Week in Review - November 25, 2011


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

November 25, 2011 - Vol 7, Issue 43


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Welcome to NASET's WEEK in REVIEW 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

NASET Sponsor - Drexel Online


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New This Week on NASET

Q & A Corner

Questions and Answers on Intellectual Disability

Intellectual disability is a term used when a person has certain limitations in mental functioning and in skills such as communicating, taking care of him or herself, and social skills. These limitations will cause a child to learn and develop more slowly than a typical child. Children with intellectual disabilities (sometimes called cognitive disabilities or mental retardation) may take longer to learn to speak, walk, and take care of their personal needs such as dressing or eating. They are likely to have trouble learning in school. They will learn, but it will take them longer. There may be some things they cannot learn. The focus of this issue of NASET's Q & A Corner will be to address frequently asked questions about intellectual disabilities.

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

IEP Components Series

Related Services

All IEP's must contain a statement of the special education and related services and supplementary aids and services, based on peer-reviewed research to the extent practicable, to be provided to the child, or on behalf of the child, and a statement of the program modifications or supports for school personnel that will be provided to enable the child-Related services help children with disabilities benefit from their special education by providing extra help and support in needed areas, such as speaking or moving. This issue of NASET's IEP Component Series will focus specifically on related services in the IEP.

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

Often Excluded, More Students with Special Needs Taking NAEP

Following a push to make "the nation's report card" better reflect the academic performance of all children in America's schools, most states boosted the numbers of students with disabilities and English-language learners who participated in the 2011 reading and math tests that are part of the National Assessment of Educational Progress, or NAEP. But many states still have far to go to reach the inclusion targets set for them last year by federal policymakers. Overall, the numbers of 4th and 8th grade students who took the NAEP and were identified as having a disability or being an English-language learner rose in 2011, continuing a longer-term trend that began over a decade ago when NAEP began allowing students to use accommodations, such as additional time, when taking the exams. To read more, click here

Words Recognized by Looks, Not Sounds

Skilled readers do not have to sound out words every time they see them, a new study indicates. Instead, once they know a word, they can access a "visual dictionary" in their brains to recognize it every time they see it, said researchers at Georgetown University Medical Center. They suggested these findings could provide new insight into certain reading disorders. "One camp of neuroscientists believes that we access both the phonology and the visual perception of a word as we read them and that the area or areas of the brain that do one also do the other, but our study proves this isn't the case," lead investigator Laurie Glezer, a postdoctoral research fellow, said in a medical center news release. To read more, click here

Did You Know That....

Unless the school and parents agree otherwise, when a request for a due process hearing is made, IDEIA's "stay-put" provision is invoked. During the pendency of any administrative or judicial proceeding regarding a complaint, unless the parent and the public agency agree otherwise, the child involved in the complaint must remain in his or her current educational placement.

High School Prepares Students with Special Needs for Careers

In today's economy it can be tough for a young high school graduate to find work - especially if they are saddled with a learning disability or have special needs. In many cases these students will simply turn 18 and begin collecting Supplemental Security Income, also known as SSI. But a 15-year-old program at Turlock High School is breaking the cycle of relying on the government - and giving them the skills to lead productive and independent lives. According to Kathy Smith, a THS job coach and developer, the Transitional Partnership Program's ultimate goal is to break that cycle and produce contributing members of society. The TPP is a triangle partnership between the California Department of Rehabilitation, Turlock Unified School District and the student. The THS program is allotted funding from the Department of Rehab to help graduating seniors develop skills necessary to find a job and keep a job. To read more,click here

NASET Sponsor - Drexel Online


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Teens with Autism Face Major Obstacles to Social Life Outside of School

Hanging out with friends after school and on the weekends is a vital part of a teen's social life. But for adolescents with autism spectrum disorders (ASDs), social activity outside of school is a rarity, finds a new study by Paul Shattuck, PhD, autism expert and assistant professor at the Brown School at Washington University in St. Louis. "We looked at data from the National Longitudinal Transition Study 2 (NLTS2), a group of over 11,000 adolescents enrolled in special education," he says. "Out of this group, teens with an ASD were significantly more likely never to see friends out of school (43.3 percent), never to get called by friends (54.4 percent), and never to be invited to social activities (50.4 percent) when compared with adolescents from all the other groups." To read more, click here

Sports Related Head Injuries Up Significantly

Autumn is here and along with it the school athletic season. By playing football, hockey, basketball, soccer, or just in the playground, children and young adults are testing their athletic skills. Yet, they are also risking head injury, an injury which research shows can have serious health consequences.  And now a new study reveals that sports related head injuries among children and teens have been increasing significantly over the last decade. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) study looked at the rate of traumatic brain injuries (TBI's), including concussions, seen by hospital emergency departments over a ten year period. The results show that among people under age 20, the rate of TBI's from sports and other recreational activities increased 60 percent. To read more, click here

Did You Know That....

Essentially, the stay-put provision acts as an automatic preliminary injunction pending a resolution of the dispute.

Studying Links Between Being Born Early And Struggling With Math

Around 160 schoolchildren from London and the Midlands are taking part in a pioneering research project, funded by Action Medical Research, to try to understand the links between being born very prematurely and struggling with mathematics. Half of the children involved were born more than eight weeks early and each of them is being studied along with a classmate who was born at full term. The children are all aged eight to ten and a psychologist, who has no knowledge of which children are which, will be assessing their learning and maths skills in school. 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: Shan Ring, Christina Berry, Joan Manchester, Julie Cudmore, Christina Arias, Lois Nembhard, Deanna Krieg, Jessica L. Ulmer, Joanie Dikeman, and Catherine Cardenas who all knoew that the Office of Civil Rights is responsible for enforcing Section 504 related issues.


Prior to a due process hearing, each party must disclose to all other parties all evaluations of the child completed by that date and recommendations based on the offering party's evaluations.  Within how many business days must this occur?

If you know the answer, send an email to contactus@naset.org
All answers must be submitted no later than Monday, November 28, 2011 at 12:00 p.m.




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

Special Ed Bus Service Stays Under Court Supervision

The D.C. special education system's odyssey through the federal courts continues. On Wednesday, U.S. District Judge Royce C. Lamberth ruled that while there has been some improvement, the District needs to dramatically ramp up its efforts to identify, assess and serve preschool-age children with special needs. And after multiple attempts to end court supervision and return sole responsibility for special education transportation service to the District, Judge Paul L. Friedman has extended the "transition period" to Oct. 31, 2012. The District has been so challenged by the task of providing reliable transportation to about 3,500 special education students that its bus service has been under federal court supervision for much of the last decade, a product of the Petties class action lawsuit. Based on signs of improvement last year, Friedman initiated a gradual transition from his designated Transportation Administrator, David Gilmore, back to the District. To read more, click here

Court Orders District to Expand Preschool Special Education

A federal judge ruled last Wednesday that the District has failed to provide special education services to hundreds of eligible preschool-age children and ordered that the city redouble its efforts to find, assess and treat those with special needs. U.S. District Judge Royce C. Lamberth issued a sweeping series of orders in a 2005 class-action suit (D.L. v. District of Columbia) brought by seven children and their parents, who encountered barriers and delays in securing special education services for which they were eligible under federal law. Lamberth set a series of performance benchmarks for D.C. special education officials and said if they were not met, more stringent intervention would follow, possibly in the form of a court-appointed special master. To read more, click here

Antisocial Personalities May Find Social Niche in Gangs

Most people who join gangs have an "extreme antisocial personality," according to a new study that challenges previous research suggesting gang membership is driven by fear, intimidation or peer pressure. People with an antisocial personality are impulsive, lack self-discipline and self-control, and aren't concerned about other people's problems. Because of this, they may be excluded from groups at school or work. In this study, British researchers gave personality tests to 152 adult male prisoners and asked them about impulsive behavior and their feelings of commitment to different social groups. Those with an antisocial personality felt little connection to peers who might be a good influence and instead preferred more antisocial peers with similar values and attitudes. To read more, click here

Maine Dept. of Ed.  Drafts New Rules on Use of Restraints and Seclusion on Students in Public Schools

The Maine Department Education (MDE) has released a draft of its new rules governing the use of restraint and seclusion on students in public schools, reports the Bangor Daily News. Some children's rights advocates have expressed concern about the definition of restraint and the process laid out for secluding a student from others. One of those advocates, Diane Smith Howard, a staff attorney for Maine's Disability Rights Center, said the proposed rules overall are a vast improvement over what is already on the books. However, Smith Howard, who spent several months developing recommendations with a group of others, said she and others intend to contest some provisions that have been changed from what the group recommended. "Many of the things we found important are included, but I do have some serious concerns," said Smith Howard. To read more, click here

States Falling Short in Serving Infants, Toddlers With Disabilities?

Nearly every state in the country is failing to enroll enough children under age three in programs for children with disabilities, even though the services could shape how they do in school or even keep them out of special education programs all together,a new report from Easter Seals finds. Nationwide, fewer than 3 percent of children are enrolled in the Part C portion of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act for infants and toddlers, even though the federal government estimates that as many as 13 percent of all should be served. Easter Seals' report identifies the number of children who may have mild to moderate disabilities, developmental delays, or who are at risk for developmental delays who could benefit from such services-beyond those children who are now eligible for services. Federal law says that states are responsible for identifying and serving children who may need services. To read more, click here

Treatment for Juvenile Offenders Shows Shows Positive Results 22 Years Later

More than 20 years ago, Charles Borduin, a University of Missouri researcher, developed a treatment for juvenile offenders that has become one of the most widely used evidence-based treatments in the world. Now, he has found that the treatment continues to have positive effects on former participants more than 20 years after treatment. Throughout the course of his career, Borduin, professor of psychological sciences in the College of Arts & Science, has pioneered the treatment called Multisystemic Therapy (MST) as a way to prevent serious mental health problems in children and adolescents. MST interventions involve the offender's entire family and community, as opposed to the more common individual therapy, where the offender visits a therapist who offers feedback, support and encouragement for behavior change. To read more,click here

Movie Screenings to Accommodate Teens, Adults with Autism

Autism-friendly movie screenings are typically designed to appeal to kids, but now one theater chain is looking to expand the concept to include films of interest to teens and adults. AMC Theatres announced plans Thursday to screen a PG-13 film for the first time as part of the "sensory-friendly" film series it conducts in partnership with the Autism Society. The movie theater chain will show The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 1 on Nov. 30 at theaters in 10 cities across the country. As part of the sensory-friendly series, the sound will be lower than normal, the lights will be up and audience members will be free to move about and make noise. What's more, no previews will be shown and moviegoers are free to bring their own snacks. To read more, click here

Did You Know That....

The objective of the stay-put provision is to maintain stability and
continuity for the student until the dispute is resolved. This is sometimes referred to as "pendency", "stay-put" or "status quo."

Could Recent Cuts to Special Education, Title I Be Undone?

The last time Congress passed a short-term budget bill, it cut spending on special education, Title I, and small group of other education programs. Although a new bill was passed yesterday, these programs won't be cut again, something that had worried special education and other advocates. (President Barack Obama still has to sign the temporary spending measure, which would last until Dec. 16.) These programs were affected because of the way they are funded, which is a little different than some other education programs. And the bigger worry, that the 1.5 percent cut could grow much larger when applied to an entire fiscal year, may also be resolved. To read more, click here

Lack of Accessible Cabs Doesn't Sit Well with Senator

More than two decades after the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act, one of the chief architects of the legislation is looking to eliminate transportation hurdles that people with disabilities continue to face. At a U.S. Senate hearing Thursday, Sen. Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, lamented the lack of accessible taxis even in the nation's biggest cities and sympathized with Americans with disabilities who struggle daily to get from point A to point B. "Unfortunately,... more than 21 years since the passage of the ADA, we have not yet achieved equality in access to transportation," Harkin said. To read more, click here

Parents Say School for Children with Autism Gives Their Children a Second Chance

The Academy at St. Andrews is the only school in Louisville that specializes in teaching students with autism and other developmental disabilities. Many parents believe the school gives their children a chance at a brighter future. 6-year-old Enrique Fernandez was diagnosed with autism three years ago. He started kindergarten at public school, but his mother quickly realized Enrique needed more attention than what his teachers could give. "Instead of coming up to us and saying you've got to do something about his screaming in class, his teachers over the past two years have come to us and said we noticed he's doing xy and z. Let's think about what kinds of things we can do to help him, why he might be doing it," says Lucy Fernandez, Enrique's mom. To read more, click here

Liberty Mutual Savings


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


"It always seems impossible until it's done."

Nelson Mandela

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