The Effects Of The ESSA (Every Student Succeeds Act) For Children With Disabilities

BY LAUREN AGORATUS, M.A. WHAT IS THE ESSA? The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) is a reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. ESSA is replacing No Child Left Behind (NCLB.) The Council of Chief State School Officers has a chart and narrative on the crosswalk between ESSA and NCLB (see Resources). Some components of the previous law have been kept, some were revised, and other pieces are new. Here is an overview on […]

College Opportunities for Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities

BY TOM SANNICANDRO AND SCOTT LIEBER INTRODUCTION: College is the dream of many students across the country, and the ladder to economic opportunity, independence, and a first job [1]. Now, evidence suggests that college provides the same opportunities for students with intellectual disabilities (ID) as for non-disabled students [2, 3]. Employment and earnings outcomes for people with ID were higher if they had taken college classes. Students with ID who attend college are significantly more […]

Parents & Teachers Can Combat Bullying Together

BY KAREN KABAKI-SISTO, M.S. CCC-SLP Along with academic achievement, a goal of the educational experience is to learn how to have successful social relationships both inside and outside of the classroom that continue through adulthood. However, physically seating a student into a classroom –mainstream or self-contained –does not automatically ensure social acceptance. Problems with learning and communication can cause a child with special needs to be misunderstood, left out, teased, and/or bullied, leading to behavioral […]

DYSLEXIA Legislative Updates Supporting Innovative Pathways Toward Student Achievement In Reading

BY ANGELA SHAW Since its inception in 1975, the original legislation, the Education for All Handicapped Children Act (Pubic Law 94-142), has evolved and matured to provide a free appropriate public education (FAPE) within an ever widening, least restrictive environment (LRE), grounded upon scientific advances that ensure high-quality, meaningful, and beneficial education for all students. The reauthorization process accounts for advancement and understanding to maintain a fluid support system toward educating students with disabling conditions […]

What Type of Assistance is Available to Students with Disabilities?

LIVING WITH A DISABILITY BY JERRY LEVINSON In an economic environment characterized by ever increasing tuition costs, financing a college education oftentimes seems an insurmountable obstacle for many young people hoping to achieve a college degree. In addition to tuition, fees, and supplies, the cost of room and board, insurance and transportation can cause the price of earning a degree to swell to levels many consider overwhelming. However, as difficult as current costs make achieving […]

Protecting Your Child’s IEP from the Nation’s Testing Craze

BY DR. MICHAEL BERG, ED.D. Parents of children with disabilities need to be proactive and make sure all the time schools are devoting to the preparation and implementation of standardized tests does not swallow up the time that is supposed to be devoted to the implementation of their children’s IEP. High stakes standardized testing in our nation’s public schools makes regular headlines in newspapers and is often the buzz on social media. The accountability level […]

$7 Million in Grants Awarded to Seven States to Improve Training Systems to Help Children with Disabilities

The U.S. Department of Education today announced the award of $7 million in grants to seven states to help recruit and train teachers, principals and other personnel to provide quality education for children with disabilities. States receiving grants are: Colorado, Louisiana, Mississippi, Nebraska, New Jersey, North Carolina and Oregon. The State Personnel Development Grants Program, authorized by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), provides funds to assist states in reforming and improving their systems […]

U.S. Education Department Releases Guidance on Education of Children with Disabilities Attending Public Virtual Schools

The U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS) today issued guidance in the form of a Dear Colleague Letter to states to ensure students with disabilities attending public virtual schools are getting the special education and supports that they deserve and is their right. The guidance focuses on specific requirements in the Individual with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) for public virtual schools. IDEA is the law that guarantees the right […]

Low Tech Tools Of Empowerment

BY ANGELA SHAW ACCESSING CURRICULUM THROUGH ASSISTIVE TECHNOLOGY One steadfast question for the IEP team is the appeal for direction toward assisting, supporting and guiding students with special needs in a manner that promotes efficient and meaningful inclusion. Today’s parents and general educators are aware of a continuum of low to high-tech assistive technology (AT) available to increase deeper engagement and learning for all learners, in order to reduce barriers and ensure access to curriculum. […]

The Importance of Developing Emotional Intelligence through Education

BY ROSIE LINDER While classroom education continues to focus on academics, there is little-to-no emphasis on healthy emotional development in an era where we need it more than ever before. In fact, the State of the Heart 2016 study found that emotional intelligence continues to decline globally. What’s more, since 2014, there has been a decline in maintaining emotional balance (-3.3 percent), self-motivation (-2.9 percent), and connecting compassionately with others (-2.4 percent). The numbers don’t […]