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Jose Blackorby to Lead CAST's R&D, Establish West Coast Office

Jose Blackorby

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

CAST today announced the appointment of Jose Blackorby, PhD, as Senior Director of Research and Development. In this capacity, he will lead CAST’s research, project development, and technical assistance efforts. He will also open a West Coast office in the Bay Area.

“I have long admired CAST’s plucky resolve to change the way education is thought about and practiced through Universal Design for Learning,” says Dr. Blackorby. “The inclusion of UDL in the new Every Student Succeeds Act is just another sign that these ideas and best practices are gaining hold. I look forward to working with my CAST colleagues to help bring UDL to scale and improve learning opportunities for every one.”

Education leaders praise the appointment:

Dr. Blackorby comes to CAST after nearly 25 years at SRI International, where most recently he has been Co-Director of the Center for Education and Human Services. He brings with him two decades of experience in the design and implementation of large-scale, multifaceted studies with research, policy, and practice implications.

He has extensive experience leading national studies on students with disabilities, including a national study of states' progress in implementing alternate assessment systems for students with significant cognitive disabilities and another on the implementation of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).

From 1998 to 2007, Dr. Blackorby was co-director of the Special Education Elementary Longitudinal Study (SEELS) and served on the research team for the National Longitudinal Transition Study-2 (NLTS2). Both studies provided national population estimates for many of the key questions related to programs and outcomes that face students who receive special education services.

In addition to large-scale research in special education, Dr. Blackorby has considerable experience in projects related to emerging trends in education reform and innovation generally, as well as their potential for students with disabilities.

He has a diverse range of research and development interests, including students with mild disabilities; reading, math, and science achievement; assistive technology; secondary school programs and transition; assessment and curriculum design; and universal design for learning.

A widely published author, Dr. Blackorby serves in an advisory role on national panels for government initiatives, as well as private organizations. He holds a doctorate in special education from the University of Washington.

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