Week in Review - October 7, 2011

WEEK IN REVIEW

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

October 7, 2011 - Vol 7, Issue 36
 

 

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In This Issue

New This Week on NASET

Prescribed Stimulant Use for ADHD Continues to Rise Steadily
Students with Special Needs Aren't Getting Picked Up From School On Time
What Do Infants Remember When They Forget?
Worries About Autism Link Still Hang Over Vaccines
Groups Seek Restored Funding for Services for Those With Disabilities
TV Characters With Disabilities Few And Far Between
The Level and Nature of Autistic Intelligence II: What About Asperger Syndrome?
TRIVIA QUESTION OF THE WEEK
Henry Winkler: 'We Have to Do and Make the Most out of Ourselves'
Los Angeles Pledges to Make Magnet Schools More Inclusive
Parent Primer: Placing Special Needs Children in the Inclusive Class
Kansas School for the Deaf turns 150 this month
Teenage Mind: First Time Evidence
Tennessee Teachers Use 'Creative' Strategies with students
Education Innovation: What It Is and Why We Need More of It
Guide Looks To Help Parents Tackling Challenging Behavior
Drug May Aid Social Functioning in Children with Autism
Dyslexia Isn't a Matter of IQ, Brain Imaging Study Shows
 

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Dear NASET News,

 

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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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.  

 

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New This Week on NASET - NASET Practical Teacher , & Parent Teacher Conference Handout 

 
NASET Practical Teacher
 
 Science Brain Efficient Word Lists for Word Sorts, Puzzles, and More...

"Science Brain Efficient Word Lists for Word Sorts, Puzzles, and More" author, Matthew J. Glavach Ph.D., offers a literacy approach based on current reading and brain research. The approach, which he calls parallel reading intervention, organizes important content area vocabulary words into logical brain efficient word lists that make learning the words much easier.  Students improve spelling, word attack, vocabulary, and comprehension skills while improving their ability to succeed in content area classes such as science. The word lists provide a powerful, easy-to-use tool that enhances, not burdens, classroom instruction. The focus of this issue of NASET's Practical Teacher is to describe the approach, and includes extensive brain efficient word lists for science.


To read or download this issue - Click here (login required)
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Parent Teacher Conference Handout
 
  Procedural Due Process for Parents and Children
 
There any be times when you are asked to clarify some legal issues for parents concerning their due process rights. This Parent Teacher Conference Handout clarifies several of the more important issues regarding this subject.The procedure of due process as it applies to special education describes the legal procedures and requirements developed to protect the rights of children, parents and school districts. In respect to children suspected of having a disability, due process guarantees a free and appropriate public education in the least restrictive educational setting. For parents, due process protects their rights to have input into the educational program and placement of their child, and to have options in cases of disagreement with the recommendations of the school district. For school districts, due process offers recourse in cases of parent resistance with a request for evaluation, challenges to an independent evaluation sought by parents at public expense or unwillingness of parents to consent to the IEP Committee recommendation.
 
 To read or download this issue - Click here  (login required)-
 

 

Prescribed Stimulant Use for ADHD Continues to Rise Steadily

The prescribed use of stimulant medications to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) rose slowly but steadily from 1996 to 2008, according to a study conducted by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). The study was published online ahead of print September 28, 2011, in the American Journal of Psychiatry. ADHD is one of the most common childhood disorders, and can continue through adolescence and adulthood. Symptoms include difficulty staying focused and paying attention, difficulty controlling behavior, and hyperactivity (over-activity). The condition is frequently treated with stimulants such as methylphenidate (e.g., Ritalin), amphetamines (e.g., Adderall) or other types of medications. Behavioral therapies can also be effective. During the 1990s, stimulant prescription use increased significantly, going from a prevalence rate among youth of 0.6 percent in 1987 to 2.7 percent in 1997, with the rate stabilizing around 2.9 percent in 2002. Recent reports, however, suggest that the prescribed use of these medications and the diagnosis of ADHD have continued to rise. Based on the Health Resources and Services Administration's National Survey of Children's Health, the percentage of children age 4-17 years diagnosed with ADHD increased from 7.8 percent in 2003 to 9.5 percent in 2007. To read more, click here

 

Students with Special Needs Aren't Getting Picked Up From School On Time

It's an issue that we've been covering for quite sometime now, school transportation. But as one mother tells me, the problem still isn't fixed...Alexis Moss (Mother of Child with Autism): "Special needs children; they don't normally like to wait." And waiting still seems to be the issue for Richmond County Transportation. Alexis Moss would know because her son has autism and he has to wait for up to 3 hours just to get picked up from school. Alexis Moss(Mother of Child with Autism): "They're telling me that he'll be sitting there until 6pm at night before he even gets picked up to arrive home." (Cory) and what time does he get off school? (Alexis) 3:15. So she picks him up herself... To read more, click here

 
Did You Know That....
Fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASDs) are a group of conditions that can occur in a person whose mother drank alcohol during pregnancy. These effects can include physical problems and problems with behavior and learning. Often, a person with an FASD has a mix of these problems.

 

What Do Infants Remember When They Forget?

Six-month-old babies are severely limited in what they can remember about the objects they see in the world; if you hide several objects from an infant, they will only remember one of those objects with any detail. But a new study, which will be published in an upcoming issue of Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science, finds that when babies "forget" about an object, not all is lost. Researchers used to think that babies less than two years old did not understand that an object continues to exist when it is not currently in the baby's view. But in the mid-1980s, new ways of doing experiments with babies found that they do, in fact, know that objects don't disappear when you're not looking at them -- a concept known as object permanence. But it was still unknown what babies needed to remember about objects in order to remember their existence. To read more, click here

 

Worries About Autism Link Still Hang Over Vaccines

Even before Rep. Michele Bachmann made waves by questioning the safety of vaccines against cervical cancer, there was plenty of resistance to routine immunization. As parents fret, vaccination rates for kids have dipped. Childhood vaccination rates against measles, mumps and rubella (MMR), for instance, fell almost 3 percentage points to 90.6 percent in 2009 from the year before, according to data from private insurers. During the first half of August, we asked people across the country for their views on vaccines in the latest NPR-Thomson Reuters Health Poll. Autism remains a top worry, with 21 percent of respondents saying they believe autism is linked to vaccines. About 7 percent believe in a link between vaccines and diabetes. To read more, click here

 

Groups Seek Restored Funding for Services for Those With Disabilities

Last Wednesday, two groups filed a lawsuit against California for allegedly violating federal and state law by failing to provide adequate funds for programs that serve about 245,000 individuals with developmental disabilities, the San Diego Union-Tribune reports. The lawsuit was filed by United Cerebral Palsy of San Diego County and the Arc of California against the California Department of Developmental Services and the Department of Health Care Services (Ignelzi, San Diego Union-Tribune, 9/28).  California froze reimbursement rates for community service providers in 2003 and slashed rates by 3% in 2009. The lawsuit states that the payment cut was increased to 4.25% last year and extended through June 2012 (Anderson, Fresno Bee, 9/28).

The plaintiffs claim that the state violated the Federal Home and Community-Based Service Providers waiver program by cutting rates without federal approval (Richman, Contra Costa Times, 9/29). According to the lawsuit, federal officials must sign off on rate cuts because the state receives federal Medicaid funds to provide services for residents with disabilities. William McLaughlin, the lead attorney on the lawsuit, said California also did not consider the effects of the cuts. To read more, click here

 
Did You Know That....
We do not know exactly how many people have an FASD. CDC studies have shown that 0.2 to 1.5 cases of fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) occur for every 1,000 live births in certain areas of the United States. Other studies using different methods have estimated the rate of FAS at 0.5 to 2.0 cases per 1,000 live births.

 

TV Characters With Disabilities Few And Far Between

Less than 1 percent of characters on primetime network television have disabilities and their numbers are on the decline, a new report indicates. Of the 647 characters appearing regularly this year on scripted programs on ABC, CBS, The CW, Fox and NBC, just five have disabilities. That's down by one from last year. The findings come from an annual report on minority representation on television released Wednesday by the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation. It's based on an analysis of the 91 scripted shows that networks have announced for the 2011-2012 season. "People with disabilities represent our country's largest minority," said Christine Bruno, co-chair of the Tri-Union I AM PWD campaign to promote inclusion of people with disabilities in entertainment, which helped conduct the report. To read more, click here

 

The Level and Nature of Autistic Intelligence II: What About Asperger Syndrome?

Autism spectrum disorders, including Asperger syndrome, have generally been associated with uneven intellectual profiles and impairment, but according to a new study of Asperger individuals published in the online journal PLoS ONE, this may not be the case -- as long as intelligence is evaluated by the right test. Both autistic and Asperger individuals display uneven profiles of performance in commonly used intelligence test batteries such as Wechsler scales, and their strongest performances are often considered evidence for deficits. However, this study reports that Asperger individuals' scores are much higher when they are evaluated by a test called Raven's Progressive Matrices, which encompasses reasoning, novel problem-solving abilities, and high-level abstraction. By comparison, scores for non-Asperger individuals are much more consistent across different tests. Interestingly, Asperger participants' performance on Raven's Matrices was associated with their strongest peaks of performance on Wechsler. 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: Danielle Nacht, Alexandra Pirard, Joanie Dikeman, Chaya Tabor, James Hannon, Lois Nembhard, Judy Scharf, Heather Shyrer, Jessica L. Ulmer, Deanna Krieg,  Rena M. Root, and Marilyn Haile who knew that approximately 9.5% of children age 4-17 years have been diagnosed with ADHD. 
 
THIS WEEK'S TRIVIA QUESTION: 
Why is the commonly used name of the condition "Trisomy 21"?
 
If you know the answer, send an email to contactus@naset.org 
All answers must be submitted no later than Monday, October 10, 2011 at 12:00 p.m.

 

Henry Winkler: 'We Have to Do and Make the Most out of Ourselves'

Henry Winkler, most popularly known as "The Fonz" on the '70s sitcom "Happy Days," encourages everyone to succeed, even if it means overcoming obstacles, such as his own learning disability, dyslexia. "We have to do and make the most out of ourselves," he told a crowd of about 600 guests at the Citizens Memorial Healthcare Burgundy Ball Saturday evening at the University Plaza Hotel in Springfield. "If we don't, something very important will remain undone forever." School was a constant struggle for Winkler, who was not diagnosed with dyslexia until he was an adult. He said his parents didn't understand how difficult school was for him, and he was not "cool" as a child and teenager, though he played a "cool" role on "Happy Days." To read more, click here

 

Los Angeles Pledges to Make Magnet Schools More Inclusive

Students with disabilities won't be automatically banned from getting into a Los Angeles magnet school simply because they can't participate in a particular program for at least half the school day or because they require services in a separate classroom, the school district told a federally appointed monitor in a letter this week. Earlier this year, the independent monitor that oversees how LAUSD works with special education students found that some of the district's practices may violate federal and state laws regarding these students. Los Angeles was assigned a monitor to oversee the district's work with students with disabilities following a 1996 lawsuit. To read more, click here

 

Parent Primer: Placing Special Needs Children in the Inclusive Class

This past week I went to my son's Back to School Night and despite the tired, musty, out-of-date classrooms, I found his teachers to be quite the opposite! They were enthusiastic about their jobs; they use current technology to teach students and repeatedly encouraged parents to stay in touch. In the end, their message was very clear - teachers, students and parents must work together to ensure the student's educational success. I noted that this "team" approach towards education not only works in the regular education setting, but in special education as well. While teachers and schools are becoming more skilled at collaborating to provide positive educational experiences for special needs children, parents also need to become actively involved in the education process. In particular, parents should participate in the decisions and classroom placements of their child. Together, the team can work towards finding an optimal learning environment for the student. To read more, click here

 

Kansas School for the Deaf turns 150 this month

To a person who hears, lunchtime at this particular school can be a jarring and confusing sight. Hands aflutter, kids laughing, the clanging of chairs and the squeaking of floors. Heads quickly scan the room, looking to see if they missed part of a funny comment or are being left out of a story. But nary a word. Have a camera, and curiosity soars. But the students approach with caution. There's an awkward moment when a student realizes a hearing person doesn't speak their language. And for a hearing person, you can't help but feel left out of all the fun. A brave 4-year-old approaches. Tiny fingers move and the girl is telling you her age. "I'm four," she says, in sign language. The cookie she's munching on? "It's chocolate chip," she says and now bored, she turns around, munching and signing, talking to her friends. The scene isn't much different from an encounter with a 4-year-old at another school. Curiosity, a short attention span and having lunch with friends. Just no words. This is the Kansas School for the Deaf, which this month celebrates its 150th anniversary. Through the years, thousands of students have passed through the school, learned a new language, moved on to careers and created a "deaf-friendly" culture in Olathe. To read more, click here

 

Teenage Mind: First Time Evidence Links Over Interpretation of Social Situations to Personality Disorder

Carla Sharp, an associate professor and director of the Developmental Psychopathology Lab in clinical psychology at the University of Houston (UH), became interested in the way people think, how they organize thoughts, execute a decision, then determine whether a decision is good or bad. Sharp will explore that interest by serving as primary investigator for a new research study titled, "Theory of Mind and Emotion Regulation Difficulties in Adolescents with Borderline Traits," featured on the cover of the June edition of the Journal of the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry. To read more, click here

 

Tennessee Teachers Use 'Creative' Strategies with students with ADHD

Students with ADHD at Rutherford County's La Vergne Lake Elementary School get to sit on a "wiggle cushion," an inflatable pad that lets them squirm all they want without disrupting others. In Metro Nashville schools, they may get to chew gum or suck on peppermints. They may get more time to take tests at Elzie Patton Elementary School in Wilson County. Tennessee teachers are not trained to deal with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, but with 11 percent of their students diagnosed with it, they're learning strategies to cope. The state - and the rest of the South - is near the top of the nation for ADHD diagnoses, and the numbers are growing. To read more, click here

 

Education Innovation: What It Is and Why We Need More of It

Whether for reasons of economic growth, competitiveness, social justice or return on tax-payer investment, there is little rational argument over the need for significant improvement in U.S. educational outcomes. Further, it is irrefutable that the country has made limited improvement on most educational outcomes over the last several decades, especially when considered in the context of the increased investment over the same period. In fact, the total cost of producing each successful high school and college graduate has increased substantially over time instead of decreasing - creating what some argue is an inverted learning curve. This analysis stands in stark contrast to the many anecdotes of teachers, schools and occasionally whole systems "beating the odds" by producing educational outcomes well beyond "reasonable" expectations. And, therein lies the challenge and the rationale for a very specific definition of educational innovation. To read more, click here

 
Did You Know That....
There is no cure for FASDs, but research shows that early intervention treatment services can improve a child's development. Early intervention services help children from birth to 3 years of age (36 months) learn important skills. Services include therapy to help the child talk, walk, and interact with others. 

Guide Looks To Help Parents Tackling Challenging Behavior

A new guide out last week aims to help parents as they contemplate medicating their kids to address challenging behaviors often associated with autism. The 21-page download offers a series of pros and cons families can weigh when considering medication alongside worksheets to help parents sort out their feelings on the issue. It was developed by clinicians affiliated with Autism Speaks' Autism Treatment Network, a group of medical providers at 17 sites throughout the country that work together to identify effective approaches to treating autism. To read more, click here

 

Drug May Aid Social Functioning in Children with Autism

U.S. researchers say propranolol -- a drug used to treat high blood pressure, control heart rate and reduce test anxiety -- may help people with autism. David Beversdorf of the University of Missouri found the drug is beneficial for improving language development and social communication in people with autism. "We can clearly say that propranolol has the potential to benefit language and may help people with autism function appropriately in social situations, including making eye contact with others," Beversdorf said in a statement. "Enhancing both language and social function is significant because those are two of the three main features of autism. Clinical trials will assess the drug's effect on all three features, including repetitive behaviors." To read more, click here

Dyslexia Isn't a Matter of IQ, Brain Imaging Study Shows

About 5 to 10 percent of American children are diagnosed with dyslexia. Historically, the label has been assigned to kids who are bright, even verbally articulate, but who struggle with reading -- in short, whose high IQs mismatch their low reading scores. When children are not as bright, however, their reading troubles have been chalked up to their general intellectual limitations. Now a new brain-imaging study challenges this understanding of dyslexia. "We found that children who are poor readers have the same brain difficulty in processing the sounds of language whether they have a high or low IQ," says Massachusetts Institute of Technology neuroscientist John D. E. Gabrieli, who worked on the study with Fumiko Hoeft, Hiroko Tanaka, Jessica M. Black, Leanne M. Stanley, Shelli R. Kesler, and Allan L. Reiss of the Stanford University School of Medicine; Charles Hulme at York University in the UK; and Susan Whitfield-Gabrieli, also at MIT. "Reading difficulty is independent of other cognitive abilities." To read more, click here

 
 

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

An investment in knowledge always pays the best interest

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