Week in Review - September 11, 2020




National Association of Special Education Teachers

September 11, 2020                    Vol 16 Issue #36


Dear NASET Members and Guests,

Welcome to NASET's WEEK in REVIEW.  Here, we provide you with the latest publications fromNASET 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 Q & A Corner

Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) Part C Evaluation and Assessment Timelines in the Current COVID-19 Environment.

IDEA Part C requires a timely, comprehensive, multidisciplinary evaluation to determine the eligibility of each child, birth through age two, who is referred for an evaluation or early intervention services and suspected of having a disability. If the child is determined eligible, an assessment is conducted to determine the appropriate early intervention services and supports for the child and family. This issue of NASET’s Q & A Corner is presented by The Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP), within the U.S. Department of Education’s (Department) Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services. The Question and Answer (Q & A) document is in response to inquiries concerning implementation of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) Part C evaluation and assessment timelines in the current COVID-19 environment.

Read More


ADHD Appears Genetically Related to Narcolepsy

Attention-deficit/hyperactive disorder (ADHD) and narcolepsy may share genetic links, according to an analysis of polygenic risk scores published online in the journal Translational Psychiatry. “We found that the genetic risk for narcolepsy has a significant association with ADHD traits using data from the general population,” researchers wrote. “Specifically, both hyperactivity and inattention traits were significantly associated with narcolepsy polygenic risk scores, suggesting that these disorders have a close genetic association.”  Investigators calculated polygenic risk scores for individuals using data from a previously collected genome-wide association study of narcolepsy and essential hypersomnia. They looked for a possible genetic link between ADHDand narcolepsy traits in 876 mothers and children from the Japanese Hamamatsu Birth Cohort. Read More


Helping Teens with Type 1 Diabetes Improve Diabetes Control with MyDiaText

Adolescence is a difficult period of development, made more complex for those with Type 1 diabetes mellitus (T1DM). The challenges of managing multiple doses of daily insulin administration, blood glucose monitoring, dietary and exercise requirements, can make self-care difficult and complicate outcomes. Adolescents with T1DM often have poorer diabetes outcomes than others, indicating that glucose control is difficult for them to maintain. Data show that 88 percent of teens own a cell phone and more than 50 percent text with friends daily. Therefore, mobile technologies could be a key to helping adolescents more fully engage with their T1DM self-care. In an article in the Journal of Diabetes Science and Technology, researchers outline their study combining text messaging with MyDiaText and financial incentives designed to help improve outcomes for adolescents with T1DM. The study results showed persistent engagement with and potential for increase in self-care using this intervention. MyDiaText was developed in 2012 by a collaboration with the School of Nursing, the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences and Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. Read More


Homeschooling Children with Learning Disabilities

About 1 in 5 children in the U.S. has learning and attention issues. For these kids, a virtual education can be a real struggle. Researchers conducted a study to better understand the online learning experiences of students with disabilities and their parents. They interviewed parents with children in third through eighth grade. In these interviews, parents reported that online education requires a significant time commitment on their part to help structure children’s time, help implement learning activities, and problem-solve when issues arise. Parents also stressed that parent-teacher communication is critical for success. Experts say be proactive about reaching out to your child’s teachers and service providers. Ask your school to help put a remote education and therapy plan in place. Set realistic daily goals that you can easily track. And don’t put too much pressure on yourself or your child; just do your best. Read More

Exposure to Cadmium in the Womb Linked to Childhood Asthma and Allergies

Babies born with higher levels of cadmium in their umbilical cord blood may be more likely to develop childhood asthma and allergies, according to research presented at the European Respiratory Society International Congress. Cadmium is known to be hazardous to human health and its use is restricted in the European Union, but it has been widely used, for example in batteries, pigments and as a coating for other metals. It is also present in tobacco and can enter the body via smoking or passive smoking. Researchers say their findings lend support for tight controls over the use and disposal of cadmium. The research was presented to the virtual conference by Professor Isabella Annesi-Maesano, research director at France's Institut national de la santé et de la recherche médicale (INSERM) and head of the epidemiology of allergic and respiratory diseases department of the Institute Pierre Louis of Epidemiology and Public Health, INSERM and Sorbonne Université, Paris, France. Read More

Designer Turns Artwork from People with Disabilities into Gorgeous Clothing

When Jovana Mullins began volunteering at New York City's Center for All Abilities (CAA) in 2018, she never expected the experience would change the course of her career. But as the print and textile designer began working with young adults with developmental disabilities in the nonprofit's art therapy program, she quickly saw an opportunity to turn her passion for fashion into something meaningful. Mullins had been working in the fashion industry for over a decade at the time and had designed prints and embroidery for brands ranging from Coach to Sam Edelman. And she knew raw talent when she saw it. Read More



NASET ADVOCACY - Board Certification for Advocacy in Special Education (BCASE)

Distance Learning and Spotting Learning Disabilities

There's nothing like a parent's intuition and following it could save your student a lot of struggling with distance learning. "We really tell families to listen to those gut feelings," said Dr. Ethan Schwehr, a Psychologist with The Learning Center at Groves Academy in St. Louis Park. Schwehr outlined some of the signs of potential learning challenges. "At younger ages, we're going to see difficulty with learning their letters, learning their sounds with rhyming, maybe with spelling. They may seem like they've learned or mastered a concept on one page, and by the time we get to the next page, it seems like they completely forgot that concept," explained Schwehr. With older students, you may see teens struggle with how fast they're reading or comprehending the material. They could also have trouble just tracking assignments or time management. "We would have children that would complete their assignments, and would forget to hit the submit button, that last step within that distance learning," recalled Schwehr. Read More

Rural People with Disabilities Fight to Retain Independence during Pandemic

From mental health strain caused by social isolation to life threatening circumstances, people with disabilities living in rural America are exposed to higher-than-average risks during the Covid-19 pandemic. “We’re a population of higher risk individuals,” said Sierra Royster, the youth coordinator for the Association of Programs for Rural Independent Living, or APRIL. “So you don’t want to be infected because you’re definitely one of those people that can end up on the ventilator that isn’t provided.”  But some of the risks faced by populations with disabilities go beyond the danger of contracting the virus. Royster recalled a disabled friend who required a ventilator and recently passed away due to medical complications not related to Covid. Read More


A District Changes Course on Special Education, But Leaves Parents and Teachers Frustrated

Bonnie Budd is used to supporting her 16-year-old daughter Sabrina, but the past six months have stretched her and her family to the limit. "Everyone is just exhausted," she said. "It’s like groundhog day. Wake up, do this routine, yada, yada, yada." Even though Budd feels like her family possesses the flexibility this moment demands, she knows they can't juggle much longer. "It’s not sustainable long-term and it’s not fair to Sabrina," she said. Sabrina has Rett Syndrome, a rare neurological condition. She typically receives one-and-a-half hours a week of special education services through the Leominster Public Schools. During the school day, she has an aide working one-on-one with her. Distance learning during the spring presented unique challenges to Sabrina, and students like her. Read More

Should Students with Special Needs Be Back in Classrooms? It's Complicated

It’s morning and Sarah Jones is hungry. “Yogurt,” she tells her mother. That’s not good. Back in March, the 4-year-old’s language skills were coming along relatively well. When she was hungry, she could turn to Anne Marie Jones and say, “Mommy, I want yogurt for breakfast.” Back in March, Sarah was learning and receiving therapy in a classroom setting. Sarah has autism, and like other children with special needs, the lack of in-person schooling due to campus closures caused by the COVID-19 pandemic is erasing the skills that have taken her so long to learn. Though the absence of classroom learning has affected children at all levels, parents and advocates say those with disabilities are more at risk and more acutely feeling the effects, with remote learning impeding the quality of their federally guaranteed education. Read More

Special Education Advocate Says Coronavirus and Online Learning Made ‘A Complex Issue Even More Complicated’

When Melanie’s two sons began school this week, they did it from home. She and her husband asked their kids if they wanted to go to classes in-person. “They said, ‘There’s no way I could wear a mask all day,’” Melanie said. Her fifth-grader is on the autism spectrum and is sensitive to textures. Her third-grader has ADHD and deals with impulsivity. CPR News is only using Melanie’s first name to protect her family’s privacy. She watched her oldest son as he had his first physical therapy since the pandemic began in their backyard. He was, of course, wearing a mask. “In a matter of 10-minutes, it was on his nose. It was on the top of his head. He was playing with it. He was rolling around. He couldn't handle it,” she said. Read More

Guilt by Dissociation: Study Sheds Light on Serotonin in Autism

Recent estimates indicate a prevalence of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) in the United States of 1 in 59 children with a well-established 4:1 male predominance. Individual costs for care are estimated at about $2.4 million, yielding a societal burden that is expected to exceed $400 billion by 2025. Currently, there are no FDA-approved medications that improve the core symptoms of ASD. Neuroscientists in the laboratory of Randy D. Blakely, Ph.D., professor of biomedical science in Florida Atlantic University's Schmidt College of Medicine and executive director of the FAU Brain Institute, are focused on serotonin, a mood-regulating molecule in the brain that regulates many brain synapses -- the gaps between nerve cells where signals are sent and received. The supply of serotonin is tightly regulated by a protein called the serotonin transporter (SERT), which sweeps away serotonin from synapses to limit its action. Shifts in the transporter's activity. Read More



Congratulations to: Helma Wardenaar, Joanna Blau, Susan Mason, Kathi Handy, Karen Frantz-Fry, Teresa Stauffer, Betty Rowe, Danelle Fugate, Cindi Maurice, Patsy Ray, Lynn Howard, Nancy Maxwell, Olumide Akerele, Elizabeth Ciccarelli-Rosa, and Barry Amper who all knew the answer to last week's trivia question:

The history of this form of communication goes all the way back to the early 1800s. A man named Charles Barbier, who served in Napoleon Bonaparte’s French army, developed a unique system known as “night writing” so soldiers could communicate safely during the night. As a military veteran, Barbier saw several soldiers killed because they used lamps after dark to read combat messages. As a result of the light shining from the lamps, enemy combatants knew where the French soldiers were and inevitably led to the loss of many men. Barbier based his “night writing” system on a raised 12-dot cell; two dots wide and six dots tall. Each dot or combination of dots within the cell represented a letter or a phonetic sound. The problem with the military code was that the human fingertip could not feel all the dots with one touch. Who took the work of Barbier to then form a new system of communication?


This Week's Trivia Question: What does a "Snellen Chart" measure?

If you know the answer to this week's trivia questions, email it to us at contactus@naset.org by , 2020. If you are correct, you will be acknowledged in next week's NASET's Week in Review

New Theory Suggests Autism May Not be Tied to Mindblindness

Tracking the extent to which other people think differently from yourself appears to be more relevant than understanding someone else's thoughts per se. Neuroscientists at Ghent University and the University of New South Wales (Sydney) came to this conclusion. Through a systematic review and critical analysis of more than 50 neurological imaging studies, they found that one of the main areas of the brain we use to understand others is active in detecting differences between what you think and what others think. In the past, this brain area was believed to be mainly active in understanding what others think. They call their new theory of human social cognition "relational. Read More

Family Says Daughter’s Inability to Wear a Mask is Keeping her from an Education

The photo of her 12-year-old niece with autism clinging to her school’s doors is almost too much for Trina Lonning to look at. “She’s waiting for someone to open the door. It’s heartbreaking,” Lonning said. The photo was taken on August 13, when Kyra, who is described by her doctor as severely autistic, clung to the doors of Rockvale Middle School, according to her family. Kyra’s mother Martha Lonning said when she returned to the school that day providing a doctor’s note that her daughter couldn’t wear a mask because of her disability, she was told by the school that all students had to wear a mask to attend. Since then, Kyra, whose disability also prevents her from online learning, has not been in school. “Here’s a child that wants to go to school and doesn’t understand why she can’t go into the building,” Trina Lonning said. Read More

Teens Who Think Their Parents are Loving are Less Likely to be Cyberbullies

Adolescents who perceive their parents to be loving and supportive are less likely to engage in cyberbullying, according to a new study by researchers at NYU Rory Meyers College of Nursing. The findings, published in the International Journal of Bullying Prevention, are especially relevant given changes in family life created by the COVID-19 pandemic. "With remote learning replacing classroom instruction for many young people, and cell phones and social media standing in for face-to-face interaction with friends, there are more opportunities for cyberbullying to occur," said Laura Grunin, a doctoral student at NYU Meyers and the study's lead author. "New family dynamics and home stressors are also at play, thanks to higher unemployment rates and more parents working from home." Read More

When Extrinsic Motivation Vanishes, ADHD Brains Get (Even More) Creative

The ADHD brain both resents and relies on external structure. The school bus schedule. The yoga studio’s class schedule. The therapist’s appointment schedule. We once cursed these obligations as unwelcome opportunities to be late, stressed, and/or unprepared. But as soon as they vanished with COVID, we discovered the extent to which they grounded our lives, powered our habits, and motivated our actions. “I’ve lost my routine — gym, friends at the dog park, socialization, in-person neurofeedback sessions — of which really helped me maintain a functioning life,” wrote a mother with ADHD, anxiety, and depression who answered ADDitude’s pandemic check-in survey on August 24. Read More



Special Education Teacher - $60,000/school year (185 days), summers off with year-round pay and year round appreciation. Special Education Teachers needed in Arizona (Phoenix and surrounding cities). Needs are in the self-contained and resource settings serving students with emotional disabilities (ED), Autism (A), Severe/Profound (S/P), and Intellectual Disabilities (ID). STARS is the largest school contract agency in AZ. STARS is owned and operated by Occupational Therapists. You will be an employee and receive full benefits - To learn more - Click here

* Special Education Teacher (Chicago) - I’ve just been retained by Bennett Day School (one of Chicago’s top-ranked private schools) to identify an outstanding Learning Resource & Special Ed Teacher. To learn more - Click here

* (Remote) Special Education Teacher - Special Education Teacher provide instruction, support and guidance, manage the learning process, and focus on students’ individual needs as defined by each student’s IEP. The special education teacher is also responsible for the compliance documents required in serving students with special needs. To learn more - Click here

* Early Childhood Specialist - Willamette Education Service District is accepting applications for multiple full-time (1.0 FTE) EI/ECSE Specialist positions with the Special Education Department’s Early Intervention/Early Childhood Special Education (EI/ECSE) program. The positions are for the 2020-2021 school year and may be based in Marion, Polk and/or Yamhill County. Successful candidates will will follow a 190-day calendar and will begin on August 21, 2020. To learn more - Click here

* Special Ed Teacher - The Home at Walpole seeks a Special Education Teacher for their Massachusetts Chapter 766 Special Education School, Clifford Academy. Clifford Academy provides a year-round engaging and comprehensive program focused on education, career development, recreation/fitness, and an individualized therapeutic approach.Under direction of a Principal, participate in the implementation of individualized educational programs for special needs children at varying academic levels. To learn more - Click here

* 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 - 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

If you are an Employer looking for excellent special education staff - Click here for more information


The true secret of happiness lies in the taking a genuine interest in all the details of daily life.

William Morris

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