Week in Review - March 16, 2012


NewNASETPublications and Articles of Interest in Special Education and Disabilities That Were Reported This Week

March 16, 2012 - Vol 8, Issue 11


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Dear NASET News,

Welcome toNASET'sWEEK in REVIEWHere, we provide you with the latest publications fromNASETto 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 theWEEK in REVIEWatnews@naset.org.Have a great weekend.


NASETNews Team

NASET Sponsor - AbleNet

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Classroom Management Series

Part VII

Working with the Child with an Emotional Disturbance in the Classroom

One of the most important things to keep in mind when working with student with special needs is that they can learn. In many cases, it is not the lack of understanding or knowledge that causes problems but rather the manner of presentation, response requirements, and level of presentation. The need to learn how to adapt material is crucial when working with this population. These adaptations offer them a better chance of success and task completion.

Many times, teachers of students with special needs realize that these students will not be able to learn the material being presented unless some changes or adaptations are made. These changes may need to be made in the manner of presentation of the material, the type of material presented, the manner of response, the tests and quizzes presents, homework expectations, and grading systems used. All of these adaptations increase a student's chances of learning something.

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Lesser Known Disorders

Disorders in this Issue:
  • LD 8.01-Motoric Nonverbal Learning Disability
  • HI 1.02-Pure word deafness
  • OHI 5.00-Alpers Disease


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Executive Director of NASET Addresses the Issue of Shortages of ADHD Drugs in Classrooms

As a shortage of the stimulant medications used to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder continues into its second year, educators, doctors, and parents of children with the disorder have been struggling to manage the effects of an unpredictable drug supply on children's behavior and performance in the classroom....ADHD can be treated without medication, but, according to George A. Giuliani, the executive director of the National Association of Special Education Teachers, in Washington, many children with the disorder don't get special education services. Neither ADHD nor ADD, the non-hyperactive form of the disorder, is recognized as a classification under the main federal special education law, though schools can make accommodations for students based on other federal law. To read more,click here

Did You Know That....

Down syndrome is a set of mental and physical symptoms that result from having an extra copy of Chromosome 21.

Normally, a fertilized egg has 23 pairs of chromosomes. In most people with Down syndrome, there is an extra copy of Chromosome 21 (also called trisomy 21 because there are three copies of this chromosome instead of two), which changes the body's and brain's normal development.

Civil Rights Data Offer Count of Section 504 Students

New data collected by the U.S. Department of Education's office for civil rights provides an idea of how many students in the nation's public schools have so-called 504 plans. (Every few years, the agency gathers a huge collection of information from school districts about everything from which courses students are taking to how students who bully classmates are disciplined. Read about some of that here. Another conclusion: Students with disabilities are more than twice as likely to receive one or more out-of-school suspensions.) It's been difficult to determine how many students have these plans, which don't provide students with special education services-the kinds of services that help them access the curriculum the way that individualized education programs, or IEPs, work under the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. Instead, these 504 plans address accommodations that would help the students be on level footing with their unimpaired peers. To read more,click here



Board Certification in Special Education Available to NASET Members

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

Self-Centered Kids? Blame Their Immature Brains

A new study suggests that age-associated improvements in the ability to consider the preferences of others are linked with maturation of a brain region involved in self control. The findings, published by Cell Press in the March 8 issue of the journal Neuron, may help to explain why young children often struggle to control selfish impulses, even when they know better, and could impact educational strategies designed to promote successful social behavior. Human social interactions often involve two parties who want to maximize their own outcomes while reaching a mutually satisfactory result. It is generally accepted that over the course of childhood behavior shifts from a more selfish focus to an increased tendency to consider the benefits to others. However, little is known about age-related changes in this type of "strategic social behavior" or the underlying neuronal mechanisms. To read more,click here

Kids Who Bully May Be More Likely to Smoke, Drink

Middle and high school students who bully their classmates are more likely to use cigarettes, alcohol and marijuana than other students, according to a new study. Ohio State University researchers examined bullying and substance use among more than 74,000 students in all public, private and Catholic middle and high schools in Franklin County, Ohio, which includes Columbus. About 30 percent of middle school students and 23 percent of high school students were deemed to be bullies, bullying victims or bully-victims (those who are both perpetrators and victims). Substance use was defined as smoking, drinking or using marijuana at least once a month. Fewer than 5 percent of middle school students reported substance use. Among high school students, 32 percent drank alcohol, 14 percent smoked cigarettes and 16 percent used marijuana. To read more,click here

Did You Know That....

Even though people with Down syndrome may have some physical and mental features in common, symptoms of Down syndrome can range from mild to severe. Usually, mental development and physical development are slower in people with Down syndrome than in those without the condition.

How Repeated Stress Impairs Memory

Anyone who has ever been subject to chronic stress knows that it can take a toll on emotions and the ability to think clearly. Now, new research uncovers a neural mechanism that directly links repeated stress with impaired memory. The study, published by Cell Press in the March 8 issue of the journal Neuron, also provides critical insight into why stress responses can act as a trigger for many mental illnesses.  Stress hormones are known to influence the prefrontal cortex (PFC), a brain region that controls high level "executive" functions such as working memory and decision making. "Previous work has shown that chronic stress impairs PFC-mediated behaviors, like mental flexibility and attention. However, little is known about the physiological consequences and molecular targets of long-term stress in PFC, especially during the adolescent period when the brain is more sensitive to stressors," explains the author this study, Dr. Zhen Yan, from the State University of New York at Buffalo." To read more,click here

NASET Sponsor - AbleNet


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

Congratulations to Craig Pate, Sara Sorensen Petersen, Stacey Slintak, Eileen Pizzi, Maria Carla O. Sangalang,  Christine Aurand, Ann Blaido, Sherri LaFond, Anita Askew, Barbara Condon, Michelle Flammia, Michelle A. Kolarik, Kerri Wing, Heather Shyrer, Bobbie Drake, Elma Shaw, Olumide Akerele, Chaya Tabor, Andrea Plotkin, Prahbhjot Malhi, Sabrina Yacoub, Judy R. Wobbenhorst, Shannon Lacy, Albinia Marquez, Ida K. O'Leary, Linda Tolbert, Alexandra Pirard, Mary Ann Beairsto, Andrew Bailey, Daryl Addison, Rita Fennelly, Jodi Adler, Jan Wixon,Anne Colborn, Joanie Dikeman, Samuel Oluwawunmi, Elizabeth Hoeske, Michael A. Ford, Dawn Cox, Jessica L. Ulmer, Catherine Cardenas, Pattie Komons, Marilyn Haile, Christine Oliver, Susan Ann Mason & Tina Theuerkauf who all knew the answer to last week's trivia question: NOS stands for "Not Otherwise Specified"


Fill in the blank:  According to the National Institute of Health, the chance of having a baby with Down syndrome increases as a woman gets older-from about 1 in 1,250 for a woman who gets pregnant at age 25, to about 1 in ____ for a woman who gets pregnant at age 40.

If you know the answer, send an email tocontactus@naset.org
All answers must be submitted no later than Monday, March 19, 2012 at 12:00 p.m.

Autism: Don't Look Now -- I'm Trying to Think

Children with autism look away from faces when thinking, especially about challenging material, according to new research from Northumbria University. Although generally encouraged to maintain eye contact as a means of enhancing their social skills, researchers found autistic children follow the same patterns as other children when processing complex information or difficult tasks. Typically developing children and adults look away when asked difficult questions and gaze aversion has been proven in the past to improve the accuracy of responses. Prof Gwyneth Doherty-Sneddon, Associate Dean for Research in the School of Life Sciences at Northumbria University, will present her findings in next month's Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry. To read more,click here

Fetal Cocaine Exposure May Not Affect Kids' Academics: Study

Exposure to cocaine, tobacco or marijuana before birth does not cause children to score lower on academic tests, according to a new study. Prenatal alcohol exposure, however, even in children with no signs of fetal alcohol syndrome, was associated with lower scores at age 11 in math reasoning and spelling, Boston University researchers found. The negative associations between intrauterine alcohol exposure and lower test scores are significant, the researchers said, because the study controlled for other substances, and the children did not have fetal alcohol syndrome and had not been born preterm, all of which could potentially decrease test scores. To read more,click here

Newly Approved Drug for Infant Respiratory Distress Syndrome

Scientific advances at The Scripps Research Institute have led to a new drug Surfaxin® (lucinactant), approved March 7 by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat infant respiratory distress syndrome. "I am excited that our scientific findings will help save lives," said Charles Cochrane, MD, professor emeritus at Scripps Research. "Many years of work in our basic research laboratory at The Scripps Research Institute made this landmark development possible." Respiratory distress syndrome (also known as neonatal respiratory distress syndrome) is a life-threatening condition affecting pre-term infants. To read more,click here

Liberty Mutual Savings


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As a member ofNASETyou qualify for a special group discount* on your auto, home, and renter's insurance through Group Savings Plus® from Liberty Mutual. This unique program allows you to purchase high-quality auto, home and renters insurance at low group rates.


See for yourself how much money you could save with Liberty Mutual compared to your current insurance provider. For a free, no-obligation quote, call 800-524-9400 or visit

www.libertymutual.com/naset,or visit your local sales office.

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Ban on Public Smoking Linked to Fewer Preterm Deliveries

A smoking ban in Scotland is associated with decreases in preterm deliveries and underweight babies, a new study finds. The nationwide ban on smoking in public places took effect in March 2006. The researchers analyzed data on preterm delivery and small-for-gestational-age babies born between January 1996 and December 2009. The number of mothers who smoked dropped from more than 25 percent before the smoking ban to about 19 percent after the ban. The researchers also found that preterm deliveries fell by more than 10 percent, while there was a nearly 5 percent decrease in the number of infants born small and a nearly 8 percent decrease in the number of infants born very small. To read more,click here

Study Pinpoints Effects of Different Doses of an ADHD Drug; Finds Higher Doses May Harm Learning

New research with monkeys sheds light on how the drug methylphenidate may affect learning and memory in children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. The results parallel a 1977 finding that a low dose of the drug boosted cognitive performance of children with ADHD, but a higher dose that reduced their hyperactivity also impaired their performance on a memory test. "Many people were intrigued by that result, but their attempts to repeat the study did not yield clear-cut results," says Luis Populin, an associate professor of neuroscience at the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Medicine and Public Health. To read more,click here

Youngest Kids in Class More Apt to Get ADHD Diagnosis: Study

A new Canadian study provides more evidence that too many young kids may be diagnosed with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD, simply because they're younger than their peers in the same classrooms. Researchers found that nearly 7 percent of boys aged 6 to 12 were diagnosed with ADHD overall, but the percentage ranged from 5.7 percent for those who were the oldest in their grade levels to 7.4 percent for the youngest. There was a similar gap for girls, although they're much less likely to be diagnosed. The findings, which are similar to those from U.S. studies, don't prove definitively that any kids are being wrongly diagnosed with ADHD or being diagnosed purely because they're younger than their peers. To read more,click here

Nintendo Wii™ Game Controllers Help Diagnose Eye Disorder in Children

Wii remotes are not all about fun and games. Scientists can use them to assess and diagnose children with an abnormal head position caused by eye diseases. As described in a recent Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science article, researchers developed a low-cost digital head posture measuring device with Nintendo Wiimotes to help diagnose this condition, medically called ocular torticollis. "Torticollis occurs in about 1.3% of children," said author, Jeong-Min Hwang, MD, of Seoul National University College of Medicine. "Accurate measurement of the angle of the abnormal head position is crucial for evaluating disease progression and determining treatment or surgical plans in parties with ocular torticollis." To read more,click here

Did You Know That....

Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (IDDs) is a disability that causes limits on intellectual abilities and adaptive behaviors (conceptual, social, and practical skills people use to function in everyday lives). Most people with Down syndrome have IQs that fall in the mild to moderate range of IDDs. They may have delayed language development and slow motor development.

Snoring Tots May Develop Behavioral Issues Later

Infants and toddlers who snore or have other breathing issues while sleeping are more likely to develop behavioral problems by the age of 7, new research suggests. Those issues can include hyperactivity and inattention, emotional problems such as anxiety and depression, conduct problems such as rule-breaking and aggressiveness and problems with peer relationships, researchers said. The study is published online March 5 and in the April print issue of Pediatrics. The researchers assessed more than 11,000 children in England, who were followed for six years, beginning when the kids were 6 months old. To read more,click here

Mom's Voice May Improve the Health of Premature Babies

When babies are born prematurely, they are thrust into a hospital environment that while highly successful at saving their lives, is not exactly the same as the mother's womb where ideal development occurs. The Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) is equipped with highly skilled care givers and incubators that regulate temperature and humidity, but Amir Lahav, ScD, PhD, director of the Neonatal Research Lab at Brigham and Women's Hospital (BWH) thought that something was missing -- simulation of the maternal sounds that a baby would hear in the womb. Now, new research conducted by Lahav and colleagues links exposure to an audio recording of mom's heartbeat and her voice to lower incidence of cardiorespiratory events in preterm infants. To read more,click here

Children With Asthma at Higher Risk for Shingles: Study

Children with asthma have a higher risk for developing shingles -- a painful skin rash -- following infection with the herpes zoster virus, new research reveals. The authors noted that 1 million Americans are estimated to be infected with the herpes zoster virus every year. However, typically it's a problem that strikes men and women over the age of 60 or people with weakened immune systems. Researchers analyzed 277 medical records involving patients under the age of 18 who had experienced an episode of shingles between 1996 and 2001. To read more,click here

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

Don't judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds that you plant.
Robert Louis Stevenson
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