When I first wrote A CHILD LEFT BEHIND, it was to express my frustration at not knowing how to do for my son what I've done rather successfully for hundreds of children over the past ten years: Teach.
As I continued to perform the show, I saw that the show was advocating for both teachers and parents who shared the same concerns and frustrations - caring people who were looking for help or answers.
One of the benefits of performing this show has been the many wonderfully caring and insight professionals who have not only helped me but numerous others to best support those children on the Autistic Spectrum and I consider it a privilege that they have given their time to participate in a special talk-back after my last show at the Santa Monica Playhouse.
On June 20th, the Santa Monica Playhouse, will be hosting a trio of very special guests to participate in a Q&A "Talk-back" after the show. This will be a great opportunity for parents, teachers, counselors and all those interested in learning more about Asperger's Syndrome and how to best support those children on the Autistic Spectrum.
Some of the panel that night will include:
Fran Goldfarb, MA, MCHES, is one of the first family support faculty. Ms. Goldfarb has played a role nationally in the development of this LEND discipline, and currently chairs the AUCD LEND Family Discipline Workgroup. She is a board member of United Advocates for Children and Families and served as a member of the North LA Autism Taskforce supporting the CA Senate Select Committee on Autism and Related Disorders. She trains teachers and school administrators on autism as a member the LA County Autism Spectrum Alliance (LACASA). She is the founder and co- Leader of the Los Angeles Asperger Syndrome Parent Support Group. Most importantly, she is the mother of an adult son who has Asperger Syndrome.
Beth Brust is an award-winning author of 13 children’s books and numerous articles that have appeared in national publications including the Los Angeles Times, San Diego Union, Highlights for Children and The Horn Book. A graduate of Stanford University, Beth taught writing courses for seven years at UCSD Extension. When her younger son was diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome in third grade, he began attending The Friends’ Club in Carlsbad, California. Founded by Dr. Cynthia Norall, The Friends’ Club teaches these children the social skills they lack naturally. This led Beth to co-write with Dr. Norall QUIRKY, YES—HOPELESS, NO: Practical Tips to Help Your Child With Asperger’s Syndrome published by St. Martin’s Press. It is the only book about Asperger’s Syndrome incorporating an expert’s and a parent’s point of view. QUIRKY, YES is reader-friendly and won the San Diego Book Award, “Best in Education,” and is now available in German. Visit www.bethbrust.com for more.
Debra Munson’s professional experience includes over 20 years of instructional opportunities in primary, secondary and college level learning environments in the United States and overseas. She has collaborated with medical professionals, school districts, and government entities to increase awareness and improve educational services for special needs children and their families. With a degree in special education (emphasis in child development and speech and language), Debra launched her private practice in Holland, Michigan. For 15 years, she was sought out by parents of children with undiagnosed speech disorders and unspecified social struggles. She learned from them and with them, growing ever more intrigued by the mysteries and challenges presented by Aspergers Syndrome. Debra’s contribution to one child’s success was cited in the book, My Child Wasn’t Born Perfect. After moving to Santa Monica, California two years ago, Debra expanded her career focus and began studying brain wave optimization. Recently becoming certified as a Brain Wave Technologist, she is eager to apply that technology to help those who struggle with invisible and often overwhelming challenges.
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