Week in Review - April 22, 2011


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

April 22, 2011 - Vol 7, Issue 15


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In This Issue
New This Week on NASET .....
FDA Reports Shortage of ADHD Drugs....
Having Both Autism and Epilepsy Linked to Raised Death Rates.....
Bipartisan Legislation to End U.S. Neglect of High-Potential Gifted Students Is Introduced.....
Parents and Advocates Surprised at Chicago's Top Autism Ranking....
Note-Taking Made Easy For Students Who are Legally Blind....
New Online Service Applies the 'Netflix' Model to Literacy....
Professional Learning Communities: Making Students and Teachers Better....
Abusive Head Trauma in Infants Doubled During Recession....
Feds Say Oregon Must Boost Special Education Funding or Face Sanctions....
PBS Focuses on Autism Awareness with Robert MacNeil Discussing His Grandson....
Desperate Family Seeks Politicians' Help to Stay in Canada: Deportation....
Dogs Seen as Way to Help Students with Learning Disabilities....
Group Creates Audio Books for Blind and Those with Learning Disabilities....
Nutrition to Treat Traumatic Brain Injury?....
The ADA Soon Will Cover More Indivuduals with Disabilities

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.


NASET News Team


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New This Week on NASET

Genetics in Special Education Series

Genetic components presented in this issue:

· Velocardiofacial Syndrome

· Turner Syndrome.

To read or download this issue - Click here (login required)

Discipline of Students in Special Education Series

Putting It All Together: A Case Study

Part 9 of 9

The final issue of our Discipline series pulls everything together.  Given the complexity of IDEA's discipline procedures, you may find it helpful to look at a case study of a student subject to disciplinary action. See how IDEA's discipline procedures apply in real life by looking at the case of Charlie.

To read or download this issue - Click here (login required)

FDA Reports Shortage of ADHD Drugs

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has reported a nationwide shortage of methylphenidate (Ritalin, Methylin, and generic) and amphetamine mixed salts (Adderall and generic), stimulants commonly used to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder in children and adults. The FDA tightly regulates the drugs, which are classified as controlled substances by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency. The agency doesn't clearly identify the cause of the shortage, though demand for the drugs has grown recently as more and more kids are being diagnosed with ADHD, and their popularity grows among people, particularly college students, who take them to improve concentration. To read more, click here

Having Both Autism and Epilepsy Linked to Raised Death Rates

People with both autism and epilepsy have a much higher death rate than those with autism alone, a new study finds. Researchers examined brain tissue donated to the Autism Speaks Autism Tissue Program, and found that 39 percent of the donors with autism also had epilepsy, which is significantly higher than the estimated rate of epilepsy among the general autism population. The study authors also examined data from the California State Department of Developmental Services, and found that people with both autism and epilepsy have an 800 percent higher death rate than those with autism alone. To read more, click here

Did You Know That....

The age range for "infants and toddlers" is birth to 36 months.

Bipartisan Legislation to End U.S. Neglect of High-Potential Gifted Students Is Introduced

The National Association for Gifted Children applauds the introduction of bipartisan legislation to end the longstanding neglect of high-achieving and high-potential students in the U.S., a neglect that is leaving the nation less competitive against global rivals and ill prepared for the future. The legislation, known as the TALENT (To Aid Gifted and High-Ability Learners by Empowering the Nation's Teachers) Act, will require states and local districts to include gifted and talented and high-potential students in their plans for using federal funding, require states to report on the performance of gifted students on their annual state report cards and help better prepare teachers to work with this special-needs population. To read more, click here

NFL Players' Foundation Gets Children with Disabilities Outdoors

Tony Semple's life's journey has taken him from Lincoln High School in Springfield, Ill., to the National Football League. But Semple knows that not everyone's life takes the preferred path. Now that Semple's playing days are over, the former football star is helping kids who are facing disabilities or life-threatening illnesses that can put a jarring hit on self-esteem. The Tony Semple Foundation for Hope, based in Ada, Mich., brings kids with disabilities and other life challenges outdoors for hunting and fishing adventures. More importantly, he says, kids get the chance to talk to other kids who have experienced similar setbacks and learn how to draw on their inner strength. To read more, click here

South Carolina Bill Would Change Wording on Mental Issues

Recently proposed legislation would help reduce the stigma for those with mental disabilities, says Rep. Jerry Govan, D-Orangeburg. The bill sponsored by Govan would substitute the term "intellectual disability" for "mental retardation" in state laws, regulations, policies and procedures. The changes would apply to state agencies, boards, commissions and local government. Govan said passage would bring South Carolina in line with federal efforts. The bill is one of several similar measures that have been introduced, including one by Rep. Bakari Sellers, D-Denmark, on April 12. "There is an effort afoot to update regulations and statutes with this language change," Govan said. "It provides dignity and greater respect for those with these issues. To read more, click here

Did You Know That....

Approximately 2% of all infants and toddlers in the United States receive early intervention services

Parents and Advocates Surprised at Chicago's Top Autism Ranking

Autism advocates gave mixed reviews to Autism Speaks' recent survey that placed Chicago as one of the top 10 places for people with autism to live in the United States. Autism Speaks, an autism advocacy organization, conducted the survey through Survey Monkey, reaching out through social networks such as Twitter, Facebook and various blogs. A total of 848 people in 48 states and the District of Columbia completed the survey. Only 26 percent stated that they are satisfied with autism resources in their community, while 74 percent reported that they are not satisfied. Mark Roithmayr, president of Autism Speaks, said that the goal of the survey was to initiate conversations in the community about autism and to convey the needs of the autism community to policy makers and leaders. "Overall, the needs of the growing population of people with autism are not being met, and that has to change," he said. Ari Goldstein, an educational psychologist and director of Cognitive Learning Center Inc. in Chicago, believes that one of the main reasons that Chicago was rated a top city for people with autism is the medical and non-medical resources available. To read more, click here

Note-Taking Made Easy For Students Who are Legally Blind

Remember back in college, sitting in those big lecture halls, trying to follow what your professor was saying and read through those equations on the board and scribble it all down furiously at the same time in your notebook? For legally blind students, it's hard to switch focus between the notebook and the board. A team of students built a device to make it easier, using a video camera and a tablet PC-a feat which won them top prize in the U.S. finals of Microsoft's Imagine Cup. Team leader David Hayden, legally blind himself, discusses the invention. To read more, click here


Guess the answer to this week's trivia question and we'll recognize you in next week's Week in Review.

Congratulations to: Tabitha Garrett, Phyllis Wilson, Sandra Kennedy, MaryLouise Torre, Marilyn Haile, Ross Jones, Catherine Cardenas, Debra Mueller, Shan Ring, James Hannon, Gloria J. Ortiz, Lisa Rotella, Deanna Krieg, Jenny Bassford, Alexandra Pirard, Amanda Davis-Holloway, Christie Miller, Nicole Singh, Jessica L. Ulmer, Ellen Bosch Brewi, Chaya Tabor, & Cindy O'Connor who knew that there are 13 categories of disability under the federal law, IDEIA.


The five disability classifications under IDEIA of Learning Disabilities, Speech and Language Impairments, Emotional Disturbance, Other Health Impairments and Mental Retardation are often referred to as the "Big Five".  Why?

If you know the answer, send an email to contactus@naset.org
All answers must be submitted no later than Monday, April 25, 2011 at 12:00 p.m.


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New Online Service Applies the 'Netflix' Model to Literacy

Anyone who's familiar with Netflix knows the online video streaming and rental service lets users rate the movies they watch, as well as their level of interest in various genres, and then delivers personalized recommendations based on this information. Now, Capstone Digital-a division of Capstone Publishing-has launched a new online service that aims to do for literacy what Netflix has done for consumer entertainment, with the hope that this approach might spark students' interest in reading. The myON Reader system is a personalized digital reading environment that functions like Netflix's "Suggested For You" section. After screening the abilities and interests of K-8 students, myON suggests titles based on the students' Lexile levels and the topics that most appeal to them-and this process is further refined each time a student rates a text he or she has read. To read more, click here

Professional Learning Communities: Making Students and Teachers Better

In some city neighborhoods, small towns, and even close-knit suburbs, each child has a lot of mothers and fathers "looking out" for him or her. In these places, adults don't parcel out children as "my child" and "your child" but as "our children," feeling some degree of responsibility for all the little ones playing up and down the block. Some Minnesota school districts are trying to introduce a similar model in teaching, called a "Professional Learning Community" (PLC). The move pulls teachers out of isolation in their classes and places them into a community based on collaboration amongst educators to improve student achievement. It turns the "my student" "your student" mentality into "our students." To read more, click here

Abusive Head Trauma in Infants Doubled During Recession

Recession-related stress may have triggered an alarming increase in non-accidental head injuries among infants, new research suggests. The number of babies hospitalized for non-accidental head trauma -- a form of child abuse previously known as shaken baby syndrome -- doubled during the recent recession, according to the study by researchers at University Hospitals Rainbow Babies and Children's Hospital in Cleveland. "The reasons for why this is happening are beyond the scope of our study, but it may be that more parents are stressed to the breaking point because of economic problems like unemployment and foreclosures," said lead author Mary I. Huang, a fourth-year medical student at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine. To read more, click here

Feds Say Oregon Must Boost Special Education Funding or Face Sanctions

The U.S. Department of Education has denied Oregon's request to reduce special education funding in light of budget cuts and will cut more than $15 million federal funding to schools if the state doesn't reverse course. States lose federal special education money if they lower their contribution to those programs without a waiver. Oregon Department of Education officials sought the federal waiver, saying the state faced declining revenue projections throughout the summer, forcing the department to reduce the amount of money supporting special education programs. But the federal government didn't see things the same way. U.S. Department of Education officials say Oregon needs to tap into its reserves and return special education funding to 2009-10 levels. If it doesn't, the federal government will reduce its contribution to the state by $15.7 million for the 2011-12 school year - a direct reduction to local school district budgets. To read more, click here

Autism Now: PBS Focuses on Autism Awareness with Robert MacNeil Discussing His Grandson

ROBERT MACNEIL: In recent years, the diagnosis of autism has shown startling growth, now affecting one in 110 American children. For over two decades, parents desperate for answers and feeling slighted by the medical community have helped force to create services for their children, raise money for research and campaign for wider awareness of autism and for support from the government.Today the picture is changing. Researchers now believe there is no simple genetic cause, that autism may involve multiple genetic pathways, and toxic materials in the environment may trigger the symptoms of autism. Autism once was considered only a brain disorder. Now, more doctors say it often involves serious physical illness. And that's our first story tonight. Frankly, I have a personal motive in telling it, because it's about my grandson Nick, who is 6 and lives in Cambridge, Mass. To read more, click here

Desperate Family Seeks Politicians' Help to Stay in Canada: Deportation--Child's Cerebral Palsy an 'Excessive Burden'

David Barlagne's family made headlines across the French-speaking world last year after Canadian immigration officials rejected his application to stay here permanently - saying his 8-year-old handicapped daughter would be an "excessive burden" on the state's social services. His daughter, Rachel, was deemed "medically inadmissible" because she has cerebral palsy. Her "excessive burden" on social services would amount to $5,259 a year in special educational costs. Barlagne moved to Montreal from the French island of Guadeloupe in 2005 on a work permit after a Canadian embassy official in Paris persuaded him Montreal would be great place to expand a computer software business. The family has settled in Montreal, and his wife, Sophie, had been teaching French to immigrants on a voluntary basis. To read more,click here

Dogs Seen as Way to Help Students with Learning Disabilities

Tuesday's Coquitlam board of education meeting was enlivened by the introduction of two super-dogs. But the animals were much more sedate than the trick dogs at the popular PNE agility show. Handlers showed how Tartan and Cypress, two Pacific Assistance Dogs, are trained to be working dogs that can be employed to help children improve reading skills. The presentation was organized by the district's teaching and evaluation centre and Animal Ambassadors for Reading Fun. The dogs were brought in to show how they can help children with learning disabilities overcome a fear of reading aloud. To read more, click here

Did You Know That....

Approximately 5% of all preschoolers (ages 3-5 years) receive special education services in the United States.

Group Creates Audio Books for Blind and Those with Learning Disabilities

Naveen James of Glendale is among the millions of blind and students with learning disabilities across the nation who can borrow or download digital audio books from Recording for the Blind and Dyslexic (RFB&D), which has been producing audio books for 63 years. "I rely on audio books," said James. "With the RFB&D books, I can increase the speed of the reading itself. I can navigate to a specific chapter or page. And because the books are read by volunteers, the RFB&D audio books have a perfect, human-sounding voice, which makes it more pleasant." One of RFB&D's 6,000 volunteers nationwide is Christopher Painter, a senior staff writer at Disney Online Studios, who gives two hours each week to read at the RFB&D recording studio in Hollywood as a Disney VoluntEAR. To read more, click here

Nutrition to Treat Traumatic Brain Injury?

The US Department of Defense may use nutritional techniques to combat traumatic brain injury, according to the National Academy of Sciences. A new report entitled Nutrition and Traumatic Brain Injury: Improving Acute and Subacute Health Outcomes in Military Personnel by the Institute of Medicine suggests the most effective nutritional approaches that the Department of Defense should adopt. According to the report, some nutrients and diets have shown potential in treating the immediate and short-term effects of brain injury, being especially effective when it comes to traumatic brain injury. To read more, click here

The ADA Soon Will Cover More Indivuduals with Disabilities

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission recently released final regulations implementing the Americans with Disabilities Amendments Act, or the ADAA. Like the act itself, "the regulations are designed to simplify the determination of who has a disability and make it easier for people to establish that they are protected by the Americans with Disabilities Act," the agency said in a statement. The new EEOC regulations are an attempt to address what Congress saw as an overly narrow definition of just who was considered disabled. "Among the purposes of the ADAA is the reinstatement of a 'broad scope of protection' by expanding the definition of the term 'disability.' Congress found that persons with many types of impairments -- including epilepsy, diabetes, multiple sclerosis, major depression, and bipolar disorder -- had been unable to bring ADA claims because they were found not to meet the ADA's definition of 'disability'," the commission said in its Q&A. "There were some really bad cases," at least from the employees' or plaintiffs' perspective, says Myra Creighton, an Atlanta-based employment attorney with Fisher & Phillips LLP. To read more,click here

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

Through enthusiasm, attitudes and ideas, or lack of these attributes, a teacher communicates messages that are sometimes more important than the subject matter itself.

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