Week in Review - April 30, 2010

WEEK in REVIEW

New NASET Publications and Articles of Interest in Special Education That Were Reported This Week

Dear NASET Members

Welcome to NASET'snWEEK in REVIEW.  Here, we provide you with the latest publications from NASET to read and download, as well as 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

New This Week on NASET

NASET Q & A Corner

Answers for Questions Frequently Asked by Parents About Early Intervention 

Broadly speaking, early intervention services are specialized health, educational, and therapeutic services designed to meet the needs of infants and toddlers, from birth through age two, who have a developmental delay or disability, and their families. At the discretion of each State, services can also be provided to children who are considered to be at-risk of developing substantial delays if services are not provided.

Sometimes it is known from the moment a child is born that early intervention services will be essential in helping the child grow and develop. Often this is so for children who are diagnosed at birth with a specific condition or who experience significant prematurity, very low birth weight, illness, or surgery soon after being born. Even before heading home from the hospital, this child's parents may be given a referral to their local early intervention office.

Some children have a relatively routine entry into the world, but may develop more slowly than others, experience setbacks, or develop in ways that seem very different from other children. For these children, a visit with a developmental pediatrician and a thorough evaluation may lead to an early intervention referral, as well. However a child comes to be referred, assessed, and determined eligible-early intervention services provide vital support so that children with developmental needs can thrive and grow.

The focus of this issue of the NASET Q & A Corner will be to address frequently asked questions by parents regarding early intervention.actile defensive type.

To read or download this issue - Click here

____________________________________________________

NASET Special Educator e-Journal

May 2010
To read or download this issue - Click here

In this issue:
  • Update from the U.S. Department Education
  • Calls to Participate
  • Update From The National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities
  • Intersection: Navigating the Road to Work
  • Latest Job Opportunites Posted on NASET
  • Special Education Resources
  • Upcoming Conferences, Workshops, and Events
  • Funding Forecast and Award Opportunities
  • Acknowledgements
  • Download a PDF Version of This Issue

To read or download this issue -Click Here

Quick Links To NASET

Language Dysfunction in Children May Be Due to Epileptic Brain Activity

Epileptic activity in the brain can affect language development in children, and EEG registrations should therefore be carried out more frequently on children with severe language impairment to identify more readily those who may need medical treatment, reveals a thesis from the Sahlgrenska Academy at the University of Gothenburg. The thesis studied 60 children of varying ages, divided into groups. The first group comprised children with language dysfunction, for example children with slow speech development who find it difficult to express themselves or who have an inadequate langugage comprehension. To read more, click here

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How Much Does it Cost to Educate One Student

How much money does the state spend to educate one Kansas student each year?It's hard to blame Kansas taxpayers for being confused about how much money is spent on and by public schools. Different organizations give different answers. In a recent survey by the Kansas Policy Institute, only about 6 percent of people answered correctly that the state spends a total of more than $6,000 per K-12 student. "Most school districts only talk about base state aid per pupil," which is $4,012 and not the only source of state funding, said Dave Trabert, president of the nonprofit policy group, which promotes keeping taxes low.  To read more, click here

DID YOU KNOW THAT.....

A successful parent-teacher partnership provides benefits for the professional, the parents, and most important, the child (Heward, 2009)

New York City Pushes Shift for Special Education

The Bloomberg administration, struggling to address the needs of a growing number of students with learning disabilities, is overhauling special education by asking every principal to take in more of the students and giving them greater flexibility in deciding how to teach them. This fall, more than 250 schools will be asked to accept more students with disabilities rather than send them to schools that have specific programs for special education, as has been the case for decades. By September 2011, principals at each of the system's 1,500 schools will be expected to enroll all but the most severely disabled students; those students will continue to be served by schools tailored exclusively to them. The shift echoes one of the central philosophies of the administration, giving principals more responsibility and control over their schools. It is also an effort to bring New York more in line with the nationwide trend of allowing special education students to benefit from regular classroom settings. To read more, click here

Concern Over Hearing Loss from Personal Music Players

Young people who listen to personal music players for several hours a day at high volume could be putting their hearing at risk, warns an expert in an editorial published online in the British Medical Journal. Professor Peter Rabinowitz from Yale University School of Medicine says that personal music devices such as MP3 players can generate levels of sound at the ear in excess of 120 decibels, similar in intensity to a jet engine, especially when used with earphones that insert into the ear canal. The use of these devices is high in young people -- more than 90% in surveys from Europe and the United States -- and "has grown faster than our ability to assess their potential health consequences," he writes. To read more, click here

NASET Member Benefit - Group Savings Plus from Liberty Mutual 

Liberty Mutual Savings

As a member of NASET you qualify for a special group discount* on your auto, home, and renter's insurance through Group Savings PlusĀ® from Liberty Mutual. This unique program allows you to purchase high-quality auto, home and renters insurance at low group rates.
 
See for yourself how much money you could save with Liberty Mutual compared to your current insurance provider. For a free, no-obligation quote, call 800-524-9400 or visit www.libertymutual.com/naset, or visit your local sales office.
 
Group discounts, other discounts, and credits are available where state laws and regulations allow, and may vary by state.  Certain discounts apply to specific coverage only.  To the extent permitted by law, applicants are individually underwritten; not all applicants may qualify.  Coverage provided and underwritten by Liberty Mutual Insurance Company and its affiliates, 175 Berkeley Street, Boston, MA.

In Australia, Disability Pension Criteria Set for Overhaul

The Government says it will overhaul the system used to assess a person's impairment and says it will result in about 6,500 new claimants missing out on the pension. But it expects the pension will be paid to 1,500 people who were previously ineligible. Families Minister Jenny Macklin says the existing system is outdated and a new one would better identify people who are able to work. Ms Macklin says the new system will reduce the processing time for claims from people who are clearly eligible for the pension. Government spokesman Bill Shorten says the savings for the budget will be negligible. To read more, click here

NASET Offering Members Two Million Dollar Educator's Liability Insurance

Every day, special educators are faced with the stresses and potential liability issues involved in dealing with children with special needs. As a result you may be vulnerable to lawsuits, which have been on the rise over the last few years, from parents, or students themselves. In the past decade, the number of suits filed against educators and administrators has risen dramatically, causing the cost of insurance to increase as well. While some special educators may feel that they do not need this type of coverage and they are protected by their district, they should think twice. Even if you are 100% innocent of the charges or accusations, legal costs alone could run into the thousands and sometimes tens of thousands of dollars. In special education today, parents - and students - are more aware of their rights, and the laws that govern special education and hold teachers/educators to high standards. Don't try to convince yourself that the expense of your professional and public liability protection is unnecessary or unjustified. Experience shows that the cost of such coverage is by far lower than the risk a teacher takes by not having such protection. Why take a chance for less than $10.00 a month? To learn more about educator liability insurance available through NASET and our partnership with the Association of American Educators (AAE), click here

Students With Intellectual Disabilities Score Capitol Hill Internships

Members of Congress are teaming up with a Washington, DC-area postsecondary program to offer young adults with intellectual disabilities a unique opportunity: internships on Capitol Hill. The internships are the brainchild of Rep. Gregg Harper, R-Miss. who has a son with fragile X syndrome. Harper reached out to officials at Mason LIFE, a postsecondary program at George Mason University for those with intellectual and developmental disabilities, to help establish a pilot program for students to gain internships on Capitol Hill and in other high-profile job environments. Since the program began six weeks ago, three interns have worked in Harper's office and five other House of Representatives offices handling constituent mail and learning to give Capitol tours, among other duties. To read more, click here

Low Vitamin D Linked to Fatigue After Brain Injury

Among patients who have suffered a traumatic brain injury, vitamin D deficiency is associated with an increased likelihood of having chronic fatigue, Dutch researchers found. Of 90 such patients, 80% who were fatigued had the vitamin deficiency, compared with 40% of those who were not fatigued (P<0.05), Jessica Schnieders, MD, of Rijnstate Hospital in Arnhem, the Netherlands, reported at the European Congress of Endocrinology in Prague. Having a sleep disorder strengthened the association between vitamin D deficiency -- defined as a level less than 50 nmol/L -- and fatigue, Schnieders said in an interview. "I think it's important to get knowledge to the patients, the rehabilitation doctors, and the family doctors that they should look at vitamin D and sleep in these patients," she said. To read more, click here

Special Education Heightens Charter Debate

Grisel Hanton does not know where to send her five-year-old to school next year. Hanton, whose daughter Kayla is autistic, sends her two older children to P.S. 241 in West Harlem. But the school isn't equipped to address Kayla's needs, Hanton said, and she is in the process of looking into other special education programs-including some offered by charter schools. Whether children like Kayla are better off-or even able to obtain a spot-in a charter school is the subject of ongoing debate. As the storm of controversy surrounding New York City charter schools continues to brew, special education has emerged as a particularly contentious issue. To read more, click here

Family Matters: Team Challenges Stimulate Gifted Children

I recently helped monitor 1,800 academically talented children in grades 3-8 from 97 schools and 16 school districts engaged in creative problem solving, language-arts and math competitions as part of the 26th annual Academic Challenge Cup (ACC). The five-day event was sponsored by Gifted Resource Council (GRC) and hosted by Washington University. Students prepared for months in advance under the guidance of 250 volunteer parent and teacher coaches who attended training sessions conducted by the council. Since September, Taylor Schnurbusch, 13, and nineteen classmates from St. Catherine Laboure Catholic Elementary School in Sappington prepared for an hour each week before the start of school. "Their attendance at this early hour showed they're interested in being challenged in a new and exciting way," said her mother, Cheryl. To read more, click here

Doctors Want You To Remember Polio and Diptheria

Too many American children do not receive recommended childhood vaccines for illnesses such as polio, measles, mumps, diphtheria and pertussis that were once thought to have been eradicated but are making a comeback in some areas. According to data from 2008, almost one-quarter of children ages 19 months to 35 months did not receive the recommended vaccinations. On Tuesday, the American Academy of Pediatrics -- perhaps frustrated with the stubborn anti-vaccine tide in the United States -- unveiled a new public health campaign called Protect Tomorrow that "brings to life the memories of the terrible diseases of the past and reminds parents that, unless they are vaccinated, infants and children are at risk for contracting infectious diseases that can lead to hospitalization, disability and even death," according to a statement from the organization. To read more, click here

Mental Health of Preterm Babies in Danger, Finds Study

A new US study has proposed that premature infants are more likely to develop cognitive disorders like hypertension, autism and sensory dysfunctions than babies delivered in normal time. For the study, the British researchers examined 219 preterm born babies for 11 years and observed that 12% of them suffered from ADHD, 9% developed emotional problems and 8% reported Autism. The study authors also proposed a three time augmented chances of cognitive disorders and a greater risk of behavioral swings in preterm babies. To read more, click here

DID YOU KNOW THAT.....

Five principles of effective communication between educators and parents are accepting what is being said, active listening, questioning appropriately, encouraging, and staying focused (Heward, 2009).

Study: Better Understanding of Abnormalities That Lead to Chronic Kidney Disease in Children

Kidney damage associated with chronic reflux is the fourth leading cause of chronic kidney disease and is the most common cause of severe hypertension in children. Doctors and researchers at Nationwide Children's Hospital have developed a new mouse model of vesicoureteral reflux (VUR), a common childhood condition that can lead to chronic kidney disease in children. In a study appearing in the May print issue of The Journal of Urology, lead author David Hains, MD, principal investigator in the Center for Clinical and Translational Research at Nationwide Children's Hospital, found that these models were missing a protein known as fibroblast growth factor receptor 2 (Fgfr2) in their kidney tissue. Fibroblast growth factors are involved in tissue and organ development, especially in the kidneys. To read more, click here

Playground for Children with Disabilities Opens

Designing and creating playgrounds for children with all ranges of mobility is a science. According to those who live, work and educate children with disabilities, many playgrounds are not inviting, accessible or safe for children who use wheelchairs or walkers. A new playground at Gompers Habilitation Center, 6601 N. 27th Ave., is inviting, accessible and safe. Built with a $50,000 grant from Phoenix, the playground will enrich the lives of more than 300 individuals served by the center, executive director Mark Jacoby said. Organizations and members of the public also can reserve time on the clean, colorful and shaded playground. "It's been a dream of mine for six years," Jacoby said. "It's the first Boundless Playground in the state of Arizona. It's a community amenity." To read more, click here

NASET Sponsor - Heinle, Cengage Learning

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DID YOU KNOW THAT.....

Friend (2000) identified four myths that may undermine professional collaboration: (1) Everyone is doing it, (2) more is better, (3) it's about feeling good and liking others, and (4) it comes naturally

Florida House Bill Establishes Regulations for Disciplining Students with Disabilities

The Florida House passed a bill that establishes procedures for the seclusion and restraint on students with disabilities. Restraint and seclusion is largely unregulated. A federal inquiry last year found there are no federal laws, and Florida was among 19 states that had no regulations. The bill would prohibit school personnel from using restraints that restrict students' breathing and locking or blocking a student in a room that does not meet rules for seclusion time-out rooms. It also requires schools to prepare incident reports within 24 hours and to provide notification to a parent or guardian. To read more, click here

Smoothing the Way

People with disabilities never have an easy time traveling, but a rash of recent improvements, including more wheelchair-accessible taxis and rental vehicles - and even Web sites for people with dexterity or vision problems - have made it easier. New regulations updating the Air Carrier Access Act, for instance, extend coverage to flights by foreign airlines originating or landing in the United States, or ticketed through American carriers. Airlines are required to provide accommodations for people who travel with oxygen and other respiratory assistance, fly with service animals or have impaired hearing or vision. If passengers are unable to use automated kiosks to check in or to print boarding passes, for example, carriers must provide assistance at the kiosk or allow them to go to the front of the line. To read more, click here

USC Gets 10 Million Dollars for Learning Disabilities Center

A Northern California couple with family experience in learning disabilities is giving USC $10 million to help create a campus center to aid students with dyslexia, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and other learning difficulties, the university announced Monday. The gift from Walter and Marcia Kortschak to the new USC Kortschak Center for Learning and Creativity will help provide tutoring, counseling, technological assistance and treatment to students and will also help fund academic research in those areas. Marcia Kortschak is dyslexic, and their two children -- one a USC sophomore and another who will enroll at USC in the fall -- both have had some learning challenges, said Walter Kortschak, a Silicon Valley venture capitalist. To read more, click here

DID YOU KNOW THAT.....

Although no journal addresses only topics related to collaboration, the Journal of Educational and Psychological Consultation often includes research-based articles related to this topic (Friend, 2008).

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Singapore Scientists Make Breakthrough Findings on Early Embryonic Development

Scientists at the Genome Institute of Singapore (GIS) have recently generated significant single cell expression data crucial for a detailed molecular understanding of mammalian development from fertilization to embryo implantation, a process known as the preimplantation period. The knowledge gained has a direct impact on clinical applications in the areas of regenerative medicine and assisted reproduction. This study, published in Developmental Cell on April 20, 2010, is the first of its kind to apply single cell gene expression analysis of many genes to hundreds of cells in a developmental system. Ton read more, click here

Vaccinations: A Hot Debate Still Burning

The Vaccine War," a look at the debate that has been raging for years over the safety of, and necessity for, childhood vaccinations, has only a few moments that might be illuminating to those who have been following this now familiar controversy. One comes near the end of the program, a "Frontline" report Tuesday on PBS. Dr. Jim Shames, a public health official in Jackson County, Ore., is having a discussion - a calm, civilized discussion, lovely to see in this age and on this hot-button topic - with some women who have chosen not to vaccinate their children. To read more, click here

Watson Says Court Affirms ADHD Drug Patent Ruling

Watson Pharmaceuticals Inc. said Monday that an appeals court affirmed that a disputed patent on Johnson & Johnson's attention deficit drug Concerta is invalid. In March 2009, the U.S. District Court in Wilmington, Del., ruled that the primary patent on J&J's drug was invalid and that Watson's planned generic version doesn't infringe on the patent. The pill is the fifth-best-selling prescription drug for Johnson & Johnson, with global sales of $1.33 billion last year. On Monday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit Court affirmed the lower court's ruling. J&J affirmed the appeals court decision. To read more, click here

Food for Thought........

A child must learn early to believe that she is somebody worthwhile, and that she can do many praiseworthy things.

                                                         Benjamin Mays

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