Week in Review - August 28, 2020





National Association of Special Education Teachers

August 28, 2020                    Vol 16 Issue #34


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’s Parent Teacher Conference Handout

The Evaluation and Assessment Process for Early Intervention


Parents who are considering early intervention services may be overwhelmed by the process. There may be times when you can assist a parent with information on the process that will reduce such concerns. This handout explains the way children are evaluated and assessed for early intervention services.

Read More



Students with Disabilities Struggle to Learn Remotely

While many schools are continuing distance learning, educators want to do things differently this time for students who need special education services. Parents say the schools have to do better. Here in the U.S., more than 7 million schoolchildren receive special education services. But this spring, many of those vital services, like physical therapy, simply stopped. So what happens now with some districts planning to continue remote learning in the fall? Here's NPR's Cory Turner. For Sarah McLaren, who lives just outside Minneapolis, talking about the spring is painful. Her daughter struggles with auditory processing. McLaren says keeping up with teachers on an iPad was super hard for her third grader. Read More


Children with Disabilities Face Additional Challenges Returning to School Amid Coronavirus

As reported COVID-19 cases continue to climb in the U.S., Chicago-based parents Margaret Storey and Jonathan Heller have struggled with the decision to send their daughter, Josie, who's disabled, back to school. Josie, 16, was born with Aicardi Syndrome, a rare neurological disorder that left her unable to walk or talk. And while the decision to send children back to school weighs heavily on all parents, families of children with intellectual, physical and developmental disabilities are facing unique challenges and considerations. "There's a lot of general information out there about return-to-school, but often when children have medical problems, families hear that information and think -- 'How does that apply to my kid?'" Dr. Carolyn Foster, an assistant professor of pediatrics at Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago, told ABC News. Read More


Anorexia May Stunt Young Women's Growth

Girls with anorexia nervosa can have stunted growth and may not reach their full height potential, according to a new study published in the Endocrine Society's Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism. Anorexia nervosa is a condition in which a person loses an unhealthy amount of weight on purpose by dieting, sometimes along with excessive exercise, binge eating, and/or purging behaviors. People with anorexia nervosa have an intense fear of gaining weight and a disturbed body image (such as thinking they are fat even when they are very underweight). "Our findings emphasize the importance of early and intensive intervention aiming at normalization of body weight, which may result in improved growth and allow patients to reach their full height potential," said the study's corresponding author, Dalit Modan-Moses, M.D., of The Edmond and Lily Safra Children's Hospital, Chaim Sheba Medical Center, in Tel Hashomer, Israel. Read More


Air Pollution Linked to Higher Risk of Young Children Developing Asthma

Children exposed to higher levels of fine particles in the air (known as PM2.5) are more likely to develop asthma and persistent wheezing than children who are not exposed, finds a study published by The BMJ today. Other risk factors associated with a higher risk of developing asthma and persistent wheezing were having parents with asthma, having a mother who smoked during pregnancy, or having parents with low education and low income. These findings support emerging evidence that exposure to air pollution might influence the development of asthma, say the researchers. PM2.5 can come from various sources, including power plants, motor vehicles and domestic heating. The particles (about 3% or less of the diameter of a human hair) can penetrate deep into the lungs and some may even enter the circulatory system. Read More


Utah Sets Pandemic Safeguards for People with Disabilities

Utah became the fifth state Thursday to overhaul crisis guidelines that could have deprived people with disabilities of doctors' care if hospitals become overwhelmed during the coronavirus pandemic. The changes approved by federal officials settle a complaint from disability advocates and set a new standard for other states, said Roger Severino, director of the Office for Civil Rights at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The decision should ease fears that disabled people could have been denied care during the pandemic. “When the going gets tough you don’t throw the most vulnerable overboard,” Severino said. Read More

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

How Adults and Children with Disabilities Deal with COVID-19 Changes

We've all been restricted from our normal routines in some way because of the COVID-19 pandemic. For some people, a routine is vital. That can be especially true for children and adults with disabilities. Letters and photos are what kept the students at the Marshall County Exceptional Center busy while it was temporarily closed. Students at the center have intellectual and developmental disabilities. The center's director says the closure was hard on everyone. "Just because the services had stopped, didn't mean that we could just stop functioning," said Lindsey Walker. They had to get prepared for students to come back to continue learning independent living skills. The center has in-person and virtual learning. Read More


Special Education Teacher Won't Let Distance Stop Her from Connecting with Students

Shaun Burks starts seventh grade at Stevenson Middle next week. Due to the pandemic, his mother, Brandy, decided it would be best to keep him online all year. "They need that hands-on learning, I agree 100%," Brandy said. "But the risk is not worth it." Shaun has autism. He's in a special education class where he can get more one-on-one attention, but working from home makes that a little harder. Brandy is prepared to pick up the slack and help her son where she can. "There are some benefits to being in school that they're missing," Brandy said. "The biggest challenge is the social aspect of it; he has a very emotional tie to his teacher as well as to his classmates." Shaun's teacher, Cindy Glover, isn't letting the distance stop her from connecting with her students. Glover sent Shaun a personalized welcome video. She also dropped off a few treats, a stuffed animal and a sign with his name on it at his house. Read More


Don’t Let the Pandemic Set Back Special Education

We have heard it time and time again. These are unprecedented times ... uncharted territory. As parents of school-aged kids or business owners, we anxiously await the next mandate to come down from local or state government, outlining what the future will look like. The same has been true for our local education systems as they navigate how to best educate our students while also remaining safe. And while decisions like delaying the start of school and moving to a virtual learning environment have been made, has every student been considered? As the executive director of a nonprofit organization that serves individuals with intellectual disabilities, I wholeheartedly believe we have come so far in awareness and activism for those with disabilities. But I don’t want to see this pandemic set us back, especially when it comes to education. Read More


Toddlers Who Use Touchscreens Show Attention Differences

Toddlers with high daily touchscreen use are faster to find targets that stood out during visual search compared to toddlers with no or low touchscreen use -- according to new research. The research team, co-led by Dr Rachael Bedford of the University of Bath's Department of Psychology, say the findings are important for the growing debate around the impact of screen time on toddlers and their development. Lead researcher Professor Tim Smith, from Birkbeck's Centre for Brain and Cognitive Development, said: "The use of smartphones and tablets by babies and toddlers has accelerated rapidly in recent years. The first few years of life are critical for children to develop the ability to focus their attention on relevant information and ignore distraction, early skills that are known to be important for later academic achievement. There has been growing concern that toddler touchscreen use may negatively impact their developing attention but this fear is not based on empirical evidence." Read More


Telemedicine May Well Outlast the Pandemic, Say Mental Health Care Staff

The Covid-19 pandemic has brought about rapid innovation in mental health care, and the move to telemedicine is likely here to stay to at least some degree, but new research led by UCL and King's College London cautions that serious barriers still need to be overcome. In a new survey in the UK and an international review of evidence from 29 countries, mental health care staff report how the pandemic and lockdown have been harmful to some people accessing mental health services. The two new studies are published in Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology and are led by the UCL- and KCL-led NIHR Mental Health Policy Research Unit (MHPRU). One is a survey of 2,180 mental health professionals in the UK, and the other is a summary of reports from 872 papers and articles across six continents. Read More


Clear Masks, Barriers to Enhance Special Education Learning

With about 1,500 special education students enrolled in the Mecosta Osceola Intermediate School District, measures are being taken to meet student needs while still abiding by safety requirements outlined by the governor. "It's teaching like we've never taught before," said Christy Miller, director of special education at MOISD. Providing services across the six MOISD school districts, satellite programs in various communities as well as at the Mecosta Osceola Education Center, Miller said staff is doing what they can to make sure students are acclimated to the new requirements in each of the buildings' opening plans. "In all of our programs, kids are expected to wear masks," she said. Miller noted students should follow all of the same safety guidelines as the general education program, including health screening before leaving the house, social distancing, frequent hand sanitizing and more. Read More



Congratulations to: Shirley Miles-Bell, Patsy Ray, Mariola Papa, Kimberly Rehbaum, Karen Frantz-Fry, Jamie Patton, Amanda Johnson, and Barry Amper, who all knew the answer to last week's trivia question:

What is the name of the IDEA disability that means “having limited strength, vitality or alertness, including a heightened alertness to environmental stimuli, that results in limited alertness with respect to the educational environment, that: (i) is due to chronic or acute health problems such as asthma, attention deficit disorder or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, diabetes, epilepsy, a heart condition, hemophilia, lead poisoning, leukemia, nephritis, rheumatic fever, and sickle cell anemia; and (ii) adversely affects a child's educational performance”?


This Week's Trivia Question: Which President of the United States signed a bill into law creating Gallaudet College (then called the Columbia Institution for the Instruction of the Deaf and Dumb and Blind), an institution of higher learning for the deaf, thereby forcing the federal government to become involved in special education in 1864?

If you know the answer to this week's trivia questions, email it to us at contactus@naset.org by August 24, 2020. If you are correct, you will be acknowledged in next week's NASET's Week in Review


Special Education Woes in Texas Aren't Getting Better

The Texas Education Agency did such a bad job providing special education services that U.S. Department of Education Secretary Betsy DeVos noticed. DeVos stated, “Far too many students in Texas had been precluded from receiving supports and services under federal special education laws.” On Jan. 11, 2018, the U.S. Department of Education sanctioned TEA $223 million for violating the Individual with Disabilities Act by denying special education services to over 250,000 children. The department ordered TEA to provide preliminary and then final corrective action plans immediately. The department found that since 2004 TEA failed to identify, locate and evaluate students for special education needs, failed to provide free appropriate education and failed to supervise and monitor districts to ensure compliance with federal law. Read More


Australian Children with Disabilities Excluded from Online Learning During Pandemic

Children with disabilities have been excluded from online home learning during the coronavirus pandemic and some students have been told to do housework in lieu of a modified curriculum, the royal commission has heard. On the second day of hearings examining the effect of the pandemic on people with disabilities, the commission was told about NDIS participants who had missed out on their supports, while another woman who had been bedridden for years expressed worry that the access she had gained to digital services would end when the crisis ended. One mother – known to the commission as ABB – said that when the pandemic led to the introduction of home learning, her daughter, who is 12 years old and lives with Down syndrome, was excluded from her school’s Google Classroom platform. Read More


Special Education Classes Work to Implement Social Distancing, While Staying ‘Hands On’

Special education will look unique this year. For many instructors, this fall’s transition to the classroom also comes with a call for new ideas. “Our students are unique in that some students cannot remove a mask independently, so we cannot put masks on those students,” said the Dickinson-Iron Intermediate School District special education director, Tricia Meneguzzo. Instead, each student will have an individual face covering plan, made by their parent. The DIISD is mandating that special ed teachers wear a mask or a shield. “We have the communication masks, that are the clear that show the mouth,” said Meneguzzo. They also have medical masks, shields, and rapid response face shield, which covers the neck. In the classroom many things will remain hands-on, but in a safe way. Woodland Elementary houses two special education rooms. Right now, the teacher is working to make sure each student has their own desk, and own learning materials. But she’s just happy to get students back to the classroom. Read More


How Will Special Education Look This Fall?

The uncertainty surrounding this year's back to school season is especially hard for parents of children with special needs. Some of these families say they feel left in the dark. For students with an individualized education program, or IEP, schools are legally required to accommodate a child's needs to provide the best possible learning experience. Special Education Director Rocco Nalli, with the Baldwinsville Central School District, says some of the district's special education students adjusted successfully after the sudden shift to remote learning this past spring. Others tended to learn more effectively through in-person instruction. Read More


* (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


Do it again and again. Consistency makes the rain drops to create holes in the rock. Whatever is difficult can be done easily with regular attendance, attention and action.

Israelmore Ayivor

Return to Week in Review Main Page - Click here

forgot username or password?