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Each week, LD OnLine gathers interesting news headlines about learning disabilities and ADHD issues. Please note that LD OnLine does not necessarily endorse these views or any others on these outside websites.

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(Opinion) We Can Learn from Special Schools

The Age (Australia)

In the "raging debate" about how our education system compares to the best in the world, it's important to look at special schools that serve students with moderate to severe disabilities. I'd like to highlight two practices: personalizing learning and a focus on the arts.

(Opinion) West Emphasizing Help for Dyslexic Students

The Beacon News (IL)

The director of community relations for the West Aurora School District says if you ask several people to define "dyslexia," it's likely you'll get different — and misguided — answers. There are myths associated with the learning disability, and two West Aurora School District employees have led efforts in the district and beyond to dispel the misconceptions.

(Opinion) Which Is Right?

The Washington Post (DC)

I can't tell left from right. In poking around through obscure psychology journals, university publications, and online chat rooms, here's what I've learned: the condition is real; there has been precious little definitive research on this topic; there's no reason to think left/right confusion is related to IQ; but it might be related to bad handwriting, difficulties with math, and dyslexia.

(Opinion) Work for Adequate School Plan for Child with Disabilities

Southtown Star (IL)

Columnist Paige Fumo Fox reflects on her recent meeting with school staff about her son's individualized education plan, and encourages any parent about to enter the IEP process to be optimistic, but prepared.

(Opinion) Working Memory and Academic Success

Kalamazoo Gazette's Family Talk Magazine (MI)

A speech-language pathologist explains that 'working memory' refers to the ability of the brain to hold and manipulate verbal and visual information for brief periods of time. It works like a notepad to help store important information to carry out tasks. Working memory plays a key role in attention deficit disorders.

(Opinion) Writing Off Disabled Children

The New York Times

Many of America's juvenile jails would be empty if the public schools obeyed federal law and provided disabled children with the special instruction that they need. Texas has both a moral and legal obligation to remake a system that is crippling, then writing off, the state's most vulnerable children.

(Opinion) You Can Help Your Child Succeed in School

Statesman Journal (OR)

A school counselor answers a question from parents about how to best help their daughter achieve school success in the special education system. She notes that developing a good relationship with teachers and specialists is key.

(Opinion) Your Hyperactive Child

The Delphos Herald (OH)

Dr. Celeste Lopez advises parents to talk with your doctor about different techniques to utilize to help children with ADD/ADHD them best use their natural learning skills to achieve in school. Finding them hobbies that they enjoy and are good at so that they will maintain a high self-esteem and remain motivated to learn is also important.

1 Child Left Behind

Chicago Tribune

In March, an independent hearing officer made official what Shnette Tyler already knew: Her 11-year-old son, who has severe learning and behavioral disabilities, had not been receiving a proper education from Chicago Public Schools. But with a hearing at least a month away and school about to start, Devon's mother must decide whether to send him back into a school environment that has both failed and frustrated him or pull him out of school and let the legal system run its course.

1.7 Million Pound Boost for Disabled Teens in Lincolnshire, UK

This is Lincolnshire

1.7 million pounds has been earmarked to help students with learning difficulties and disabilities in Lincolnshire, UK. The money will help set up facilities for disabled students or those with learning difficulties, to help them continue studying after mainstream school.

10 Tips For College Students With Disabilities

NPR

Clinical psychologist and author Kathleen G. Nadeau writes that the key to success is developing learning and organization strategies to cope with learning disabilities. Here are a few of Nadeau's tips for students with ADHD transitioning to college.

10 Tips for College Students with LD or ADHD

NPR

A student's freshman year in college represents a big transition. Many students move out of their parents' home and onto a bustling college campus, where they can be overwhelmed with new workloads, academic demands, and a multitude of social and extracurricular events. For college students who have attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) or learning disabilities, staying organized and focused can be extra challenging.

These tips can help!

12-Year-Old Honored at School After Acts of Bravery

Bloomington Pantagraph (IL)

Virginia Henry has a learning disability. She already knew her parents and her aunt thought she was a hero. She had received their hugs and encouragement, but she didnít know until Friday that her entire school felt the same way.

19 Number-Based Apps for Children with Special Needs

Apps for Children With Special Needs

Is your child struggling with mathematical concepts like number sense and arithmetic? Browse this collection of educational apps recommended by Apps for Children with Special Needs. You may find a useful tool to help your child learn.

2-Year Colleges Help Learning-Disabled Students Break Into Math and Science

Chronicle of Higher Education

For as long as he can remember, Robert T. Calloway has had a fascination with engineering and all things mechanical. He wanted to pursue an engineering career despite a diagnosis of dyslexia, which challenged both his confidence and his ability in the classroom. He enrolled in the Community College of Allegheny County, in Pittsburgh, where professors and the college's academic-support staff helped him work around his dyslexia. Now, a program being developed by a two-year college in Vermont aims to assess the successful practices of Allegheny and other colleges to help more students, like Mr. Calloway, succeed academically in math and the sciences.

200 City Students Take Alternative to SOL Test

Daily News Record (VA)

This year, more than 200 Harrisonburg students are taking the Virginia Grade Level Alternative, an alternative form of the Standards of Learning test. It's a better assessment for some students who are unable to participate in the traditional SOL testing because of a disability or limited English proficiency. But it also costs more and creates more work for teachers.

5 Questions to Ask Before Starting Your Child on ADHD Medication

Fox News Health

Medication for ADHD can make a dramatic difference if it's used appropriately, yet some experts say these pills are being overly prescribed. In fact, according to study published in The American Journal of Psychiatry, approximately 2.8 million or 3.5 percent of children were prescribed ADHD medication in 2008, up from 2.4 percent 12 years earlier. If you are concerned your child has ADHD, or he or she has already received a diagnosis, here are five questions to ask before opting for meds.

5 Questions with a PTA President

The Beacon News (IL)

Of the more than 3,500 special needs students in the district, only 150 or so of their parents participate in the district's Special Needs PTA — the only organization of its kind in Illinois. That, said PTA president Lori Price, makes it the best-kept secret in the school system.

50 Educational Podcasts You Should be Listening To

Getting Smart

Podcasts are a great way to get information when youíre driving in your car, making dinner at home, or waiting at the DMV to renew your license. Podcasts donít force you to find more time in your day; they give you the opportunity to capitalize on all the dead time that already exists in your day by simply downloading the .mp3 or syncing a podcast to your iTunes account on your smartphone.

523 Graduate From Jones

Hattiesburg American (MS)

Malinda Wiklund, 34, overcame learning problems as she persistently worked four years to gain her associate degree at Jones County Junior College. Wiklund had to deal with dyslexia and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder learning disabilities as she worked toward her degree in criminal justice. On Friday, she was among 523 students receiving their diplomas.

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