Week in Review - April 1, 2011

WEEK IN REVIEW

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

April 1, 2011 - Vol 7, Issue 12

 

 

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In This Issue
New This Week on NASET
ADA Amendments Act (ADAAA)
One Woman's Dream Could Improve Beach Experience for People with Disabilities
In Hong Kong, Government Encourages Individuals with Disabilities to Develop Potential
Alexandria's Special Education Programs Up for Scrutiny
Students with Special Needs Protest Proposed Budget Cuts
Is Autism a Disease of Synaptic Function?
Surgery Relieves Pressure in TBI But Outcomes No Better
TRIVIA QUESTION OF THE WEEK
Interest in Toys May Predict Success of Autism Home Therapy
Food Dyes May Worsen Hyperactivity in Children
Children with Epilepsy Often Have More Psychiatric Symptoms
U.S. Chamber Applauds Bipartisan Work of EEOC on ADA Amendments Regulations
Arizona School Providing New Techniques for Children with Learning Disabilities
Housing Increasingly a Struggle for Individuals with Disabilities
KIPP and Special Education
Disability Awareness and Inclusion
Survey: Teachers Concerned About Resources for Students with Diverse Learning Needs
Treating Students as Gifted Yields Impressive Academic Results
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Dear NASET Members:

Welcome to NASET's WEEK in REVIEW. Here, we provide you with the latest publications from NASET to read and or download, as well as some of the most interesting articles 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 Special Educator e-Journal

New This Week on NASET

NASET Special Educator e-Journal

April 2011

In this issue:

Update from the U.S. Department Education
Calls to Participate
Special Education Resources
Update From The National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities
Latest Employment Opportunities Posted on NASET
Upcoming Conferences and Events
Funding Forecast and Award Opportunities
Acknowledgements
 
To read or download this issue - Click here (login required)

  

ADA Amendments Act (ADAAA): Expanding the Definition of Disability

Last week, the EEOC's final regulations to implement the ADA Amendments Act (ADAAA) were published in the Federal Register. The final regulations reflect significant changes in the interpretation of the ADA's definition of "disability." The ADA's definition of the term "disability" has not changed. The ADA defines a disability as a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities; a record (or past history) of such an impairment; or being regarded as having a disability. However, the law makes significant changes in how those terms are interpreted. Here is an overview of the changes. To read more, click here

 

One Woman's Dream Could Improve Beach Experience for People with Disabilities

One woman had a dream she's acting on today. The result could be a place for people with disabilities to better enjoy nature at Corpus Christi Beach. "I dreamed I invented something called the 'Braille Rail,' " said JoAnn Gilbertson, who moved to the beach in 2006. "I don't know why I dreamed it, but the notion has mushroomed into a passion to make sure everybody enjoys this beach as much as I do." Gilbertson didn't know at the time of her dream that a handrail with Braille inscribed on it was patented in 1976. That invention could help the blind learn about the beach's surrounding wetlands, animals and sounds. To read more, click here

 

Did You Know That....

In 2007, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) data showed that 97% of newborns in the United States were screened for hearing loss. Of those who were screened, 2.1% did not pass the final or most recent hearing screening.

  

In Hong Kong, Government Encourages Individuals with Disabilities to Develop Potential

Promoting the employment and capability development of persons with disabilities is one of the major objectives of the Government's rehabilitation policy. Speaking at the prize presentation ceremony of the eighth Hong Kong Abilympics today (March 26), the Secretary for Labour and Welfare, Mr Matthew Cheung Kin-chung, said that through participation in vocational skills and hobby competitions, persons with disabilities could demonstrate to the community their working capabilities and talent. He commended the event for actively promoting equal participation and inclusion which would help enhance public recognition of the potential of persons with disabilities in different areas. This would in turn increase their chances of successful job placement and enable them to contribute to society. To read more, click here

  

Alexandria's Special Education Programs Up for Scrutiny

State education officials will be in Alexandria classrooms next week conducting a follow-up audit to determine if the city's special education programs have improved. The Virginia Association of School Superintendents will spend Monday and Tuesday watching classes and interviewing administrators to see what changes school officials have made since the organization's last audit of the Alexandria City Public Schools in 2009. The VASS audit followed an investigation by the Virginia Department of Education, which in 2008 found that the city was not meeting six federal standards for special education instruction. To read more, click here

  

Students with Special Needs Protest Proposed Budget Cuts

Students from the New York Institute for Special Education rallied against Governor Andrew Cuomo's proposed budget cuts on Friday. The crowd of passionate protesters chanted loudly, "We will be seen. We will be heard. We are here today and we are not going away." Protesters claim that the Governor's proposed budget would force disabled students like Amanie Riley to be "main-streamed" and sent to public schools that lack the resources and funds to meet their needs. In most ways, Amanie is like any other senior in high school. She is driven, passionate, and excited about embarking on her journey to college. However, in one big way Amanie is different - she was born blind. The teen with a visual impairment is a student at the New York Institute for Special Education. To read more, click here

 

Did You Know That....

In 2007, 83.0% of the babies with diagnosed hearing loss were referred to Part C Early Intervention Services. Among the 83% of those referred, 91% were eligible for Part C services. The remaining 9% referred either were not eligible for services or their eligibility was unknown.

 

Is Autism a Disease of Synaptic Function?

The synapses are areas in the brain that permit messages to travel from cell to cell through chemicals called neurotransmitters. A study published this week suggests that autism may caused by faulty synapses. The new study was launched with the knowledge that some genes seem to contribute to autism, including a gene called shank3 that is found in the synapses. Researchers led by Guoping Feng, a professor of brain and cognitive sciences at the McGovern Institute for Brain Research at MIT, decided to test the concept that autism may be caused by dysfunctional synapses. By mutating just the shank3 gene, they were able to produce mice that possessed two key autism traits: compulsive, repetitive behavior and avoidance of social interaction. To read more, click here

 

Surgery Relieves Pressure in TBI But Outcomes No Better

Surgery successfully relieved pressure on the brain in patients with cases of severe traumatic brain injury, researchers reported. But, unexpectedly, the procedure did not improve long-term outcomes, according to D. James Cooper, MD, of Monash University in Melbourne, Australia, and colleagues. Indeed, in a randomized trial, patients assigned to surgery were twice as likely to have an unfavorable outcome after six months than were those treated with standard care, they reported online in the New England Journal of Medicine. To read more, click here

 

TRIVIA QUESTION OF THE WEEK

Guess the answer to this week's trivia question and we'll recognize you in next week's Week in Review.
 
Congratulations to: Jennifer A. Walz, MaryLouise Torre, Dawn Thomas, Warren Roberts, Lois Nembhard, Thomas McKibben, Marilyn Haile, Rhea Boldman, Debbie Innerarity, Peggy Woodall, Alexandra Pirard, Patricia Williams, Christie Miller, and Jessica L. Ulmer who knew the answer to last week's trivia question was: Gastroschisis (or we would have accepted the answer: Omphalocele)
 
THIS WEEK'S TRIVIA QUESTION:
  
According to the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA), there are 3 types of hearing loss. What are the 3 types of hearing loss?
  
 
If you know the answer, send an email to contactus@naset.org
All answers must be submitted no later than Monday, April 4, 2011 at 12:00 p.m.

 

Interest in Toys May Predict Success of Autism Home Therapy

The level of interest toddlers with early signs of autism show in toys may predict how well they will respond to a parent-guided treatment program, a new study suggests. The study included 51 boys and 11 girls younger than age 2 who met the criteria for autism disorders. The children were randomly assigned to receive either standard treatment (the control group) or enrolled in the Hanen's More Than Words program, which is designed to promote communication, language development and social skills. In the program, parents learn ways to help their toddlers communicate, such as encouraging eye contact and saying simple sentences from the child's perspective. To read more, click here

 

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NASET MEMBER'S BENEFIT -

Board Certification in Special Education Available to NASET Members

As 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 Educationestablishes a much needed standard for professionals, across disciplines, who work with exceptional children.
For more information on Board Certification in Special Education, click here

 

Food Dyes May Worsen Hyperactivity in Children

The Food and Drug Administration says food dyes may worsen hyperactivity in children. The FDA is responding to a petition asking the government agency to ban eight dyes used in food. Earlier studies have raised the possibility that some kids with behavioral issues like Attention-Deficit Disorder, or ADD, may have a unique intolerance to artificial food coloring. To read more, click here

 

Children with Epilepsy Often Have More Psychiatric Symptoms

Children with epilepsy are at increased risk of having psychiatric problems, with girls more likely to exhibit symptoms linked to depression and anxiety and boys more likely to have symptoms of ADHD and difficulty getting along with peers, new research suggests. In the study, epilepsy was a stronger risk factor for psychiatric problems than poverty, living with a single parent, or having another chronic disease. The study examined children with and without epilepsy living in Norway. Slightly more than one in three epileptic children in the study exhibited psychiatric symptoms, compared to about one in five children without epilepsy. To read more, click here

 

U.S. Chamber Applauds Bipartisan Work of EEOC on ADA Amendments Regulations

Randel K. Johnson, U.S. Chamber of Commerce senior vice president of Labor, Immigration and Employee Benefits, issued this statement today applauding the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) for its bipartisan approval of regulations implementing the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Amendments Act of 2008: "The ADA Amendments reflect a carefully crafted compromise between the business community and the disability community that was passed by the House and the Senate without dissent. To read more, click here

 

Arizona School Providing New Techniques for Children with Learning Disabilities

A lot of students struggle in school and if you're coping with a learning deficiency classes can be even more challenging. But one Valley school is helping kids unlock a new way of learning. "The student ratio is about one to six," said Dawn Gutierrez, New Way Learning Academy's Head of School. She said students attending the independent school suffer from learning disabilities or as they're called here "learning differences." "A lot of the students when they come to us have totally shut down they've been made to feel like they're a failure," said Gutierrez. Since 1968, the independent K-12 school in Scottsdale has turned failures into success stories. To read more, click here

 

Housing Increasingly a Struggle for Individuals with Disabilities

The number of Americans with disabilities who live in dire housing situations is on the rise, a new report indicates. About 1 million households that include people with disabilities qualified as having "worst case housing needs" in 2009, according to data released this week by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. The classification identifies households with extremely low-income renters who receive no government housing aid and who spend more than half of their income on rent or who live in substandard conditions. To read more, click here

 

KIPP and Special Education

Dee Alpert, a reader interested in charter schools, noticed the debate over their handling of students with learning disabilities. Some people say charter schools reject students with learning disabilities. Others say that can't be true because charters are public schools that must accept everyone they have room for. Alpert asked me how many special education students were in the 99 schools in 20 states and the District that were part of KIPP, the nation's most successful charter school network and the subject of my 2009 book, "Work Hard. Be Nice." I asked KIPP national spokesman Steve Mancini, who sent me this message. It is a good summary of what KIPP does with special ed, and will help guide our future arguments about this issue. To read more, click here

Did You Know That....

Infections during pregnancy in the mother, other environmental causes, and complications after birth are responsible for hearing loss among almost 30% of babies with hearing loss.

 

Disability Awareness and Inclusion

The National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities (NICHCY) receives many calls and emails each year from people looking for materials on disability awareness. People need these materials for many different reasons, from classroom instructional units, to Girl Scout information fairs, to school reports. This resource page (what's below) provides just a sample of selected materials available from different organizations. We also receive many requests for information about inclusion of children with disabilities in all walks of life. We are pleased to offer you a separate page of resources on the subject of inclusion. To read more, click here

 

Survey: Teachers Concerned About Resources for Students with Diverse Learning Needs

A large majority of U.S. teachers believe that schools are not doing enough to prepare students with diverse learning needs for success after high school, according to a nationwide survey released today. Fully 91 percent of the public school teachers interviewed for this year's annual MetLife Survey of the American Teacher said that strengthening programs and resources to help "diverse learners"-defined as students with low-income status, limited fluency in English, or learning disabilities-become college- and career-ready should be a priority in education. More than half of the teachers (59 percent) indicated it should be one of schools' highest priorities. To read more, click here

 

Treating Students as Gifted Yields Impressive Academic Results

Schools that seek to help students who are underrepresented in advanced programs should treat them as gifted young scholars, an approach that can result in many of them actually performing at a gifted level within a few years, according to a U.S. Dept. of Education study of a North Carolina program. Developed by researchers at Duke University with state educators, the five-year study of 10,000 kindergarteners and first- and second-graders suggests that raising expectations could be a key to enhancing the academic performance of at-risk students nationwide. "All students should get a gifted education, even if they are not subsequently identified as gifted," said William "Sandy" Darity, chair of African and African American studies and a professor at the Sanford School of Public Policy at Duke University. "It's not about who is in the class, but the quality of instruction." To read more, click here

Food For Thought..........

Success is always temporary. When all is said and done, the only thing you'll have left is your character.

Vince Gill

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