Wandering: Disability and Safety

Wandering, also called elopement, is an important safety issue that affects some people with disabilities, their families, and the community. There are steps that parents, teachers, healthcare providers, and others can take to help keep children safe. Wandering is when someone leaves a safe area or a responsible caregiver. This typically includes situations where the person may be injured or harmed as a result.1 Wandering goes beyond the brief time that a typical toddler might […]

Choosing Appropriate Gifts for Kids with Special Needs

Buying the perfect gift for kids and other loved ones can be challenging, and this can also be true when buying gifts for kids with autism. To help make your gift-giving easier, here are a few helpful tips to keep in mind when purchasing gifts for individuals with autism: Focus on the person’s interests and preferences Research shows that incorporating preferences into the learning and play environment of individuals with autism, can reduce behaviors and […]

Thanksgiving celebration with Your Special Needs Child

Thanksgiving dinner is one of America’s biggest traditions and memories spent with friends and family can last a lifetime. The big meal is a lot to plan in itself, especially for families of children with special needs. Planning in advance is key. Below are some tips to help your child with special needs feel comfortable and part of the family Thanksgiving tradition. Fun and Engaging Thanksgiving Activities Try involving your child in some these Thanksgiving […]

Protecting Youth from Bullying and The Role of the Pediatrician

By: Wahida Abaza, M.D., Associate at The Family and Youth Institute, and Michael C. Lu, MD, MPH, Maternal and Child Health Bureau, Health Resources & Services Administration (HRSA) Pediatric health care providers are an important, front line, family-trusted group that can not only detect the warning signs of victimization, but are also in a position to advise parents and advocate for their patients. It is important for health care providers to be prepared to screen […]

Studies challenge the claim that black students are sent to special ed too much

Two quantitative studies find that black students are under-identified for disabilities at school Decades of research have documented that students of color, particularly black children, are disproportionately classified by schools as having disabilities. In 2016, 12 percent of black children across the nation received services at school for disabilities ranging from emotional disturbances to physical disabilities to intellectual impairment. Only 8.5 percent of white children received those services. The disability rate for Hispanic students — […]

Ways to be an Advocate on National Down Syndrome Awareness Month

I have the best little sister in the world. I’m not bragging though…this is just a fact! She’s kind, caring, a member of the Foster-Schmidt dance company, a huge fan of slapstick humor, and a devoted employee at the Johns Creek Police department. She also happens to have Down syndrome and a bonus 21st chromosome. I celebrate and love on my sister all of the time. National Down Syndrome Awareness Month is an extra excuse […]

Spread the Word

We think the world would be better if everyone were included. Around the world, exclusion and discrimination continue to divide people with and without intellectual and developmental disabilities. We are changing that with grassroots action for inclusion. That’s Spread the Word. Spread the Word is a global engagement campaign to increase inclusion amongst people with and without and developmental disabilities through grassroots action. In schools, workplaces, and communities around the world, local leaders are taking […]

Bullying at School and Electronic Bullying

“Between 2005 and 2017, the percentage of students ages 12—18 who reported being bullied at school during the school year decreased from 29 to 20 percent. In 2017, about 15 percent of students in grades 9–12 reported being electronically bullied during the previous 12 months.” The School Crime Supplement (SCS) to the National Crime Victimization Survey collected data on bullying51 by asking students ages 12–18 if they had been bullied at school52 during the school […]

Top 10 facts that parents, educators and students should know

Bullying and Harassment of Students with Disabilities 1. The statistics – Students with disabilities are much more likely to be bullied than their nondisabled peers. Although only 10 U.S. studies have been conducted on the connection between bullying and developmental disabilities, all of these studies found that children with disabilities were two to three times more likely to be bullied than their nondisabled peers. (Disabilities: Insights from Across Fields and Around the World; Marshall, Kendall, […]

Breast Cancer Screening for Women with Disabilities

Finding Breast Cancer Early Can Save Lives Breast cancer is the most common type of cancer among women in the United States, and the second leading cause of cancer-related deaths. Thinking “breast cancer won’t happen to me” is a risk no woman should take. Having a screening mammogram regularly is an important way to maintain good health. A mammogram, which is an X-ray picture of the breast, is the best way to find breast cancer […]