On August 7th and 8th, the Kennedy Center’s Office of VSA and Accessibility hosted the 2013 Intersections: Arts and Special Education Conference. The conference addressed a wide array of topics and issues pertaining to the practice, policy, and research of arts education’s intersection with special education. Attendees partook in discussions and experiential sessions devoted to improving students’ access to and engagement with the arts. David Flink, Co-Founded and CEO of Eye to Eye, joined the conference as Keynote Speaker, and research was presented from Dr. Rob Horowitz, Alida Anderson, and Lawrence Ruich.
Sita Frederick, EASE Program Manager, and Kathy London, Instructional Specialist with the New York City Department of Education’s Special Education District, hosted an experiential session on EASE for over fifty participants, including two of administrators from one of the EASE Program’s schools Ronnie Shuster and Tessa Derfner. Frederick and London were given the opportunity to share EASE’s research-based methodology through a selection of interactive activities and discussion.
Prior to Frederick and London’s experiential session, Horowitz led a research symposium on his evaluation of the EASE program and its significant, positive impact on students’ learning and teachers proficiency in gaining new skills. Results of his first two years of the study were presented along with suggestions and implications for the field.
As Sita Frederick noted, participants expressed appreciation for the activities we shared and our hands on approach to learning about the program. People were chatting and asking questions after it was over, which is always a good sign in my mind!