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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NY Daily News
A huge chunk of the city's special education students are being shortchanged when it comes to the services they're supposed to get, the Daily News has learned. As of June, nearly a quarter of the special needs children officials say should receive occupational therapy aren't getting it, according to Department of Education data obtained by The News.
David Neeleman, the founder and former CEO of JetBlue, launched his fourth low-cost airline Monday. This one is in Brazil. Neeleman's attention deficit disorder, not diagnosed until he reached his 30s, helped him figure out that he's better at creating businesses than fitting into established ones.
Behind a red door at the Brooklyn Heights Montessori School, a half-dozen preschoolers who once struggled to talk merrily sang "Jingle Bells" the other morning. They are among 27 special needs children enrolled in the Little Room, which takes its name from the small room where it started in 1970 and has become a nationally recognized program for 3- and 4-year-olds with speech and language delays across Brooklyn and Manhattan. But the fate of the much-loved program is unclear, as the school that has long run it, Brooklyn Heights Montessori, has decided it can no longer keep it in its red-brick complex.
Pacific Daily News (Guam)
As principals of the Guam Public School System continue to struggle to decide whether to use Direct Instruction, Success for All, or the Pacific Resources for Education and Learning model as part of their reading curriculum for next school year, it is only fitting that they stop and consider the special needs of more than 2,000 students with learning disabilities who are attending the Guam's public schools.
The Desert Sun (CA)
Columnist Brent M. Cooper fields a question from a concerned parent about her 8-year-old son. Having been recently diagnosed with epilepsy, his grades have dropped. The parent asks "could this have something to do with his epilepsy?"
Rochester Democrat and Chronicle (NY)
The general public, including employers, is recognizing that attention deficit hyperactivity disorder isn't limited to children wriggling in their seats. Estimates suggest between 30 percent and 70 percent of children show some symptoms into adulthood.
Sacramento Bee (CA)
You know the type. Heck, you may even be the type. You flit from task to uncompleted task, losing interest based on how hard and boring it becomes. You choose the task of least resistance and focus on immediate gains, not richer, more long-term rewards. For people with ADHD attention deficit hyperactivity disorder such distractedness is not mere procrastination.
Washington City Paper (DC)
Last week, the District finally did something to unclog the special-education system. Attorney General Peter J. Nickles declared war on special-ed lawyers. The District filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court against an attorney handling a special-ed case.
Press Publications (MN)
The Northwood resident, a native of Melrose Park, IL, juggles basketballs for a living. But that's not the entire story. During his performances, Jones delivers motivational messages to his audience about learning to deal with and overcome learning disabilities. Jones, 43, was diagnosed with dyslexia near the end of his first grade year.
The Guardian (UK)
In these first extracts from Michael Phelps' new autobiography, he reveals how he won eight gold medals in Beijing and what that meant to him. According to Phelps, who was diagnosed with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder as a child, he never wanted to be the second Mark Spitz: "I only wanted to be the first Michael Phelps."
Cecil Wells Jr. had accomplished many things in life, but he was unable to really read. Wells said he was one of those kids who slipped through the cracks. Back then, dyslexia and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (with which Wells has been diagnosed) weren't readily recognized by teachers. There were no special-education classes for those needing extra help. When he was in his early 40s, Wells made a call to the Eastside Literacy Council, which is now part of Hopelink, one of 13 agencies supported by The Seattle Times' annual Fund for the Needy drive.
Merrick Herald (NY)
"Close your eyes and imagine your best friend from fourth grade." This was an exercise that author and special educator Rick Lavoie practiced with a group of parents, educators, administrators and various school faculty who sat in the Calhoun High School auditorium in Merrick, NY to hear him speak on Dec. 2. Lavoie was brought to the district by the North Merrick Special Education PTA and the Teacher's Center in honor of Special Education Week.
Lake Oswego Review (OR)
More children receiving special services in the Lake Oswego School District of Lake Oswego, Oregon are now eligible for placement in special education classrooms, according to a document the school board reviewed on Nov. 3 a fact that the district sees as flexibility, and dissatisfied parent/attorney Cynthia Mohiuddin sees as the district setting itself up for violations of the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act.
A surprisingly large number of children nearly 12% are using herbal supplements and other complementary and alternative therapies, according to the first national study on the subject, released Wednesday. Children used these therapies most often for back or neck pain, colds, anxiety or stress, other muscle and skeletal problems and attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder, the study shows.
Times & Transcript (Canada)
Erik Bruens always hated reading. The 15-year-old Moncton High School student has dyslexia, and until recently, he wasn't sure he'd ever be able to read. That was until Erik joined the Wilson Reading Centre, run by Priscilla Wilson. The Moncton-based private tutor program gave Erik the tools to break down words and sound them out. Erik was one of a few dozen students of various ages who were celebrating success with the program last night at the centre.
The Flint Journal (MI)
Columnist Kori Carson Dean fields a question from a concerned mother regarding her 10-year-old son, who has attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. His teacher constantly sends him to the office for behavioral problems, and then the principal suspends him from school. Dean advises the mother on the next steps she should take toward keeping him in school and getting the services he needs to succeed.
Despite a promotional push by the federal government and adoption by school districts around the country, "response to intervention" remains a little-known educational framework to many. Supporters say the teaching method, which requires teachers to initiate scientifically based, intensive instruction when students show signs of academic struggle, could mean better classroom results for all students.
The Miami Herald
Do stimulant medications, often prescribed to treat attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, cause potentially dangerous genetic changes in children who take them?
Wisconsin State Journal
This year, UW-Whitewater moved to strengthen its claim as a draw for students with disabilities, a varied population that includes not only students who have physical disorders, but those who have autism and attention deficit disorder, among other disabilities.
The Vancouver Sun (Canada)
Teachers and psychologists have little information about learning disabilities when they enter their professions and have no guidelines to help them in their work with LD students. That's the conclusion of a study released today by the Learning Disabilities Association of Canada, which found that no province or territory requires teachers or psychologists working with children to take even a single course on learning disabilities.