Thursday, December 8, 2016

Advocacy, FAPE, ASD Diagnosis, PISA, and Resources

SCOTUS AND FAPE. Disability Scoop has published an article on the current status of the US Supreme Court's acceptance of a case involving free and appropriate education. This case is the Colorado case, where parents complained that schools did not offer FAPE to their son with autism and put him in a private school, then asked for reimbursement. According to Disability Scoop, many individuals and groups have weighed in, asking the court to side with the family when the case is heard in January. Read more.

THE DOE OCR? The Office of Civil Rights in the Department of Education sticks up for many students, occasionally for "our" students -- ones discriminated against because of a learning disability. The Atlantic has published an article in which experts speculate on whether the new president and his secretary of education will make changes that would affect the OCR. Read more.

DIAGNOSING ASD WITH DSM-5. Those involved in diagnosing ASD might be interested in a Belin Blank study concerning the instruments used to make such a diagnosis under DSM-5. The study indicated that the ADOS (Autism Diagnosis Observation Scale) instrument alone is insufficient for making such a diagnosis, and should be used along with the ADI-R (Autism Diagnosis Instrument -- Revised). Find the study abstract.

PISA TIME AGAIN. The results of the latest Program for International Student Assessment, PISA, are out, and things aren't looking exactly rosy for U.S. students, who tend to score in the middle of the pack. You can read more at the site of The New York Times, which observed the following about what makes for good results: "Generally speaking, the smartest countries tend to be those that have acted to make teaching more prestigious and selective; directed more resources to their neediest children; enrolled most children in high-quality preschools; helped schools establish cultures of constant improvement; and applied rigorous, consistent standards across all classrooms." (We -- the U.S. -- get 1 out of 5 on those criteria.) The Education Week "Inside School Research" blog also discusses the results. So does Science Magazine.

ONLINE DYSLEXIA SCREEN. Our friends at Dyslexic Advantage are looking for volunteers (dyslexic and non-dyslexic) to help with the development of an affordable online test for dyslexia. If you, or a dyslexic kiddo you know, or someone else with an interest in dyslexia can help out, it'll be a service to the 2e community. Find out more; respond to the email address if interested.

SMART KIDS WITH LEARNING DISABILITIES has posted a new article with tips for achieving stress-free holidays when your family might include kiddos of a certain persuasion. Find the article.

UNDERSTOOD is hosting an "Experts Live" webinar on December 22 titled "Twice-Exceptional: Helping Gifted Kids with Learning and Attention Issues." Amanda Morin presents. Find out more.

LANDMARK COLLEGE has issued new editions of two e-newsletters, one on the college and one on the college's Institute for Research and Training. In the college newsletter, Landmark College students tell their stories on video, and the college announces other news, such as a $131,220 grant to "integrate, articulate and apply an approach to teaching and supporting writing across the curriculum that is unprecedented in higher education and holds potential for broad dissemination." Find the Insider. LCIRT announces a newly launched blog and upcoming events. The blog already features a variety of posts on topics such as cognitive flexibility, dyscalculia (is it real?) and mindfulness. Find the newsletter.

ADDITUDE WEBINAR. On December 14m ADDitude will present a free webinar by Jerome Schultz titled "An Educator's Guide to Teaching Students with ADHD." Find out more.

WITH UNDERSTANDING COMES CALM. This organization is sponsoring a May 2 screening of the movie "2e: Twice Exceptional" in Silver Springs, Maryland. Find out more. Separately, the founder of With Understanding Comes Calm, Julie Skolnick, is part of the group putting on Camp Summit East this August 19-26. The camp is for gifted kids and is 2e-friendly. Find out more at the site of the Summit Center, founders of the camp.

TiLT PARENTING has released Episode 36 in its podcast series, a conversation with the son of TiLT's founder, 12yo Asher, about diagnoses, labels, and stigmas. Debbie Asher says of the podcast, "In our conversation, we talk about how Asher feels about his diagnoses, why he believes parents should tell their kids exactly what’s going on with them, and why he’s totally fine for others to know about the ways in which he’s differently wired." We've heard Asher on previous podcasts, and he is bright, funny, honest, and engaging. Find out more.

DUKE TIP is sponsoring a writing and illustration contest as part of its 4th-6th grade talent search. If that bright kiddo you raise or teach might be motivated to participate, check it out.

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