Thursday, August 27, 2015

ABLE Accounts

The ABLE (Achieving a Better Life Experience) Act was passed by Congress and signed into law in January 2015. Passage of this law allows for the establishment of savings accounts for individuals with disabilities.  ABLE accounts are tax-free savings accounts, similar to 529 college savings accounts, that do not impact an individual's eligibility for Supplemental Security Income (SSI), Medicaid, and other benefits.  In order to get a better idea of how many individuals might be eligible for ABLE accounts and how a potential beneficiary may use the account to save for disability-related expenses, please take a moment to fill out the ABLE National Resource Center's survey.  Clicking the link below will take you to the survey, as well as to a very informative video that gives an overview of ABLE accounts.  The deadline to complete the survey is Tuesday, September 1, 2015.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

ESP 360

Registration is currently under way for afterschool programs at ESP (Extra Special People).  From dance, theater, and cheer, to karate, outdoor education, and sports, there is an option for everyone! Programming is from 4:00 - 6:00 pm, Monday through Thursday, at the ESP facility on VFW Drive in Watkinsville.  To learn more about available classes, costs, or to register, visit the ESP website:

Monday, August 24, 2015

Upcoming Public Forum

The Georgia Council for Developmental Disabilities (GCDD) is an advisory council for the Governor's office, giving input on public policy regarding people with disabilities.  They are holding public meetings this fall to get input from the public, to help them establish priorities for a five-year plan. If there are concerns that you'd like to share with folks at the state level, who are in a position to make change happen - this is your chance!  There will be a public meeting in Athens on September 24, at the Georgia Center for Continuing Education on Lumpkin Street, at 6 pm - you can register to attend by clicking here: GCDD Public Forum

You can also give input through an online survey (takes about 10 minutes) by clicking here:  GCDD Survey

Friday, August 21, 2015

"What A Great IDEA!"

Oconee County School's first Weeknight Workshop of the semester is coming up!  This parent training opportunity will be on Monday, August 24, at 6:30 pm, at Oconee Veterans Park's community meeting room.  "What A Great IDEA!" presented by Parent to Parent of Georgia, will give parents an overview of the special education process and the basics of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), the federal law governing special education.  Parents will learn about referring a student for evaluation, what to expect when developing an Individual Education Plan (IEP), and how to collaborate in a positive way with teachers and school administrators for the benefit of  their student. Great information for families new to special education, as well as seasoned pros - please join us!

Thursday, August 6, 2015 - Another Great Resource links to more than 10,000 national, state and local resources. That’s a lot of information, which is why they have developed a series of guides to help you find answers. Whether you’re looking for information about disability benefits,housing assistancejob training programs or financial help for families with low incomes,’s Guides to Information & Resources are a good place to start. Choose from among 14 guides that cover everything from home health care to programs for caregivers to assistive technology and much more. Each guide begins with a series of “quick links” that answer many frequently asked questions.’s Guides to Information & Resources also connect you to information about organizations near you that offer programs and services that promote the inclusion and full participation of people with disabilities in their communities.

Monday, August 3, 2015


Welcome!  A new school year is beginning, and it's time to refresh your "school supplies" - your resources and information to make this school year an awesome one for your child!  Be sure to subscribe to this Parent Connections blog by entering your email in the box on the right side of this page, so that you can receive any new postings straight to your email inbox!

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Emory Autism Workshop

The Emory Autism Center's Monarch Program is hosting a Summer Autism Workshop on July 16-17, at Gwinnett Center, 6400 Sugarloaf Parkway, Duluth.  This two-day workshop is primarily for teachers, but parents may also find lots of helpful information; topics will include addressing problematic behavior, use of assistive technology, use of video based instruction, and a look at the Autism Plan for Georgia from the Centers for Leadership in Disability.  Early bird registration ends May 31 - you can find the conference brochure here: Emory Autism Workshop