Ola, Ana Paula Loução Martins!
My colleague and friend, Ana Paula Loução Martins, is professora at the University of Minho in Portugal. She is a wonderfully competent special educator whom I recommend not just to people interested in Portuguese special education, but to anyone who cares about kids with disabilities wherever those kids live.
Ana Paula has advanced very far since I first met her in 2003. During her career she has written articles for international journals, given talks on different continents, organized multinational conferences promoting special education, conducted researach about children’s development, and been a helluva a friend. Her competence was clear from the beginnning.
She took a one-year fellowship at the University of Virginia. She began collaborating with her fellow students right away, alternating between leadership and participant roles. I greatly admired her work ethic. She went home to Portugal and completed her doctorate.
As a consequence of our connection, Pat and I were able to spend time in Portugal on a Fullbright fellowship. It was magical. This photo from that time I hope captures Ana Paula’s wonderful spirit.
Ana Paula, and one of her many colleagues, Luis de Miranda Correia, treated us to many afternoons, evenings, and weekends of discussion about special education…to say nothing of beautiful scenery, fine food and wine, and enduring friendship!
Ana Paula took us on tours. We saw structures that were way-way older than our Virginia historic prospective (1000 years, not just 400 years! Also, see later notes.). But, that was a wonderful sort of everyday to Ana Paula. She waved her hands and matter-of-factly took us to another place important in antiquity (e.g., the charming Ponte de Lima, where the original bridge dates to 1 AD). Another time, we were off to the south of Portugal where the Atlantic nearly meets the Mediterranean. I was enthralled.
Pat suggested that I include this photo. I think it’s prety cool, not only because it shows Ana Paula and me together (thanks for the photo, Pat), but also because we are standing with our backs to this very ancient structure.
Needless to say, Pat and I went back to Portugal. We’ve visited with Ana Paula twice there (and other times in the US). Not only did she take us to wonderful dining spots in Portugal and introduce us to excellent educators, but she also drove us to a place where we could see pre-historic human “cave paintings.”
Still, she is slogging away at her research (e.g., using CBM to document developmental changes in children’s learning). She teaches her students who want to break into special education. She helps prepare future resarchers and teacher educators who want to advance special education. She is a special educator.
In Ana Paula Loução Martins you have an international scholar with whom you should hope to have a casual lunch. But, be prepared that the discussion will be wide ranging, and fun.