Striking A Chord: Music’s Impact On Cognitive Delays & Physical Disabilities

BOOK EXCERPT BY SHARLENE HABERMEYER, MA “Great things are not done by impulse, but by a series of small things brought together.” – Vincent Van Gogh As a young child, Anthony suffered with severe language, social, and emotional issues. Socialization was a particular challenging issue. It was difficult for him to socialize with his peers, to work independently at school, and he was argumentative with his teachers. But music changed all that. Today, Anthony attends […]

Art Is The Glue In A NYC Inclusion Program

BY LYDIE RASCHKA With a grant from the National Inclusion Project, the Marquis Studios Inclusion Program was launched in 2011. As the six year olds filled the sunny art studio, they chanted the teacher’s name, “Hiromi! Hiromi!” With her frizzy pigtails, crinkly-eyed smile, and blocky gray tunic, Hiromi Niizeki looked like a big first-grader herself. This was Ms. Niizeki’s second season teaching visual art in the Inclusion Program, a project designed by Marquis Studios. Marquis […]

The Olmstead Decision Has Been Misinterpreted

BY JILL BARKER, DAVID HART AND TAMIE HOPP The Olmstead decision, which interprets the Americans with Disabilities Act, is so clear that persistent misinterpretation by federal agencies can only be described as purposeful. INTRODUCTION The 25th Anniversary of the American with Disabilities Act (ADA) on July 26, 2015 offers an opportunity to set the record straight about what the landmark Supreme Court decision, Olmstead v. L.C., 527 U.S. 581 (1999)1, actually says about the ADA’s […]

Parent Advocates: Champions of Change in Newborn Screening

GENETIC ALLIANCE BY BRIANA MITTLEMAN As Newborn Screening Awareness Month kicks off in September, it is important we reflect on the many advocates, communities, healthcare professionals, and state programs that work everyday to improve this public health program. Yet, in September, we honor one of the many champions of change in newborn screening: parents. Newborn screening reaches nearly all of the four million babies born in the United States, with thousands of babies receiving newborn […]


FROM THE AMERICAN ACADEMY OF PEDIATRICS Parents and families are encouraged to model healthy behaviors for children, and pediatricians are in a good position to help families find ways to do this together. In updated recommendations, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) offers practical steps families can take to help children maintain a healthy weight. The advice comes as part of an AAP clinical report published in the July 2015 issue of Pediatrics. The report, […]


JOHNNY MAC SOLDIERS FUND BY CHRISTINE REDMAN-WALDEYER “There are 20,000 children of fallen soldiers who are out there and need help. This number will only increase over the next 10 years; there is a half a billion dollar need.” One of the first items on our bucket list for the summer included a family vacation to Mt. Vernon. My six-year-old became increasingly aware of our history this past year in kindergarten and expressed his desire […]


BY MARY ANN RACCOSTA What I realized and experienced over the 16 years of having two special needs children, is that for my family to travel, we needed to be efficient researchers. I always envisioned traveling to different cities, parts of the country and even international places with my children. Yet, when my sons were born, along with them came an entirely complicated list of prerequisites for traveling. How fast can I make it to […]

Five Summer Activities For Children With Special Needs

BY NATASHA CORNIN Find inclusive or targeted activities welcoming of special needs kids, where we and our kids feel safe among others and create enriching experiences. Summer has arrived, and with it the challenges presented as we seek to maintain our special needs kids’ familiar routines while taking advantage of the seasonal activities available. Whether your child has a 10-month or 12-month program may impact your priorities as it relates to the quantity and cost […]

So Why Keep Screening?

BY H. BARRY WALDMAN DDS, MPH, PHD, STEVEN P. PERLMAN DDS, MSCD, DHL (HON, THADDEUS J. ARNOLD, MPH AND MISHA GAREY, DDS The repeated screenings do demonstrate that significant numbers of individuals are referred to dental practitioners and receive the needed relief from pain and suffering. DELAYED AND NO CARE “…On the patient side of the balance sheet, having a child with (disabilities) is costly and can directly impact a family’s stability… The general public’s […]

Do You Need to Name an Executor of Your Estate? Seven Questions and Answers to Help You Decide.

Estates vary regarding valuation and complexity. In its simplest definition, if you own assets, you have an estate. If you also have debts and/or a will, you may need someone to settle your estate when you die. “Most individuals understand the importance of creating a financial strategy or a life care plan1 for their family, especially when a family member has special needs” says Connor W. Kavanaugh, who is a Special Care Planner2 with MassMutual-Oregon3 […]