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October 18 - 19, 2018

10th Annual Mississippi Special Education Conference 

For Parents and Professionals



A special conference rate is being offered by Holiday Inn Express & Suites. 


 Holiday Inn Express & Suites

310 Greymont Avenue

Jackson, MS 39202

 (601) 948-4466




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Thursday, October 18, 2018 at  9:00 AM CST
Friday, Ocotober 19, 2018 at 4:00 PM CST 

Registration begins at 8:00 AM CST both days

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Jackson Convention Center
105 E. Pascagoula Street
Jackson, MS 39201

Driving Directions


Mickey Alford
Coalition/MSPTI, 2 Old River Place, Suite M, Jackson, MS 39202















The 2018 Building Partnerships...Working Together Conference will be educational, enlightening and informative for parents, special education professionals and advocates! The conference is also a great networking and relationship building opportunity for those interested in improving outcomes for students with disabilities in Mississippi. 

Keynote Speaker Day 1: Rick Daynes 

Rick Daynes

Whether diving ancient Spanish galleons as part of Mel Fisher’s Golden Crew, being life-flighted out of a tropical jungle or snowboarding off precipitous mountain cliffs, Rick Daynes has been finding adventure his entire life. Today however, the adventure he enjoys most is the one that found him. 

Rick recently released his first book, “Keep It Together Man” For Dads with a Special Kid. It is based on his experiences as a husband and father of five, three of whom are on the Autism Spectrum; one has Asperger’s Syndrome and another Down Syndrome.

Rick has presented across the United States and Canada, been featured on several television and radio shows, and has helped change the lives of thousands. He brings a unique perspective that encourages audiences to expand their creativity and take action EVERY DAY!

Marriage, children, money, and everyday battles take their toll on any parent. Throw a kid with special needs into that mix, and it’s an entirely different ball game. Rick navigates a clear path through the roller coaster of different lives. The challenges and triumphs that mold families are celebrated. Get ready to laugh, cry, and be inspired by the keeping-it-real dad, who offers life changing solutions and tools to ALL parents, teachers, or anyone who wants to empower their life and shape the brightest future.

Click here to read more about Rick Daynes

Keynote Speaker Day 2: Ronnie Sidney

Ronnie Sidney, II, Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW), is a father, therapist, author, app developer, professional speaker and entrepreneur. He received a Master of Social Work from Virginia Commonwealth University in 2014. Ronnie was raised in Tappahannock, Virginia, and attended Essex County Public Schools (ECPS). While attending ECPS, he spent several years in Special Education after being diagnosed with a learning disability. The stigmatization of special education created a lack of interest in school. Nevertheless, he graduated from Essex High School in 2001, but with a 1.8 GPA. With limited options regarding four-year colleges, he decided to enroll in J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College in Richmond, Virginia. The following year, he transferred to Old Dominion University, where he received a Bachelor of Science degree in Human Services in 2006. 

Click here to read more about Ronnie

Topics covered during the conference will include:

  • Overview of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)
  • Dyslexia
  • Social and Emotional Learning
  • State Complaints 
  • Evidence-Based Practice for Students with ASD 
  • Parental Collaboration and Involvement
  • Academic Standards 
  • Legal Issues in Special Education
  • Supporting Children with Limited Communication, Life and Functional Skills
  • Mental Health Supports
  • Assistive Technology
Dr. Patrick Schwarz is a dynamic and engaging professor, author, motivational speaker and leader in Education (Inclusive Education, Special Education, General Education, Educational Leadership) and Human Services. He is a professor at National-Louis University, Chicago. Patrick’s company is Creative Culture Consulting LLC. He is the author of From Disability to Possibility, You’re Welcome (with Paula Kluth), Just Give Him the Whale (with Paula Kluth) and Pedro’s Whale (with Paula Kluth). His new book is From Possibility to Success.
CEUs and SEMIs will be offered through Mississippi College

Be sure to ask your school district for sponsorship to assist with travel expenses. Parent training is a related service.  

Should you experience any difficulty completing your registration, contact
Mickey Alford