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Exceptional Children's Advocacy Group (ECAG)


Navigating the special education system can often feel overwhelming. Parents who have children with exceptional needs can rely on unbiased assistance, which can make a huge difference along the educational journey. Reaching Heights, in partnership with the CH-UH school district, provides the following services to families with special needs students throughout the year: 

Parent Mentor Services

Joy Howard:

  • Support for families to answer questions and concerns about the special education process via in-person meetings, by email or over the phone

  • Guidance and information about the CH-UH special education program

  • Preparation, support and guidance for IEP meetings

  • Resources relating to special education within and around the CH-UH community

  • Host and promote community engagement events, workshops and special events


Joy Howard is our district's Parent Mentor and brings a strong background to this position as a former healthcare worker, an active community member and parent of a child with special needs. If you need assistance in any of the above-mentioned areas, Joy can be reached by calling the office or by email at or by phone at (216) 236-3616

"As a mother of a child with an IEP, I know how discouraging the process can feel sometimes and how truly amazing our children are. My goal is to help families build strong toolkits so they can be their children's best and strongest advocates."


ECAG Events & Resources

As Cleveland Heights-University Heights parents/caregivers of those living with disabilities, we believe ALL children deserve the right to learn and thrive in proactive, integrated and rigorous learning environments in a community that provides opportunities, education and collaboration to help them live up to their full potential. 


We warmly invite everyone to join us for our parent support group meetings held most 3rd Mondays of the month from 6:30 pm-7:30 pm, unless special programs are happening that month. Meet other parents who share similar life experiences raising special needs children and have navigated the myriad of choices that must be made to support their children. In addition to providing support, the group also addresses specific needs parents may have by connecting them to the resources and training they need. It is also during these monthly meetings that we plan collaborative events with the school district in an effort to improve its special education program. Meetings are currently VIRTUAL.  Zoom link is always:


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Advocacy Group (ECAG) upcoming


Summer 2023 Events

Exceptional Children’s Advocacy Group (ECAG) is thrilled to invite you to our upcoming events!

Our mission is to provide support, resources and advocacy opportunities for the families that we serve. Join us to connect with other parents, share experiences and learn new strategies to support the growth and well-being of your child.


Here are some of the exciting events that we have planned:


1) Ice Cream Playdate:

Join us on Monday, June 12th at 6 pm for our second summer playdate! Relax, unwind and connect with other parents in a supportive and welcoming environment.


2) Sensory Friendly Movie Night: On Date TBD at 6pm, we’ll be hosting a sensory-friendly movie night at the local AMC theater. Enjoy some quality family time while watching an entertaining movie, with the environment tailored to meet the needs of children with sensory sensitivities.


3) Educational Workshop: On Thursday, July 10th at 6:30 pm, we’ll be hosting an exciting educational workshop led by a renowned special education specialist. This insightful workshop will cover important topics such as navigating Individualized Education Plans (IEPs), understanding the special education system, and empowering parents to effectively advocate for their exceptional child.


We can’t wait to see you at these events! Come join us for a fun, informative, and supportive experience.


If you have any questions, please email us at


We look forward to connecting with you soon!



2023 Family Fun Fairs

Cuyahoga DD is hosting the 2023 Family Fun Fairs!

FREE events for families with children with developmental disabilities to meet and connect with each other, learn about Cuyahoga DD and HAVE FUN!

These fairs are geared for families with children age 14 and under. Rain or shine. Registration is required and space is limited. Click  Here to register.

Dates Times Location

Saturday, June 10, 11 AM - 1 PM

Big Creek Center, 6149 W 130th Street, Parma

Sunday, July 30, 1  PM - 3 PM

Green Road Service Center, 4329 Green Road, Highland Hills

Sunday, October 22, 1 PM - 3 PM

Big Creek Center, 6149 W 130th Street, Parma



The PACTS special education program received a special message from Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson! 


Monday,  June 3, 2023

 9 am - 12 pm 

Cuyahoga DD is proud to host, with Special Olympics Ohio, the Family Health Forum! Join us for a free educational and fun event on June 3 at William Patrick Day Center (2421 Community College Ave., Cleveland) from 9 AM - 12 PM.
The event is designed for families of children of all abilities, ages 2 - 7. Families will enjoy:
- lunch
- fun childcare
- giveaways
- resources from local professionals
Register: at


CH-UH school district special education information

Cuyahoga County Board of Developmental Disabilities

Cuyahoga Board of Health Provide direction, support, and coordination in preventing, preparing for, and responding to events that threaten the public's health.

Milestones Autism Resource Toolkits for diagnosis, behavior, and much more. Supporting the well-being of Ohio's families and children with challenges, disabilities, and health care needs. 

CH-UH School COVID-19 Information

Local Pantry and Crisis Contact List

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ECAG and Parent Mentoring programming are generously supported through CH-UH Schools' IDEA funding.

some fun & learning we've had

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