Heather Hillery discusses how she integrates canine assistance and companion dogs into her special education classroom. Learn about the process of training an assistance dog, the research-based benefits of having a therapeutic dog, and why Heather feels so passionately about volunteering to raise them. Also hear examples of how having the puppies in classrooms has positively impacted her students.
Heather Hillery, MSEd, CCC-SLP holds a BS in Economics and went back to school after raising her family to complete her Master’s in Education in Communication Sciences and Disorders. She has experience working with adolescents and adults with cognitive impairments in achieving their goals for education, life skills and job opportunities. Additionally, she has worked at the university level as an adjunct professor teaching undergraduate and graduate classes while providing direct clinical supervision. Heather is currently a lead educator in an elementary classroom at The Parish School and is raising her third puppy on The Parish School campus for Canine Companions for Independence, an organization that provides assistance dogs free of charge to adults, children and veterans with disabilities. She recently presented on both inquiry-based learning and the benefits of raising a service dog in a school setting at SXSW-EDU and at the Texas Speech-Language-Hearing Association's annual convention.
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