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Showing Revision 3 created 08/22/2020 by Cokro Tjakranegara.

  1. Hi, Im Evelyn Peña and I'm an associate
  2. I am also the director of the Autism

  3. Communications Center, which is the center
  4. that focuses on inclusion, communication,
  5. access, and higher education, for people
  6. with autism or autistic individuals.
  7. This is my son, Diego Peña, he is doing a
  8. camio today and Diego would like to
  9. introduce himself using the letter board
  10. since he is non speaking.
  11. So he has his communication partner with
  12. him and they are going to spell out
  13. something.
  14. (Communication Partner) H.E.L.L.O. A.L.L.
  15. Hello all. Ok, back straight.
  16. M.Y. N.A M.E. I.S. D.I E.G.O.
  17. Hello all, my name is Deigo.
  18. Evelyn: Awesome, so just a little bit
  19. about Deigo, he is going into 7th grade.
  20. He is fully included in general education
  21. and he is a presenter at conferences and a
  22. best selling book author of the book,
  23. Anatomy of Autism, so that is us and
  24. we're excited to be here.
  25. So, Diego is really excited to talk about
  26. inclusion, not only in his book but also
  27. share his thoughts.
  28. I think that is so important in relation
  29. to the Americans with Disability Act
  30. because it provided an avenue for
  31. inclusion in the community, higher
  32. education, and employment.
  33. As a young activist, Diego has experienced
  34. inclusion in school so he wanted to share
  35. some words that he typed out.
  36. He is going to share them through his iPad
  37. , which he calls his talker.
  38. (iPad): I think the culture of inclusion
  39. is important to have in order to implement
  40. strategies be successful for autistic
  41. students in a general education classroom.
  42. Without inclusion, I wouldn't be able to
  43. be in general education setting.
  44. Having autism has limited me both verbally
  45. and physically.
  46. I thankfully have access to communication
  47. by typing and this form of communicaion
  48. has given me opportunity to be
  49. included in general education classes and
  50. activities in the community.
  51. Evelyn: Thanks, Diego. So the first time I
  52. really learned about the Disabilities Act
  53. was when I was researching what it would
  54. take to support my son, Diego,
  55. He's autistic, you just met him, to go to
  56. college essentially.
  57. When I learned he had autism I didn't know
  58. anything about whether or not people had
  59. access to college if they had a diagnosis
  60. of autism or what the precedent was for that
  61. So, I really started looking into it and I
  62. did learn that, yes, autistic students do
  63. go to college. Which is wonderful.
  64. At that time this was, you know, when
  65. Diego was diagnosed.
  66. It was 8 years ago or 10 years ago and
  67. there wasn't a lot of research out there
  68. on autistic students going to college.
  69. So, that was one area where I'm excited
  70. that I've been able to do research and
  71. publish some work on how we can support
  72. autistic studetns to go to college and
  73. become successful. But, really the ADA
  74. (Americans with Disabilities Act)
  75. is so important for autistic students and
  76. students with disabilites in general, just
  77. to make sure that they have access to
  78. academic curriculums, that they are
  79. getting accommidations that they need to
  80. be successful in academic settings.
  81. So, I really feel that the ADA has been a
  82. key factor in making sure that students
  83. with disabilities are included in college
  84. and university settings.
  85. Certainly the ADA has provided a lot of
  86. opportunities for students with
  87. disabilities. So, I'm grateful for that.
  88. I think there are some areas that we need
  89. to think about, that the ADA does have
  90. some limitations.
  91. One of them is that, many disablility
  92. service offices on campuses at higher
  93. education institutions require diagnosis
  94. or documentation of neuropsychological
  95. evaluation and this can cost upwards of
  96. several thousand dollars for individuals
  97. to get this diagnosis.
  98. So I think there has been a lot of
  99. progress lately where those offices are
  100. saying, "Ok well, we will consider the IEP
  101. document and your individual education
  102. plan from high school as a form to
  103. validate that you do need services".
  104. But one thing we do need to work on a
  105. little more is making sure that higher
  106. education institutions, specifically the
  107. disabiblity offices, are a bit more
  108. flexible in making sure that students can
  109. recieve accomidations without dropping
  110. 3 or 4 thousand dollars, in order to do that
  111. The other thing that I think about a lot
  112. is, while the ADA does provide important
  113. accomodations that are resonable and
  114. appropriate, to students.
  115. I think that what I have learned is
  116. universities and disabilities offices specifically
  117. do a much better job when they go about
  118. and beyond their ADA
  119. So what's required by the ADA
  120. usually I see proper team member
  121. the staff