Volunteer Advocacy Project

Written by Lisa Mattheiss
Tuesday, 12 January 2010 23:10

The Volunteer Advocacy Project trains volunteer advocates to provide instrumental and affective support to parents of children with disabilities. In this training, participants will learn more about special education law and advocacy strategies. At the end of the training, each participant will shadow an advocate at a special education meeting. Following graduation from the program, you will be linked with a family of a child with a disability. Each volunteer advocate is expected to work with, at least, four families, at the completion of the project.

This is a comprehensive 5-weekend training to be held in the Fall of 02011 (9/10, 9/24, 10/8, 10/22, 11/5, 11/19). Each training session will last 6 hours (9:00AM - 3:00PM CST, 10:00PM - 4:00PM EST). The training will include a binder of materials including passages from: the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, State law, No Child Left Behind, the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act, and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act. Additionally, the participants will be given copies of each training session’s powerpoints along with relevant materials. For each training session, the participant will be expected to read pertinent materials. This will encourage full participation at the training sessions. The training will be held on the Vanderbilt campus in The Vanderbilt Kennedy Center. The training will also be video-conferenced to East Tennessee State University in Johnson City, LifeLine, Inc in Chattanooga and West Tennessee Healthcare in Jackson.


For further information and to register please contact Lisa Mattheiss at 423-622-4007 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it for an application.

Last Updated ( Tuesday, 09 August 2011 01:47 )

CARE (Chattanooga Area Resource & Education) Project

Written by Virginia Piper
Monday, 11 January 2010 23:29

The CARE (Chattanooga Area Resource & Education) Project provides workshops and training to support parents of children with disabilities for the purpose of empowering families by providing the necessary training and resources in the IDEA to become active partners in their child's education process and programming. Collaborating with other organizations and agencies CARE workshops are provided in each of the six counties that CARE serves.  All workshops are provide free of charge to families and are offered to professionals and educators for a nominal fee to cover material costs. In addition to workshops on the IDEA, topics also include disability specific and related issues. YOU are your child’s best advocate. Come and join other caregivers, families and professionals as you learn together to develop and hone your advocacy skills.

Space is limited and free meals and childcare (as available) are provided for those who pre-register.

Click here to download the CARE brochure.

Last Updated ( Thursday, 02 September 2010 03:31 )

Skill Builders

Written by Virginia Piper
Saturday, 09 January 2010 02:46

SKILL BUILDERS are lunch hour (noon to 1:00pm) mini workshops designed to give you additional resources and information to increase your child‚Äôs success at home and school.¬† These workshops are designed to provide detailed information on issues that impact care or education of a child with a disability. Examples of workshops include designing visual schedules, developing a prompt hierarchy tool for your child‚Äôs IEP, learning how to ‚Äúlace your IEP with literacy‚ÄĚ, etc. ¬†These workshops will provide a take-away for your use at home and/or at school.¬†¬†

While we recommend that you attend the evening workshop series, it is not required prior to attending SKILL BUILDERS.

Space is limited. Free lunches are provided for those who pre-register.


Last Updated ( Friday, 05 February 2010 12:35 )

Workshop Topics

Written by Lisa Mattheiss
Saturday, 09 January 2010 02:06


Special Education Basic Rights under IDEA

 IEP Development


Transition and Early Childhood 

Transition to Adulthood

Inclusion & Least Restrictive Environment

Assessments & Evaluations


Conflict Resolution

Disability/Diagnosis Specific Training

‚Äʬ†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† ADD/ADHD

‚Äʬ†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† Access to Education: Epilepsy

‚Äʬ†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† Access to Education: Autism

‚Äʬ†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† Autism

‚Äʬ†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† Spina Bifida

‚Äʬ†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† Down Syndrome

‚Äʬ†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† Non-Verbal Learning Disorder

‚Äʬ†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† Learning Disabilities

Response to Intervention

Extended School Year

Functional Behavior Assessments & Behavior Intervention Plans

Guardianship & Conservatorship

Financial & Estate Planning

Independent Living

Modifications & Accommodations

Medical & Education Record Keeping

Prompt Hierarchy   

Developing a Visual Schedule

Other topics as requested



Last Updated ( Sunday, 28 March 2010 01:39 )