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On Special Education Blog, Education Week
A new North Carolina law provides a tax credit to families of children with disabilities. Gov. Beverly Perdue allowed the measure to become law without her signature. The law gives parents of children with disabilities a tax credit of up to $6,000 for educational expenses including private school tuition, therapy, and tutoring.
The Times of India
Aranya is eight and in her drawings, elephants can fly. She enjoys art and has a vivid imagination, but when it comes to her studies, she struggles with writing and concentration. Aranya is suffering from Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), a neuro-behavioural developmental disorder. Often children like Aranya are labeled 'lazy' or 'dumb' although they are neither. "My daughter is very creative. She loves painting animals and working with clay. All she needs is a little more time to grasp her lessons. It is unfortunate that in the pursuit of high scores the power of the imagination is under-estimated," says Aranya's mother.
Sarah Fridy is a special education teacher and some of her third-graders read at a first-grade level. They can't get through the questions even on the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test, which they're required to take, yet their scores may determine how much Fridy earns and whether she keeps her job.
Washington Post (DC)
Every school day, Anne Fogel draws on more than three decades of teaching experience to find what she calls that "light-bulb moment" in her students. Fogel, a special education teacher at Spring Ridge Middle School works with students one-on-one or in small groups to help them learn to read. She's Maryland's nominee for LDA's "Sam Kirk Educator of the Year" award.
Hudson Star-Observer (WI)
On the eve of her retirement, the newspaper looks at the career of teacher Joan Thompson. Thompson said that she was uncomfortable seeing students with disabilities sitting on the sidelines because they could not participate in a traditional way in her physical education classes, so in 1993 she organized the first adapted athletic program in the state of Wisconsin.
The Capital Times (WI)
Students who have persistent trouble reading because the neural pathways in their brains do not decode letters and sounds in the ways that make reading and writing natural - need specific help, they say, and the sooner the better. That's why Rep. Keith Ripp, R-Lodi, has introduced two bills to the Wisconsin Assembly aimed at helping schoolchildren with dyslexia.
The Daily Comet (LA)
More than 200 people from throughout Louisiana filled the halls of Nicholls State University Saturday to improve their understanding of dyslexia and its effect on human's intellectual development. Called "Unmasking Their Potential," many who attended said they welcomed the chance to learn of the learning disability without traveling far.
Specialist London-based tutoring agency Tutor House has recently come up with a guide to aid teachers, private tutors and parents on teaching dyslexic children. The article analyses the effects of dyslexia on academic performance, how to identify it as well as quality teaching strategies to help people with dyslexia.
The Greenville News (SC)
What does having a learning disability (dyslexia) mean for a child? It means the way I learn is different than others. When I was growing up, adults often told me "Just look at the letters and see how they are different. Focus! Look again, you will see the difference." "What are these adults talking about? What is different about each letter?" "Why should I try?"
As the number of children with autism has ballooned nationwide, so has the population of children who are capable of grade-level academics but bewildered by the social code that governs every interaction from the classroom to the cafeteria. They often spend the bulk of their day in mainstream classes supported with a suite of special education services including life-skills groups and one-on-one aides. For some students, that arrangement works. But many parents of this growing group worry that including children in the mainstream this way fails to teach them what they need to navigate the world independently. Increasingly, Washington, DC area educators are offering alternatives.
SchoolBook Blog, New York Times
I've spent more than 20 consecutive Augusts doing the same thing: getting ready to go back to school. I've always felt a mixture of apprehension and excitement, for many years as a student, and now for my fifth year as a teacher.
A school program in New York is committed to helping all students, including those with learning disabilities, achieve their full potential.
To "make this as effective as possible, [they] used a team-teaching approach for the students with disabilities. The team teaching, the longer school day, adult to student ratio in year one, and a six-week summer program focused on geometry have contributed to 68 percent of students with disabilities having scored a 65 or higher on a math regents and 12 percent of students scoring an 80 or higher on a math regents."
The Daily Times (NM)
A pair of retired Park Avenue Elementary School teachers are working with San Juan Masonic Lodge No. 25 and the Aztec Municipal School District to open a clinic for children with dyslexia and other reading disorders.
The social care landscape in Scotland is currently undergoing huge and transformational change with the introduction of self-directed support (SDS), which gives people greater choice and control over their support, along with the opportunity to control their own support budget.
Montrose Daily Press (CO)
Technology is being used in the classroom for more than PowerPoint slides and accessing the Internet. The Montrose Re-1J State Wide Assistive, Alternative, Augmentative Communication Team (SWAAC) works with Montrose, CO students who have disabilities by using different equipment to aid them in the classroom.
The Financial Times Limited (U.K.)
The biggest challenge for most IT system buyers is picking the right one, at the right price. The choice is far more limited, however, if they or their employees rely on "screen reader" technology to scan the text of a web page or application interface and present it in audio format.
The Jackson Sun (TN)
West Tennessee educators learned about the use of assistive technology to help students with learning disabilities read books during a two-day seminar held on Lambuth University's campus.
Sudbury Northern Life (Canada)
Motivational speaker Todd Cunningham provides a personal life perspective on how technology can assist people with learning disabilities. Some of these technologies include text-to-speech, graphic organizers, word prediction, and voice recognition.
The Boston Globe
Bringing assistive technology into the mainstream curriculum and classroom, a process known as universal design, makes education accessible for all children, allows children with special needs to feel included in a school's social life, provides for a more equitable education, and better prepares them for life outside school, supporters say.
San Jose Mercury News (CA)
A young author will discuss his struggles with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder at a presentation tonight in Palo Alto, CA with the aim being to reduce the stigma around the disorder and show there's an upside to ADHD. Blake Taylor, a 19-year-old UC-Berkeley sophomore, will be speaking about his book "ADHD & Me: What I Learned From Lighting Fires at the Dinner Table."