We are honored to share this informative interview with a historical figure in the area of bilingual special education, Dr. Patricia Medeiros Landurand. Known as the “mother of bilingual special education,” Dr. Medeiros Landurand began her pioneering work knocking on countless doors at the Massachusetts Department of Education and the U.S. Education Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services demanding support for bilingual/multilingual students with disabilities. Dr. Medeiros Landurand began her career as a teacher working with Portuguese speaking students with and without disabilities in 1975, just as the nation passed the historic Education of Children’s Handicapped Act, also known as Public Law 94-142. Since then, she has fought diligently to protect both the English language development and special education rights of bilingual/multilingual learners with disabilities. In this interview, Dr. Medeiros Landurand shares the history of her struggles to obtain resources, materials, and professional development to provide learners with the language and disability services they are entitled to. Moreover, viewers will have the privilege of hearing how Dr. Medeiros Landurand bridged the gap between research and practice into actionable teaching practices that influenced countless schools, districts, states, and federal offices. Through advocacy, teacher preparation grants, professional development, and teacher preparation program faculty, Dr. Medeiros Landurand created supports when there were none. As a result, it is our honor to share this one hour twenty minute interview with you. Ultimately, Dr. Medeiros Landurand addresses misconceptions, leaves us with lessons learned, and shares recommendations for moving forward with the goal of providing all bilingual/multilingual students with disabilities with culturally and linguistically sustaining educational services they need to be contributing members of our multicultural U.S. society. Click here to view the entire interview. Dr. Patricia Medeiros Landurand bio Dr. Patricia Medeiros Landurand, a Mary Tucker Thorpe Professor in Special Education at Rhode Island College, is a pioneer educational leader, an equity advocate, an innovative teacher educator and an invited speaker in the field of Multicultural Bilingual-ESL Special Education in MA and in the USA since the 70’s. Professor Landurand earned her doctorate from UMass Amherst and her doctoral research focused on the emerging new field of bilingual especial education teacher preparation. She made history in Bilingual Special Education in the United States when she became the first Bilingual Special Education Director in the Massachusetts Department of Education in 1977. Three years later in 1980, she continued to make history by taking action to address the need for teachers or college faculty that were adequately prepared to respond to the needs in this new field, when she authored and got funding for one of the first Bilingual Special Education Masters’ Degree Program and the first Post-Doctoral Dean’s grant in Multicultural Special Education in the United States aka Multicultural Institute for Change both at Regis College, Weston, MA. Her dedication and commitment to personnel preparation led her author and be the principal investigator/ director of many other federal grants from Office of Special Education and the former Office of Bilingual Education in the US Department of Education some statewide and others nationwide. She co-started the bilingual special education network and among other firsts, she was the first keynote speaker of the first CEC bilingual Special Education Conference As a professor at Rhode Island College she developed and directed a Rhode Island Comprehensive System of Personnel Development (CSPD) multicultural post-doctoral faculty development. She worked with faculty throughout Rhode Island on multicultural issues in teaching children with disabilities and their families. Furthermore, she also co-developed a new Masters’ degree in Urban Multicultural ESL Special Education, which has already prepared over a hundred and forty graduates in this critical area of need and demand in special education. In addition to RI College and Regis College Professor Landurand taught at Columbia University and Brown University, Honors include being the recipient of the Rhode Island College Award for outstanding teaching, a Fullbright AWARD to Brazil, the Mary Tucker Thorpe Faculty Award, the MATSOL-MABE Achievement Award for her thirty years of work on behalf of English language learners with disabilities at the local, state, national and international levels. Her tireless commitment to the field of BilingualESL Special Education, Pat was acknowledged for being a caring mentor and colleague to others in the field and for her leadership, commitment and contributions to mentoring teachers and encouraging them to become advocates for culturally and linguistically diverse students with and without disabilities.
Claudia Rinaldi, Ph.D.
Claudia is the Endowed Joan Wieler Arno 49 Professor at Lasell University. She is currently a full professor of education and chair of the Education Program. Claudia has been a teacher, researcher, consultant, and professor of special education.