Thursday, November 30, 2017

IDEA, ASD in College, Depression, and More

IDEA: 42ND ANNIVERSARY. The Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) points out that November 29 (yesterday) was the 42nd anniversary of the signing of the legislation that became IDEA, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. Today, according to CEC, about seven million children, many of them presumably twice-exceptional, receive IDEA services. Find out more. Separately, you can read an account of a high-profile IDEA case -- Endrew F -- at the site of The Denver Post. The article describes the family's long fight with schools and the courts, a fight that they eventually won in the Supreme Court of the United States. Find the article. Separately again, Wrightslaw's Special Ed Advocate in its most recent edition promises to teach you about "tutoring as a direct service under IDEA, not an accommodation or modification. Find out why some schools say no to services." Find Special Ed Advocate.

CAMPUS LIFE ON THE SPECTRUM. US News recently ran a piece titled "Families: Learn How to Find Autism-Friendly Colleges." The theme: "consider the type of support that is helpful for their high schooler and look for colleges that can provide these services." According to the article, about 60 colleges have autism support programs. Read more. Separately, NPR has a series called "Been There: Lessons from a Shared Experience," and a recent piece from the series dealt with how to navigate life on campus when you're on the spectrum. Find it.

DEPRESSION. In The Washington Post, a resident physician in psychiatry offers his perspective on the treatment of depression -- meds, therapy, or both. He describes the use of cognitive behavioral therapy and antidepressants, along with research on the effectiveness of either or both. Also covered: alternative treatments such as exercise and transcranial magnetic stimulation. If depression is a challenge for your 2e kiddo, check out this article -- but, as always, rely on the advice of a professional familiar with your particular situation.

PSYCHOLOGIST DEVON MACEACHRON, in her blog, takes on the question of whether giftedness or effort is a bigger factor in "success." She notes how in the 1980s and 90s practice and effort were seen as the major factors, and how the pendulum has lately been swinging back toward innate ability. She notes how a model by Francoys Gagne, "A Differentiated Model of Giftedness and Talent," involves factors besides innate ability, even factors such as chance and the environment. MacEachron's conclusion: " many domains, it’s a necessary but not sufficient condition to predict high achievement. The development of gifts into talents is a process impacted by environmental, intrapersonal, and chance factors." But you should read the blog yourself. 😀

TiLT PARENTING's most recent podcast is a conversation with Seth Perler, an executive functioning coach. TiLT founder Debbie Reber says, "Seth explains what executive functioning is and how it impacts our kids, talks about the challenges we face in supporting our kids in the current educational paradigm, and gives us suggestions for how we can prioritize our efforts to help our kids while also keeping our eye on the big picture and what’s really important (hint: It might not be what you think). Find the podcast.

DYSLEXIA. Science Daily reports this: "Researchers have recently looked at the purely motor aspects of writing in children diagnosed with dyslexia. Their results show that orthographic processing in children with dyslexia is so laborious that it can modify or impair writing skills, despite the absence of dysgraphia in these children." Read more.

EDUCATION POLICY AND LAW. If you've been following the U.S. Department of Education's reported shift to a narrower enforcement of civil rights discrimination (eg, based on LDs and other disabilities), check out a piece at ABC News on the topic. On the same topic, special ed attorney Matt Cohen says this in his more recent newsletter: "The US Department of Education Office for Civil Rights has developed a preliminary revision of OCR Guidelines for how complaints will be handled that, if adopted, would substantially change the way the office handles complaints and limit the scope of the complaint process. Two major changes being discussed are 1) to limit investigation of individual complaints to the complaining party's situation, rather than investigating whether the alleged misconduct was part of a systemic violation, and 2) allowing OCR to potentially resolve complaints with the school district before even informing the parent of the outcome of the investigation. These changes have the effect of limiting OCR's ability to pursue systemic problems and limiting the ability of parents to have equal involvement with the school districts in the complaint process." Find the newsletter.

Monday, November 27, 2017

"Making It" with Dyslexia or Autism; Labels; Research Participation Opportunity; More

THE HECHINGER REPORT published a first-person piece from a young person with dyslexia. "For most of my childhood, I always felt just a little bit too slow, or just a little bit too dumb. I knew I was smart, but it seemed like I could never quite get there." Read more about how this student succeeded.

THE CURIOUS INCIDENT of the Dog in the Night-Time is a story about a mystery-solving teen boy with autism. The novel was turned into a hit Broadway play. A staging in Syracuse, New York, features as its lead actor Mickey Rowe, who is, according to The New York Times, "thought to be the first openly autistic actor to play the role." The article highlights how "role" can be important in the life of an autistic person. For example, Rowe tells the reporter during an interview, “This is easy-ish for me because you’re a reporter; I’m the interviewee, We have specific roles. If we met on the street, that would be more scary.” Find the article.

LABELS, MINDSET. A Stanford professor teaching high-achievers began to see, according to KQED News, "how being labeled 'gifted' or 'smart' as children stunted even these bright and successful young people." The professor made a short video in which Stanford students talk about the labels they grew up with and the effects. Find the article and the video. (Thanks for TiLT for bringing this item to our attention.)

RESEARCH PARTICIPATION OPPORTUNITY. The organization Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates (COPAA) will be conducting focus groups in December to gather information on charter schools, choice, voucher programs, and implications for students with disabilities. COPAA says, "The findings in this report will primarily serve to assist policymakers, including the White House and Congress, and state and local education agencies with insight needed to make policy decisions designed to improve the outcomes for students with disabilities in charter schools and voucher programs." COPAA seeks "
Parents of students with disabilities or students who are attending, have attended or tried to attend a charter school." Find out more.

TESTS AND ASSESSMENTS are crucial in identifying and securing services for twice-exceptional children. Smart Kids with Learning Disabilities offers a primer on IQ tests and index scales; find it. For a deeper dive, check out Wrightslaw's book All About Tests and Assessments, now in its second edition.


  • The Center for Gifted Studies at Western Kentucky University holds an annual seminar on twice-exceptional learners, saying "The yearly seminar provides parents, educators, and students with information and strategies on supporting these learners..." This year's presenter is Lois Baldwin. The event is scheduled for January 24 in Bowling Green, Kentucky. Find out more
  • The Weinfeld Group has announced the featured keynote presenter for its "Diamonds in the Rough" conference scheduled for March 9-10 in Rockville, Maryland. The keynoter is Joyce Cooper-Kahn, author of Late, Lost, and Unprepared: A Parent's Guide to Executive Functioning. A 2e Newsletter staff member who has covered other presentations by Cooper-Kahn calls her "really good." Find out more
  • "Surviving the College Transition: A Gifted Undergraduate's Perspective" is the title of November 30 SENG webinar. Got a transition coming up? Check out the webinar
POLICY, LAW. The Council for Exceptional Children has come out in favor of the new nominee for Assistant Secretary of the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services at the U.S. Department of Education. Why is this post important? CEC notes that the person in it can "ensure the provision of a free appropriate public education and early intervention services." Read more.

TED sponsors local TEDx Youth events for young people, designed, according to TED, "to empower and inspire young people." One such talk is titled "Activism Needs Introverts." Acknowledging that for introverts "traditional forms of activism like marches, protests and door-to-door canvassing can be intimidating and stressful," the talk suggests involvement through craftivism, "a way to get people to slow down and think deeply about the issues they're facing, all while engaging the public more gently." Intrigued? Find the talk. Or, find out more about TEDxYouth.


  • From Science Daily: Physical fitness in children may affect their brain structure, which in turn may have an influence on their academic performance, new research indicates. Find the study write-up.
  • From Medical News Today: "A new study examined how obstructive sleep apnea in children may interfere with memory consolidation, and it also uncovered a potential method of predicting the level of disruption caused by the associated sleep loss." Find the study write-up
  • From Newswise: University of Kentucky researchers have developed an after-school program using "small group activities and novel learning strategies" to help students with ADHD succeed at school. Read more
  • And from the Brain and Behavior Research Foundation: "New Analysis Finds Behavioral Therapy Should Be Combined with Medication to Relieve Severe Anxiety in Children." Read more.

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

A 2e School Program, Items on ADHD and Anxiety, and Lots of Research -- Plus Thanksgiving

WE'VE COME A LONG WAY, in some respects and in some places. In Waterloo, Iowa, the Waterloo Schools Foundation provided a $10,000 grant to help start the "Expanded Learning Program" in Waterloo schools. The program focuses on 2e students. Explaining 2e to the school board, the program coordinator said, “it’s gifted with a disability. So we turn it into a strengths-based instead of a deficit model.” Our compliments, but too bad it often takes private grants and non-budgeted funds to start such programs. Read more.

ADHD. Medical News Today offers a list of "The 10 best blogs for ADHD." If this is an "e" you're concerned about, check out the list.

SMART KIDS WITH LEARNING DISABILITIES has published an article about the behavior behind ADHD. From the preface: "Understanding what drives the behavior of your child with ADHD may help you respond in supportive and compassionate ways rather than with anger and resentment." Find the article.

DAVIDSON INSTITUTE. This organization's November newsletter is out, featuring what's new in gifted ed; news of Davidson's various ventures; legislative and policy news, possibly from your state; resources from the web; and news items. Find the newsletter.

TiLT PARENTING. The latest podcast from TiLT is with the founder of the "Hey Sigmund" website, Karen Young. TiLT founder Debbie says the podcast concerns anxiety in children. "Karen will tell us exactly what it looks like, how we can recognize it in our kids, what to do about it, and how to talk with our kids about it. Karen also tells us about her new book which she wrote specifically for children with anxiety, called Hey Warrior." Find the podcast.

HECHINGER REPORT published a first-person piece from a young person with dyslexia. "For most of my childhood, I always felt just a little bit too slow, or just a little bit too dumb. I knew I was smart, but it seemed like I could never quite get there." Read more about how this student succeeded.

RESEARCH: ADHD. Healthday published the results of a study indicating that "calm, positive parenting" can help children deal with their emotions and behaviors. (And we all know how difficult staying calm can sometimes be.) Read more.

  • A recently-published study followed the treatment trajectories (psychotherapy, drugs, or no treatment) and results in terms of suicide attempts or hospitalization. Of interest: the lowest incidence of those adverse outcomes came with psychotherapy alone. Read a study write-up
  • Researchers using MRI have discovered a common pattern of structural abnormalities in the brains of people with depression and social anxiety, according to a new study. Read a study write-up.
  • Other research examines the co-occurrence of ASD and depression. According to US News, "individuals who have both autism spectrum disorder and depression are different than those who have just one or the other – and inflammation of a certain protein may be one of the causes. There isn't treatment for these individuals currently, nor is much known about why or how depression in autism spectrum disorder develops." Read more
RESEARCH: AUTISM. From Science Daily: "Researchers from the University of Surrey have discovered that experiences of social and emotional exclusion in mainstream schools can adversely affect how pupils with autism view themselves, increasing their risk of developing low self-esteem, a poor sense of self-worth and mental health problems." Read more.

  • One study has shown that cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) can be a very effective treatment for OCD. Read more at PsychCentral or Science Daily
  • Another study says that CBT plus something called POsitive Fammily Interaction Therapy reduces symptom severity in OCD. Read more
AND FINALLY, THIS, apropos of nothing but Thanksgiving, a story title from the Washington Post: "What I learned when I tried to make my blended family a gluten-free, kosher, no-soy, vegan, organic, low-acid, no-dairy Thanksgiving." Find the story.

Monday, November 20, 2017

Serving Those with LDs, 2e and Honors Classes, Dyslexia, and More

LDs AND INVESTIGATIVE JOURNALISM. Remember last year's investigation by the Houston Chronicle revealing that school districts in Texas were capping the number of students enrolled in special ed services? As a result of that investigation, the Texas Education Agency has now stated that it is obligated to serve all students needing special ed, and the number of students served has grown by about 14,000. Read more.

ENDREW F. Two recent items deal with the Endrew F case decided this year by the U.S. Supreme Court. The Hechinger Report clarifies what the ruling meant in terms of the rights of students with disabilities, in this case ASD. For example, Hechinger says, "...parent-advocates should hesitate to 'overreach' and leverage the case as a tool to make unreasonable demands, which may not accord with the Endrew holding and may only perpetuate a counterproductive 'parent versus school' narrative." Read more. And Chalkbeat describes how the parents of Endrew are resisting being painted as the "poster family" for school choice by the U.S. Secretary of Education. Find out why.

DUKE TIP offers a Q&A column at its website, and a recent question dealt with getting a 2e student into honors classes -- the trade-off between challenge and engagement versus workload, plus the question of accommodations. Find the Q&A, and note that the column invites questions from readers.

CHILD MIND INSTITUTE. This organization presented a "summit" on the topic of mental health needs of children and adolescents and the need for parents, teachers, and children to be aware of mental health disorders. Hillary Clinton was one of three participants. You can read a summary or see a video of the summit at the site of the Child Mind Institute; go there.

DYSLEXIA is the topic of three recent items:
  • District Administration describes how schools that understand dyslexia and intervene early help students succeed. Read more
  • Education Dive tells how universal screening for dyslexia in kindergarten and first grade can help students succeed. Read more
  • And Medical News Today describes dyslexia in adults. Read more
  • Jen the Blogger turns to verse with a piece called "I See You" about recognizing the twice-exceptional, believing in them, and advocating for them. Find it
  • Julie Skolnick reflects on "letting go" of your 2e kiddo; her starting point is her daughter's junior year in high school, which gets her thinking... Find it
PROFESSIONAL'S RESOURCE. One of the contributors to 2e Newsletter pointed us to the second edition of the book The Clinical Practice of Educational Therapy: Learning and Functioning with Diversity. Our contributor says this about the book: "The intended audience is allied professionals in related fields who have interdisciplinary perspectives.... In particular, there is a case study in chapter 5 is of a 2e student across the lifespan." Find out more at Amazon.

EDUCATION LAW AND POLICY. Regardless of our individual political views, we in the 2e community are all advocates for governmental efforts to recognize and serve twice-exceptional students, we believe. As advocates, it's incumbent upon us to pay attention to what's happening at the federal level and express our support or our displeasure with what we see. Here are recent items concerning law and policy in education in the United States.
  • The president has nominated a candidate to be the top official responsible for special education. The post, according to Disability Scoop, is "tasked with overseeing the federal government’s implementation of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act and other laws." Read more
  • In Teen Vogue, the former Secretary of Education offers his views on how education in the U.S. has changed over the past year. His opinion: "The promise of the American Dream is under assault, and we need action to preserve it." Find it
  • And an article in The Washington Post describes how the current Secretary of Education is moving toward her goal, "to return control of education back to states, localities and parents." Read more

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Special Ed, OCD, ADHD, Depression, and More

SPECIAL ED: FAILING STUDENTS? A story from The Hechinger Report concludes that most students with disabilities are capable of graduating from high school on time, but many don't. From the article: "There are 6.6 million public school children enrolled in special education in the United States, 13 percent of all public school students....Their disabilities shouldn’t keep them from achieving the same standards as their peers — and experts estimate that up to 90 percent of students with disabilities are capable of graduating high school fully prepared to tackle college or a career if they receive proper support along the way." Read more. Of note is a chart accompanying the story that shows the range of graduation rates, by state, for students with disabilities. Highest: Arkansas, at 82 precent; lowest, Nevada, at 29 percent.

FOLLOW-UP TWO on John Green's YA novel on OCD, Turtles All the Way Down: the Child Mind Institute says, "What we wished, reading it, is that Aza [the book's main character] could have gotten better treatment. And so, with Aza in mind, this week we share resources on that explore OCD: what it is, what it looks like in the classroom and how the gold standard treatment for OCD — exposure therapy — works."

  • Should parents try to diagnose ADHD early, or is it better to wait? That question is addressed at US News; find it
  • Cutting back on yelling, criticism and other harsh parenting approaches, including physical punishment, has the power to calm children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, according to a new study. Find a write-up of the study
  • A new study indicates that subjects with different types of ADHD have impairments in unique brain systems, indicating that there may not be a one-size-fits-all explanation for the cause of the disorder. While the subjects were supposedly clinically indistinguishable, each of the three different subgroups defined by the study showed dysfunction in different brain regions. Read more
DEPRESSION. This doesn't sound as if it would lead to effective treatments: "Adolescent patients included in clinical trials of therapies for major depressive disorder differ considerably from depressed adolescents encountered in daily practice, researchers report. Read more.

ASSISTIVE TECHNOLOGY is the topic of the most recent LD Online Newsletter; find it.

UNDERSTOOD offers "6 Steps for Requesting a School Evaluation." Is that on your to-do list? If so, find the steps.

tDCS -- transcrainal direct current stimulation -- is being examined for use in treating many conditions, as readers here know. An article at Psychiatric Times give a good background on what studies and science say so far about the technique. Find the article.

  • Jen the Blogger compares raising 2e kiddos to a marathon her most recent posting, "The 23rd Mile." Read it
  • A blog at the site of Gifted Homeschoolers Forum is titled "That Mom" -- and it's about how moms of gifted kids need "community" (as in a mom's group) just like moms of neurotypical kids. However, according to the blogger, because her parenting concerns turned out to be different than the others in her mom's group, her community quietly edged her out. Find the blog.
TiLT PARENTING's newest podcast is "The Power of Different: The Link Between Disorder and Genius," and it features psychiatrist Gail Saltz. The podcast title is also the title of Dr. Saltz' new book. Find the podcast.

AND APROPOS OF NOTHING, except maybe for a laugh from the audience here. "In many species, males tend to do somewhat stupid things that end up getting them killed in silly ways, and it appears that may have been true for mammoths also," says a researcher about her findings on the causes of death for these creatures. Read more.

Monday, November 6, 2017

Mentoring with LDs, ADHD Therapy, Brain Stuff, and More

EYE TO EYE is a mentoring organization that connects children with LDs to college student who have the same learning challenges. Its founder is David Flink. Its second employee was Marcus Soutra, who was recently profiled by his college's news organization in conjunction with the bestowal of the college's Alumni Achievement Award. So know, O Good Reader, that there are organizations and people out there willing to help that 2e kiddo you know as he or she grows up through the grades. Find the college's article. Find out more about Eye to Eye.

NEW THERAPY FOR ADHD? From Healio: "Data presented at the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry annual meeting indicated efficacy of monotherapy external trigeminal nerve stimulation for ADHD in children." This therapy would present an alternative to meds or behavioral therapy. The treatment is apparently still awaiting FDA approval. Read more. Find out more about the trigeminal nerve at the site of the therapy's developer.

CONNECTOTYPES -- a new word to us, evidently meaning "a distinct pattern of functional brain connectivity... or brain fingerprint." Research described at Science Daily says that connectotypes are individually unique but show family and heritable relationships. The hope is that connectotypes will help provide personalized, targeted treatments for conditions such as ADHD and ASD. Read more.

BRAIN-BASED TEACHING. Education World offers a three-part series in which, it says, "neuroscientist Marilee Sprenger reveals the latest research on the brain and discusses how it affects teaching and learning." Find the series.

UNDERSTOOD EXPERT CHAT. On November 13, Understood presents an "expert chat" featuring Ellen Braaten on "How Anxiety and Slow Processing Speed Fuel Each Other." Find out more.

MINDFULNESS IN KIDS is the topic of an article at the site of The New York Times. If you've been wondering what it is, or about its benefits -- eg, minimizing anxiety -- perhaps check out the article. (And if you wonder exactly why kids and young people might be helped by mindfulness, read the story at the UK Daily Mail about rising rates of depression and mental illness in US teens.)

TiLT PARENTING. TiLT founder Debbie Reber is finishing up a book, Differently Wired: Raising an Exceptional Child in a Conventional World. In it, she says, "I lay out a new vision for not only redefining the way neurodiversity is perceived in the world, but shifting the parenting paradigm so parents raising extraordinary kids can do so from a place of peace, joy, and most importantly, choice." She's also forming a "Book Team" to help spread the word about the book. Find out more.

  • The Utah Association for Gifted Children holds its Winter Symposium on Saturday, February 10, featuring Shelagh Gallagher. More information
  • The Oklahoma Association for the Gifted, Talented, and Creative holds its annual conference on February 16 at Oklahoma State University. More information
  • The Hechinger Report notes how the U.S. in recent years has reduced the amount it spends on education; at the same time, other countries are increasing what they spend on elementary and high school education. Read more
  • CIVIL RIGHTS IN EDUCATION. A group of education organizations and civil rights groups have formed the Education Civil Rights Alliance, which will, according to US News, "focus specifically on safeguarding the rights of students with disabilities, immigrant students, and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender students...." Twice-exceptional students are afforded special protection under the law because of their disabilities. Read more

Thursday, November 2, 2017

2e Success Story, Un-Success Story (So Far), Good Blog Postings, More

FAMILIAR TUNE, NEW TWIST. A high school dropout turned cook turned ice sculptor turned Harvard graduate turned advocate is profiled in the LA Times, and it's a good story. One turning point is, hopefully, familiar to those here: "Most of my life, they focused on what I was bad at,” the subject of the profile, John Rodriguez, is quoted as saying. “When you focus on what you are good at, things just start happening.” Even after he'd achieved success doing things he was good at, there was still another turning point: when he was sitting in a college counseling office and saw a poster with the title "Signs that you have dyslexia." Read the profile.

FROM DECATUR, ILLINOIS: A mother writes a long, reasoned letter to describing her positive experience with the Decatur school system as an employee but also relating how the school has not addressed her son's dyslexia, with effects on son and mom that are familiar to readers here. She describes her own efforts to help her son (Orton-Gillingham, tutoring) but remains frustrated by the district's inaction: "Some acknowledgement of my child’s true learning obstacles must occur within the school day for him to really be able to compensate for his learning difference." Find the letter.

GIFTED CHALLENGES. Psychologist Gail Post writes on the topic of "Get your gifted boy through middle school." Starting from the thesis that boys are not necessarily "built" for school, she covers pitfalls, challenges, and ways to help. Underachievement (not via LDs) is one pitfall; others are peer pressure; gifted sensitivity; and identity formation and existential depression (with a nod to James Webb). Find Post's blog.

PLATO PARENTING is a term coned by psychologist Devon MacEachron, who practice specializes in gifted and 2e children. Based on "know thyself," her parenting tips are intended to help that gifted or 2e kiddo "develop into the happy, productive young adults they are meant to be." Can't argue with that. Find out more about Plato Parenting, and watch for an article by MacEachron in an upcoming issue of 2e Newsletter.

DIFFERENT PERCEPTIONS OF GIFTED PROGRAMS. Ethnicity has a lot to do with how parents perceive the value of gifted programs, whether the parents might "game" the system for entrance to such a program, and even what parents look for in terms of a good classroom for their child. An article in The Atlantic provides interesting perspectives on how white, Hispanic, and black families view gifted programs. Find the article.

WRIGHTSLAW, in Special Ed Advocate, offers information about FAPE and how it might affect your child. Included are articles on the legal concept of FAPE, the Endrew F case, and what the law requires. Find Special Ed Advocate.

TiLT PARENTING's most recent podcast: "Dr. Ross Greene Explains How Collaborative and Proactive Solutions Benefit Atypical Kids." Find it.

  • The most recent communique from the World Council for Gifted and Talented Children is now available; find it. Also from WCGTC: the next conference is scheduled for July 24-28, 2019, in Nashville, Tennessee. That's in the U S of A. 
  • Gifted and Distractible's monthly newsletter is out. "'Letting Go' is the subject of Julie's blog this month. Many people are recalibrating expectations and adjusting to ‘new norms’ globally -- in the face of natural and man-made disasters. Letting go is an essential strategy to successfully move forward." Find the newsletter.
TECA reminds us of its online parent support groups, one for parents of teens, one for parents of 13-and-unders, and one for all parents. Find out more.

  • YOU'RE SO SMART! An Education Week article reminds us of the dangers of praising children simply for being smart. According to a study, one such danger is cheating. Read more
  • Science Daily has a recent study write-up on detecting the risk of dyslexia before a child learns to read; find the write-up.
  • Also from Science Daily: "Depression is on the rise in the United States. From 2005 to 2015, depression rose significantly among Americans age 12 and older with the most rapid increases seen in young people. This is the first study to identify trends in depression by gender, income, and education over the past decade." Find the write-up
  • Those on either "side" of the issue of public funding for private and charter schools might be interested in a Politico article about some of the backers who favor of that funding; find it
  • The educational process in the U.S. is becoming politicized. Politico also offers an "Essential Guide to Legislation" explaining the federal (House, Senate) legislative process. Current or prospective advocates on particular issues might be interested in this. Find it
AND FINALLY, THIS. Next time you plan to approach a teacher, perhaps related to issues of twice-exceptionality, perhaps keep in mind the results of a recent survey indicating that teachers feel more stressed than average people. A little empathy can go a long way. Read more.