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Soledad Unified School District hosts 9th conference of special education workshops

SOLEDAD, Calif. (KION) - Families filled the Soledad High School campus Saturday for the 9th annual south county conference of special education workshops.

The Soledad District superintendent, Randy Bangs talked about the agencies that parents could get resources from at the conference. 

“The agencies you see here are providing supplemental or augmentative services for parents and students that may include respite care, meaning food, resources for how to work with the school system,” Bangs said. “So there's many different resources internally and externally that may be represented here.” 

Parents came to learn medical, legal, and educational information about the rights of their children and services available to them. Many parents, such as Alicia Lustre said that having this information helps them be better advocates for their children's needs. 

“And we never stop learning,” Lustre said. “There's new agencies, we have new programs. And we're the best advocates for our kids.” 

The San Andreas regional center, including Menivira Valdez, helped organize the conference. 

Their workshop focused on educating parents on what the state is doing to help their children and the importance of shared experiences. 

“Once we talk about all of those things people go around and can share about their own experiences because we've each felt included or maybe not so included in different situations,” Valdez said. “And then there's an activity where people complete these colorful leaves when they're included and not included.” 

Along with the workshops and resources for parents, the district superintendent also highlighted the new inclusion resolution that was passed at the last meeting. 

“And so we asked ourselves, how do we become as inclusive as possible for our students in a general ed environment in an activities mode in athletics,” Bangs said. “Can we embrace these students as much as possible?”

The Superintendent told KION there are approximately 700 neuro diverse students in the Soledad Unified District.

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Katie Nicora

Katie Nicora is the Dayside Producer for KION News Channel 5/46

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