SPAN The Bridge Newsletter pictorial graphic.  Your weekly access to SPAN news, resources and events.

April 19, 2022 | Issue 25 (View newsletter as webpage)

Important News

Equity Photo

Plans to Advance Equity and Racial Justice Across the Federal Government

More than 90 federal agencies released the first-ever Equity Action Plans that include over 300 concrete strategies to address systemic barriers. The action plans make changes in our nation's policies and programs that "hold too many underserved communities back from prosperity, dignity and equality."

Federal agencies are expanding investments and support in communities such as:

  • Communities of color
  • Tribal communities
  • Rural communities
  • LGBTQI+ communities
  • People with disabilities
  • Women and girls
  • Communities impacted by persistent poverty

See agency Equity Action Plan snapshots here

Links to some of the most important Equity Action Plans for family-led, family-serving organizations:

US Department of Education plan here

US Department of Health and Human Services plan here

US Department of Labor plan here


Free Legal Counsel and Social Services to Support Migrant Children and Youth

New Jersey is home to the fifth-largest population of unaccompanied migrant children in the US

KIND (Kids In Need of Defense) logo

The NJ Department of Human Services is partnering with Kids in Need of Defense (KIND) (Link) to provide legal counsel and social services coordination to unaccompanied minors seeking refuge in NJ.

Migrant children and youth seeking protection in the U.S. do not have the right to appointed counsel in immigration court.  This program will provide free expert legal counsel to unaccompanied immigrant children and youth at risk of deportation.

The program will also support unaccompanied immigrant children and youth in need of social services coordination as they make New Jersey their home. Social services support connects children to:

  • essential medical care,
  • mental health services
  • education
  • other services to help them integrate into their communities

Social services improve socio-emotional, health, and educational outcomes. 

Individuals seeking immigration legal assistance for an unaccompanied child or youth under age 21

can call 201-305-9217 or email for an eligibility assessment here.

Read the full press release here

Los Servicios Humanos se junta con KIND para ofrecer asesoramiento jurídico gratuito y apoyo de servicios sociales a niños y jóvenes inmigrantes

Statewide Special Education Leadership Roundtable - Spring, 2022

Sen Gopal.jpg

It starts with you. Join this important conversation with NJ Senator Vin Gopal, Chair, Senate Education Committee about his role as a policymaker. SPAN Policy Director, Peg Kinsell will discuss how a bill becomes a law and ways that parent groups can influence the policies that affect children with learning differences.

Monday, May 23rd at 7:00 PM


Wednesday, May 25th at 10:00 AM

Register for the Roundtable here

Submit a question for the Senator here

For additional information or to submit a question without using the form,

contact Debbie Esposito


Upcoming Events

See what's happening

SPAN offers a variety of learning opportunities for families and the professionals who work with them. Check out our Event Calendar here for details and registration links

Upcoming Events include:

More events

SPAN Resource Parent Logo

SPAN Resource (SRP) Parent Training

Spring, 2022

"It takes each of us to make a difference for all of us."

The SRP Training course covers:

  • Laws and regulations
  • Special education processes 
  • Strategies for working effectively with the school team 
  • Dynamics of systems that serve children with disabilities and special health care needs

Both parents/caregivers and professionals are welcome to participate. The course includes:

  • Eight weekly Zoom sessions
  • Google Classroom learning activities that are completed independently

Individuals who complete the entire training course receive a compilation of useful resources and are prepared to share information with families about concerns related to their child’s education and development.


Register Here

There is no fee to register for those 

who commit to volunteering after completing the course.

There is a $350 fee for those who do not wish to volunteer.

Share your SPAN testimonial story! CLICK HERE

Join the SPAN Team - View Open Positions here

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