Our Workshops


A large conference with nationally known speakers is typically scheduled bi-annually.   Conferences have focused on social issues, healthcare, behavioral issues, sexuality, abuse prevention, estate planning and education techniques.

We are devoted to providing pertinent educational opportunities that empower our membership and community to become better educated about people with Down syndrome, the challenges they face, and how to help these individuals achieve their life goals.

Smaller Scale Workshops and Talks

Periodically, we schedule smaller scale workshops and programs that cover topics related to Down syndrome in the areas of parenting, education, healthcare, recreation, therapies, self advocacy, sibling issues, behavior, and life planning to name a few.

Virtual Workshop on Regression and Down syndrome with Dr. Jonathon Santoro, MD

Thursday, February 23, 2023 from 6:30- 8:00 pm

Join DSACC to learn more about what regression is, who it effects, and get all your questions answered.

How to work with teachers to implement successful accommodations & adaptations

We welcome Stanford professors Lakshmi Balasubramanian, Ph.D. and Renee Starowicz, Ph.D. as they take us through a 2 part workshop on how to work with teachers to get the most out of adaptations and accommodations in the classroom & at home.

About the presenters:

Lakshmi BalasubramanianLakshmi Balasubramanian is a Lecturer and Researcher in the field of special education at the Graduate School of Education at Stanford University. She completed her Ph.D. in Special Education at the joint doctoral program at the University of California, Berkeley with San Francisco State University in May 2021. Her dissertation research examined the processes and practices of inclusive education for students with diverse disabilities in a school district in Northern California. The first part of the dissertation is a theoretical articulation of a conceptual framework that school districts and local education agencies can use to design, implement, and sustain inclusive educational practices. This framework has three central tenets, which relate to (a) how students access general education, (b) meaningful ways in which they can participate alongside their peers, and (c) support structures that can undergird effective implementation. The second part of this dissertation consists of an empirical study that evaluated the deployment of this framework in implementing inclusive education in the kindergarten-through-12th-grade context. It brought under scrutiny the system-level processes and programmatic structures that were in place or being developed at this school district. Facilitators and barriers to inclusion were examined as they related to access, meaningful participation, and creation and provision of supports for all participants within their sociocultural context. She makes visible the ableist and disablist discourses and practices that sometimes frame the construction of disability and what it means to teach or parent a child with a disability within those confines. In this way, this research untangles the oppressive ideologies that are prevalent in narratives about the disabled and destabilizes any claims made to a normative ideal, while affirming that inclusion and receiving education in the least restrictive environment is a civil right for disabled students.

Prior to joining Stanford, Lakshmi worked as a special education teacher and inclusion specialist in a large public school district for 14 years. During this time, she spearheaded the design and implementation of inclusive education programs at the school district in grades K-12. Additionally she has worked as a professional development facilitator nationally and internationally on a variety of topics related to inclusive education and Universal Design for Learning (UDL).

Renee Starowicz earned her Ph.D. from the Joint Program in Special Education at the University of California, Berkeley (UCB) and San Francisco State University (SFSU). Her work is focused at the nexus of interactional communication and Disability Studies in Education (DSE). Her dissertation work looks at the use of communication resources and the embodied experiences of disabled adults in a community-based transition program that supports participants from a trauma-informed and Neurodiversity lens. She is the Data Services Manager and Co-Executive Director of the Federal Statistical Research Data Center at the D-Lab at the University of California, Berkeley. Renee co-teaches the Disability and Access in the Elementary Classroom course with Dr. Balasubramanian and Dr. Lemons at Stanford University.

Potty Training Tips & Tricks with Lina Patel, PsyD

Lina Patel, PsyD is an Associate Professor of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at the University of
Colorado School of Medicine, practicing at Children’s Hospital Colorado.  Dr. Patel is the Director of the
Down Syndrome Behavioral Health Collaborative, a virtual clinic providing tele-behavioral health
services to children, teens and young adults with Down syndrome. She provides consultation with
schools, parent training regarding the management of challenging or unsafe behaviors, toilet training,
and desensitization to medical devices (such as hearing aids and CPAP) and procedure-related distress.
She has worked with hundreds of individuals with Down syndrome. Outside of her clinical work, she
conducts research as the Director of Neurodevelopmental, Behavioral and Cognitive Assessment at the
Linda Crnic Institute for Down Syndrome. Additionally, she has presented to numerous organizations
across the country and internationally and is the coauthor “Potty Time for Kids with Down Syndrome:
Lose the Diapers, Not Your Patience”.


To enhance the quality of life for all people whose lives are touched by Down syndrome.


We envision a community that demonstrates acceptance, inclusion and appreciation for those who have Down syndrome.