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Disability Equality in Education September 2023 Newsletter

September 26, 2023 | by sau1admin

Disability Equality in Education logo

Disability Equality in Education

September 2023 Newsletter


Disability Equality in Education Logo which is a silhouette of a person with short hair facing right, the shape of a brain in white and a rainbow coming out of the top of the head to the left. The words “Disability Equality in Education” appear to the left of the rainbow and “Eradicating disability stigma in education” appear to the left of the silhouette.

In this issue:

  • Website updates

  • Educator Membership

  • PA Disability Inclusive Curriculum Pilot Program Update

  • Coalition on Disability Inclusive Curriculum

  • Founder, Alan Holdsworth, receives the inaugural Judy Heumann Advocacy Award from the National Council on Independent Living (NCIL)

  • Shortlisted for Zero Project

  • Help Wanted

Busy Summer!

We’ve had a good and very busy summer. We hope you had a good one as well and that your school year is off to a good start. Read on to learn about the excitement.

Website Updates

We’ve been busy over the summer updating our website, getting it ready for the new school year, and the many schools who will be using it for the Pennsylvania Disability Inclusive Curriculum Pilot.

Our home page has a new section called “New and Noteworthy” where we will post, you guessed it, things that are new and/or noteworthy! You may find links to current event stories that foster discussion of disability in the social model, notification of new lessons or resources we’ve added, and we may highlight some of our favorite lessons and resources from time to time as well.

We’ve also added two new pages, titled “Getting Started” and “Guidance on Introducing Disability Inclusive Curriculum”, both of which can be found under the Education tab.

For the first few months of the school year, you may notice a black announcement bar at the top of the page. This is our way of ensuring that all of the schools participating in the Pilot receive a welcome message and some personalized information for them related to the pilot.

You will also notice new offerings under the Services tab, most notably, the Educator Membership. More information about that is below.

Educator Membership

Educators: The Disability Inclusive Curriculum Educator Membership is open for registration!

Disability Inclusive Curriculum provides all students, disabled and non-disabled, with an understanding of disability through a social model lens. All Disability Inclusive Curriculum content is designed to be integrated with existing lesson plans and has been either created or approved by disabled people.

Newly available, the Educator Forum, available through our Educator Membership, gives members access to other teachers, experts and resources that make lesson planning easier. Whether you are participating in Pennsylvania’s Disability Inclusive Curriculum Pilot Grant, using the Disability Inclusive Curriculum toolkit, or are incorporating disability into the classroom in your own way, the Educator Membership is an essential resource.

Educator Membership includes:

  • Exclusive Google Classroom content including easy-to-digest lessons and conversations on current events

  • Weekly drop-in Zoom sessions - ask questions and participate in the conversation as it happens

  • Monthly conversations with leading disability inclusive activists, authors and historians

  • Space to share lessons, ideas and support

Register now:

Individual, lifetime and organization membership options are available.

PA Disability Inclusive Curriculum Pilot Program Update

Over the summer, Governor Shapiro announced that 10 schools/districts would be receiving full funding and support for the PA Disability Inclusive Curriculum Pilot Grant. We’ve also learned that there are another 20-plus schools/districts that applied and will receive varying levels of support. Furthermore, the toolkit on the SAS portal is now posted online and is available to all schools nationally at: The lessons and resources as well as our professional development are featured at the top of the toolkit.

We are looking forward to working with the pilot awardees over the next 3 years and beyond.

Founder, Alan Holdsworth, receives the inaugural Judy Heumann Advocacy Award from National Council on Independent Living (NCIL)

We are proud to share that when the National Council on Independent Living (NCIL) met in July, they awarded our Founder, Alan Holdsworth with the inaugural Judy Heumann Advocacy Award. Alan used this opportunity to get all attendees excited about the Disability Inclusive Curriculum and increase the membership of the Coalition on Disability Inclusive Curriculum. Anita Cameron was one of the other honorees. She received the 2023 Corey Rowley National Advocacy Award for her work in systems change advocacy and activism.

We’re honored to share that Anita is excited about our mission and has joined the Coalition and Alan invited her to be on the Board of the non-profit Disability Equality in Education. Anita’s wisdom and experience will make sure that all means all.


[IMAGE DESCRIPTION: Alan Holdsworth smiling wearing a cowboy hat holding an award plaque that reads: “Judy Heumann Advocacy Award.” Anita Cameron sits next to him. Anita is proudly smiling and is holding the award that reads “Corey Rowley Advocacy Award”.]

Shortlisted for Zero Project

Disability Equality In Education has successfully made it through the first round of peer-review at the Zero Project Call for Nominations 2024 and is now part of the coveted shortlist.

From the Zero Project: “What makes this achievement even more laudable is the fact that your placement on the shortlist was determined directly by peer-review votes placed by disability inclusion experts from all around the world. Your peers, who share the same passion and vision for creating a more inclusive world, have acknowledged the profound impact your projects have had and continue to have. This is a testament to the fact that your work is resonating deeply within the community that understands the challenges and triumphs of disability inclusion.”

“It is also important to recognize that your projects are directly aligned with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UN CRPD). By addressing the needs and rights of persons with disabilities, you are contributing to the global effort to create a more just, equitable, and inclusive society – a world with zero barriers.”

We are proud to be recognized and included with the many other excellent projects shortlisted for the 2024 Zero Project Award.


Image Description: Zero Project Shortlist 2024 badge.

Help Wanted

Join us in making a difference! At Disability Equality in Education, we believe in the power of dedicated volunteers like you to drive our mission forward. There are countless ways you can contribute, each tailored to your unique skills, interests, and availability. Your support is the key to growing this movement. Come be a part of our passionate team and help us build and ensure that all students have access to the very best Disability Inclusive Curriculum.

To sign up and learn about our volunteer opportunities fill out this Google Form or email us at

A list of volunteer options is available as well.

Knowledge is power, use it to connect with us!

Learn more about Self Advocates United as 1’s (SAU1) work, being a self advocate, and
speaking up for people’s rights

You can reach us in lots of ways. It’s easy!

Mail Us

984 Water St.
PO Box 297
Meadville PA 16335

Email SAU1 at
Give Carla at SAU1 a call at
724 588 2378.

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We will connect with you as soon as possible.

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Your donation supports our mission: to support the self advocacy of people with disabilities for positive impact in our communities and in people’s lives.

Self Advocates United as 1 is a non-profit organization. As a 501c3, your donation is tax deductible to the extent allowable by law. No goods or services were provided in exchange for this contribution.