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“Brilliantly written from the differing vantage points of both parents and professionals, this book shows how perceptions and assumptions can be falsely formed between ‘opponents.’ Use this knowledge to develop the strong partnerships necessary for parents and professionals to collaborate and support the needs of students!"
“The authors help readers understand that relationships are about human needs and feelings and that partnerships only develop to their potential when each party can both share and listen to content and facts as well as the needs and feelings of the other. This book is destined to be a classic. Give it to someone you care about; and read it yourself reflectively.”
“I love this book. It helps people to truly walk in someone else’s footprints. This guide will show beginning teachers and other professionals how to build successful relationships with their students' parents.”
“This is a book written with a quality that is both honest and sensitive. The authors force us to put aside all other issues, reminding us what is real and essential in our pursuit of genuine student learning.”
“So often in special education, the people involved share the same goal, yet envision a different path to achieve that goal. The authors remind us that our ultimate goal is the same. They show us how, even in the most difficult situations, we can ‘dance’ together in successful collaboration.”
“The authors of this book offer a welcomed, kind and needed message for both professionals and parents: slow the pace, stop and listen. The authors know we build each partnership one at a time. This is a message we desperately need to get into higher education and professional development communities.”
"If parents and professionals could wear out their shoes by dancing the way Fialka, Feldman, and Mikus describe it in this book, the shoes would indeed be worth pressing against one’s heart. Through stories, the authors expertly choreograph the steps families, professionals, and the children must take to foster this essential relationship—like a waltz: one, two, three."
“Having attended many challenging problem-solving meetings, I know how important it is for families and professionals to keep open hearts and minds. This unique resource moves beyond the ‘how to’s’ of effective communication and reminds us of the values that are central to any great team—generosity, creativity, and a willingness to learn from one another.”
“This book offers important suggestions for finding a way to dance together, reminding us exactly why we are dancing—for the child. I strongly recommend this text to parents and professionals. The real-life examples will help all parties understand and empathize with each other, making it that much easier to dance together.”
“This book reminds teachers and professionals to include parents in the timeline of the special education process. The information that parents contribute and different perspective they provide can help us understand the whole child. As I finished this book, I developed a more open perspective to working with parents.”
"This book beautifully reminds us that social change happens through listening, dialogue, and engagement. Beneath our roles as professionals and parents, these authors gently help us to remember that 'we are all people first,' and through empathy we can find ways to sidestep—or dance— around many of the missteps that lead to misunderstanding and conflict. This book is a wonderful resource for anyone trying to navigate the complexities of supporting and advocating for disabled students in inclusive classrooms."
“The authors capture the range of family and provider experiences, communication styles, and strategies that create effective partnerships. This book is a critically important read for families, providers, and especially for preservice students entering professions in which they will work with children and families.”
“As I read this book, I realized that I kept switching back and forth from my ‘professional’ hat to my ‘parent’ hat. Helping us to switch hats is the real power of this work. The personal stories highlight well-documented themes in the literature on parent and professional perspectives. The strategies are practical and effective. This is a text I will revisit often.”
“The parent-professional relationship can be awkward, so using the metaphor of learning to dance together to benefit children is apt. With the resources to help children shrinking, it is more vital than ever for parents and professionals to forge strong partnerships. This perspective can really help—highly recommended.”
“I will use this book as a key text in my courses that include the topics of collaborative teaching, home-school partnerships, and conflict mediation. What a great book for modeling for new teachers the realities of collaboration in the IEP process and the best practices that make the process a joyful dance rather than a difficult experience.”
“A mother who found her calling through fate or accident—and never looked away or glanced back—Janice Fialka is internationally renowned for her relentless, never-say-never advocacy. She and her coauthors offer hope and wisdom for parents who would see more clearly into the lives of their children—disabled or not—and for every professional who would engage them.”
“This is a wonderful reference book to help parent and professionals ‘dance the dance’ together and avoid any missteps. The authors help readers understand the underlying thoughts of both the parent and the professional when they meet to set up a program. This is a sure read for both parents and education professionals.”
“The authors have done the near impossible—they have described the process of partnership in a way that is both easily accessible and incredibly nuanced. They provide a developmental roadmap and the concrete tools we need to make partnerships work. In this book, I have finally found the resource I need.”
“Using understandable, jargon-free language, the authors help professionals and parents understand each others’ viewpoints. The text also provides practical tips and suggestions about how to work together collaboratively. I highly recommend this book for novice and veteran parents and professionals.”
“Rarely does a book hold such promise for promoting genuine partnerships between families of children with disabilities and the professionals who participate in their care. The real-life passages from the authors, seasoned parents, and experienced professionals infuse this work with unparalleled authenticity.”