Saturday, September 27, 2008

Conference Follow Up

I love speaking at conferences for a number of reasons. First Special Education Law is fascinating. (I know that's pathetic. There is likely a DSM-IV category for people who like SpEd Law.) It changes, it's not often clear and it requires the ability to make an argument as well as to float like a butterfly and sting like a bee.
Also conferences are a good way to meet people who actually work with kids with disabilities or who are parents of kids with disabilities. Those kids and how they are educated are what this area of law is really all about. Networking with them is always fun.
Equally important is that the folks in the audience generally participate and what they say as well as how they react help me improve my presentations for the future. For example, the other day I was getting pretty deep into the fine print about the rules of discipline for special education students. I was concentrating upon the interface of the juvenile justice system and special education law. Somebody asked a question starting with a preface about a kid shooting a gun. I noted that in any emergency situation, you first get the kids to safety and call 911. The special ed discipline rules can wait until everybody is safe and secure. I cannot cite a case for this proposition, yet I feel comfortable that it sound.

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