Week in Review - May 11, 2012


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

May 11, 2012 - Vol 8, Issue 17


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Rhode Island Graduation Regulations Condemned

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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


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New This Week on NASET

May - Parent Teacher Conference Handout

What are Modifications and Accommodations

There may be times when parents become confused or are unaware of the modifications or accommodations that are available for their child in special education. This Parent Teacher Conference Handout explains the various modification and accommodation options that may be placed on a child's IEP as long as there is evidence indicating the need for such a modification or accommodation.

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Classroom Management Series VI Part IX

Adapting Grading Systems

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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Prenatal Smoking Linked to High-Functioning Autism in Kids

If a woman smokes during pregnancy, it may increase her child's risk of high-functioning autism, a new study suggests. But the raised risk was slight, experts said. And researchers found no association between maternal smoking and more severe forms of autism. What the findings suggest is that although autism spectrum disorders share many of the same symptoms, subtypes of the disorder likely have many different genetic and environmental causes that vary from person to person and by type of autism, explained study author Amy Kalkbrenner, an assistant professor in the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Zilber School of Public Health. To read more,click here

Did You Know That....

Each year in the United States, more than 12,000 babies are born with a hearing loss; often, the cause is unknown (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2010).

New Muscular Dystrophy Treatment Approach Developed Using Human Stem Cells

Researchers from the University of Minnesota's Lillehei Heart Institute have effectively treated muscular dystrophy in mice using human stem cells derived from a new process that -- for the first time -- makes the production of human muscle cells from stem cells efficient and effective. The research, published May 4 in Cell Stem Cell, outlines the strategy for the development of a rapidly dividing population of skeletal myogenic progenitor cells (muscle-forming cells) derived from induced pluripotent (iPS) cells. iPS cells have all of the potential of embryonic stem (ES) cells, but are derived by reprogramming skin cells. They can be patient-specific, which renders them unlikely to be rejected, and do not involve the destruction of embryos. To read more,click here

Swaddling Infants Too Tightly May Cause Hip Problems

When swaddling an infant, make sure to leave the blankets loose enough to allow leg and hip movement, experts say. They warn that wrapping infants too tightly may cause their hip joints to develop abnormally, causing the ball of the thighbone to dislocate from the socket. The condition, called developmental dysplasia of the hip, can lead to limping, differences in limb length, pain and arthritis, according to the Pediatric Orthopaedic Society of North America. "Many cultures, and a growing number of Americans, practice traditional swaddling -- the tight wrapping of infants with their legs together and fully extended," said orthopedic surgeon Dr. Peter Waters, president of the society, in a news release. To read more,click here

Research Explores the Positives of Bipolar Disorder

The problems of living with bipolar have been well documented, but a new study by Lancaster University has captured the views of those who also report highly-valued, positive experiences of living with the condition. Researchers at Lancaster's Spectrum Centre, which is dedicated to the study of bipolar disorder, interviewed and recorded their views of ten people with a bipolar diagnosis, aged between 24 and 57. Participants in the study reported a number of perceived benefits to the condition ranging from to sharper senses to increased productivity. The research was designed to explore growing evidence that some people with bipolar value their experiences and in some cases would prefer not to be without the condition. 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 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

Did You Know That....

Profound deafness occurs in 4-11 per 10,000 children; in at least 50% of these cases, the cause is genetic (American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, n.d.). 

Lehigh University Special Education Law Symposium, June 24-29, 2012

Lehigh University's intensive week-long special education law symposium provides a practical analysis of legislation, regulations, and case law relating to the education of students with disabilities. The symposium provides a thorough analysis of the leading issues under the IDEA and Section 504. Special features include: parallel tracks for basic and advanced practitioners, starting with a keynote dinner and presentation by Dr. Alexa Posny, Assistant Secretary, Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services, U.S. Department of Education, and ending with a post-luncheon crystal-ball session  by Chicago attorney Darcy Kriha; a balance of knowledgeable district, parent, and neutral perspectives; essential topics with proven effective presenters for the basic track; and a brand new set of "hot topics" and faculty presenters for the advanced track.For more information visit http://www.lehigh.edu/education/law. Questions? Contact Tamara Bartolet (tlp205@lehigh.edu or 610/758-3226).

Overly Long Pregnancies Linked to Behavioral Problems in Toddlers

Children born after a longer-than-normal pregnancy are at increased risk for behavioral and emotional problems, a new study suggests. The study found that attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is an especially common problem among children who were born post-term, defined as birth after a pregnancy of 42 weeks. The study of more than 5,000 infants in the Netherlands found that about 7 percent were born post-term, while 4 percent were born pre-term (before 37 weeks of pregnancy). Children who were born post-term and pre-term both had an increased risk of behavioral and emotional problems when they were 18 and 36 months old. To read more,click here


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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:

Kerry Scheetz, Maricel Tiamzon-Bustos, Catherine Cardenas, Suzann Armitage, Victoria Eversole, Louise Janus, Stacey Slintak, Vicky Gill, Beverly Taylor, Merril Bruce, Pam Bubeck-Head, Dawn Cox, Lori Christian, Jessica L. Ulmer, Kim Lipp, Lori Christian, Anji Reddy Nalamalapu, Thomas S. Robin, Elma Shaw, Chaya Tabor, Mary Goodwin, Olumide Akerele, Anne L. Grothaus, Heather Shyrer, Carol Kramp, Robin E. Kittai, Sara Towne, Laura Arnold, Rebecca S. Birrenkott,Sandra Lasater, Joanne Heit, Linda Cierlitsky, Marilyn Haile, Craig Pate, Elaine Draper, Marlene Barnett, and Prahbhjot Malhi who all knew that Spastic, Athetoid and Ataxic are the three main types of Cerebral Palsy.


In October of 2010, President Obama signed a law mandating that Federal statutes will no longer use the term "mental retardation;" the replacement phrase is "intellectual disability." What is the name of this law?

If you know the answer, send an email tocontactus@naset.org
All answers must be submitted no later than Monday, May 14, 2012 at 12:00 p.m.

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Are Educators Showing a 'Positive Bias' to Minority Students?

Remember that teacher you grumbled about back in your school days, the really tough one who made you work so hard, insisted you could do better, and made you sweat for your A's? The one you didn't appreciate until after you graduated and realized how much you had learned? Minority students in the U.S. might have fewer of those teachers, at least compared to white students, and as a result they might be at a significant learning disadvantage. A major study, led by Rutgers-Newark psychology professor Kent D. Harber, indicates that public school teachers under-challenge minority students by providing them more positive feedback than they give to white students, for work of equal merit. The study, which is currently available online in the Journal of Educational Psychology (JEP), involved 113 white middle school and high school teachers in two public school districts located in the New York/New Jersey/Connecticut tri-state area, one middle class and white, and the other more working class and racially mixed. To read more,click here

U.S. Ranks 131st in World for Premature Birth Rate

More than 15 million -- or 12 percent -- of U.S. babies are born prematurely each year, according to a report released Wednesday by the March of Dimes and several other organizations. This gives the United States a ranking of 131st in the world for its rate of preterm births, on a par with Somalia, Thailand and Turkey and slightly lower than the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the report said. "It was surprising to see the U.S. ranked 131st in terms of its rate of preterm birth," said report co-author Christopher Howson. "This really should be seen as a call to action in the United States." To read more,click here

Of Mice and Men: Characterization of a New Autism Gene

Malfunctioning single proteins can cause disruptions in neuronal junctions leading to autistic forms of behavior. A current study, published in the scientific journal Nature, comes to this conclusion after examining genetically altered mice. The study, in which scientists from Charité -- Universitätsmedizin Berlin and the NeuroCure Cluster of Excellence contributed, thus supports the hypothesis that disruptions in neuronal junctions, i.e. synapses, could be the cause of the development of neuropsychiatric illnesses like autism. The international research team, that included scientists from Ulm University and the Institut Pasteur in Paris, ascribes a key role to the excitatory synapses. This finding could become an important step stone for future autism therapies. To read more,click here

Liberty Mutual Savings


Group Savings Plus from Liberty Mutual

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.


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Many Children with Asthma Harmed by Secondhand Smoke: Study

Many children with asthma in the United States are exposed to secondhand tobacco smoke and suffer health problems because of it, a new study shows. "National asthma guidelines have advised avoidance of environmental tobacco smoke for patients with asthma for decades, but it is unclear to what degree these recommendations are being followed and what the impact of exposure has been in an era of increased awareness of the effects of environmental tobacco smoke exposure," study author Dr. Lara Akinbami, medical officer at the National Center for Health Statistics of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said in an American Academy of Pediatrics news release. To read more,click here

New Report Shows 15 Million Babies Born Too Soon Every Year

The first-ever national, regional, and global estimates of preterm birth reveals that 15 million babies are born too soon every year and 1.1 million of those babies die shortly after birth, making premature birth the second-leading cause of death in children under age 5. The alarming statistics in the new report, Born Too Soon: The Global Action Report on Preterm Birth, highlight the need for more research into the causes of preterm birth and how to prevent it. According to the report, more than one in every 10 babies is born prematurely and preterm birth rates are increasing in almost all countries with reliable data. Survivors of premature birth often face a lifetime of disability, including serious infections, cerebral palsy, brain injury, and respiratory, vision, hearing, learning, and developmental problems. To read more,click here

Arthritis in Children Linked to Infections

Children with juvenile arthritis have higher rates of bacterial infection when hospitalized than children without arthritis, a new study says. While taking high-dose steroids was associated with a higher infection risk among kids with arthritis, other arthritis drugs -- methotrexate and tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF) inhibitors -- were not. Researchers analyzed Medicaid data on nearly 8,500 children with juvenile idiopathic arthritis and more than 360,000 arthritis-free children. Idiopathic means that a disease occurs without a known cause. To read more,click here

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Evidence of Familial Vulnerability for Epilepsy and Psychosis

Although the two disorders may seem dissimilar, epilepsy and psychosis are associated. Individuals with epilepsy are more likely to have schizophrenia, and a family history of epilepsy is a risk factor for psychosis. It is not known whether the converse is true, i.e., whether a family history of psychosis is a risk factor for epilepsy. Multiple studies using varied investigative techniques have shown that patients with schizophrenia and patients with epilepsy show some similar structural brain and genetic abnormalities, suggesting they may share a common etiology. To read more,click here

Did You Know That....

Through the Universal Newborn Hearing Screening program, many states now mandate that all newborns be screened for hearing loss within hours of birth (National Center for Hearing Assessment & Management, n.d.).

Environment Key to Preventing Childhood Disabilities

The United States government would get a better bang for its health-care buck in managing the country's most prevalent childhood disabilities if it invested more in eliminating socio-environmental risk factors than in developing medicines. That's the key conclusion of Prevention of Disability in Children: Elevating the Role of Environment, a new paper co-authored by a Simon Fraser University researcher. The paper is in the May issue of the Future of the Children journal, which is produced by the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University and the Brookings Institution. To read more,click here

Mothers' Stress Could Cause Iron Deficiency in Newborns

Stress experienced by a mother during the first trimester of pregnancy can lead to iron deficiency in her newborn, putting the infant at risk for physical and mental development delays, a new study says. Iron is important in organ-system development, especially for the brain. Risk factors for iron deficiency in newborns include iron deficiency and diabetes in their mothers, as well as smoking during pregnancy. Preterm birth, low birth weight and multiple pregnancy are also well-known risk factors for low iron. This is the first study to suggest that stress experienced by mothers early in pregnancy is another risk factor for iron deficiency in newborns, according to the researchers. To read more,click here

Excessive Sleepiness May Be Cause of Learning, Attention and School Problems

Children who have learning, attention and behavior problems may be suffering from excessive daytime sleepiness, even though clinical tests show them sleeping long enough at night, a new study reports. Penn State researchers studied 508 children and found that those whose parents reported excessive daytime sleepiness (EDS) -- despite little indication of short sleep from traditional measurements -- were more likely to experience learning, attention/hyperactivity and conduct problems than children without EDS. The culprits? Obesity, symptoms of inattention, depression and anxiety, asthma and parent-reported trouble falling asleep have been found to contribute to EDS even among children with no signs of diminished sleep time or sleep apnea. To read more,click here

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

Happiness comes from within. It is not dependent on external things or on other people. You become vulnerable and can be easily hurt when your feelings of security and happiness depend on the behavior and actions of other people. Never give your power to anyone else.

Brian Weiss

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