Special Education – Parent Information

Parent Information Relating to Special Education


All these opportunities are FREE unless noted.
In most cases you must register if registration information is provided.

April 2018

  • Mind in the Making: The Seven Essential Skills Every Child Needs Mind in the Making identifies seven skills from child development research and neuroscience that help children thrive both now and in the future. The good news is that parents and educators can promote these skills in children by doing simple, everyday activities and it’s never too late to begin! This workshop series will continue with the 5th skill, Critical Thinking, on Thursday, April 5, 2018, from 10 a.m. to noon. We will continue with skill 6, Taking on Challenges, on April 12, 2018, and skill 7, Self-Directed and Engaged Learning, on April 19, 2018. Each workshop will take place from 10 a.m. to noon at the Dunn Loring Center for Parent Services, Entrance 1, Room 100.
  • A Closer Look at Stress and Anxiety – Strategies to Support Elementary School Students Join us in exploring strategies and resources to support elementary school children who experience stress and anxiety. Topics discussed will include recognizing your child’s worry, managing anxiety during the school day, helping your child remain calm and using stress reduction tools. Kasey Cain, FCPS Resource Counselor, will present this workshop and explain the role of the school counselor and how they can help your child. This workshop will take place on Friday, April 6, 2018, from 10 a.m. to noon at the Dunn Loring Center for Parent Services, Entrance 1, Room 100.
  • FLASH FORWARD!   Come and learn all about Postsecondary Education and Employment Options for students with IEPs and their parents. Select a free workshop to explore options for life after high school. Topics will include Supported Employment, Competitive Employment, and Postsecondary Education. Join us at Woodson High School (9525 Main Street, Fairfax, VA 22031) on Tuesday, April 10, 2018, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.This event will take place in Cafeteria A.
  • Collaborative IEP Meetings: Parents as Partners Learning all about the Individual Educational Program (IEP) process and its components can be overwhelming! Join us for this important workshop on Friday, April 13, 2018, from 10 a.m. to noon at the Dunn Loring Center for Parent Services, Entrance 1, Room 100. Andrew Guillen, FCPS IEP Educational Specialist and Mary Beth Cunningham, Manager, FCPS Parent Resource Center (PRC), will present strategies to support your role in your child’s IEP meetings.
  • Vision 2018 Career and Transition Services (CTS) and Northern Virginia Community College (NOVA), are offering an opportunity for students with disabilities interested in NOVA to learn about options available.  Vision 2018 will be held on Wednesday, April 18, 2018, at the NOVA Annandale Campus from 4 to 6 p.m. The conference will include presentations from Disability Support Services, Counseling Services, and a Q&A session. NOVA Annandale Campus is located at 8333 Little River Turnpike. For more information students and/or parents should contact their school’s Employment and Transition Services Representative (ETR).
  • The 13th Annual Special Education Conference will be held on Saturday, April 21, 2018, from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Keynote Speaker, Dr. Pamela Mims, will speak about Justifying Inclusion for All. In addition to the keynote speaker, there will also be numerous workshops to choose from on a wide variety of topics. An exhibit hall will be in the cafeteria where you’ll find representatives from local organizations and agencies who support students with disabilities. Exhibitors will be available to speak with and provide plenty of information. This conference will take place at Hayfield Secondary School, 7630 Telegraph Road, Alexandria, Virginia 22315. View all conference details at  https://www.fcps.edu/spedconference2018
  • Do your children know they have a secure place in your family? Do you set a “place” for them in your family? Do you focus on yourself first? Join us for ScreamFree, an interactive workshop to learn strategies to become the cool, calm, connected parent your child really needs. Keeping your cool creates a place for everyone in your family. ScreamFree will take place on Friday, April 27, 2018, from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at the Dunn Loring Center for Parent Services, Entrance 1, Room 100. Peace begins with pause!
  • The FCPS PRC provides resources, information, and consultations to support the success of all students, including those with learning challenges, special needs, and disabilities. Confidential meetings, training opportunities, an extensive lending library, and a year-long calendar of workshops are offered for parents, educators, and community members through collaboration with staff members from FCPS offices as well as local and national experts. Contact the FCPS PRC for additional information, to schedule a consultation, use our extensive lending library, or to attend a workshop at 703-204-3941 or email prc@fcps.edu. Follow us on Twitter @prc_fcps, like us on Facebook at FCPS – Parent Resource Center and tune into our You Tube Channel at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCpvmcIWFX4DXwEQgBCSKIdg to see some of our recorded workshops. Bookmark our website to stay up-to-date with all our workshops and resources: https://www.fcps.edu/resources/family-engagement/parent-resource-center
  • During the 2017-18 school year, Assistive Technology Services (ATS) will be offering training sessions focused on the use of high-end Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) devices. Participants will learn basic programming and maintenance of the devices as well as integration ideas. These sessions are open to both staff members and parents of students using the specific devices. To register, contact the ATS Resource Teacher who supports your school. April sessions will include the following topics:

April 10, 2018, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., PRC Devices – Lanier Middle School

April 11, 2018, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., PRC Devices – Lanier Middle School

April 16, 2018, 9 a.m. to noon, Words for Life App – Virginia Hills

April 17, 2018, 9 a.m. to noon, Proloquo2Go App – Lanier Middle School

April 24, 2018, 9 a.m. to noon, Words for Life App – Lanier Middle School


The Parent Resource Center now has it’s own YouTube channel! Subscribe NOW.

We will be sharing many of our workshops throughout the school year on our channel. Our first video is from Thinking Outside the Box: Creative Postsecondary Employment Ideas for Students with Disabilities, a workshop presented by FCPS Career and Transition Services,The Arc of Northern Virginia, and the Fairfax-Falls Church Community Services Board. Watch Thinking Outside the Box now.

Watch for many other workshops that will be added to our playlist. Subscribe to our channel NOW.


The FCPS Parent Resource Center (PRC) helps parents of students with disabilities.  It sponsors workshops, has a lending library, and has Parent Liaisons to help parents solve problems.   2334 Gallows Rd. Rm 105, Dunn Loring    English:  703-204-3941  Espanol: 703-204-3955  The PRC can often provide translation services for their events into Spanish, Arabic, or other languages if you contact them well in advance.

Support Groups for Parents

Alpha Moms  This support group for adoptive parents meets monthly in McLean.


CHADD: Children & Adults with Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder
Alexandria CHADD Parent Support Group  4th Mon. of each month at 6:30 pm
West Fairfax CHADD Parent Support Group   1st & 3rd Tues. of each month at 7:30 pm Contact:  Sharon  clintob@aol.com  703 716-4646


CSB Family Support Group at Gatlan Center  2nd and 4th Wed. of each month 6-8 pm in Alexandria Contact:  Samar.Chwairy@fairfaxcounty.gov 703-799-2882


D.A.D.S.  Dads Appreciating Down Syndrome 3rd Thur. each month, 7-9 pm in Alexandria; and last Wed. of each month in Tysons at 7-9 pm  Contact:  rich_westhoff@hotmail.com   571-490-1268


Fairfax Juvenile Court Parent Support Group for problems including runaway behavior, truancy, alcohol/drug abuse, and serious behavioral problems at home, at school, or in the community. 7:30 pm every Tues. Room 201.1 Fairfax County Courthouse  703-246-2495


JCCNV Special Needs Parent Support Group  1st Wed. each month, 7:00–8:30 pm
Contact:  Melissa at MelissaH@jccnv.org Cost: $15 per meeting.


NAMI:  National Alliance on Mental Illness builds better lives for those affected by mental illness.
Fairfax Family Support Group meets on the 2nd Thur. of each month  7:30-9:00 pm
Contact:  Heather   daviesva@gmail.com  or  703-362-4985
Springfield Family Support Group  meets the 4th Thur. of each month 7:00-8:30 pm
Contact:  Heather    daviesva@gmail.com  or  703-362-4985


OCD Family Support Group   1st Mon. of each month, 7:30 pm


POAC: Parents of Autistic Children of Northern Virginia
Bimonthly Support Group  Contact:  Nicole Zupan at nicizupan@gmail.com


Northern Virginia Tourette Support Group meets the 2nd Sunday of each month at noon at the Chantilly Public Library.  Contact:  mark.bramer@gmail.com