Hilpp Serves State Advisory Panel
Posted on October 1, 2023, by GAPMP
Vicki Hilpp shares about her experiences serving on the prestigious State Advisory Panel.
How did you become a member of SAP?
I learned about the State Advisory Panel and the application process through Anne Ladd. I talked with my Director about applying, and she encouraged me to do so. The application asks for information regarding areas of specialty training, professional affiliations, why I wanted to be a member of the SAP, what my vision is for Georgia students with disabilities, and to provide references. 51% of the Panel members must be individuals with disabilities and parents. My role on the panel is a parent of an individual with a disability.
How does the work you do as a parent mentor inform your work as a member of SAP and vice versa?
Working with parents in our district, I have a good sense of what is important to families of SWD. Listening to questions, concerns and gathering information about what resources are relevant to our families helps me be able to provide input during our SAP meetings. Being a parent myself also gives me a perspective that I can offer to the panel. Each Panel member brings a voice from their area of expertise and from their district.
What is something you have learned through SAP that you wish every parent knew?
I’ve learned that at the state level, there is much thought and consideration that goes into every decision made for SWD in Georgia, and there is a true heart and desire to see all SWD succeed. There are processes and constraints that those at the state level must work within, so sometimes the wheels move more slowly than parents would like to see.
What is something that has changed how you parent because of your involvement in SAP?
I have always been a parent involved in the education of my children, and in the IEP process, but I feel like I have gained a much broader understanding of how things work at the state level and how things trickle down to LEAs. I’ve gained some patience and a higher level of respect for schools, teachers and administrators because I’ve learned how complex their jobs really are. I’ve also worked harder to help my two adult children with disabilities increase their self-determination and self-advocacy skills.
Communicating Informing Collaborating Sharing Power
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