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16. Presuming Competence with Jillian Parramore

Jillian Parramore has a B.A. in Applied Arts and Sciences Liberal Studies, emphasizing Elementary Education and Bachelor's in Child Development with a credential.

Jillian has taught early childhood, elementary, middle school, and university level for the past ten years. For the past six years, Jillian has been training special education departments on inclusive education in school districts throughout Southern California. She also provides health education for her community through People First of California. She also volunteers for Beyond Awareness Celebration events in school districts. Jillian participated in TEDxChula Vista to discuss inclusion in society through her lived experience with Cerebral Palsy and living on the Autism spectrum. The video can be found here. Jillian and her partner live together with their three rescue dogs, including Starbuck, a 21-year-old chihuahua.

In this episode, Jillian Parramore shares about her life growing up as a child with multiple disabilities, and especially as a child who did not speak until the age of 10. She shares about the way that she was treated, and how this lonely experience of being spoken about, rather than spoken to, affected her concept of self. Jillian distinguishes about the differences between mainstreaming and inclusion, and shares direct messages of encouragement for educators, parents, and students, about how we must presume competence, and advocate for, facilitate, and respect alternative communication methods. 


Links Mentioned  

Disability Rights California


Stay Connected with Diana

Diana's Website

FREE RESOURCE - 5 Keys to Going Beyond Awareness 

Beyond Awareness: Bringing Disability into Diversity in K-12 Schools & Communities - Diana's Book

Ed Roberts: Champion of Disability Rights - Diana's Children's Book

"Beyond Awareness" Digital Course

Diana's TEDx Talk

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