No more Inclusive Learning Technologies (ILT) Conferences hosted by Spectronics

Spectronics’ mission is to seek, share and support technologies to advance independent achievement. As such, one of our major objectives is to increase community awareness of the benefits of assistive technologies. Toward this aim we ran the biennial Inclusive Learning Technologies Conference that became known as the ILT Conference on the fabulous Gold Coast in Queensland, Australia. The first two were held in 2004 and 2006 at the Crowne Plaza. In 2008 and 2010 the ILT Conference was held at the Marriott Hotel in Surfers Paradise. In 2012 and 2014 the venue was Jupiter’s Convention Centre at Broadbeach.

Spectronics staff worked tirelessly to offer what has been regarded at the best Assistive Technology Conference anywhere in the world. The ILT Conferences were a celebration of all participants’ achievements, an opportunity to share successes (and failures) as well as new ideas. The conferences were heavily subsidised by Spectronics. No expense was spared. I regard them all personally as my gift to the Assistive Technology industry in Australia, New Zealand and South East Asia, and the people in our region who benefit from the industry’s products.

Sadly with the decline in the Assistive Technology industry, which continues to struggle with mobile technologies, cloud based software and limited budgets, Spectronics can no longer afford the high risk investment in future ILT Conferences.

Which leaves me to thank all who have supported the past Inclusive Learning Technologies Conferences and to apologise for any disappointment that ILT 2016 is not to be.

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Michael O’Leary
Managing Director | Occupational Therapist

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About Michael O'Leary

After many years as a communications technician with Telstra, Michael completed a degree in Occupational Therapy (with 1st Class Honours) in 1986 at the University of Queensland. That same year, while working with spinal injured patients and clients with cerebral palsy, he became frustrated with the inability to source the exciting range of assistive technologies being developed overseas. He founded Spectronics in 1986 in order to make these emerging technologies available for people in Australia.

10 Responses to No more Inclusive Learning Technologies (ILT) Conferences hosted by Spectronics

  1. Hillary Epton says:

    My heart is heavy with this news. Thank you Spectronics for all that you have done for the students who struggle with learning and for the AT industry industry in general.

  2. Kelly Moore says:

    Michael and team,
    Such sad news. I can personally attribute so much of my AT knowledge to these wonderful conferences which I’ve felt very privileged to be able to attend with my team from ILC WA. I think my manager Sally Hunter even attended the very first one with just a select few people from the then emerging AT space. Such fun conferences but most importantly I think these conferences really pulled together the AT therapists, educators, users and suppliers and built a real community of support across Australia and the world. The way the Spectronics crew embraced social media was so innovative and showed us new ways to learn and network. And of course who could forgot the infamous conference dinners and Specos bag competitions. Thanks for sharing it forward Michael, Barb, Greg, Jane, Cha, Katie, Terri, Karl, Amanda and everyone else on the team x

  3. Hilary King says:

    Michael! That is such sad news for everyone working in the field! We who have had the privilege of attending any of the conferences (3 in my case!) have been totally inspired by the numerous many faceted presentations you and the team inspired and provided. Then of course there was the social aspect of the learning process which I have to say you ILT PEOPLE are immensely talented at providing!!
    I feel immensely grateful to you and your team for having provided a feast of intellectual & technical delights to this old Kiwi Rocker. Many thanks and all the best in the future. Love you all! Hilz

  4. thank you for your gift. I have loved it. The Spwctronics team are awesome and given so much. I totally understand and am very sad.

  5. Cheryl Wood says:

    I have been lucky enough to attend 4 of your conferences. I would like to thank you for the time, effort and cost in these fantastic conferences. The knowledge I gained from these I was able to pass onto others educators as well as use with the many students who benefited from the ideas I gained after attending these conferences. In these times I totally understand your decision and hope that maybe one day in the future they may eventuate again. Thank you so much for the opportunities you gave people to assist students engage in their learning.

  6. It was a fabulous run, Michael! I feel so honored to have been a part of The Glory Days! Thanks so much!!

  7. Greg Alchin says:

    Michael ol’ mate, the times are definitely changing. We both remember when AT was a new and emerging stream and now in many cases it is mainstream! You are a legend in the AT field, a great bloke to boot. You surrounded yourself with amazing people and YOU MADE A DIFFERENCE in peopl’s lives. It has been a pleasure and an honour to be part of most of the ILT conferences. I will rember them fondly and miss them deeply.

  8. Denise Donovan says:

    Michael, this is such a disappointment. I was really looking forward to and planning for next years conference.The conference will be sorely missed. it was our pick me up for ideas and implementation.
    Hope things improve for AT. The children i work with need it!

  9. Ania Ciechanowski says:

    Dear Michael,
    Sad news! Thank you for so long providing a forum for users, therapists, educators, technicians and innovators to share their knowledge, skills and stories. You created a community that inspired each other and learnt from its challenges and successes. Our ComTEC crew would always return from ILT and the sunshine with heads bursting and hearts racing.
    Thank you to all your team.

  10. Margie Laviano says:

    Thank you Spectronics team for your commitment and dedication to ILT. I only had the privilege of attending one IlT conference – of all the professional development and conferences I have attended, this ILT conference was like none other. It was inspiring, challenging and it opened the door to making learning accessible for students who struggle. Thank you.

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