Monday, May 4, 2015

Some BIG News Items, Resources

2e AND SPECIAL ED SERVICES. According to Disability Scoop, the U.S. Department of Education has reminded state directors of special ed that twice-exception children must be evaluated and served under IDEA. The memo refers to 2e kids as "children with disabilities with high cognition." Disability Scoop puts quotes around term "twice exceptional," but that's okay, we'll take what we can get. Read more.

IT'S NATIONAL MENTAL HEALTH AWARENESS MONTH, by proclamation of the U.S. President, no less. As part the month, the Child Mind Institute sponsors Speak Up for Kids, as we've mentioned in earlier posts. And as part of Speak Up for Kids, the Institute has released The Children's Mental Health Report. Here's what the director of the Institute says about the report: "In the Children's Mental Health Report we've gathered the best information about the scope of children’s mental illness in America. The findings are staggering. More than 17 million kids have a psychiatric disorder and only 35 percent of them get help. We hope this high-impact, interactive presentation of the data will help start a vital conversation among health care providers, families, and lawmakers." Go to the site for Speak Up for Kids.

NEW SCHOOLS FOR THE 2e. Recently we've discovered three schools devoting themselves to educating the twice exceptional. They're in various stages of "lift-off," with two up and running and one scheduled to open in the fall. We hope to provide more information on each in 2e Newsletter in coming months. In the meantime, depending on where you live, you might have an educational resource nearby.
  • Arete Academy opened in the fall of 2014 in Hopkins, Minnesota. Find out more
  • McNaught School in San Jose, California, describes itself as "an independent micro-school for gifted students with dyslexia, ADD, ADHD, high-functioning autism, and Asperger's." Find out more
  • In Orange County, California, the founder of Reid Day School and Center for Brain-Based Excellence is planning a fall, 2015, opening. Of note is a partnership with Summit Center to provide psychological and educational services for students. Find out more

THE GAP YEAR. The Motherlode column in The New York Times recently addressed the issue of the gap year between high school and college, presenting the perspectives of parent, student, and university. The writer's "spiel" to students having difficulty: "The university isn’t going anywhere and you only get to do college once. Perhaps you could take a break and come back when you’re ready to make the most of this opportunity.” Read more.

HEAVY-DUTY 2e CONTENT -- delivered in what sound like restorative surroundings. Neuroscientist Layne Kalbfleish will deliver seminar content over five days for parents and educators of the twice exceptional at the Ghost Ranch Educational and Retreat Center in New Mexico. Learn more.

EVER ON THE LOOKOUT for ways to edify our discriminating audience (that's you), we were scanning TED's weekly email "This Week on" for videos of interest. There was a playlist of "The Funniest TED Talks," so we looked at that, and yes, there was a talk we've mentioned before -- Sir Ken Robinson on how schools kill creativity, which we highly recommend. But there was another video on the list -- "It's Time for the 'Talk.'" If you're a parent, you'll likely enjoy both of these talks. And if you get caught up in the others, let the rest of us know which are worth watching. 

MOTIVATION FOR YOUR ADHDer? The site of ADDitude has a piece called "6 Stories of ADHD Triumph." The profiles include a singer-songwriter, a customer-service guru, a novelist, a psychologist, the holder of the Guinness World Record for Greatest Memory, and a municipal special events coordinator. Find the profiles.

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