The Advocate

Fall 2020


In this Issue: COVID Perspectives; NCPEID and NCHPAD survey updates, APENS Update, Policy and Advocacy Efforts at the State, and National levels; Student Spotlight, Virtual Research Poster Presentation, NCPEID Resources, and more. 

Message from the President 

Michelle Grenier, Ph.D., University of New Hampshire


 On behalf of the National Consortium for Physical Education for Individuals with Disabilities (NCPEID) Board of Directors (BOD), we hope that you, your family, friends, colleagues, and students are safe and well, particularly during this challenging time. Our current climate demands leadership, advocacy, and innovation, and the NCPEID organization is attuned to the concerns we, as educators, are facing.

We continue to evolve with the challenges and remain resolute in our efforts to educate our students during the most unusual semester/and or fall in our history. More importantly, we are still here. For some of us, “here” means working remotely, for others face-to-face, hybrid or asynchronous. We want to thank all of our members, in whichever part of the country you reside, who have continued to make education possible, particularly for those most challenged by COVID circumstances. Our needs and challenges are great, but our determination and commitment to our students is resolute as this global crisis is presenting a unique opportunity to rethink the need for accessible and appropriate education.

This issue of the Advocate provides evidence of our efforts to support our membership. We begin this issue with a synopsis of three perspectives of COVID within higher education. Dr. Michelle Grenier from the University of New Hampshire, Dr. Ali Brian from the University of South Carolina, and Dr. Andrea Taliaferro from West Virginia University share their experiences with COVID, actions taken by their institutions, and how the virus has impacted their teaching. Next, Dr. Melissa Bittner and Dr. Amanda Young present their findings on an NCPEID survey disseminated last spring to the NCPEID membership. The article highlights NCPEID’s strengths as well as recommendations for improvement.

Amy Oliver is featured in our Student Spotlight and the work she is doing at Indiana University Purdue University of Indianapolis (IUPUI) as the Adapted Movement Programs clinic coordinator at the university. Next, Dr. Tim Davis, our APENS Chair provides us with some exciting news regarding the online availability of the exam. Dr. Suzanna Dillon, our Policy and Advocacy Chair follows with efforts made on behalf of NCPEID at the local and national levels. Thank you Suzanna for advocating on behalf of NCPEID.

Our resource section editors, Amy Oliver and Mason Sur provide a list of timely resources for practitioners and families. We are also excited as we move forward with our first annual virtual poster session. Dr. Ron Davis and Dr. Andrew Colombo-Dougovito along with other members of the Research Committee are in the process of finalizing information for the conference. As part of our on-going efforts to collaborate with organizations, we are also excited to present the “hot off the press” results of the widely disseminated NCHPAD survey. Lastly, we remember one of our long-term members, Sherry Folsom-Meek, and her passing this past summer.

NCPEID continues to advocate for appropriate educational programs for individuals with disabilities. Likewise, NCPEID leadership will continue to support its members and advocate for legislative actions, professional preparation, and practice in higher education and at the K-12 level. If you are not a current member, please consider joining today. If you are a member and would like to be actively involved in the organization, we welcome your talents and skills.   

Michelle Grenier, Ph.D., CAPE

President (2020-2022)


 Board of Directors Update

Erin Ashleigh Siebert, Ph.D., MPH, San Jose State University

Hello to all from the NCPEID Board of Directors (BOD). One of the top priorities for the BOD is to focus on Strategic Priority 3: Provide Meaningful Information and Resources to Key Stakeholders that Support the Advancement of APE/APA. To spearhead this issue, the BOD has created a website subcommittee lead by Dr. Melissa Bittner and Dr. Amanda Young.

In other news, the BOD has finalized the dates for NCPEID’s annual conference to be held on July 1-3, 2021. We are also looking forward to hosting our first ever virtual research poster presentation sometime in Spring 2021. Keep an eye out for more information to follow.


COVID Perspectives: Three Institutions

Michelle Grenier, Ph.D., University of New Hampshire 

Ali Brian, Ph.D., University of South Carolina

Andrea Taliaferro, Ph.D., West Virginia University 

The long-term impact of COVID on teaching and professional experiences will certainly outlive the virus. Before COVID, our campuses were places where students lived, studied, and taught in close proximity with peers. Our institutions have been impacted by the spread of the virus, creating uncertainty regarding the implications for higher education, our programs, and most importantly, the students we teach. Read More.


Adapted Physical Education

NCPEID Membership Survey

Amanda Young, Ph.D., Slippery Rock University 

Melissa Bittner, Ph.D., California State University, Long beach

This past spring, a 29 question online NCPEID Membership Survey was designed to focus on NCPEID members’ beliefs, subjective norms, and intentions in order to better serve our membership. There were69 participants that completed the survey. Read more.



Timothy D. Davis, Ph.D., CAPE, SUNY Cortland 

The APENS Committee and the NCPEID are pleased to announce that the APENS National Exam is now available ONLINE! Read more. 



Advocacy Activities from Late Summer and Early Fall

Suzanna Dillon, Ph.D., Texas Woman's University 

Over the past few months, NCPEID has been actively engaged nationally and locally with initiatives that promote the mission of the organization. Read more.






Amy Oliver, Indiana University Purdue University of Indianapolis

Currently, I am a second-year doctoral student at Indiana University Purdue University of Indianapolis (IUPUI) and am serving as a NCPEID student representative. I taught adapted physical education for 12 years in east-central Indiana before accepting a new position as the Adapted Movement Programs clinic coordinator at IUPUI in 2016 which is a community service-learning opportunity for higher-level undergraduate students. Students work with children and adults with disabilities by creating and implementing physical activity plans in a clinical setting.

Because our physical activity clinics are offered during each semester, last spring we were forced to end early. Our planning for the summer included an alternative delivery model that was fully online. Students were tasked with having weekly live Zoom meetings with their clients and working through an exercise plan. The students were resilient and completed the experience to the best of their ability, but as a clinic coordinator, I could see some disadvantages related to pivoting the clinic to an online format and have tried to make some adaptations to our physical activity clinics.

This fall we are offering our physical activity clinics in two different formats. We typically offer 2 separate clinics: one for adults, and one for children and teens. Essentially, we split the service-learning class into 4 different clinics. Each clinic has an online and face-to-face option. This fall students who are doing the online experience, also have an added responsibility to create exercise videos for their clients that can be accessed by the client at their leisure.

I became a NCPEID member four years ago and have appreciated being able to interact with and learn from other adapted physical activity professionals as well as being able to hear about research that has been completed recently to continue advancing and advocating for our profession. I am excited to serve as a student representative of NCPEID until 2022 and look forward to building more relationships and gaining professional experience as a student representative.


Alex X. Martinez, M.Ed., NCHPAD

The National Center on Health, Physical Activity, and Disability (NCHPAD) conducted a survey to gather information about the needs of parents of students with disabilities during the current COVID-19 health situation. Read more. 


Amy Oliver, Indiana University Purdue University of Indianapolis

Mason Sur, Georgia State University 

Adapted Physical Education Law Refresher

Revisiting adapted physical education laws and the Least Restrictive Environment at the beginning of each school year is always an excellent way to ensure students are receiving high-quality purposeful physical education in an appropriate setting. Read more.



Andrea Taliaferro, Ph.D., West Virginia University 

NCPEID SOCIAL. NCPEID membership committee will be hosting a Zoom social on Thursday, November 19 at 5:00 p.m. Pacific Time/ 8pm Eastern Time.  The socials are open to all and tend to have a fluid agenda on the field of APE/APA.

TWITTER CHAT. The NCPEID is also hosting a Twitter chat on December 15th at 8pm ET.   Read More. 




Dr. Andrew M. Colombo-Dougovito, along with co-authors Drs. Karen Weiller-Abels and Tracy Everback, are requesting submissions for an upcoming edited volume, “Shut up and Dribble”: Intersectional Identities, Media Representation, and the Power of Sport. This edited volume is looking for qualitative or quantitative academic approaches and popular essays/narratives that employ thorough reporting methods that examine sport, media, and society, and how they shape popular thought on political and social issues. More information can be found here: Chapter proposals (300-500 words) are due by December 20, 2020 and notifications will be made by January 4, 2021, with the intention of a complete chapter submission (between 6,000 & 10,000 words) by May 1, 2021.


Sherry Folsom-Meek, a long-time NCPEID member, died peacefully in her sleep on the morning of August 29, 2020, following a courageous battle with kidney disease. Read More. 


 National Consortium for Physical Education for Individuals with Disabilities