The Fairfax County Special Education PTA (SEPTA), https://fairfaxcountysepta.org, is dedicated to supporting the unique needs of special education, special needs and disabled students and families. They have an excellent set of resources on their website which include information on the following (plus much more!):
- Community Events (Events include workshops, webinars, and more. All these opportunities are FREE unless noted. In most cases you must register if registration information is provided. Events listed below relate best to middle school however the SEPTA site has events for all school age ranges)
- Distance Learning Resources
- Support Groups (some are listed below)
- SEPTA Blog
The SEPTA website also has a list of other FCPS resources under their Resources tab. Some (but not all!) of the listed resources are:
The FCPS Parent Resource Center is open and continues to provide direct assistance to families, educators, and community members. The staff there can help you find answers and solve problems. email@example.com 703-204-3941
FCPS school counselors, psychologists and social workers are available – Any FCPS parent may schedule a 30-minute phone consultation for themselves or their middle or high school student. Consultations will provide support and strategies to students who may be experiencing difficulties with anxiety, mood, behavior, or peer or family interactions.Register: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeFLnv14CZ1Pga7QpeDpxXpKNVM4U8YvJdS08XL9yKEk7fJtA/viewform?utm_name=
FCPS Ombudsman: Another valuable resource, Armando Peri https://www.fcps.edu/department/office-family-student-ombudsm
FCPS Return to School Supports for Students with Disabilities is a webpage that outlines FCPS’s approach to the return to school and provides links to many resources.
All these support groups are open to newcomers, most are online, and they are free, except where noted. No diagnosis is required to participate. Participants are typically given the opportunity to share their story, experience support, and glean guidance (as desired) from group members regarding both community and school resources. Confidentiality is respected.
Alpha Moms This support group for adoptive parents meets monthly in McLean. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Autism Dads meets one evening monthly typically in the past in Falls Church. Contact: George Buzby at 571-419-1257 or email@example.com
Autism Society of Northern Virginia Virtual Support Group 2nd and 4th Saturday of the month,1:00-2:30 pm via Zoom. Meeting ID: 83085728013
Business Networking Event for Special Needs ParentsAlternate Fridays, May 29 and following, 9:00-10:30 am Via Zoom. Connect with fellow special needs parents and business owners, build your referral network, and share best practices. Contact: https://thearcofloudoun.org/networking/
CHADD: Children & Adults with Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder
- Burke CHADD Support Group for Parents, Caregivers and Family Members Last Thursday of the month at 7:00 pm. Contact Kim Griffin: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Loudoun County CHADD Parent Support 3rd Tue. morning of the month in Sterling. Contact: Bonnie Little 571-306-2932 or on Facebook @loudounahdhsupport
- West Fairfax CHADD Evening Parent Support Group 3rd Thur. of each month at 8:00 pm Contact: Cathy, email@example.com
- West Fairfax CHADD Morning Parent Support Group 1st Tues. of each month at 8:00 pm. Contact: Cathy, firstname.lastname@example.org
CSB Family Support Group at Gatlan Center 2nd and 4th Wed. of each month 6-7:30 pm via Zoom Contact: Samar.Chwairy@fairfaxcounty.gov or call 703-799-2882.
D.A.D.S. Dads Appreciating Down Syndrome 3rd Tue. each month, 7-9 pm via Zoom. Contact: George email@example.com or call 703- 545-6089.
Dr. Dan’s Support Group for Parents Raising Challenging Children meets via Zoom on Mondays, 1-2 pm, Register: http://survey.constantcontact.com/survey/a07eh2rnzqrk9vdghmb/a0179kbgrhnj1/questions
Epilepsy Parent Support Group & Discussion Series meets monthly on the 4th Thursday, 7:00-8:30 pm. Register: https://epilepsywdc.org/events/epilepsy-parent-support-group-discussion-series-virtual/
Fairfax Juvenile Court Parent Support for problems including runaway behavior, truancy, alcohol/drug abuse, and serious behavioral problems at home, at school, or in the community. Sign up for a phone consultation at https://www.signupgenius.com/go/10c0a44abab29abf85-juvenile
Family Recovery & Support Group meets weekly via Zoom on Mondays 6:30-7:30 pm for family and friends of those receiving CSB services for addictions. Contact: Natalie.Holmes@fairfaxcounty.govwww.fairfaxcounty.gov/community-services-board/recovery/family-support-virtual-group
Grupo de Chat para Padres: Unete a nuestro nuevo GRUPO DE CHAT mediante la aplicación de WhatsApp y podras mantenerte al tanto de todo lo que PEATC Latino esta haciendo. Entra al GRUPO: https://bit.ly/2VoU2vw (Chat Group for Latino Parents: Join our new CHAT GROUP through the WhatsApp application and you will be able to keep up to date with everything that PEATC Latino is doing.)
NAMI: National Alliance on Mental Illness builds better lives for affected families. Arlington Parent Support Group meets two Sundays a month at 7:00-8:30 pm. Contact: Michelle Best firstname.lastname@example.org
OCD Family Support Group 1st Mon. of each month, 7:30 pm. Contact: email@example.com or call 202-215-5859.
Parent Café (for all Fairfax County parents and guardians) meets via Zoom in English on Mon. 7:45-9:15 pm, and en español, miércoles, 7:00-8:30 pm. Register at least 24 hours in advance 703-324-7720 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Parents in a Pandemic for families of children or young adults with developmental and/or behavioral challenges. They meet twice monthly, 5:30-6:30 pm on Tuesdays. Contact Diane Manning email@example.com .
Parents of Autistic Children (POAC-NOVA) Parent Support Group meets on Saturdays occasionally. Contact: Brianne Russel-Morris firstname.lastname@example.org .
Parents of Autistic Teens meets some Sat. of each month. Contact: Maria Dubuc 703-970-3676 or Admin@ASNV.org
Survive and Thrive with Virtual Learning: Practical Strategies Tue. Sep. 1, 6:30-8:00 pm, OnlineLearn how to avoid parent-child conflict around academics this fall with practical tips for establishing routines that really work keeping kids focused while learning online.Register: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLScIILpU6WC5B9TqWBpW-wo0KTMlZDuXSHMIuUmt_1lLzGzaig/viewform
Strategies for Improving Dysgraphia in Children with ADHDTue. Sep. 1, 1:00 pm, Webinar with Replay LinkIn addition to impairing handwriting, dysgraphia interferes with academic achievement and self-esteem. In other words, it is much more than messy writing.Register: https://www.additudemag.com/webinar/how-to-improve-handwriting/
REVIVE TrainingWed. Sep. 2, 10 am, OnlineLearn what to do and not do in an overdose situation, how to administer naloxone, and what to do afterwards. Supplies are provided for use when needed.Register: https://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/community-services-board/heroin-opioids/revive
Organize Your IEP & 504 BinderWed. Sep. 2, 7:00 pmWe will cover organizational strategies to help keep track of all your student’s IEP and 504 records, from medical information and testing results to correspondence.
How to improve Social Interaction for Teenagers with ADHDWed. Sep. 2, 7:00 pm,Learn common strategies to avoid when interacting with adolescents, and how to engage teens in a dialogue to coach them through social dilemmas. Register: https://chadd.org/ask-the-expert/
Special Education and IEPs During COVID-19Thu. Sep. 3, noon-1 pm, Via ZoomLearn ways to communicate with your school and what steps parents should take to have important discussions about your child’s needs when they go back to school.Register: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSdptfj3618on8q0i9fYixaB_RpEzDAzAV_7vk0D3cDjg58NIw/viewform?
Plan Ahead — Exceptional Parents Book ClubWed. Oct. 7, 7:30-9:00 pm, Via ZoomThis online book club for parents of exceptional children will be discussing The Speed of Dark by Elizabeth Moon. Read now to discuss next month.Register: https://guidingexceptionalparents.com/maryland-book-club-registrations/
Debunking the Myths of Supported Decision-Making and GuardianshipTue. Sep. 8, 2:00 pmThis webinar will describe guardianship and less restrictive decision-making alternatives, as well as help debunk some of the myths that persist about these.Register: https://thearc.org/about-us/webinars/
Survive and Thrive with Virtual Learning: Practical Strategies Fri. Sep. 11, 10-11:30 am, OnlineLearn how to avoid parent-child conflict around academics this fall with practical tips for routines that help keep kids focused while learning online.Register: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLScIILpU6WC5B9TqWBpW-wo0KTMlZDuXSHMIuUmt_1lLzGzaig/viewform
Ethical Decision Making in Positive Behavior Support, Part 1Fri. Sep. 11, noon-1:00 pmLearn how ethics is currently being approached in the field of behavior analysis and how that compares with other historical approaches. Register: https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_i2rfTi3fQzqbw5dyI0w9EA
How to Help Your Middle/High School Aged Child with Learning Differences Conquer Distance LearningMon. Sep. 14, 7:00-8:30 pm,This webinar will help parents guide their children to build a toolkit of strategies to make distance learning more effective and less stressful.Register: http://bridgestherapyandwellness.com/events/
Una introducción a la prevención del suicidioMartes, sep. 15, 6:30-8:00 pm,Aprenda sobre la prevención del suicidio, incluidos los factores de riesgo, las señales de advertencia y cómo mantenerse a salvo.Registrese: https://ncactsl091520.attendease.com
disAbility Rights and Resources ExpoWed. Sep. 16, 10 am-5 pm, OnlineThe event will include, “Know Your Rights” workshops on disability benefits, special education, and rehabilitation as well as ways to interact in a virtual exhibit hall.Register: https://www.dlcv.org/event/disability-rights-expo
Social Emotional Learning for Children with ADHD in QuarantineWed. Sep. 16, 1 pm, With Replay LinkLearn strategies to help children feel and show empathy and make and keep positive relationships so that they can be more be socially and emotionally competent.Register: https://goto.webcasts.com/starthere.jsp?ei=1361051&tp_key=5efa7cb133
The Spectrum of TransportationWed. Sep 16, noon-1:30 pm, WebinarLearn about services available to those with ASD to assess their potential to safely and independently operate a motor vehicle, including a parent perspective. Register: https://cvent.me/bVzZGL
Seizure Alert Dogs and Devices: What You Need to KnowSep. 16, 7:00 pm, OnlineLearn about seizure alert dogs and the process for getting one, and get an overview of the available seizure alert devices and how to choose one.Register: https://epilepsywdc.org/events/seizure-alert-dogs-and-devices-what-you-need-to-know-sept-16/
Autism 101Thu. Sep. 17, 11-noon, Learn basic information about autism, accepted therapies and interventions, how to access services, and longterm developments.Register: https://asnv.nonprofiteasy.net/PublicPages/Event/Details.aspx?eid=34434
Collaborative & Proactive Solutions: 1-2 Day TrainingThu. & Fri. Sep. 17 & 18, 8:40 am-4:15 pm $99-$159Gain an overview of the CPS model, along with the nuances of assessment and engaging kids in solving the problems that affect their lives.Register: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/collaborative-proactive-solutions-2-day-virtual-training-registration-108761990040
10 Ways to Stop Power Struggles & Start Motivating Your KidsFri. Sep. 18, 10:00-11:30 am, OR 6:30-8:00 pm, It’s time to stop the yelling and power struggles with toddlers and teens. Learn how to create stress-free home life with practical strategies that really work. Register: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeRCwQHVLUFdkeaDeUqlzHFCxpAWzoa_UMumevKSy7N_Sarkw/viewform
Plan Ahead—NAMI Ending the Silence — for Students Grades 8-12Mon. Sep. 21. 6:30 pm, Parent consent for student RequiredAn educational presentation is followed by a hopeful personal story, shared by a young adult who experienced a mental health condition while in school.Register: https://events.r20.constantcontact.com/register/eventReg?oeidk=a07eh9jhb6g2d883c9c&oseq=&c=&ch=
Parenting Children of Color with Dr. Jamell White Wed. Sep. 23, 7-8 pm, via Zoom $20Learn about and discuss with other parents the unique issues in raising children of color with special needs and the impact of the current race-related events on children.Register: https://events.r20.constantcontact.com/register/eventReg?oeidk=a07eh7nbhkse626d33a&oseq=&c=&ch=
Setting the Stage for Good Behavior: Routines, Procedures & Expectations Thu. Sep. 24, 10 am-3 pm, Gain an overview on establishing and maintaining routines, procedures, and expectations, as well as strategies to teach and reinforce these lessons.Register: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSfekSCsrbimWJg-
Integrated vs. Segregated Vocational Services and Their Impact on Competitive Integrated Employment (CIE) Thu. Sep 24, 2:00-2:45,Learn about the benefits of integrated vocational services compared to segregated services at promoting various work outcomes for individuals with IDD.Register: https://vcurrtc.org/training/webcasts/webcastDetails.cfm/505
Helping Children and Adolescents Effectively Deal with Social and Emotional ChallengesThu. Sep. 24, 6:30-9:00 pm, Online $25Social skills and emotional regulation CAN be taught. Learn tools to use when children struggle with prosocial skills, motivation, or poor self-esteem.Register: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/chesapeake-childrens-conference-september-24-25-registration-90855205365
Seeds to Recovery Sat. Sep. 26, 9 am-noon, OnlineLearn about the root causes of addiction and how to support yourself and/or a loved one on the road to recovery.Register: https://help.recoverycentersofamerica.com/WEBINARDC2020-09-26_registration.html
NAMI Ending the Silence for Parents & CaregiversMon. Sep. 28, 6:30 pm, An educational presentation by a parent, and a hopeful personal story by a young adult who experienced a mental health condition while in school.Register: https://events.r20.constantcontact.com/register/eventReg?oeidk=a07eh9jhb6g2d883c9c&oseq=&c=&ch=
Bridging the Distance: Accommodations and Technology for Overcoming Remote LearningTue. Sep. 29,1 pm, With Replay LinkLearn about effective accommodations and tech tools to support students with ADHD and learning disabilities for remote learning.Register: https://goto.webcasts.com/starthere.jsp?ei=1360306&tp_key=d4b32453ed
Talk Saves Lives for Firearms OwnersTue. Sep. 29, , 6:30-8:00 pm, OnlineSuicide can be prevented. Learn about suicide prevention, including common risk factors, warning signs, and how to stay safe, specifically for firearms owners.Register: https://ncactsl09292020.attendease.com
Plan Ahead — Fall 2020 Transition University Virtual Training Sun. Oct. 11-Mon. Nov. 23, 5 Week Online CourseThis self-paced course for parents of school aged children with IEPs includes the major topics needed to plan now for their child’s future adult life.Register: https://bit.ly/2ztNrbN
Plan Ahead — Parent Child Journey interactive Zoom Discussion Groups10 Weekly 1-hour meetings on Mon. Wed. or Thu. Starting in Oct. $150A child behavior expert will lead a discussion and trouble-shoot participants’ implementation of the ten course topics. Register: http://www.parentchildjourney.com/journey/