Texas Tech University

West Texas special education teachers complete training in dual diagnosis

Robert Stein

January 19, 2021

Project TEDD: Training Educators in Dual Diagnosis

The training was provided through the Virginia Murray Sowell Center for Research and Education in Sensory Disabilities.

A group of 27 teachers from 25 school districts in West Texas recently completed training as part of Project TEDD: Training Educators in Dual Diagnosis, an initiative to address a state need for K-12 educators who specialize in teaching students who have a dual diagnosis of an intellectual and developmental disability (I/DD) and a mental health condition.

The participants completed a virtual, one-day workshop through Texas Tech University's Virginia Murray Sowell Center for Research and Education in Sensory Disabilities, learning necessary skills for recognizing, understanding and working with individuals with dual diagnosis. This workshop equipped them with specialized skills to also train other teachers on dual diagnosis.

"Project TEDD congratulates these special education teachers on participating in the training workshop on dual diagnosis," said Dr. Devender Banda, the project director and a professor of special education at Texas Tech. "These educators are a valuable resource in their respective school districts and can provide additional training and information on educating students with dual diagnosis."

The special education teachers who completed the training included:

Ms. Krystal Woosley, Denver City ISD Ms. Christy Puryear, Plains ISD
Ms. Patricia Mendez, Frenship ISD Ms. Kate McCandless, Plainview ISD
Ms. Stephani Campbell, Frenship ISD Ms. Karen Garner, Post ISD
Ms. Carla Sells, Hale Center ISD Ms. Renee Thomas, Ralls ISD
Mr. James Allison, Idalou ISD Ms. Kristi Griffith, Roosevelt ISD
Ms. Tracye Swafford, Lamesa ISD Ms. Joyce Laurens, Sands CISD
Ms. Victoria Jones, Levelland ISD Ms. Haley Ross, Seminole ISD
Ms. Heather Cortez, Lorenzo ISD Ms. Mindy Shadden, Shallowater ISD
Ms. Sherri Moyers, Lubbock ISD Ms. Bailey Richardson, Slaton ISD
Ms. Jessica Chambers, Lubbock-Cooper ISD Ms. Brandee Hamilton, Spur ISD
Ms. Courtney May, Meadow ISD Ms. Dana Conrad, Spur ISD
Ms. Erin Jones, Motley County ISD Ms. Brandi Webb, Sundown ISD
Ms. Lynsey Skipper Copeland, New Deal ISD  

These teachers are the first to take part in Project TEDD, which aims to train a total of 400 special educators over five years using a "train-the-trainer" approach. Each participant is expected to train at least five additional educators, meaning Project TEDD will impact a total of 2,000 or more educators across Texas.

Project TEDD is coordinated by Texas Tech and funded by a $1.5 million grant from the Texas Council for Developmental Disabilities (TCDD). The mission of TCDD is to create change where all people with disabilities are fully included in their communities and exercise control over their own lives.