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Speaker, Author & Consultant for Students with Disabilities

Speaking & Consulting

Keynote Presentation

Beyond Classification: This keynote presentation provides strategies for increasing the academic performance, self-determination, and self-advocacy skills of students with disabilities. As an entrepreneur and performance poet with a learning disability who has worked as an advocate on the national, state and local level, LeDerick Horne provides a unique prospective on education reform and issues related to creating a more equitable society. This emotionally stirring talk is filled with moving verses and empowering information that will prepare the audience to challenge stereotypes, rethink pedagogy and improve the lives of people with disabilities.


Key Objectives: Increasing Performance and Confidence– The audience will have a greater understanding of educational policies and practices that have contributed to the poor performance of students with disabilities. They will also see how using an asset based model in an inclusive setting can improve student’s outcomes.


Self-Determination – The audience will be given some of the key strategies for developing self-determination skills for students with disabilities. Some of these strategies will include mentoring, systematic development of disability awareness, and delivering supports in a way that is culturally competent.


Self-Advocacy – Many studies state that self-advocacy skills are required for people to successfully transition through life. The audience will understand how building communication skills, developing a clear understanding of one’s abilities, and knowing how to access accommodations are key in a student’s long-term success.

Workshops for Educators, Parents and Service Providers

Changing School Culture is a workshop that examines how contemporary education practices, policies, and personnel positively and negatively affect students with disabilities. Participants are asked to confront the written and unwritten cultural standards in their own schools so they can create an environment that optimizes each student’s potential. Nationally recognized programs will be presented as examples of best practices and there will be a focus on creating a systemic change throughout schools and communities.


Unconventional Thinking: Tapping Creativity to Teach to Students' Assets LeDerick Horne will lead faculty and staff through a creative writing exercise that challenges them to think unconventionally and take risks. Through discussion after the writing exercise, participants will be asked to call attention to their anxieties, to share their process, and talk about what techniques worked to get them comfortable. Discussion about the methodology LeDerick uses to “free” himself and others to tap into their generative talents; talk about how these methods can inform the way we think about students with learning disabilities, but also how these techniques can benefit all students and create a more inclusive classroom. Participants will discuss the inclusive classroom and the way that contemporary education practices, polices, and personnel can positively and negatively affect students with diverse learning needs. This workshop will also ask faculty to confront the written and unwritten cultural standards in their own school so they can create an environment that optimized each student’s potential.


Nothing about Us, Without Us: Meaningful Youth Leadership and Involvement This workshop examines the ways educators and service providers throughout the United States are meaningfully working with youth and young-adults to improve the quality of their programs. Best practice examples on the local, state and national level will be presented and participants will be shown a various ways to collaborate with youth and young-adults.


Finding Your Voice This workshop presents ways to incorporate the writing and performance of poetry into After-School and Recreation programs. Participants will be given strategies for creating an inclusive environment for all youth to express themselves through writing regardless of their writing ability.

Workshops for Youth and Young Adults

Self-Advocacy: What Is It And How Does It Work? This workshop introduces high school students to the concept of self-advocacy, demonstrates how self-advocacy works in a variety of situations, and prepares students to begin advocating for themselves in several postsecondary settings. Students will also understand how self-advocacy skills are linked to identifying and achieving their life goals.


Finding Your Voice (for youth) Form-poems and other alternatives to standard writing will be used in this session to help students write poems. The poetry from this session will be used to help students understand the many benefits of writing and they will learn how creating art can help you develop a new vision for yourself and your school.


The above abstracts are for presentations and workshops that LeDerick has successfully delivered for clients throughout the United States. Upon request, LeDerick is willing to create a presentation or workshop to meet the exact needs of your school or community. He has also worked with state and local organizations on long-term projects addressing issues like youth leadership and school climate. Please send LeDerick an email for more information.


What clients and colleagues say

"LeDerick isn’t just a popular speaker on disabilities in the country today...

— his experiences have been transformed into a very touching message of how labels and low expectations can hurt children, but also about how the care and concern of one adult can make all the difference. Whether he’s encouraging others with stories from his own personal journey, helping to inform policy discussions, providing hope for those who have lost hope, or fostering a better understanding of the potential within all people with disabilities, LeDerick is an invaluable source of inspiration and leadership."


Melody Musgrove

Director of the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP)

US Department of Education

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