Week in Review - September 5, 2008

WEEK in REVIEW

Articles of Interest in Special Education That Were Reported This Week

Welcome to NASET's WEEK in REVIEW.  Here, we provide you with some of the most interesting issues that have happened this week in the field of special education.  We hope you enjoy this publication.  Feel free to send us articles for this publication or let us know your thoughts about the WEEK in REVIEW at news@naset.org

Have a great weekend.  

Sincerely,

NASET News Team

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NASET Executive Director, Dr. George Giuliani, Adresses the Need for More Special Education Teachers

Salem-Keizer School District is launching new programs to recruit, train and retain special-education staffers this year. A shortage of special-education teachers is a perpetual issue districts face nationwide. "The need and demand for special-education teachers is so high because we've become so much more aware of students with disabilities," said George Giuliani, an executive director of the National Association of Special Education Teachers. There are 600,000 certified special-education teachers nationwide and almost 7 million children in special education, he said. "The competition (between districts) is pretty heavy, and supply is pretty low," said Mary Cadez, the Salem-Keizer human resources director. To read more, click here

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Adequate Yearly Progress Testing Results Released for State and Local Schools in Virginia

 

Three-quarters of Virginia's public schools met federally required math and reading targets last year, but most local districts and several local schools fell short of the goals. Three Hampton elementary schools that had struggled with achievement goals in the past met them for the second consecutive year, lifting sanctions imposed in prior years, which included free tutoring and the chance for students to transfer to better schools. The annual achievement goals, called Adequate Yearly Progress or AYP, ratcheted up four percentage points in 2007-08 over the previous year. Seventy-seven percent of students had to pass the state Standards of Learning reading tests and 75 percent of students had to pass the state SOL math tests. All students must take the annual tests in grades 3-8 and at least once in high school. Fifty-four of the state's 132 school districts did not meet the AYP achievement targets last year.  To read more, click here

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A Science Summer School That Had the Formula for Success for Gifted and Talented Students

 

Twenty four youngsters went back to school during the summer holidays for a Super Science Week at Hessle High School. The town secondary, which is a specialist science college, opened its doors for high-achieving youngsters from its feeder primary schools. The 11-year-olds, who will be moving up from primary school to the secondary next week, were also joined by older students at the science sessions. Hessle High School's assistant head teacher Rachel Davenport said the summer school has laid the foundations for a smooth transition to secondary school for the primary youngsters.  She said: "It has helped the pupils grow in confidence as they have enjoyed working in a team with other gifted and talented students. To read more, click here

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An Investigation of the Academic Processing of Students with Emotional and Behavioral Disorders in School Settings

Little is known about the academic processing speed (i.e., rapid automatic naming and academic fluency) of children and adolescents with emotional and behavioral disorders (EBD) served in public school settings. A crosssectional design was used to investigate the (a) percentage of K-12 students with EBD served in public school settings with academic processing speed deficits; (b) mean level and stability of academic processing speed exhibited by K- 12 students with EBD served in public school settings; (c) differences in the academic skills, IQ, social adjustment, and language skills of students with and without processing speed deficits; and (d) the relative contribution of academic processing speed, academic skills, and language to the prediction of the social adjustment problems (i.e., total, externalizing, internalizing, and attention). To read more, click here

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Extra School Funds Sought: Special Education is the Key in Request

The Fenty administration of Washington D.C. wants to divert $15.2 million from several District agencies to cover a series of extra expenses in D.C. schools, including unpaid bills dating back to 2005 for textbooks and custodial supplies and nearly $9 million in private school tuition for special education students whose needs can't be met by the city. Without the money, the school system will be over budget for the fiscal year that ends Sept. 30. Mayor Adrian M. Fenty (D) assumed control of the school system last year, in part to bring managerial order to a bureaucracy notorious for squandering money. City officials described the request for funds as a sign of progress in cleaning up past mismanagement. To read more, click here

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In Canada, Parents of Children with Autism Seek Clout in Federal Election

A long-simmering fight between parents of children with autism and Canadian governments over funding for their children's therapy may boil over into this fall's expected federal election. Medicare for Autism Now, a recently formed activist group, means to mount a campaign it calls "The Two Percent Solution" in 14 swing ridings across the country. In the Maritimes, Ontario and five B.C. ridings, targeting federal Minister of Health Tony Clement and other incumbents who won last time by less than two per cent, the group will press candidates with demands that they support Canada Health Act coverage for autism treatment and full funding for an intensive one-to-one therapy approach. To read more, <click here

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New Web Site Provides Information, Tools and Practical Tips About ADHD

If you or someone you know has symptoms of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) you may be relieved to know where to go for more information about the disorder or for support in managing the condition. Shire, the ADHD Support Company, has relaunched its educational Web site, ADHDSupport. com, designed to provide families, caregivers, educators and patients with tools and resources about ADHD. The newly enhanced Web site provides visitors with an easy-to-navigate road map to help learn about ADHD. The site offers information about the recognition, diagnosis and management of the disorder, assistance with how to identify a health care professional and what to expect when meeting with a physician about ADHD. To read more, click here

Board Certification in Special Education - Available to NASET Members

Through an agreement with The American Academy of Special Education Professionals (AASEP), NASET members now have the opportunity to achieve AASEP Board Certification in Special Education - (B.C.S.E.) at a reduced fee.  AASEP Board Certification in Special Education - (B.C.S.E.) is a voluntary choice on the part of the candidate. The candidate for Board Certification wishes to demonstrate a commitment to excellence to employers, peers, administrators, other professionals, and parents. From the standpoint of the Academy, board certification will demonstrate the highest professional competency in the area of special education. Board Certification in Special Education establishes a much needed standard for professionals, across disciplines, who work with exceptional children.   For more information on Board Certification in Special Education, click here

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To Find the Perfect School, You Might Need to Start One

New York parents have been known to do a lot to get their child into their ideal school: putting themselves on waiting lists before they've even left the maternity ward, chummying up to distant but well-placed playground friends, and, of course, donating ungodly sums of money. What Audra Zuckerman, a downtown mother of two, did to ensure her son, Max, a place at the perfect school for him was, even by New York standards, exceptional. She started the independent school of her dreams herself, along with two other women she had befriended over the years, the three families committing to keep the school rolling financially until it could stand on its own feet. Sometimes exceptional children demand exceptional action. Ms. Zuckerman and her co-founders, Julia Harquail and Michelle Smith, all had children with Down syndrome, and none felt confident that even the vast resources of New York City could provide the kind of education they wanted. To read more, click here

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Extent of Parental Involvement in Improving Students' Levels in Special Education Programs in Kuwait

This research study investigates the degree to which parental involvement impacts students' levels in special education programs in Kuwait. More specifically, this research discusses several scientific methods for research included within the significance of the study and research questions for this study. Research methods and results using a participant sample indicated some interesting results. The study showed that parents of special needs children can be involved in classroom activities and school functions in many different ways. The results showed that over 70% of the participant sample were engaged in some forms of involvement with their special needs children. To read more, click here

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A Vision to Create a Better Tomorrow

How do you feel when you see a blind person searching for something? Pity? Does it help them in anyway? Definitely not. Its only when you help them locate whatever they need, you are really expressing your true feeling of concern. According to research, a human being learns 83% through sight, 11% through hearing, 3½% through smell, 1½% through touch and 1% through taste. A glance at the above statistics will tell you what the visually challenged people are denied. To read more, click here

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And in this Corner....Has Diagnostic Labeling Gone Too Far?

While diagnosing emotional and behavioral disorders helps many children get the extra support they need to succeed in school, some North Shore parents wonder if diagnostic labeling has gone too far. When should we just let kids be kids, and when should we seek expert intervention to remedy those things that make them "different"? The answer isn't always easy. To read more, click here

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Officials Promote Special Education

At Frankford Elementary School, seven students are considered partially deaf and wear cocliar implants. Many of them don't speak English.  "The first time they're able to hear, they're trying to adjust to three languages," said Principal Duncan Smith. "At such a young age, they might be hearing Spanish at home, English in school and, of course, sign language." With more than 8,300 students in the Indian River School District, and so many unique needs, administrators are striving to promote more specialized education for students with disabilities. Through innovative programs and Intensive Learning Centers -- special education classrooms found throughout the district -- officials are dedicated to helping students reach their maximum potential. To read more, click here

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In Maryland, Special Education Students to be Held to Same Test Standard

The Maryland State Board of Education voted yesterday to make the passing standard for a group of special-education students who take a modified high school test the same as it is for students without disabilities. The decision came after advocates for students with disabilities said those students should be held to the same standards as other students. State statistics showed, however, that only 9 percent or 10 percent of students who took a modified high school assessment last year passed. Passing the HSAs will be required for students to get a high school diploma, beginning with this year's seniors. Leslie Margolis, a lawyer with the Maryland Disabilities Law Center, said that lowering the passing standard set a double standard for students with disabilities. More students, she said, would get access to good instruction if the standards were the same. To read more, click here

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Food for Thought........

The teacher, if indeed wise, does not bid you to enter the houseof their wisdom, but leads you to the threshold of your own mind. 

                                                                         Kahlil Gibran

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