Week in Review - August 7, 2009


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

Dear NASET Members:

Welcome to NASET'sWEEK in REVIEW.  Here, we provide you with the latest publications from NASET to read and download, as well as some of the most interesting issues 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.

NASETNews Team

New This Week on NASET

The Practical Teacher

Finding the Spark: More Tips for Building Student Motivation

Teachers can feel overwhelmed when faced with students who are unmotivated to learn. The task becomes less daunting, though, when teachers realize that they can boost student motivation in five important ways: by (1) making positive changes to the learning environment, (2) fostering a sense of community in the classroom, (3) enhancing the interest of classroom activities, (4) responding to individual learning challenges, and (5) building in additional outcomes/pay-offs for learning. The focus of this issue of the Practical Teacher is to present tips for building student motivation.
To read or download this issue - Click Here

Autism Spectrum Disorder 

Facilitating Inclusion for Students with Autism Spectrum Disorder

Inclusion refers not merely to setting but to specially designed instruction and support for students with special needs in regular classrooms and neighborhood schools. Instruction, rather than setting, is the key to success and decisions related to the placement of students are best made on an individual basis in a manner that maximizes their opportunity to participate fully in the experience of schooling. Inclusion is also called integration or mainstreaming. There is much evidence to suggest that students with ASD can benefit from integration with typical peers.

This issue of the Autism Spectrum Disorder Series provides methods to help facilitate inclusion for students with ASD.
To read or download this issue - Click Here

Quick Links To NASET

Become Board Certified In Special Education Through NASET

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 Education establishes a much needed standard for professionals, across disciplines, who work with exceptional children. For more information on Board Certification in Special Education, click here

Invisible Ink? What Rorschach Tests Really Tell Us

One of the most well-known psychological tools is the Rorschach Inkblot Test. A viewer looks at ten inkblots, one at a time, and describes what they see. The rationale behind this test is the idea that certain aspects of the subject's personality will be exposed as they are interpreting the images, allowing for the possible diagnosis of various psychological disorders. However, does the inkblot really reveal all? Psychological Science in the Public Interest, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science, published an exhaustive review of all data on the Rorschach (and other similar "projective" tests) in 2000. Such meta-analyses are major undertakings, so although this report is a few years old, it remains the most definitive word on the Rorschach. According to authors Scott O. Lilienfeld of Emory University, James M. Wood of University of Texas at El Paso, and Howard N. Garb of the University of Pittsburgh, despite its popularity, the Rorschach may not be the best diagnostic tool and practitioners need to be cautious in how they use this technique and interpret their results. To read more, click here

Pacemakers Used To Help Children With Stomach Problems

Physicians at Nationwide Children's Hospital in Columbus, Ohio are turning to a device typically used in adults with heart problems to help children with severe stomach conditions. In June, surgeons implanted a pacemaker in a 16-year-old patient with gastroparesis, a debilitating stomach condition that affects the way the body processes food. This is the first time the procedure has been performed in a child at Nationwide Children's Hospital, which is now one of only a handful of institutions across the country offering this type of treatment in children. Gastroparesis is a condition where the stomach contracts less often and less powerfully, causing food and liquids to stay in the stomach for a long time. In as many as 60 percent of children with gastroparesis, the cause is not known. The condition often leaves children feeling constantly bloated and nauseated and can result in malnourishment and significant weight loss. In severe cases, symptoms may prevent children from attending school or taking part in other daily activities. The pacemaker is inserted into the abdomen, with electrical wires leading to the stomach. It sends electrical impulses to stimulate the stomach after eating. To read more, click here

NASET Offering Members Two Million Dollar Educator's Liability Insurance

Every day, special educators are faced with the stresses and potential liability issues involved in dealing with children with special needs. As a result you may be vulnerable to lawsuits, which have been on the rise over the last few years, from parents, or students themselves. In the past decade, the number of suits filed against educators and administrators has risen dramatically, causing the cost of insurance to increase as well. While some special educators may feel that they do not need this type of coverage and they are protected by their district, they should think twice. Even if you are 100% innocent of the charges or accusations, legal costs alone could run into the thousands and sometimes tens of thousands of dollars. In special education today, parents - and students - are more aware of their rights, and the laws that govern special education and hold teachers/educators to high standards. Don't try to convince yourself that the expense of your professional and public liability protection is unnecessary or unjustified. Experience shows that the cost of such coverage is by far lower than the risk a teacher takes by not having such protection. Why take a chance for less than $10.00 a month? To learn more about educator liability insurance available through NASET, click here

Schools Try To Make Progress While Addressing Special-Needs Students

The federal No Child Left Behind mandate was passed in 2001 to hold schools accountable for getting students to meet grade-level standards, earning schools their Adequate Yearly Progress stamp of approval. But two subgroups, special-needs students and English-language learners, are proving most difficult for schools locally and nationwide. Only two local schools, Gainesville Middle and Hall County's Chicopee Elementary, did not meet AYP this year. But a closer look reveals below-standard test scores for only a handful of Hall's English-language learners and a margin of less than one Gainesville special-needs student holding the schools back from AYP, district administrators said. To read more, click here

Homeschooling A Child With Autism

Homeschooling is indeed an option for a child with autism, and actually one of the best options, according to many parents. Although teachers, friends, and relatives may try to persuade you to keep your child with autism in public or private school, many parents find that their cihldren do much better when homeschooled. The obvious advantage is being able to work with your child, one on one, which most schools cannot do, or at least not to the full extent a parent at home can. Even if you are homeschooling more than one child, you can almost always give your child more attention and one on one time than the average public or private school teacher can.....Homeschooling is not always possible because of financial need and work schedules. Although many families have made it a goal to work toward and thus have managed to eventually be able for one parent to quit a job to homeschool the kids, it is simply not possible for some families. To read more, click here

Students With Intellectual Disabilities Struggle Academically

Nearly all high school students with intellectual disability receive some type of accommodation at school and score below the norm on standardized tests, according to a fact sheet from the Department of Education. The fact sheet released this week by the National Center for Special Education Research is part of the National Longitudinal Transition Study-2, a 10-year government study following 12,000 students as they transition from school to adulthood. It provides a snapshot of the experiences of students with intellectual disability, also called mental retardation. To read more, click here

Leading Medical Organizations Issue Revised Policy Statement On Learning Disabilities And Dyslexia

The American Academy of Ophthalmology announced today that it has issued a revised policy statement on Learning Disabilities, Dyslexia, and Vision. The revised statement, which was issued jointly with the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), the American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus (AAPOS) and the American Association of Certified Orthoptists (AACO), expands upon the previous policy and includes extensive scientific references. The statement was also published today in Pediatrics, the journal of the AAP. "Dyslexia and learning disabilities are complex problems that have no simple solutions," said Sheryl Handler, M.D., a pediatric ophthalmologist who helped revise the statement. "This policy statement applies the available evidence to develop recommended steps for the best possible outcome for children with these disabilities. We hope that the statement will be helpful for the physicians who play an important role in the care of children with learning disabilities." To read more, click here

Will Fears Of Autism Hurt Swine Flu Vaccinations?

With the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention hoping to have 120 million doses of H1N1 swine flu virus vaccine ready before flu season this fall, some are raising concerns over what they see as an effort to rush the drug through safety trials. The source of many of these concerns is the probability that the mercury-containing preservative thimerosal will be an ingredient in some of the doses of the new vaccine. Concern over thimerosal has lingered for years, despite research that has overwhelmingly found it to be harmless. "We have yet to find any evidence that thimerosal ever hurt anyone," said Dr. Andrew Pavia, chief of Pediatric Infectious Diseases at the University of Utah. To read more, click here

University Of Buffalo Launches Center For Disability Studies

The College of Arts and Sciences (CAS) at the University at Buffalo has launched a Center for Disability Studies, a partnership between CAS and People Inc. aimed at advancing greater acceptance of persons with disabilities in the community. The goal of the center, which is housed in CAS, is to encourage the study, teaching and accurate representation of disability, and of individuals with disabilities, says David Gerber, UB Distinguished Professor in the Department of History and center director. To read more, click here

Student With Disability Awarded For Perseverance

Oscar Ortiz, a 10-year-old who attends Treasure Island Elementary School, came to the United States two years ago from Puerto Rico. Besides suffering from cerebral palsy, he had to learn a new language and make new friends. ``At first, it was hard, but my teachers helped me,'' Ortiz said. Ortiz once was known as a student who hid from schoolmates and teachers behind a language barrier. Now they recognize him for his persistence and outgoing personality. ``I never give up,'' Ortiz said. ``I keep on trying.'' This past school year, Ortiz was awarded the Award of Excellence for Students with Disabilities. To read more, click here

The Equal Opportunity Disorder

Marco Robertiello arrived on schedule in October 2000, weighing in at five pounds, seven ounces. Apart from being a little underweight, he had a near-perfect Apgar score, and by the looks of things, the brown-haired, brown-eyed newborn was healthy. In fact, everyone thought Marco was a perfect baby. He was quieter than most and didn't need much attention. He was happy just lying in his crib, gazing at his mobile or spending time in his playpen staring at a book. "He was angelic," remembers his mother, Adrienne. "Everyone would say, 'He's so good.' He hardly cried, and he never fussed."When Marco missed several important developmental milestones like babbling, rolling over, and crawling, family and friends reminded his parents that boys were late bloomers. Even their pediatrician assured them everything was fine when, at six months, their son couldn't sit up. But as Marco approached his first birthday, he still wasn't responding to his name or looking over when others tried to engage him. "I had a gut feeling that something was terribly wrong with him," says Robertiello. Her instinct proved right. Marco was soon diagnosed with autism, a complex brain disorder that impairs one's ability to communicate and relate to others-and even though he began saying a few words, he eventually lost that ability. To read more, click here

Food for Thought........

Always have the courage to want the very best for yourself.
                                                                         Author Unknown

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