Some visitors to SpecialNeeds.com have found us for the first time. Others, including many parents, educators, other professionals and persons with a disability, have been coming to the site for years. For old friends, we want to add a word of explanation. For new friends, we want to say, “Welcome. Read on!”
SN: Let’s get to it. What’s going on? What’s the new Special Needs page?
HG: It’s a terrific change from the old site, but I always say, “The same but different.” What strikes visitors right off the bat is the modern design, but there’s much more than that. Web technology changed a lot in the dozen years the old site was around. The new version is vastly more advanced technically. SpecialNeeds.com has a simple goal–to be the single best source of information for special needs families. The old site was the “best of breed”. The new site is better. We want you to come and see that.
SN: Going to ask about that. The new look is nifty–but not all the features work the way I expect.
HG: You’re right. Right now we have some further development to do, plus some explaining. I have a separate article on that. There’s quite a bit to say.
SN: Besides a different appearance and some growing pains, what else is “the same,” as you put it?
HG: The mission is the same. Special Needs Project started 23 years ago, and we’re still working to “put the right books in the right hands”–in other words, to give families with special needs the tools and the access they need to have. When it comes to their kids, families are the first responders. If parents don’t help their children achieve all they can–it won’t get done. It won’t happen. At least not as well. Parents achieve great things every day.
SN: Then–what’s “different”?
HG:: What’s different is now we can do it better. I like to call books–the traditional kind–”crystallized knowledge,” We still sell those. But there are many other ways to access information and resources, like toys and equipment–there’s a world of that–services and camps. Now we can feature specific articles on a huge range of topics that may help families with special needs.
SN: Tell us a little about yourself. Who is Hod Gray?
HG: I’m the Editor of the new SpecialNeeds.com. Hod Gray is a remarkably good-looking man of a certain age. I’m a special needs parent also. My daughter had cerebral palsy, and my son was diagnosed as an adult with specific learning disabilities.
SN: Where is Special Needs Project in this? What’s the difference there?
HG: we have partnered with Family Magazine Group. My wife Laraine and I own SNP, and we are the editors of SpecialNeeds.com.
SN: Does Special Needs Project still exist?
HG: Yes. It is the Bookstore on this site.
To reach the Bookstore, call (800) 333-6867 or (805) 962-8087
Fax: (805) 962-5087.
Email: <[email protected]>
1405 Anderson Lane
Santa Barbara, CA 93111
SN: Special Needs Project was known for its extraordinary conference book displays at conferences. What will happen to that?
HG: Special Needs Project will continue to exhibit throughout 2011.
SN: Thank you, Hod.
HG: This is going to be fun. We want everybody to join us.