August 2020 - Special Educator e-Journal




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Special Education Legal Alert

By Perry A. Zirkel

© July 2020

This month’s update concerns issues that were subject to recent court decisions of general significance: (a) child find, evaluation, eligibility, and remedies for a child with excessive absenteeism, and (b) transfer of rights upon reaching the age of majority. 

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Buzz from the Hub

All articles below can be accessed through login:

  • The Ultimate Parents’ Guide to Summer Activity Resources
  • Parent Advocacy Toolkit for Equity in Use of COVID-19 Funds
  • COVID-19 Planning Considerations: Guidance for School Re-entry
  • Special Report | How We Go Back to School
  • Spanish-Language Webinar on the Transition to Kindergarten Amid COVID-19
  • The National Responsible Fatherhood Clearinghouse
  • What’s Important to Native Youth?
  • Reinforcing Resilience: How Parent Centers Can Support American Indian and Alaska Native Parents
  • Bouncing Back from Setbacks: A Message for American Indian and Alaska Native Youth
  • Will Your Schools Re-Open? What’s the Plan, Stan?
  • 2020 Determination Letters on State Implementation of IDEA
  • Comparison Guide: Video Conferencing Tools for Your Nonprofit
  • Tech Soup Courses for Free!
  • Camp Kinda
  • How to Support Your Unique, Quirky Child
  • Video | The CDC Guidance on Reopening Schools, Explained
  • SAVE the DATE | Webinar on Monday, June 8th @ 3 pm EDT

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Supports in Equity: Universal Design for Learning for Students with Disabilities in Higher Education

Melissa Beck Wells, EdD

College students are more diverse in race, ethnicity, and ability than ever before (Espinosa, Turk, Taylor, & Chessman, 2019).  It is imperative that higher education is aware of the needs of its students and has a plan and a guiding framework to ensure that all students are provided the supports they need to achieve the high standards of the learning institution. 

The high school graduation rate of students with disabilities has been steadily increasing throughout the United States. About 70% of high-school-aged students receiving special education services graduated with a regular high school diploma in the 2014-2015 school year, up substantially from the 27% receiving regular diplomas nearly 20 years earlier. (Congressional Research Service, 2017).  This could be in part because students have been supported with scientifically derived or evidence-based validated techniques in their K-12 experience. Students with disabilities who have seen success in their K-12 education may rely on the consistency, reliability, and effectiveness to achieve academically.  However, the use of scientifically validated frameworks of support may not be widespread in higher education institutions

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Better Together on Behalf of Our Children

Samantha Ashley Forrest

Abstract

“Better Together on Behalf of Our Children” by Julie Simone, Ally Hauptman, and Michelle Hasty is an article that focused on empowering the partnership between home and school to foster more authentic literacy experiences and to assist children to become better readers and writers. The article consisted of state funded summer camps that participated in a study focused on with parents and highly qualified educators to discuss what literacy practices that were conducted at home and provided more support of enrichment practices to help families. The study worked economically disadvantaged children by supporting them with four – hour long literacy related learning experiences, within 20 consecutive days; in which, they were able to take home themed based books that were discussed with parents to build their home libraries. The educators were able to look at their state’s specific literacy goals and add to what the parents were already doing at home. The authors were able to create an enriched literacy program that used local communities to help families explore ways and add more to what they were doing at home. These authentic approaches helped parents and students become more engaging and therefore, lead to an increase in the reading comprehension rates among their children.

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Using Visuals to Teach Phonics: Sand, Pictures, and iPads

Amanda Gyemant

Min Mize

Abstract

Reading is an important skill for children to learn. Early reading skills such as phonics skills are a viable predictor of later reading skills such as word identification and reading comprehension. Lack of age-appropriate phonics skills can cause severe reading difficulties over time such as dyslexia.  Given that a large proportion of students are visual learners, teachers are in need of using effective visual-based phonics lessons.  To that end, this article presents examples of visual-based phonics activities using various mediums such as sand, pictures, graphic organizers, and iPads.

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The Curious Case of Fragile X Syndrome

Anthony Ruggiero

Introduction and History

In today’s society, children and adults alike are greatly impacted by exceptionalities that affect their daily living. One of those exceptionalities is Fragile X Syndrome or FXS. Although the history of this classification is short, researchers have conducted several studies in order to acquire various information regarding its causes. Researchers have discovered that FXS, caused by genetics, can greatly impact a person’s cognitive and physical development. Despite FXS being irreversible, researchers have also tested various practices, such as assistive technology and medication, in order to tackle its adverse effects and improve the lives of those living with it.NASET Members - Login to Access the Full Article

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Book Review: How to Win Friends and Influence People

Massiel N. Rodriguez

Dale Carnegie was an influential American writer and lecturer, who developed courses in salesmanship, public speaking and self-improvement in general. His most popular book “How to Win Friends and Influence People” is widely considered to be one of the most important self-improvement books when it comes to interpersonal relationships. Over fifteen million copies have been sold all over the world since it was written in 1936. It is considered so influential that it has been translated in over 40 languages and it is still relevant today.

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Book Review: Lead with Appreciation Fostering a Culture of Gratitude

Elizabeth Y. Cuesta

Amber and Melinda both met on social media in 2013. They shared an understanding of the positive impact that social media had. Together they designed a social group of school administrators and they used this platform to spread positive strategies among themselves. They were passionate about sharing their experiences, personal views, and professional endeavors with anyone who was willing to join them. As leaders at their school, they concluded that the leadership positions could be challenging and lonely at times.

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Latest Employment Opportunities Posted on NASET 

* Executive Director of Special Education - Garland ISD seeks an Executive Director of Special Education with the following qualifications, Master’s Degree, Special Education Certification, Principal/Mid-Management Certification, three (3) years’ teaching experience; special education preferred, experience in successful leadership role at the District or State level, earned or in progress doctorate. To learn more - Click here

* Special Education Teacher - Is sought who demonstrates a commitment to the success of all SLA students and specifically to raising the academic achievement of children in high-poverty communities and/ or children with special needs. Has a desire to grow professionally and seek out new opportunities to learn; and integrity and clarity in all communications and interactions. To learn more - Click here

* Special Education Teacher - Teacher needed for students ages 7-23 with intellectual disabilities. Students are in non-graded classes but do have goal work. Located in Columbia, TN (45 minutes south of Nashville), the school boasts small (4-to-1) student-to-teacher ratio class settings. Teachers enjoy extensive training opportunities, generous classroom supply budgets, benefits, and competitive non-public-school salaries. To Learn more - Click here

* Learning Specialist Teacher - The primary responsibility of the Bennett Day School Learning Specialist is to support the academic and developmental needs of the Bennett Day School community. We seek a Learning Specialist Teacher who will work in close partnership with students, faculty, and families to provide support and direction connected to academic and developmental growth of students in grades Senior Kindergarten through Seventh Grade. To learn more - Click here

* Chief Executive Officer - St. Coletta of Greater Washington is seeking an experienced Chief Executive Officer to lead and manage the organization while achieving educational and operational goals. This person will be responsible for strategically growing St. Coletta with an eye toward achieving success not only for the school, but for the children and adults that benefit from their services.To Learn more - Click here

* Asst Supt - Exceptional Children - The Assistant Superintendent for Special Education Services is a critical leadership role that directly affects the acceleration of improved student outcomes for GCS’s 10,534 students with special needs. This role directs, monitors and strengthens programs and ensures all services are implemented within federal, state, and local regulations. To learn more - Click here

* Education Specialist - We are always looking for compassionate, exceptional educators to join our SPED Team (grades K-5 or 6-8) ! You’ll work collaboratively with your colleagues to drive the achievement of all students in your grade level. You will be encouraged and supported to lead engaging, personalized, and rigorous lessons that integrate our four pillars: Heart, Smart, Think, and Act. To learn more - Click here

* High School Special Education Teacher - New Trier High School is a large, high-achieving school in the northern suburbs of Chicago with two campuses in Northfield and Winnetka, Illinois. The outstanding Special Education department is large and comprehensive. To learn more - Click here

* Special Education Teacher - We are looking for highly motivated and skilled Special Education teachers to join our team at District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS). DCPS serves more than 51,000 students through the e?orts of approximately 4,000 educators in 117 schools. DCPS intends to have the highest-performing, best paid, most satis?ed, and most honored educator force in the nation and a distinctive central o?ce sta? whose work supports and drives instructional excellence and significant achievement gains for DCPS students. To learn more- Click here

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Acknowledgements

Portions of this or previous month’s NASET’s Special Educator e-Journal were excerpted from:

  • Center for Parent Information and Resources
  • Committee on Education and the Workforce
  • FirstGov.gov-The Official U.S. Government Web Portal
  • Journal of the American Academy of Special Education Professionals (JAASEP)
  • National Collaborative on Workforce and Disability for Youth
  • National Institute of Health
  • National Organization on Disability
  • Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
  • U.S. Department of Education
  • U.S. Department of Education-The Achiever
  • U.S. Department of Education-The Education Innovator
  • U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
  • U.S. Department of Labor
  • U.S. Food and Drug Administration
  • U.S. Office of Special Education

The National Association of Special Education Teachers (NASET) thanks all of the above for the information provided for this or prior editions of the Special Educator e-Journal


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