Week in Review - February 1, 2013

Week in Review - February 1, 2013


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

February 1, 2013 - Vol 9, Issue 5


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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 - Liberty Mutual


To learn more -Click here

New This Week on NASET

NASET's "How To" Series
February 2013

"How To" Hold Effective Parent Conferences
As a special educator, you will most probably hold parent conferences several times during the school year. Having a positive conference will tend to have the parents be more supportive and involved with their child's work and performance in school. Successful parent conferences also send a positive message to the students that the school and home are working together.
"How To" Prepare for the Triennial Process

One of the responsibilities for the special education teacher may be involvement in the triennial evaluation (a complete and updated evaluation required every three years for all children classified as having a disability by the Eligibility Committee). This is a very important phase of the special education process because it reviews the factors that accounted for the child's classification and placement.

To read or download this issue -Click here (login required)
NASET's Special Educator e-Journal
February 2013

Table of Contents

*             Update from the U.S. Department of Education

*             Special Education Resources

*             Update From The National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities

*             Latest Employment Opportunities Posted on NASET

*             Upcoming Conferences and Events

*             Funding Forecast and Award Opportunities

*             Acknowledgements

To read or download this issue - Click here (login required)

U.S. Department of Education Clarifies Schools' Obligation to Provide Equal Opportunity to Students with Disabilities to Participate in Extracurricular Athletics

Last week, the Department's Office for Civil Rightsissued guidanceclarifying school districts' existing legal obligations to provide equal access to extracurricular athletic activities to students with disabilities. In addition to explaining those legal obligations, the guidance urges school districts to work with community organizations to increase athletic opportunities for students with disabilities, such as opportunities outside of the existing extracurricular athletic program. Students with disabilities have the right, under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, to an equal opportunity to participate in their schools' extracurricular activities. A 2010 report by the U.S. Government Accountability Office found that many students with disabilities are not afforded an equal opportunity to participate in athletics, and therefore may not have equitable access to the health and social benefits of athletic participation. To read more,click here

A Promising New Therapy for a Childhood Coordination Disorder

About 6% of children experience a significant delay in the development of motor coordination compared to their peers, according to the American Psychiatric Association. Children withdevelopmental coordination disorder (DCD), experience problems with both: gross motor skills, which involve large muscle groups and include activities such as walking; and fine motor skills, which involve manipulation and hand-eye coordination, such as writing. DCD, also called developmental dyspraxia, occurs more often in boys and may be diagnosed with other conditions such as learning delay, developmental language disorder, dyslexia, autism spectrum disorder, and attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder. To read more,click here

Did You Know That....

Spina bifida (SB) is a neural tube defect (a disorder involving incomplete development of the brain, spinal cord, and/or their protective coverings) caused by the failure of the fetus's spine to close properly during the first month of pregnancy.

Pa. Governor Proposes 'Intellectual Disabilities' Funding Increase

In a glimpse of his upcoming budget address, Gov. Tom Corbett told a group of advocates and family members that he will propose increased funding for programs for adults with intellectual disabilities. Mr. Corbett said his February budget proposal will provide home- and community-based services to about 1,200 adults awaiting access to state programs. The governor and his secretary of public welfare, Gary Alexander, described the addition of nearly $20 million as part of an ongoing effort to direct state resources to those who most need them. To read more,click here

Prenatal Inflammation Linked to Autism Risk

Maternal inflammation during early pregnancy may be related to an increased risk of autism in children, according to new findings supported by the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), part of the National Institutes of Health. Researchers found this in children of mothers with elevated C-reactive protein (CRP), a well-established marker of systemic inflammation. The risk of autism among children in the study was increased by 43 percent among mothers with CRP levels in the top 20th percentile, and by 80 percent for maternal CRP in the top 10th percentile. The findings appear in the journal Molecular Psychiatry and add to mounting evidence that an overactive immune response can alter the development of the central nervous system in the fetus. "Elevated CRP is a signal that the body is undergoing a response to inflammation from, for example, a viral or bacterial infection," said lead scientist on the study, Alan Brown, M.D., professor of clinical psychiatry and epidemiology at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, New York State Psychiatric Institute, and Mailman School of Public Health. "The higher the level of CRP in the mother, the greater the risk of autism in the child."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

Hate Crimes Alleged After People With Disabilities Held Captive

In a first-of-its-kind hate crimes case, federal prosecutors are accusing five people of holding individuals with disabilities captive in subhuman conditions in order to steal their Social Security benefits. A 193-count indictment unsealed Wednesday describes a decade-long scheme by which alleged ringleader Linda Weston convinced people with developmental disabilities and other special needs to make her the designated recipient of their Social Security payments. In exchange, Weston promised them a good place to live. Instead, prosecutors say Weston, her daughter and three others kept their victims in locked closets, basements and attics while subjecting them to beatings and denying them food and medical attention. Some in Weston's care were allegedly forced into prostitution and two died. To read more,click here

Waiter Refuses to Serve Customers who Insulted a Child with Special Needs

When a group of regulars insulted a special needs customer at his restaurant, waiterMichael Garciaserved them a dose of bravery. "My personal feelings just took over," said Garcia, a waiter at Laurenzo's Prime Rib in Houston, toldKTRK. "And I told this man, 'I'm sorry, I can't serve you.'" The restaurant might have lost a few customers that day, but the waiter is still being hailed for his bravado. Garcia, who has been working at Laurenzo's for two years, was put in charge of two groups of regulars last Wednesday night. Kim Castillo was at one of Garcia's tables. Castillo's son Milo, a 5-year-old with Down syndrome, has been eating at Laurenzo's for most of his short life. He's quite popular with the waiters, so many were coming over to say hello, Castillo told local Houston blog 29-95.com. Milo hadn't been at the restaurant for a few weeks, so he was chatting it up about his recent birthday. To read more,click here


Designed for a national audience, this intensive one-week, well-balanced program is available on both a non-credit and graduate-credit basis and provides a thorough analysis of the leading issues under the IDEA and Section 504. Among the 19 symposium sessions are the following "hot topics": RTI; discipline, including a mock manifestation determination hearing; child find; transitional services; tuition reimbursement and other remedies; disability-related bullying; and autism.

Special features include:

  • Parallel tracks for basic and advanced practitioners, starting with a keynote dinner presentation by Dr. Melody Musgrove, Director, Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP), U.S. Department of Education and ending with a post-luncheon crystal-ball culminating presentationled by national consultant and trainer Julie Weatherly, Esq., recipient of the 2012 National CASE Award for Outstanding Service.
  • Balance of district, parent, and neutral perspectives with a specialized set of topics and presenters for the advanced track.
  • Knowledgeable national faculty including attorneys Laura Anthony (Ohio), Emerson Dickman (New Jersey), Andrew Faust (Pennsylvania), Joshua Kershenbaum (Pennsylvania), Michele Kule-Korgood (New York), Deborah Mattison (Alabama), Marsha Moses (Connecticut), Michael Stafford (Delaware), Julie Weatherly (Alabama), Mark Weber (Illinois), and Dr. Perry Zirkel (Pennsylvania).
  • The symposium will take place on the beautiful campus of Lehigh University in Bethlehem, Pa., located just 60 miles north of Philadelphia and 70 miles south of New York City, with access from Lehigh Valley (ABE), Newark, and Philadelphia International airports.
  • CLE and ACT 48 credits available.
  • Non-credit: $995 full week; or $295 per day.  Lehigh University Graduate Credit (3): $1,695
Special Education Law Symposium ~ June 23-28, 2013 ~ Lehigh University, Bethlehem, PA ~ coe.lehigh.edu/law


California Gets 'D' in Teacher Prep

The National Council on Teacher Quality, a policy reform organization that focuses on teaching effectiveness, gave the state of California a "D" in the sixth annual State Teacher Policy Yearbook for 2012, released publicly today. The Policy Yearbook compares how well state education policy and licensing programs prepare teachers. "In terms of teacher preparation I think the issues in California fall into maybe three broad categories," said Sandi Jacobs, vice president of the National Council on Teacher Quality. She said in a phone interview that state education officials need to better evaluate admission standards, the K-12 teacher licensing structure and accountability of teaching preparation programs. To read more,click here

Bill Would Require School Psychologist in Every SC Public School

While South Carolina lawmakers talk about whether to put an armed school resource officer in every public school and whether to allow teachers to get concealed weapons permits and carry guns to school, Rep. Jerry Govan wants to start a different discussion about protecting school children. He's introduced a bill that would require every public school in the state to have a full-time school psychologist on staff. "I don't have any type of illusion that this is not costly or that we can afford it, but I think it's important that we start the dialogue," he says. To read more,click here

Did You Know That....

Infants born with Spina bifida sometimes have an open lesion on their spine where significant damage to the nerves and spinal cord has occurred. Although the spinal opening can be surgically repaired shortly after birth, the nerve damage is permanent, resulting in varying degrees of paralysis of the lower limbs. Even when there is no lesion present there may be improperly formed or missing vertebrae and accompanying nerve damage.

Group Uses Human-Animal Bond to Help Humans Heal

Shelby walks into Putnam Elementary School of Science once a week with the determination to do her job right. Her red vest shows that she's there to do business - she's there to change lives. She doesn't communicate the way most therapists do, but that's probably because, unlike most therapists, she's a golden retriever mix who uses slobbery kisses, gentle nudges and warm hugs to help her clients. "Shelby's great with kids," owner Sandy Dailey said. "She's extremely patient. She's very smart. And she gets very excited to be here and put her vest on because she knows what she's about to do." To read more,click here


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


Congratulations to: Dildreda Willy, Ope-Oluwa Olubela, Merril Bruce, Sue Claggett, Jessica L. Ulmer, Alexandra Pirard, Vasantha Ramachandran, Cyreasa Sprankle, Olumide Akerele, Pamela R. Downing-Hosten, Lois Nembhard, Sue Brooks, Nancy G Johnsen, Kathleen George, Prahbhjot Malhi, Craig Pate, Pattie Komons, and Mike Namian who all knew that Jean-Marc-Gaspard Itard was the French physician (1774-1838) who is considered to be the "father of special education".

Fill in the blank:  When the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-V) comes out with its 5th edition in May 2013, one of the most significant changes will be the removing of ____ as a separate disorder and "collapsing" it under autism spectrum disorder.

If you know the answer, send an email tocontactus@naset.org
All answers must be submitted no later than Monday, February 4, 2013 at 12:00 p.m.

ADHD in Kids Jumps 24 percent in a Decade, Study Shows

Overall, about 5 percent of nearly 843,000 kids ages 5 to 11 were diagnosed between 2001 and 2010 with the condition that can cause impulsive behavior and trouble concentrating. But during that time, rates of new ADHD diagnoses skyrocketed 24 percent - jumping from 2.5 percent in 2001 to 3.1 percent in 2010. That's according to a comprehensive review of medical records for children who were covered by the Kaiser Permanente Southern California health plan. Rates rose most among minority kids during the study period, climbing nearly 70 percent overall in black children, and 60 percent among Hispanic youngsters, according the study published in JAMA Pediatrics. Among black girls, ADHD rates jumped 90 percent. To read more,click here

Federal Disabilities Law May be Able to Help People with Food Allergies

Allergic to gluten? What about peanuts? Federal disabilities law may be able to help. The Justice Department said in a recent settlement with a Massachusetts college that severe food allergies can be considered a disability under the law. That gives those who suffer from such allergies a new avenue in seeking menus that fit their diet. The decision leaves schools, restaurants and other places that serve food more exposed to legal challenges if they fail to honor requests for accommodations by people with food allergies. 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

Group Helps Montanans with Disabilities Hit the Slopes

Despite the dogged persistence of three men with spinal cord injuries, their resolve shining through tinted ski goggles and from beneath visored helmets, a combination of frustration and defeat would surely abrade their spirits, eventually. Except it never did. Instead, they charged down the mountain again and again, picking themselves up from falls and remounting the chairlift for another lap, indefatigably. All three Montana men enthusiastically pursued extreme mountain sports prior to their accidents, but spinal cord injuries left them paralyzed in the legs, and robbed them of varying degrees of upper-body function. On a recent bluebird day at Whitefish Mountain Resort on Big Mountain, the men were learning to ride a sit-ski, or monoski, which consists of a molded seat mounted on a metal frame, set over a shock absorber attached to an ordinary alpine ski. To read more,click here

Sports Help Children with Developmental Disabilities Excel

When children are diagnosed with a learning or a neural developmental disorder, parents and doctors usually hold little hope of the child playing competitive sports. Two Calhoun County youths have beat the odds with the game of basketball. Xavier King, 14, who is an eighth grade student at Travis Middle School, is considered an asset to his Fiddler basketball B Team despite his Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, or ADHD, a learning disorder. King has been an avid basketball fan from his first steps said his mother, Fina King, of Port Lavaca. "He has loved the game ever since he could walk," Fina said. "We have a basketball goal at our house and at my mother's house where he practices, weather permitting." To read more,click here

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The Science of Stuttering

Stuttering is a speech disorder that's affected some very famous people, including King George VI, actress Marilyn Monroe, and, believe it or not, even Vice President Joe Biden. About 5% of children stutter, but many like the Vice President outgrow the disorder. About 1% of adults stutter. That's about 3 million people in the United States and 60 million worldwide. Until recently, the cause of most stuttering was a mystery. However, researchers at the NIH'sNational Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disordershave identified several genes involved in inherited forms of stuttering and are busy looking for additional clues that may open new avenues for treatment.To read more,click here

NYC Student Attendance Drops During Bus Driver Strike, Mainly in Special Ed.

Two days before New York City school bus drivers walked off the job Jan. 16, Mayor Michael Bloomberg emphasized the impact on the city's schoolchildren. The strike involving more than 8,000 bus drivers and matrons stems from a dispute over job protections in future bus company contracts. "It would necessarily jeopardize the education and safety of the more than 150,000 students who take school buses every single day, in a year when our students have already missed a week or more of school because of Hurricane Sandy," Bloomberg said during a press conference last Monday. "We certainly don't need to make it more difficult to get to school." To read more,click here

Michigan's Autism Coverage Reimbursement Program for Insurers Off to a Slow Start

Michigan's new program allowing health insurance companies to be reimbursed for paid claims related to autism coverage is off to a slow start. The reimbursement provision for carriers and third-party administrators was part of a compromise that helped the autism coverage plan win approval in the Michigan Legislature and besigned into lawlast year. The law mandates that insurance companies provide coverage for autism treatment and diagnosis. The reimbursement is designed to help companies offset those costs. To read more,click here

Did You Know That....

There is no cure for Spina bifida because the nerve tissue cannot be replaced or repaired. Treatment for the variety of effects of SB may include surgery, medication, and physiotherapy. Many individuals with SB will need assistive devices such as braces, crutches, or wheelchairs. Ongoing therapy, medical care, and/or surgical treatments may be necessary to prevent and manage complications throughout the individual's life. Surgery to close the newborn's spinal opening is generally performed within 24 hours after birth to minimize the risk of infection and to preserve existing function in the spinal cord.

ER Visits Linked to ADHD Meds Up Sharply

U.S. emergency department visits involving attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) drugs more than doubled from 2005 to 2010, with the largest hike occurring among adults, says a new government report. In that period, such ER visits rose from about 13,400 to 31,200, according to the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). "ADHD medications, when properly prescribed and used, can be of enormous benefit to those suffering from ADHD, but like any other medication they can pose serious risks -- particularly when they are misused," SAMHSA administrator Pamela Hyde said in an agency news release. To read more,click here

Lead Levels Down in U.S. Kids, But Asthma Cases Rising: EPA

Lead levels in young children in the United States have declined dramatically in recent decades, according to government figures released Friday. But the new report on the environment and children's health also found a rise in asthma among kids. "This latest report provides important information for protecting America's most vulnerable -- our children. It shows good progress on some issues, such as reducing children's blood lead levels and exposure to tobacco smoke in the home, and points to the need for continued focus on other issues," Environmental Protection Agency administrator Lisa Jackson said in a news release. The average blood concentration of lead measured in children aged 1 to 5 years was 92 percent lower in 2009-2010 than in 1976-1980, according to the EPA. Most of that decline occurred in the 1980s, but consistent decreases have continued since 1999. To read more,click here

Study Links Epilepsy Drug in Pregnancy to Lower IQ

Children of mothers who take the antiepileptic drug valproate during pregnancy have lower IQ scores at age 6, a new study says. And the higher the dose of valproate during pregnancy, the greater the effect on a child's IQ, according to the report published in the Jan. 22 issue of The Lancet Neurology. For the study, the researchers looked at 305 pregnant women in the United States and United Kingdom who took a single drug to treat the seizure disorder -- either valproate (Depakote), carbamazepine (Tegretol), lamotrigine (Lamictal) or phenytoin (Dilantin). To read more,click here

Study Finds Nearly Half of U.S. Kids Are Under-Vaccinated

In recent years, nearly half (49 percent) of U.S. children under the age of 2 did not receive all the recommended vaccinations or received some vaccinations late, a new study shows. All these children are considered under-vaccinated, according to the Kaiser Permanente researchers who analyzed the immunization records of more than 320,000 children born between 2004 and 2008. The investigation revealed a significant increase in the number of under-vaccinated children during the study period, and also found that one in eight under-vaccinated children's parents decided not to follow Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) childhood vaccination guidelines, according to a Kaiser news release. To read more,click here

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

Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible.

Dalai Lama
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