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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Daily Press (VA)
Virginia Tech's Stephan Virgil overcomes a learning disability and excels as a starting cornerback. Virgil skipped much of spring practice, using the extra time to meet with tutors and get additional academic help. His spring-practice absence makes his rise from backup to starter even more amazing.
Springfield Connection (VA)
Kathy Lascala, 52, has a rare passion for educating difficult children that public schools have discarded. She works with The Children's Guild, a group of private schools in Maryland, helps these children — who have a range from emotional to behavioral disabilities including ADD (Attention Deficit Disorders)— develop the skills they need to manage their behavior and improve their achievement so they can return to the public schools.
Washington Post (DC)
The D.C. school system's deputy chancellor for special education, Phyllis Harris, has taken a leave of absence for unspecified reasons. Her leave comes less than two weeks after a federal judge admonished the District for its lack of progress in serving children with learning disabilities and physical or behavioral challenges.
This essay was written by college freshman William Wissemann for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting's "This I Believe" radio series: I carry a Rubik’s Cube in my backpack. Solving it quickly is a terrific conversation starter … I usually ask people to try it first. They turn the cube over in their hands, half-heartedly they make a few moves and then sheepishly hand it back. They don’t even know where to begin. That’s exactly what it was like for me to learn how to read. Letters and words were scrambled and out of sequence. Nothing made sense because I’m dyslexic.
Getting a driver's license is a rite of passage for many teenagers, but the process was a bit more challenging for 19-year-old Mulligan of Acworth, Georgia. She has attention deficit disorder. Experts recommended that teenagers with ADD or ADHD stay in a learner's permit program longer, at least a year, and put off getting their license until they have more experience behind the wheel.
Naperville Sun (IL)
A world-renowned author, psychiatrist and attention deficit expert will be the guest speaker for two free community presentations highlighting the topic of ADD/ADHD. NCO Youth and Family Services announces Dr. Larry Silver will help to launch its new ADD/ADHD Choices and Challenges program.
Advance, a trade magazine for speech-language pathologists, featured Kent State professor Kristie Pretti-Frontczak. The article, "Constructing an IEP: Six Steps to Success," sprang from a lecture she gave about balancing the spirit and intent of the individualized education plans while providing the student with the help he or she needs.
Battle Creek Enquirer (MI)
On the fifth anniversary of national ADHD Awareness Day, Congress has now designated a whole week to raise awareness about this pervasive and impairing neurobiological disorder. When we as a society understand that all brains are different and children need different supports based on actual differences in brain development, we will go far in the support of self-esteem and safety of these affected children.
Not being able to tie his own shoelaces probably doesn't bother actor Daniel Radcliffe that much. The Harry Potter star's success means he won't have to worry too much about his illegible handwriting either. But when he recently admitted that he suffers from the neurological condition dyspraxia, he did a great service to the thousands of sufferers, by bringing it out into the open.
Westport Minuteman (CT)
My child has been difficult and hard to handle this summer. His second-grade teacher expressed concern that he had been falling behind in his schoolwork. Now that he's going into 3rd grade, should I be worried that he may have learning disabilities and how do I find out about it?
Sacramento Bee (CA)
Lunch rush was over, but distractions remained numerous inside the La Bou cafe just off Highway 49 in Auburn. Through it all, Cass Brown Capel stayed focused — eyes locked on her interviewer. You would have no inkling that Capel, a 54-year-old psychologist from Auburn, has been diagnosed with the adult version of attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder since 1991.
San Francisco Chronicle (CA)
In 2005, when the high school that Ken Dreyfuss' daughter Elyssa planned on attending was shut down, he began his crusade to improve the outlook for children in the Bay Area with learning disabilities. His daughter has attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
Abbotsford Times, (Canada)
Why can't the public school system offer better individual, one-on-one specialized instruction for its students? It comes down to funding. Ministry of Education officials will tell you that they have increased their base funding for each. But where is the extra money for students with learning disabilities?
Richmond Times-Dispatch (VA)
Under pressure from politicians and thousands of parents of special-education students, the state education department has backed down from proposed rule changes that would limit parental consent for ending special-education services. The proposed rule changes drew 77,000 comments from the public — the most ever.
The Brown and White (PA)
A Lehigh professor was awarded the 2008 Senior Scientist Award by the American Psychology Association for his work with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Professor George DuPaul said "I chose ADHD because they are neat kids who are behaving all the time…. I wanted to learn why they had this disorder and how I could help besides popping pills."
KTVT CBS 11 (TX)
All the North Texas students who went to SMART Camp — Strategic Memory And Reasoning Training Camp at the Dallas Center for Brain Health — have Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. "We teach children strategies to help them learn how to reason," said camp director Dr. Jacque Gamino.
The Press Association (U.K.)
A National Literacy Trust report looking at the effects of literacy on England's happiness found stark differences between those with good literacy skills and those without. The report, which looked in particular at men's happiness, found that only half of men with poor reading skills were satisfied with their life so far, compared with more than three-quarters of men with good reading levels.
The Times of Trenton (NJ)
Any effective intervention plan for ADHD should involve a comprehensive approach — possibly including an ADHD coach. Jane Milrod works as an ADHD coach with middle school and high school students, helping them understand what their priorities are, organize materials for school, and develop study plans to prepare for tests.
WHOI 19 (IL)
"He would come home and say 'you don't understand me, you don't understand me,'" said Judy Joosten, Jacob's mom. "Well, we didn't understand him, we didn't know how he spelled, couldn't figure out why he couldn't spell." It wasn't until last year when Jacob, who has dyslexia, came to the Masonic Learning Center for Children that things started to make more sense.
The Mercury News (CA)
About 9 in 10 students from the Class of 2008 have passed the California High School Exit Exam, according to data released by the state this morning. But thousands more are still struggling to master the test and earn their high school diploma. This year marks the first time that special education students are required to take and pass the exit exam.