InspirED Virtual Learning Series

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As we continue to watch the COVID-19 pandemic evolve across the world, one thing we know for sure – the 2020-2021 school year will look different—for students, families, teachers, and administrators. Depending on the district, some, most, or even all instruction will be delivered online.

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Who It's For

As an organization committed to promoting access and inspiring change for people with disabilities, OCALI and the Ohio Department of Education’s Office for Exceptional Children are partnering to support educators, education professionals, families, and others during this pandemic and in a new, remote learning environment with the creation of – InspirED Virtual Learning Series.

Our vision for this virtual learning series is to fill a need and help educators, administrators, and families find the information and resources they need to support learning and successful outcomes for their students or children during a very unique time of learning.

Educators who support students with disabilities in their continued/newer role as remote learning instructors.
Administrators and other school leaders as they guide and support educators.
Families in their new role as at-home instructors.
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How it Works

Initially, the learning series will consist of 15 “Zoomcast” sessions or recorded, facilitated conversations that are approximately 30 minutes each. Over time, additional sessions will be added to the library. All content will be focused on increasing successful engagement of diverse learners in a remote/virtual instructional environment, linking the users with appropriate resources and tools.

Learners will have the ability to earn a professional development certificate by completing a survey at the end of each learning session.

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Let's Get Started

This ongoing Zoomcast series is hosted jointly by OCALI Center leads and ODE partners.

Online Instruction Based on Communication Mode

January 21, 2021 | 4:00pm

From face-to-face to online, or hybrid—school has taken many forms during the pandemic. Ensuring all learners have access to the curriculum has been essential, which starts with identifying each learner’s preferred communication mode. Learn how to identify learners’ preferred communication mode and what that means for access.

Presented by: Christine Croyle, Program Director, Outreach Center for Deafness and Blindness at OCALI; Shawna Benson, Program Director, Teaching Diverse Learners Center; Abbey Weaver, Teacher of the Deaf, Consultant; Jessica Chandler, Teacher of the Visually Impaired, Certified Orientation and Mobility Specialist.


Why Checklists, Especially Now When the World is Up-Side Down

January 28, 2021 | 4:00pm

Checklists can be a great way to keep organized. As we multi-task in our professional and personal lives during this pandemic, checklists can help take the edge off of thinking. Discover an eye-opening experience and leave with outstanding examples that can be used immediately.

Presented by: Mike McCoy, Consultant, State Support Team Region 15; Heidi Orvosh-Kamenski, Consultant, State Support Team Region 7; Ron B. Rogers, Program Director of the Universal Design for Learning Center at OCALI.


Maximizing Accessibility and Learning with Slide Presentations

February 4, 2021 | 4:00pm

Slide presentations are commonly used by educators to convey information and ideas to students. Students with disabilities may encounter barriers within presentations that limit or prevent access to information. Learn about the importance of accessibility, how to build an accessible presentation, and how to utilize tools to increase access. Activities for application will be included.

Presented by: Rachel Schultz, MA, Accessible Educational Materials Specialist, AT&AEM Center at OCALI; Jennifer Govender, M.Ed., Accessible Educational Materials Specialist, AT&AEM Center at OCALI


Ready, Set, Action! Simple Strategies to Support Learning, Build Connections, and Offer Balance in an Ever-Changing World

February 11, 2021 | 4:00pm

As families and caregivers continue to support youth with remote learning and manage everyday life, access to easy-to-use resources is essential. Explore how OCALI’s ASD Strategies in Action, an online, video-based training program, provides simple strategies and quick tips that can be used immediately. Hear from two parents of young adults with autism as they share their personal experiences using this FREE resource.

Presented by: Jen Bavry, Program Director, Family and Community Outreach Center at OCALI; Julie Short, MA, Regional Consultant, Autism Center at OCALI


Surviving the Pandemic with PBIS

February 18, 2021 | 4:00pm

As districts continue to educate students during the pandemic, the process of implementing PBIS has had to change to accommodate hybrid and virtual learning environments. Districts have turned to creative ways of supporting students' educational, social-emotional, and behavioral needs within the PBIS framework. Hear from two educators working in a district that has moved from hybrid to a completely virtual model and how they have continued to focus on PBIS throughout the pandemic.

Presented by: Carly McVey, Senior Director at OCALI; Amy Bixler Coffin, Program Director, Autism Center at OCALI; Stacy Lyles, Intervention Specialist/PBIS Coach; Erica Houston, General Educator/PBIS Coach


More sessions coming soon!

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Check Out Previous Sessions

View InspirED sessions that have already aired, access supplementary materials specific to each topic, and earn professional development credit.

View More

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Want More?

If you have participated in one of our InspirED Zoomcasts, we know that you are interested in expanding your knowledge and capacity through online learning. So, we want to be sure that you know about OCALICONLINE, the nation’s premier autism and disabilities conference.

While we usually bring thousands of people together in Columbus, Ohio each year, this year, we’re doing it all virtually! Registration is open now! We invite you to join us November 11-13! Head over to to learn more!

Below we've included some resources from the Special Education Leaders Fellowship that address remote learning and are available to help school leaders on the return to school.

  • Learning modules on MTSS and making PD engaging at a distance;
  • Re-entry toolkits on engaging related service providers, student-centered staffing, IEP progress monitoring, and collaborative planning; and
  • Distance learning webinars to help educators use distance learning tools effectively and efficiently.
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Made possible through a partnership between the Ohio Department of Education’s Office for Exceptional Children and OCALI

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