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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Fort Worth Star-Telegram (TX)
Lara Honos-Webb, author of The Gift of Adult, challenges those with attention-deficit disorder (ADD) to cast off the stigma of the disability and harness the strengths of the affliction. Those with ADD are ideally suited for specific roles, she contends, and each of the affliction's drawbacks is really an advantage that needs to be reframed.
Bucks County Courier-Times (PA)
High school swimming has been so much more than an activity for Maria D'Andrea. It's changed her life. The senior at Bensalem has attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and stutters. But that did not stop her from trying out for the swim team.
Medscape Medical News (NY)
Pharmacologic research presented in posters at the 2008 US Psychiatric and Mental Health Congress reflected an increasingly sophisticated understanding of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and the ways in which patients respond to treatment.
Daily Mail (UK)
With his slicked-back hair, blue jeans and leather jacket, actor Henry Winkler turned the character of Arthur 'The Fonz' Fonzarelli into a Seventies icon as he sat astride his gleaming Harley-Davidson. The star couldn't actually ride the bike because his co-ordination was so poor one symptom of dyslexia, a condition that had crippled him since childhood yet remained undiagnosed until he was 35.
MetroWest Daily News (MA)
Fourth-graders had to concentrate hard simply to write their names yesterday afternoon at Marguerite E. Peaslee School. The activity was one of a handful aimed at teaching students about learning disabilities and sensitivity toward those who learn differently.
Little About (India)
The symptoms that differentiate it from attention deficit hyper-activity disorder (ADHD) are subtle, it's rarely seen, and many doctors may not know much about it or be looking for it at all. It's not surprising that some general practitioners, pediatricians, and school health officials can easily misdiagnose central auditory processing disorder, or CAPD.
Norwalk Citizen (CT)
A report on Norwalk's special education program released Nov. 26 was reviewed Tuesday evening at a Board of Education meeting at City Hall. The report provides recommendations to help the Board of Education develop and implement a plan for addressing the needs of some 1,000 special needs children in the district.
New York Times
After more than three years of nomadic uncertainty, many of the children of Hurricane Katrina are behind in school, acting out and suffering from extraordinarily high rates of illness and mental health problems. When the Children's Health Fund, whose mobile health clinics have provided the only doctors and psychologists available to many of the families in the evacuee trailer park Renaissance Village, reviewed the charts of children seen this year, researchers found that 41 percent under age 4 had iron-deficiency anemia. More than half of those ages 6 to 11 had a behavior or learning problem, yet in the East Baton Rouge School District children can wait for as long as two years to be tested for learning disabilities.
Medscape Medical News (NY)
New research may help clinicians better tailor smoking-cessation treatment in individuals with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), a patient population where tobacco use is high and quit rates are low.
News Leader (VA)
S. Gordon Stewart Middle School of Fort Defiance, Virginia hosted a Disability Sensitivity Day on Tuesday. Sharon Blatz, assistant professor in the exceptional education program at James Madison University and the other coordinators of the day at Stewart wanted students to come away from the various activities with a new understanding of what their peers living with physical, cognitive and learning disabilities go through each day.
The long-term academic problems that children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) often experience may affect their siblings as well, according to an analysis partially funded by NIMH and published in the Journal of Health Economics.
Arizona Daily Star
Devon Dobbins was diagnosed with attention-deficit disorder in elementary school. When her family learned the state was offering scholarships to special-needs students to go to the school of their choice, including private schools, they jumped at the chance to send her. Devon is among 225 students statewide with special needs whose scholastic fates will be determined by the Arizona Supreme Court, which will hear arguments Tuesday about whether it's legal to send state dollars to private schools to educate special-needs and displaced foster children.
Workforce Management (CA)
When President George W. Bush signed legislation to expand the protections afforded by the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, it broadened the definition of 'disabled,' triggering important changes for employers. Being informed of these changesand in compliance with the new lawis a must for employers and HR.
To pick up a book and read is an activity that many of us take for granted. But for the approximate two million who are blind or suffer from dyslexia, it's a privilege that is neither easily available nor accessible. For the past 60 years, the RFB&D (Recording for the Blind & Dyslexic) has been providing an audio textbook library to the visually-impaired, and members from the Brush, Fort Morgan and Sterling Lions Clubs of Colorado recently learned more of the program from Ed Sardella, former KUSA 9News anchor turned volunteer/spokesperson for the program.
The Berkshire Eagle (MA)
Learning disorders can be complex in origin and definition. But at Tuesday's Hillcrest Educational Centers conference on the topic in Pittsfield, MA, they were summed up on the side of a candy bar. Each of the 135 participants yesterday were given a familiar-looking chocolate bar in dark mocha-colored wrapper. But instead of the bold-faced silver lettering reading "Hershey's," for example, the bar was labeled "Dyslexia."
When pediatricians diagnose attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, they often ask their patients whether they know anybody else with the problem. These days, children are likely to reply with a household name: Michael Phelps, the Olympic superstar, who is emerging as an inspirational role model among parents and children whose lives are affected by attention problems. But the emergence of a major celebrity with attention deficit has revealed a schism in the community of patients, parents, doctors and educators who deal with the disorder. For years, these people have debated whether it means a lifetime of limitations or whether it can sometimes be a good thing.
Downey Patriot (CA)
West Middle School and its library have not been the same since identical twins Brittany and Brianna Winner, 13, held an assembly on Nov. 6 called, "If You Can Dream It, You Can Write It." The creators of "The Strand Prophecy" are the youngest award winning authors in the United States and they are dyslexic.
The U.S. Department of Education's recent regulations setting a standard calculation for high school graduation rates appear to have pleased disability-group advocates, who were concerned that a loose standard could mean fewer opportunities for students with disabilities to earn a regular diploma.
Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel (WI)
Kina King said she repeatedly had asked Milwaukee Public Schools to evaluate whether her daughter Jamie had special needs since the girl was 5. But it wasn't until Jamie failed first grade for the third time that the district determined that she suffers from cognitive delays and needs additional support. The question of what MPS should do to compensate the students it has failed to place in special education in a timely manner is at the heart of the third phase in an ongoing class-action suit about how MPS serves special education students.
Providence Journal (RI)
Learning to read and write, as some teachers say, is rocket science. For deaf children, acquiring language skills is exponentially harder. Many students arrive at the Rhode Island School for the Deaf without a solid language base or the advantages of hearing children, who pick up incidental language skills through television, music and radio. Many of the children at school also have significant learning, behavioral or physical disabilities that must be addressed. The school is confronting the challenges shared by schools struggling to successfully educate all students regardless of learning disabilities at the same time the state is raising its academic standards, says David V. Abbott, deputy education commissioner of Rhode Island’s public schools.