Friends of Different Learners is an independent organization of parents, staff, and community members dedicated to maximizing the potential of Birmingham Public School students with different abilities.

All Friends meetings are FREE and open to everyone!

2016-17                     MEETING SCHEDULE

APRIL 13  

Employability, Job Training and Life Skills

MAY 4   

Appreciation Celebration at *Birmingham Covington School


JUNE 1   

Wrap Up 2017 & Plan 2018!

Meeting and Location Information

Meetings are held on the first Thursday of the month (with a few exceptions - see schedule).
  We start with a brief business meeting followed by the guest speaker and topic presentation.  Informal networking opportunities are available after every meeting to share ideas about how to help our different learners and to learn from each other.

Meetings begin at 7:00 pm unless otherwise noted.

Birmingham Covington School (BCS)
1525 Covington Rd.
Bloomfield Hills, MI  48301
Click here for map

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Job & Life Skills for Employment

April 13, 2017 at 7:00 p.m.

Birmingham Covington School (BCS) Media Center

1525 Covington Road • Bloomfield Hills, MI 48301


Please join us for a panel presentation summarizing of some of the community services available for job and life skills training related to transition planning, and/or eventual employment for your different learner.

• Caroline Gorman: Program Coordinator for OUCARES (Oakland University Center for Autism Outreach), will discuss new and existing employment, social, and life skills programs/camps available for teens and young adults with autism.

• Carin Lloyd: Counselor from MRS (Michigan Rehabilitation Services), will focus on Vocational Rehabilitation Transition Services, including Project SEARCH and MCTI, and briefly discuss Pre-Employment Transition Services (Pre-ETS).

• Cindy Burdi: Employment Developer from MORC (Macomb-Oakland Regional Center) Vocational Services, will speak about services for individuals who receive supports through Community Mental Health/MORC. She is also part of an employment initiative with Oakland County in a partnership to expand their diversity with hiring more individuals with disabilities.

Q & A will follow the presentations in which parents can ask the speakers, along with Barbara Dean the Transition Coordinator for BPS, direct questions regarding pre-employment skills training.

For more information contact Jane Konoya at 248-497-2706 or

This letter was given to Friends of Different Learners, along with other BPS school organizations, in response to recent concerns raised by our community. Please contact the SISS Department directly if you have questions about the content of this letter. Contact information is contained in the letter. The SISS department will add more details to upcoming newsletters.

Click here to read the letter:

Appreciation Awards Cancellation Notification


The Annual Appreciation Awards will not take place this year. The Friends of Different Learners Executive Committee carefully reviewed the comments and suggestions from BPS staff and FODL members to make this difficult decision. We at Friends, value the daily contribution and difference that all our teachers and staff make in a different learner’s life. Without their passion, dedication and empathy, our families’ lives would be more challenging and less bright. We hope that our members will take it upon themselves to share their appreciation for Specialized Instruction teachers and staff during Teacher Appreciation Week and Paraprofessional Day. Thank you all for your patience and understanding as FODL re-evaluates the services and support that will be provided as we move forward to serve our community.


Friends of Different Learners

Executive Committee