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"Opening Doors of Tomorrow, Today"

"Opening Doors of Tomorrow, Today" is a Karen Gaffney Foundation video geared toward educators and paraprofessionals. It focuses on the keys to successful inclusion from the student's point of view. Dr. Jean Edwards, Ph.D., Special Education Professor at Portland State University was kind enough to lend us her classroom of education students who have the opportunity to ask Karen Gaffney about inclusive classroom settings and what worked for her. Karen delivers a polished presentation full of important information for both families and educators.

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"With the same forthright, practical approach she took in her first informational video directed at parents, Karen Gaffney and the Karen Gaffney Foundation has produced "Opening the Doors of Tomorrow, Today" specifically to help teachers provide an exceptional education for their students with special needs. Karen shares her experience growing up with Down syndrome, and in a straightforward, question-and-answer format, she gives concrete examples of how teachers successfully supported her in mainstream education. This video has the potential to be a great starting point for any educators‹from those who have never had a child with special needs in their class and who are wondering what works to those just starting their careers as special educators."

    Bridget M. Lyne
    EP (Exceptional Parent) magazine

"Karen Gaffney is an engaging and remarkable young woman who can teach all of us many valuable lessons. When she reminds us what WE can do to assist individuals with disabilities to succeed in school and in the community, I sit up and listen! I hope this video will be used to inform professionals and families everywhere on the powers of self-determination and strong family involvement."

    Diane S. Bassett, Ph.D.
    Council for Exceptional Children
    Division on Career Development and Transition

"Opening Doors of Tomorrow, Today provides a wonderful introduction for educators to the many benefits and facets of inclusion for students with developmental disabilities, in particular, Down syndrome. Karen Gaffney does a marvelous job of narrating the video, demonstrating first-hand how being fully included in school can have a positive impact not only on the individual with a disability, but also on the other students and teachers. Upon viewing the video, educators will see that inclusion is not an overwhelming concept. With a positive attitude, a little extra work, and a bit of flexibility, educators can help make successful inclusion a reality for students with developmental disabilities."

    Andrea Lack, CSW
    Associate Director
    National Down Syndrome Society

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