood; Connecticut Birth to Three; Capital Workforce Partners; The Arc Connecticut; Connecticut Department of Developmental Services; Connecticut Department of Labor; FAVOR-CT

Date And Time

Tuesday, April 7, 2020

8:00 AM – 4:00 PM EDT




Early Intervention Professionals Specialist Graduates

Images of Connecticut Partners in Policymaking 2020

Congratulations to the graduates of Co hort 4 Early Intervention Professionals Specialist Program.  This year long programs is a personnel preparation grant funded by the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP).  The focus of the program is aimed to increase the number of qualified personnel across disciplines who currently provide services in the Connecticut Birth to Three (IDEA Part C) system.

The students participating in the coursework attend monthly face-to-face community of practice held at the CT UCEDD, three sequential graduate level courses: Family-Centered Practices, Evaluation and Assessment, and Intervention Strategies  and completed 19 practicum based competencies.

Transportation Task Force Public Roundtable

The Commission on Women, Children, Seniors, Equity and Opportunity looking for ways to better Connecticut by finding the best ideas to provide efficient, cost- effective, and reliable transportation for people with disabilities, seniors, and veterans.

And we want to hear from you!

Please join us at the Transportation Task Force Public Roundtable

Thursday, December 12, 2019

12:30 PM – 2:30 PM

Legislative Office Building Room 1D

Legislative Office Building

300 Capitol Ave

Hartford, Connecticut 06106

 Please reach out to Kali at with any questions!

To Learn more : An Act Establishing a Task Force to Study Best Practices for Providing Transportations for Persons with Disabilities Senior Citizens and Veterans

Drs. Ann and Rud Turnbull Speak at CT LEND Seminar

Images of Ann and Rud speaking with the LEND class

Drs. Ann and Rud Turnbull from the Beach Center on Disabilities at the University of Kansas presented at a recent CT LEND seminar. Drs. Ann and Rud Turnbull are national leaders on disability issues and spoke with LEND students about family quality of life as a critical outcome of early education and on the core competencies of disability policy, organizing principles, and the principle of dignity. We are so grateful for their time, expertise, and enrichment of our LEND program.

A Communication Aid for Emergency Personnel

Images of Connecticut Partners in Policymaking 2020

A Communication Aid for Emergency Personnel

The UConn UCEDD center staff through a collaboration with the CT Council on Development Disabilities developed a flipbook for emergency personnel which supports people with unique access or functional needs.  UConn UCEDD staff and CT LEND students further enhanced this tool by creating a communication aid for emergency personnel. This communication aid enhances communication between first responders and children and adults with disabilities during an emergency. Through this work, firefighters, police officers, active members of ambulance services, emergency mobile psychiatric services personnel, and mental health crisis intervention services personnel are able to better meet the needs of a child, youth, or adult with disabilities when verbal communication might be hindered. Included are techniques for serving and interacting with those with autism spectrum disorder, cognitive impairment, and nonverbal learning disorders.  The bill requires emergency personnel to carry this communication aid in their vehicles beginning in January 2020.


This communication aid has been produced to meet the requirements of CT P.A. 19-147 and funded by The University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities through cooperative agreement #90DDUC0071-01-00 with the Administration on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Materials and opinions expressed herein do not necessarily represent the Administration on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities or the Department of Health and Human Service's position or policy.


For more information please contact :

Heather Petit

Administrative Manager