On October 13, 2021, CommunicationFIRST is excited to join with the Autistic Self Advocacy Network, Thinking Person’s Guide to Autism, and AssistiveWare in celebrating the public release of This Is Not About Me, a documentary featuring one of our Board members, Jordyn Zimmerman.
Although the film tells Jordyn’s story, it also tells the story of so many other nonspeaking autistic students who are denied access to robust, language-based augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) tools and supports based on biased assumptions about their ability to understand and use language simply based on their inability to use speech and move in certain ways.
“The assumption was that I had no understanding.” - Jordyn Zimmerman
Jordyn was not given access to robust AAC until age 18. She quickly made up for lost time, catching up on twelve years of academic education in a few short years. She then went to college at Ohio University. This winter, Jordyn will finish her master’s degree in education from Boston College. She is currently student-teaching in the Boston Public Schools.
Watch the film here: https://thisisnotaboutme.film/watch/
CommunicationFIRST worked with Jordyn and Cole Sorensen, an autistic AAC user with a degree in special education, to put together a film discussion guide and toolkit for K-12 educators. That toolkit can be accessed here: https://thisisnotaboutme.film/resources.
CommunicationFIRST will also be hosting an event on November 10, 2021, from 7:00-8:00 pm Eastern US time to give AAC users an opportunity to interview Jordyn about the film and her experiences. Save the date and look out for registration details soon.