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In Memory of Joan Tellefsen
Joan Tellefsen, former TASK executive director

Joan Tellefsen, who worked at TASK for 25 years and served as our executive director until retiring in 2004, passed away in her sleep on Thursday, Feb. 20th. Having joined the board of directors in 1979, Joan helped preside over TASK’s expansion into a viable organization. Affectionately dubbed “Fearless Leader,” she was renowned by staff for her sense of humor as well as her ambition for our organization: “I’d like to see a [TASK] office in every city and a technology center in every office,” she said in a 2004 interview published in our newsletter. Among her many accomplishments, Joan helped steer the creation of our TECH Center and assistive technology program. She served on numerous national committees that helped strengthen and shape the work of the Parent Training and Information Centers as we know them today. TASK staff would like to thank Joan for helping to blaze the trail and making our organization what it is today.

Joan is survived by her husband Ed, daughters Bobbi and Cindy, and three grandchildren.

In lieu of flowers, plants or sympathy cards, her family has requested that donations be made to TASK in her name.

California's Special Education Task Force: Make Your Voice Heard!
A new initiative in California, the Special Education Task Force, is working on changing education to improve student outcomes. The Task Force will examine California's systems for providing services to students with disabilities and make recommendations to the Commission on Teacher Credentialing, the Department of Education, the legislature and the State Board of Education.

In order to get as much insight as possible into the issues facing students with disabilities, the Task Force needs your help! You can e-mail your written input to spedtf@smcoe.org or attend one of their public forums to submit your input in person. For more information on the California Special Education TASK Force and how you can make your voice heard and influence the process of improving our educational system, visit the Statewide Special Education Task Force website.

WonderGrove Kids Interviews TASK's Deputy Director
TASK Deputy Director Brenda Smith and her son Tobi recently met with WonderGrove Kids for an "animated" interview. Click here to watch the video on our news page!

Board Members Needed
TASK is looking for qualified individuals to serve on our Board of Directors. If you are the parent of a child with a disability or a professional that lives in Ventura, Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo, Mono, Inyo or Imperial Counties, please consider applying to the board. For more information, please call (866) 828-8275.

DONATE and get a TASK Tote Bag! More info...

Donate to get a TASK Tote Bag. Click for more information.



TASK's Basic Rights workshop includes an overview of the basic rights and protections under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, an overview of Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, and explanations of record-keeping requirements and the assessment process. More...

The IEP Rights and Strategies workshop  provides an overview of the rights and protections mandated for special needs children as well as advocacy tips and strategies. More...

Transition workshops provide information on entering the public school system. TASK also offers an Adult Transition workshop. More...


TASK provides legal rights information, individual telephone assistance and peer support. If you are in need of services, please call. 


Team of Advocates for Special Kids (TASK) is a Parent Training and Information Center that parents and professionals can turn to for assistance in seeking and obtaining needed early intervention, educational, medical or therapeutic support service for children. More..

TASK on Facebook
TASK is now on FACEBOOK!


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TASK Videos

Now available for viewing on our website or on YouTube, TASK has produced a series of videos for families who are accessing special education for the first time, as well as those who may still have unanswered questions. Watch them on our videos page! We also have a page featuring some of our favorite videos from around the Web, like the following video, created by Laura Cobb, who has aphasia and made this wonderful clip of tips on how to talk to people who have speech disorders: