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TSD Conference to Highlight Fundamentals of Special Needs Transportation

A special session planned for March 21 at the TSD Conference in Frisco, Texas, will provide attendees who transport students with disabilities and special needs with the answer to the question, “Why do we do what we do?”

“Understanding the Foundations of Special Needs Transportation” will be led by Kathleen Furneaux, executive director of the Pupil Transportation Safety Institute and a member of the TSD Conference national board of advisors. The session will include an overview of how and why transportation is a related service to the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act.

Furneaux will be joined by John Benish, Jr., president and chief operating officer of Chicago school bus contractor Cook-Illinois Corporation, as well as a national advisor to TSD. Also speaking will be Julie Jilek, the assistant superintendent and chief business officer for the Northwest Suburban Special Education Organization in Palatine, Illinois.

Interactive discussions will focus on the foundations of IDEA and regulations, collaboration with special educators and operations.

Browse the full TSD Conference schedule

The session also highlights “Transporting Students with Special Needs: Training Curriculum, Resource Guide and Training Manual,” the first edition written by Linda F. Bluth, Ed.D., a member of the TSD Conference Tenured Faculty who is also speaking at the event next month.

PTSI recently released the second edition of the 300-page training curriculum. It is designed as a 20-hour training program in its entirety but is also divided into stand-alone units. The guide consists of nine sections, a final course review answer key, PowerPoint slides with instructor notes, and a sample participant workbook.

Bluth told School Transportation News that the training manual embraces the required areas to support safe transportation for students who have disabilities and special needs. Each of the nine chapters focuses on facilitating the skills that are necessary to understand the complexity of safe transportation, she relayed.

“Special needs transportation trainers will welcome this up-to-date resource focused on teaching about the complexity of providing safe transportation,” Bluth added.

In addition to the training curriculum resource guide manual, PTSI offers a 92-page participant manual and workbook that are sold separately.

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