On October 15 & 16, we hosted our annual AssisTechKnow Assistive Technology Conference at the Kent ISD. The atmosphere was electric and we filled the Education Service Center with over 225 people each day. Participants came from near and far to learn about how to use Assistive Technology in their teaching and learning practice.
This year, we brought in a nationally known speaker, Chris Bugaj, from Louden County Public School in Virginia. You may have read a previous blog post about him titled, “3 Unique Reading Strategies You’ll Want to Try!” And as expected, he electrified our participants with his keynote and other presentations over two days.
We also had over 15 exhibitors from the Midwest region, and sponsors who helped provide over 150 door prizes to include an iPad mini, a Chromebook and 5 foot bean bag chair.
We had some fantastic things happen at this two day event:
- Students from Special Education Transition programs as well as KTC volunteered for both days – offering bagels and donuts to exhibitors, distributing door prizes and lunches, popping and selling popcorn, and interacting with participants
- Tony Bonofiglio, a Forest Hills High School student, presented one of the break-out sessions, solely with his electronic communication device, from his stand-up wheelchair. As a toddler, his parents were told he would never live a functional life, yet when asked what he would like to do when he finishes high school, he responded – “Be a public speaker”.
- Several of our presenters and volunteers were from Grand Rapids Public Schools, even taking a personal day to participate
- One of the participants traveled from Kentucky and several came from the UP and far reaches of Michigan
- Our national speaker commented that he has never been to a local conference with such depth and energy
Want to attend this incredible conference?
Mark your calendar for October 20 and 21, 2016!
We’re so glad that we can provide such a meaningful and impactful conference to our region, and hope to make it even bigger and better for next year.
Ron Houtman & Kindy Segovia
This post was written by Ron Houtman, Educational Technology Consultant at Kent ISD, the conference is organized by Kindy Segovia, Assistive Technology Coordinator and a team of Kent ISD staff, the post was edited by Amanda Walma Professional Learning Coordinator at Kent ISD.