2022 Leadership and Project Directors' Conference


Monday, July 18, 2022 – Friday, July 22, 2022


Virtual Meeting

Meeting Who

Leadership Audience

  • Part B State Directors and agency staff working across federal programs
  • Part C Coordinators/619 Coordinators and staff
  • Parent Center Directors and staff
  • Part B and Part C Data Managers
  • Part D Technical Assistance Providers
  • State Advisory Councils and State Interagency Coordinating Councils
  • OSEP and U.S. Department of Education staff

Project Directors'  Audience

  • Personnel Development Project Directors
  • Technical Assistance and Dissemination Project Directors
  • Educational Technology, Media, and Materials Project Directors
  • Parent Center Project Directors
  • State Personnel Development Grant Project Directors
  • Data Center Project Directors
  • OSEP doctoral scholars
  • Project Evaluators
  • OSEP and U.S. Department of Education staff

Archived Materials

The Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) hosted its Leadership and Project Directors’ Conference the week of July 18, 2022. The conference offered both synchronous and asynchronous learning experiences. Asynchronous sessions included Breakouts, Posters, Technology Demonstrations, and Technical Assistance Center Booths. Synchronous content included Keynote presentations, Plenary sessions, and Large Group Panels.

For any questions on the conference, please reach out to the conference planning team at: osep-meeting@air.org

Following below are the links to the presentation recordings. We will add additional resource materials soon. We hope you enjoy the sessions!

Tuesday, July 19, 2022

Keynote Presentation & Large Group Panel Sessions

Wednesday, July 20, 2022

Plenary & Large Group Panel Sessions

Thursday, July 21, 2022

Plenary Session

Additional Sessions

Breakout Sessions

These presentations were opportunities for participants to share innovative ideas, address persistent issues, and discuss effective practices in preparation, research, technical assistance, technology, practice, and policy for improving results for infants, toddlers, children, and youth with disabilities and their families.

Technology Demonstrations:

These sessions offered the opportunity for OSEP grantees to share information about new technologies available to practitioners, State education agencies, researchers, and technical assistance providers.

Poster Sessions:

These sessions provided opportunities to share information that can be easily understood without a formal presentation component. Posters highlighted innovative practices that lead to improved outcomes for infants, toddlers, children, and youth with disabilities and their families.

Presenter Information


Symposium Prework

Symposium Postwork

Special Needs

Mobile Website

Lodging, Dining, Activities

Call for Proposals


The information below will help you prepare for your conference experience. This page contains: agendas at-a-glance, descriptions of the various session formats, and engagement guides with tips to ensure you get the most out of this year’s virtual conference.

Session Formats

There are two types of sessions at this year’s conference: Asynchronous and Synchronous.

  • Asynchronous—Pre-recorded content that is available at any time during the event. Asynchronous sessions include Breakouts and Posters, Technology Demonstrations, and TA Center Booths. Recordings of live sessions will also be made available asynchronously after captions are added.
  • Synchronous—Live sessions that are scheduled at specific time periods. Once we go live (July 18-22), the agenda will become interactive on the conference platform, and you will be able to add specific synchronous sessions to your calendar. We encourage you to place holds on your calendar for synchronous sessions, based on the agenda below!

Visual Agenda At-A-Glance

Click the image below to display/download the visual agenda at-a-glance. If you are a participant with a visual impairment who cannot access content via color-coding, we suggest using the text-based, daily agenda at-a-glance below to support your conference planning.

2022 Visual Agenda At-A-Glance

Daily Agenda At-A-Glance

Monday, July 18, 2022 (All Grantees)

All Day
Asynchronous Content Exploration—Breakout and Poster sessions, technology demonstrations, and TA Center Booths available all day!

Tuesday, July 19, 2022 (All Grantees)

11:00 a.m. ET (90 minutes)
  Plenary Session - Live Session

12:30 p.m. ET (45 minutes)
  Asynchronous Content Exploration

1:15 p.m.  ET (90 minutes)
  Large Group Panels - Live Session

2:45 p.m. ET (45 minutes)
  Asynchronous Content Exploration

3:30 p.m. ET (90 minutes)
   Large Group Panels – Live Session

Wednesday, July 20, 2022 (All Grantees)

9:30 a.m. ET (60 minutes)
  Optional Topical Discussions

11:00 a.m. ET (90 minutes)
  Plenary Session - Live Session

12:30 p.m. ET (45 minutes)
  Asynchronous Content Exploration

1:15 p.m. ET (90 minutes)
  Large Group Panels - Live Session

2:35 p.m. ET (45 minutes)
  Asynchronous Content Exploration

3:30 p.m. ET (90 minutes)
Live Session Policy Panel

4:45 p.m. ET (60 minutes)
  Optional Topical Discussions

Thursday, July 21, 2022 (Part D Grantees Only)

11:00 a.m. ET (90 minutes)
  Part D Plenary - Live Session

12:30 p.m. ET (45 minutes)
 Asynchronous Content Exploration

1:15 p.m. ET (90 minutes)
  Program Area Meetings

              Technical Assistance for State Data Collection (Data)

              Parent Training and Information Centers (PTIC)

              Personnel Development Program (PDP)

2:45 p.m. ET (45 minutes)
 Asynchronous Content Exploration

3:30 p.m. ET (90 minutes)
  Program Area Meetings

            Educational Technology, Media and Materials (ETMM)

            State Personnel Development Grants (SDPG)

            Technical Assistance & Dissemination (TA&D)

Friday, July 22, 2022 (All Grantees)

All Day
Asynchronous Content Exploration—Breakout and Poster sessions, technology demonstrations, and TA Center Booths available all day!


Large Group Panel Schedule, Titles, and Descriptions

Large Group Panel sessions are among the most popular sessions at the conference. Below, find times, titles, and descriptions of the sessions for your planning purposes.

A complete agenda will be available on the conference platform. You will receive more information about its availability and how to access it upon registration – be sure to register for the conference if you haven’t already.

Tuesday, July 19, 2022

1:15-2:45 pm Eastern

Can the Science of Reading Fix Everything? How the Science of Reading Can Support Equity for All Learners

The term “science of reading” is currently in the spotlight, as both researchers and practitioners grapple with how to translate findings from reading research into policy and practice that lead to improved outcomes for students. Long-standing disparities that have only been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic and amplified by increasing attention to issues of racial equity have created a real sense of urgency about doing what we can to support learning among student populations that are vulnerable to experiencing difficulty in school, including students with disabilities, students who may be growing up in underserved communities, and students from specific historically marginalized groups. In this session, researchers with diverse expertise and experiences with reading discuss key considerations for research and practice related to the science of reading. Collectively, they will provide a frame for discussing how researchers, educators, policymakers, and other education stakeholders might advance the science of reading to promote success for vulnerable learners.

Spilling the Tea: National Dissemination Efforts That Reach and Resonate With Our Target Audiences

How are we adapting our national dissemination efforts to address changing times? How are we continuing to innovate to reach people where they are and keep them engaged, and how do we know they’re engaged? How do we lead the field in accessibility and how do we assist with data interpretation? How are we partnering to advocate for infants, toddlers, and students with disabilities; developing common messages; and amplifying each other’s messages by creating a network? And finally, how can we use data to evaluate our communication efforts and inform continuous improvement? In this session, panelists from OSEP TA centers and nonprofits will address these questions and share examples of how they have developed innovative communication campaigns to reach their target audiences with tailored messages that make a difference for children with disabilities.

Sparking a Revolution in Special Education: Reimagining Preparation and Practice

The COVID-19 pandemic is a global crisis of unprecedented scale, with aftershocks that will be felt in virtually all aspects of life for years or decades to come. It also affords an opportunity for us to reimagine education and revolutionize the preparation of personnel who serve and support children with disabilities. Join this conversation with leading experts and visionaries from across the country to explore the future of special education. Together they will consider the challenges and the opportunities that we will face in our post-pandemic future and reimagine the preparation needed to support new, innovative approaches to practice as we work together to leverage our strengths and ensure all children thrive as they learn and grow.

Igniting a Revolution: Rethinking Recruitment and Retention of Racially, Ethnically, and Linguistically Diverse Early Intervention and Early Childhood Special Education Personnel

Disrupting the status quo to revolutionize recruitment, preparation, and retention of a diverse early childhood workforce is more critical than ever. Racially, ethnically, and linguistically diverse children and families increasingly represent a large proportion of the children receiving early intervention and early childhood special education through IDEA. Conversely, the demographics of personnel entering the early intervention and special education fields are not aligned with the demographics of the children and families served under IDEA. In this session, participants will explore the question of how to attract, prepare, and retain diverse early childhood personnel within a culturally responsive framework, and how to appropriately support early childhood personnel to better retain staff and decrease burnout. Presenters will share innovative national and State-based strategies to support participants to better recruit and retain diverse preservice personnel as well as an early childhood workforce.

Reconceptualizing Transition K Through 21

Inclusive community living and participation encompasses several life activities, including participation in postsecondary education, competitive integrated employment, residential independence, establishing and maintaining social and interpersonal relationships, and being an active member of one’s community. Achieving these goals for individuals with disabilities requires early and ongoing services and supports. As students with disabilities age and progress through school, there is a greater focus on their goals beyond graduation, which affects the services and supports provided in their special education program. Panelists will provide their perspectives on and experiences with promising practices as students travel the pipeline to inclusive outcomes. They will share how instruction and supports may be reconceptualized to ensure students gain the knowledge and skills needed to successfully transition from one grade level to the next, one school to the next, and from school to post-school life. The panelists’ experiences in ensuring infrastructure for increased collaboration and provision of instruction and services in the academic (e.g., math, reading) and functional skills (e.g., self-determination, career readiness, life skills) needed for successful transitions will be a focus of the presentation.

3:30-5:00 pm Eastern

Reimagine Early Childhood Transitions—Focus on the Family’s Vision: What Every Policy Maker, Leader, and Practitioner Needs to Know

This session will expand the way you see early childhood transitions. A family panel will discuss their diverse and dynamic transitions from Part C, and how their vision for their children positively impacted the progress and the process. Participants will learn how to achieve the crucial combination of honoring the family’s vision for their child and providing effective support to the family that promotes positive relationships, child and family preparation, and adjustment to new settings and services.

What Does an Inclusive and Comprehensive Literacy Program Look Like for Students With Significant Cognitive Disabilities?

In this session, audience members will hear from two nationally recognized experts and a classroom teacher working in the field of literacy instruction for students with significant cognitive disabilities. Speakers will describe the components of comprehensive literacy models, and offer illustrations and examples of how students with significant cognitive disabilities are successfully taught in inclusive and accessible classroom environments.

Audiences of interest would include State directors and SPDG project directors who wish to implement and scale up fully inclusive comprehensive reading initiatives in their States, higher education leaders who wish to ensure they know what to look for when supervising a practicum student implementing a comprehensive reading program, and TA centers that support educators to implement inclusive evidence-based reading programs.

EDFacts Modernization and What It Means for IDEA Part B and Part C Data Submissions: Preparing for Change

The purpose of this session is to discuss the impact of the EDFacts Modernization work on States' submission of IDEA Part B and Part C data to OSEP. Representatives from OSEP and EDFacts will discuss the changing expectations around submitting high-quality IDEA Section 618 Part B and Part C data to ED and the effect of these new expectations on OSEP’s use of the data. Additionally, representatives from the data TA centers will provide an overview of tools and resources that are available to States to support their transition to submitting IDEA Part B and Part C data under EDFacts Modernization.

Keeping Our Best: Retaining Effective Educators in Challenging Times

In a time of growing educator shortages, this panel session asks why teachers teach, and how we can leverage their motivations to better retain them over the course of their careers. By understanding what brought teachers and providers into the field, presenters also hope to better understand what makes them want to stay. Speakers will discuss innovative ideas for improving working conditions, promoting educators' mental health and well-being, and addressing staffing shortages, while increasing the diversity of the special education field and ensuring all educators are prepared for culturally responsive practice. Panelists will share examples of emerging strategies and innovations for higher education faculty, policymakers, and district leaders. Available resources will be shared, including resources from the OSEP series “Attract, Prepare, Retain: Effective Personnel for All,” and from OSEP-funded national centers.

Integrating Mental Health Into the DNA of Schools and Programs: Discussing Social, Emotional, and Behavioral Practices to Address Trauma and Child Needs

This session spotlights the importance of understanding and recognizing mental health as an integral part of the continuum of services and instruction in schools and programs. Attendees will be provided with insight into the current climate of mental health in schools and programs, the impact of trauma on child development, and effective practices to address these needs. Presenters will also showcase State and local exemplars of the integration of evidence-based practices that promote systemic change. Panelists will discuss research, State-level implementation, and firsthand experiences.

Wednesday, July 20, 2022

1:15-2:45 pm Eastern

Communication Works for Those Who Work at It: Strategies and Lessons Learned From State and Community Dissemination Efforts

This session will include presentations from two State agencies—one Part C and one Part B—as well as a PTI and CPRC to share their strategies for communicating and disseminating information Statewide. Presenters will discuss the importance of designing the message to reach the intended audiences, especially families, and to foster meaningful stakeholder engagement in State initiatives. Information will be shared on the importance of evaluation in dissemination efforts.

Leveraging Federal Pandemic Relief Funds to Enhance and Expand Early Childhood Programs

Panelists will discuss how State and local governments are using Federal pandemic relief funds to expand early childhood initiatives, including programs that support infants, toddlers, and preschoolers with disabilities.

Reimagining Early Childhood: Opportunities for Growth and Innovation in Uncertain Times

The pandemic brought an onslaught of challenges and uncertainties to families with very young children with disabilities and the programs that support and serve them. Through it all, programs responded with innovation and creativity to shift practices and meet the demands of the situation. This panel will highlight three birth-to-5 programs’ responses and explore the opportunity the pandemic has created to build comprehensive and coordinated early childhood service delivery systems that are equitable, effective, and sustainable.

The Power of Partnerships: Innovations Used to Attract Talent and Support Entry Into Special Education Careers

Whether faced with the challenge of filling vacancies or declining enrollment in university programs, we all recognize the need to attract talent and support their entry into special education careers. Using the power of partnerships and data to inform decision making, speakers will share effective strategies used to strengthen, stabilize, and diversify the special education workforce in their communities. Panelists will share examples that tap underrepresented pools of talent; offer new pathways and approaches to preparing teachers, providers, and leaders for careers in special education; and offer mentoring and induction support that can be used to build the capacity of personnel serving children with disabilities in both rural and urban settings. Available resources will be shared, including resources from the OSEP series “Attract, Prepare, Retain: Effective Personnel for All,” and from OSEP-funded national centers.

Engagement Guide

Except for the live sessions, the provided agenda is only a suggested way to structure your conference experience.  This allows you to choose which sessions will work best for you and your schedule.

The engagement guide provides information on:

  • The different types of sessions being offered during the conference.
  • Tips on how to navigate the conference platform.
  • Information on the topical discussions.
  • Tips on how to network with your colleagues during the conference.

We hope you find this guide beneficial and look forward to you joining us at the conference!