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The National Center on Dispute Resolution in Special Education

"Encouraging the use of mediation and other collaborative strategies to resolve disagreements about special
education and early intervention programs."

Advocates Across America

Joan McCabe-Kern
P.O. Box 754
Chandler, AZ 85244-0754
Telephone: 480-917-0955
Fax: 480-814-9404
My name is Joan McCabe-Kern and I'm the Director of Advocates Across America a non-profit organization dedicated to teaching parents and other interested people how to advocate effectively for the educational rights of children with special needs. As a parent of a child with special needs, a certified Special Education Teacher and a Professional Education Advocate - I have a variety of experiences that create a comprehensive understanding in most situations. Advocates Across America is developing curriculum for Advanced Education Advocacy Training and a program for "Advocacy Certification". The organization provides individualized advocacy services and information, as well as a 6 hour audio-tape training program and manual. Our long range goal is to develop a network of "advocates across America".

Services Offered

  • Advocate
  • Conflict Prevention
  • Conflict Resolution System Design
  • Educator - Special Education
  • Facilitator - Group
  • Facilitator - IEP
  • Facilitator - IFSP
  • Facilitator - Wraparound
  • Interagency Collaboration
  • Mediation Services - Facilitative
  • Organizational Development
  • Parent of Child with Disability
  • Trainer - Basic Mediation Skills
  • Trainer - Communication Skills
  • Trainer - Negotiation Skills

Academic Degrees

BS in Special Education with certifications in LD, EH and MH

Special Education and Conflict Resolution Experience

I have taught a variety of individuals of all ages and with a variety of disabilities. I have a BS in Special Education with current certifications (in AZ) in Learning Disabilities, Emotional Disabilities and Mental Disabilities. I was trained as a Mediator for the AZ Dept. of Education - but can no longer be of service due to the IDEA reauthorization because I have represented parents in the past year. As an Education Advocate I developed the Education Advocacy Program for The Arc of AZ, have attended hundreds of IEP's, assisting parents through the maze and am now the Director of Advocates Across America. Our mission is to teach parents to be their child's best advocate and to do it in a non-adversarial manner.

Practicing in