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October 2011 E-News


The latest news and information from around the country.

New Projects


Reference Points: Lives Worth Living  (October 2011)
“Lives Worth Living” documents Americans with disabilities' decades-long struggle for equal rights. It traces the development of the disability rights movement from World War II, when thousands of disabled veterans returned home, through the 1960s and 1970s, when it began to adopt the tactics of other social movements. Told through interviews with the movement’s pioneers, legislators, and others, the film explores how Americans with a wide variety of disabilities banded together to change public perception and policy. “Lives Worth Living” premieres on the PBS series Independent Lens, Thursday, October 27, 2011 at 10:00 PM (check local listings).

Calls to Participate


12th Annual Lights On Afterschool Celebration
Lights On Afterschool provides an opportunity for afterschool programs to promote the benefits of engaging in high quality learning beyond the classroom. Participants are encouraged to host their own events and invite parents and community members, or work with other programs in the community to host a larger event.


America's Promise Launches Grad Nation Communities
America's Promise Alliance is drafting more communities into its campaign to boost high school graduation. The Alliance recently launched Grad Nation Communities, part of the Grad Nation Campaign, a 10-year initiative to mobilize all Americans to take action to end the high school dropout crisis and better prepare young people for college and the 21st century workforce. The Alliance invites communities to join this network of cities and towns that will work to improve high school graduation rates by focusing on the local schools that are most in need of improvement.


National Disability Employment Awareness Month
National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM) is a national campaign held each October to raise awareness about disability employment issues and celebrate the many contributions of America’s workers with disabilities. NDEAM’s roots go back to 1945, when Congress enacted a law declaring the first week in October each year ”National Employ the Physically Handicapped Week.” In 1988, Congress expanded the week to a month and changed the name to “National Disability Employment Awareness Month.” When the Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) was established in 2001, it assumed responsibility for NDEAM, working to expand its reach and scope. But NDEAM’s true spirit lies in the creative observances held across the nation every year. ODEP offers a variety of resources to help employers, schools and organizations, and communities participate in NDEAM. Activities can be as simple as putting up NDEAM posters, or as comprehensive as implementing a disability education program. All are important in fostering a more inclusive America, where every person’s abilities are recognized all year round. The theme for NDEAM 2011 is “Profit by Investing in Workers with Disabilities,” which promotes the valuable of people with disabilities to America’s workplaces and economy.


National Disability Employment Awareness Month Presidential Proclamation
The presidential proclamation of NDEAM 2011 recognizes the skills that people with disabilities bring to the workforce, and urges rededication to improving employment opportunities in both the public and private sectors for those living with disabilities. The full text is on the White House Press Office’s Web site.


OVAE Seeks Input on a Research Center for Career and Technical Education
The U.S. Department of Education, Office of Vocational and Adult Education (OVAE) is planning a competition for a national research center to carry out scientifically based research and evaluation, and to conduct dissemination and training activities consistent with Section 114(d)(4) of the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act of 2006. It seeks input on research topics and on types of dissemination activities and technical assistance to states to address the education, employment, and training needs of students in career and technical education programs. Comments are due by Oct. 21, 2011. Comments can be emailed to or submitted at the Web site.

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The Resource Zone

NCSET Resources


Postsecondary Education Supports and Accommodations  (2011)
NCSET Web Topic
This NCSET Web Topic explores how the kinds of supports that are currently offered in postsecondary education, and the manner in which they are offered, could be improved to promote better outcomes for individuals with disabilities. Like all NCSET Web topics, it includes an introduction, frequently asked questions, related research, emerging practices, Web sites, and additional resources.

Other National Resources


Addressing Barriers To Learning: Enhancing Classroom Climate for All Students  (September) PDF document
The Fall 2011 Journal/News from the UCLA Center is a special edition, on “Addressing Barriers To Learning: Enhancing Classroom Climate for All Students.” School climate requires a special look with respect to students who are struggling academically, misbehaving, and having conflicts with school staff and peers. This special edition looks at ways to ensure that efforts to improve conditions for learning address all students. Available in pdf (83.2 KB, 16 pp).


Annenberg Institute for School Reform’s Issues/Challenges Webinar Archived  (August 2011)
Archived Webinars
The Annenberg Institute for School Reform (AISR) and the Nellie Mae Education Foundation held two webinars on the issues and challenges of community organizing and engagement around school reform (as part of AISR’s support for the community-based work under Nellie Mae's District Level Systems Change initiative) which have been archived online, with videos, summaries, presentations, and resource lists. “Tackling the Challenges of Rural Engagement” offered strategies for rural communities to adopt a more meaningful role in school reform. “Working Together to Create Meaningful Parent Engagement” discussed opportunities for parents from historically marginalized communities to engage as leaders in school reform.


Autism Spectrum Disorders Collection  (February 2011)
Information Links
This collection of links to information on Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) is the product of the IDEA Partnership’s collaborative work on ASD with 12 partner organization representatives, 9 national and state technical assistance providers, and a number of state and local organizations and agencies. The collection includes Guiding Principles, Fact Sheets, Essential Elements, a Resource Guide, Standards of Evidence in Autism Spectrum Disorders, etc.


Helping Youth Develop Soft Skills for Job Success (Podcast)  (2011)
Podcast Series
The National Collaborative on Workforce and Disability for Youth (NCWD/Youth) has released a new podcast series for parents and families, “Helping Youth Develop Soft Skills for Job Success.” The podcast episodes are: #1 “Helping Youth Develop Soft Skills for Job Success,” #2 “How to Build Communication Skills for Job Success,” #3 “How to Build Interpersonal Skills for Job Success,” and #4 “How to Build Lifelong Learning Skills for Job Success.” The series provides ideas for parents and families on activities they can do at home and include in their child’s Individualized Education Program (IEP) to ensure the development of skills needed for job success following completion of high school


High School Longitudinal Study of 2009: A First Look at Fall 2009 Ninth-Graders’ Parents, Teachers, School Counselors, and School Administrators  (August 2011)
The U.S. Department of Education’s Institute of Education Sciences has released “High School Longitudinal Study of 2009 (HSLS:09): A First Look at Fall 2009 Ninth-Graders’ Parents, Teachers, School Counselors, and School Administrators,” a report that features initial findings from the base year of HSLS:09, which began in the fall of 2009 with a nationally representative cohort of ninth-graders who will be followed through postsecondary education and the world of work. The HSLS:09 surveys focus on students’ transitions into and out of high school, especially their decisions about courses, postsecondary education, and careers generally and specifically in math and science. This First Look report highlights data provided by students’ parents, teachers, school counselors, and school administrators and provides insight into ninth-graders’ experiences at home and in school.


Innovative Practice Brief From NCWD  (September 2011)
Practice Brief
The National Collaborative on Workforce and Disability for Youth (NCWD/Youth) has issued “Using Career Interest Inventories to Inform Career Planning,” a Practice Brief describing the strategies and resources used by several successful youth programs to conduct career interest inventories with youth. Career interest inventories are a used tool for self-exploration. Engaging youth in self-exploration – the process of learning to identify their skills, interests, and values and how they could be used in various careers – is a critical step in the career development process for all young people, including youth with disabilities.


JobTIPS is a program to help individuals with disabilities explore career interests, seek and obtain employment, and successfully maintain it. JobTIPS addresses social and behavioral differences that might make identifying, obtaining, and keeping a job more difficult. Though JobTIPS is designed for direct use by individuals with autism and other disabilities, it is also suitable for delivery by teachers, family members, clinicians, mentors, and job coaches.


Key Findings from the National Longitudinal Transition Study-2  (September 2011) PDF document
The U.S. Department of Education’s Institute of Education Sciences has released “The Post-High School Outcomes of Young Adults With Disabilities up to 6 Years After High School: Key Findings From the National Longitudinal Transition Study-2,” a report that uses data from the National Longitudinal Transition Study-2 dataset to provide a national picture of post-high school outcomes for students with disabilities. The report includes postsecondary enrollment rates; employment rates; engagement in employment, education, and/or job training activities; household circumstances (e.g., residential independence, parenting status); and social and community involvement. Available in pdf (1.41 MB, 106 pp).


National Council of La Raza (NCLR) Speaks about the Need for High Standards for All Students  (August 2011)
The adoption and implementation of the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) is a step in the right direction toward ensuring that our Latino students receive a high quality education regardless of where they live. NCLR’s Senior Vice President of Programs, Delia Pompa, discussed the need for high academic standards across states and ensuring effective implementation of the CCSS in each state.


NCES Releases Post-High School Outcomes of Young Adults With Disabilities up to Eight Years After High School  (September)
The U.S. Department of Education’s Institute of Education Sciences (IES), National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) has released “The Post-High School Outcomes of Young Adults With Disabilities up to eight Years After High School: Key Findings From the National Longitudinal Transition Study-2 (NLTS2),” using data from the NLTS2 dataset to provide a national picture of post-high school outcomes for students with disabilities. The report describes the experiences and outcomes of young adults with disabilities in postsecondary education, employment, independence, and social domains during their first eight years out of high school.

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What's Happening

Other National Events


Unlocking Key Business Drivers: Disability in the Workplace, Marketplace and Supply Chain
October 16, 2011 - October 19, 2011
Louisville, KY
“Unlocking Key Business Drivers: Disability in the Workplace, Marketplace and Supply Chain,” the 14th Annual Conference of the US Business Leadership Network (USBLN), is a national business event that taps into the economic potential of people with disabilities. It brings corporate, government, disability-owned businesses and BLN affiliates together to create workplaces, marketplaces, and supply chains where people with disabilities are fully included as professionals, customers and entrepreneurs.

Broader Partnerships 101 Webinar
Web-based Event
October 25, 2011
3:00 PM - 4:00 PM   (Eastern)
The Forum for Youth Investment’s Ready by 21® Webinar Series will present a webinar on “Broader Partnerships 101.” Effective partnerships, whatever the scale of the partnership, are built on clear agreements about the scope of work to be done, the capacity needed to do the work and the mandate or authority in place to ensure that the work is done thoroughly and well. The Forum for Youth Investment, in working with many partnerships at both the state and local levels, has found that communities and states need to consider the basic components of partnerships. The webinar will discuss this leadership capacity area and how to build broader, more effective partnerships.

After School Alignment with the Core Instructional Day in Support of STEM Learning
Web-based Event
October 26, 2011
1:30 PM - 2:00 PM   (Eastern)
SchoolsMovingUp of WestEd, co-sponsored by The California After-School Network, the U.S. Department of Education’s Web site Doing What Works, and California State University Hear, will present a panel discussion on how alignment between afterschool programs and the core instructional day can support STEM learning in districts and schools, to support students in math, science and technology for a 21st-century world. It is the second webinar in a three-part series, “Advancing Student Success: Aligning In-school and Afterschool Learning,” on the impact of afterschool programs on closing achievement gaps and readying students for college and/or careers.

Showcasing Exemplary Practices: The Fifth National Symposium on Dispute Resolution in Special Education
October 26, 2011 - October 28, 2011
Eugene, OR
The National Center on Dispute Resolution in Special Education (CADRE) will hold “Showcasing Exemplary Practices: The Fifth National Symposium on Dispute Resolution in Special Education,” for individuals interested in resolving disputes in a non-adversarial manner and building collaborative relationships that will lead to better educational programs for students with disabilities. This is the first national symposium on the topic since 2006. Symposium invitees include State dispute resolution coordinators, directors of special education, dispute resolution practitioners, parent advocates, attorneys, educators, service providers, parents, and others.

Public Systems: Responding to Students Affected by Trauma
Web-based Event
November 1, 2011
9:00 AM - 10:30 AM   (Central)
The Chapin Hall Child & Family Policy Forum will podcast a discussion of “Public Systems: Responding to Students Affected by Trauma.” Children and youth who experience trauma such as maltreatment are often involved with multiple systems in the public sector, including foster care, education, and juvenile justice. Effective interventions for this vulnerable population require a perspective that is grounded in the understanding of trauma and its effects; comprehensive information about the medical, social, developmental, mental health, and educational status of the child and the adults who figure prominently in the child's life; and collaboration across public systems. The panel will discuss the implications of trauma as it relates to children and families involved with public systems, and on the particular challenges of working with adolescents who have experienced trauma, and programs designed to meet their needs.

Mid-Atlantic School Safety Conference
November 3, 2011 - November 4, 2011
Baltimore, MD
National Law Enforcement Corrections Training Center-National /U.S. Department of Justice-National Institute of Justice will hold the 2011 Mid-Atlantic School Safety Conference in Baltimore, MD. Experts from law enforcement, the School Safety Advocacy Council, and others will discuss topics in school safety, including safety initiatives, threat response, gangs, bullying, communication with teens, and social networking.

On the Path to Recovery: Medication, Mental Health Treatment, and the Transition to Adult Life
Web-based Event
November 4, 2011
10:00 AM - 11:00 AM   (Pacific)
The Research and Training Center for Pathways to Positive Futures of Portland State University will present a webinar on issues that affect the use of psychotropic medication by young adults who are experiencing mental illness. The webinar will discuss evidence-based use of medication, potential side effects, the influence of stigma, and cultural meaning; and consider the elements of successful collaborative decision-making processes.

National Conference on Bullying
February 15, 2012 - February 17, 2012
Orlando, FL
The School Safety Advocacy Council, National Students Against Violence Everywhere (SAVE), and Florida Association of School Resource Officers (FASRO) will hold the 2012 National Conference on Bullying in Orlando, FL. It will examine the causation, prevention, and mitigation of bullying. Topics addressed will include: Bullying Program Showcase, Using Digital Literacy to Combat Bullying, Bullying-What are the Trends Telling US?, Cyber-Bullying, The Reality Television Generation, and Liability 101-How not to be Successfully Sued. ^ Top of Page ^

Get Wired!

Web Sites


The ARISE Web site offers information and links to resources on assisting at-risk youth to avoid dropping out and incarceration with the aim of keeping them in education and preparing for adult life. offers information on deciding which careers to pursue. Currently, the site has articles on over 200 careers.



UCLA’s Mental Health Listserv
UCLA’s Mental Health Listserv is intended for people with mental health issues, families, or those who work with them.

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Funding Forecast

Federal Grant Opportunities


Forecast of Funding Opportunities under the Department of Education Discretionary Grant Programs for Fiscal Year 2011-2011
This document lists virtually all programs and competitions under which the U.S. Department of Education has invited or expects to invite applications for new awards for fiscal year 2011-2012 and provides actual or estimated deadlines for the transmittal of applications under these programs. The lists are in the form of charts organized according to the Department’s principal program offices and include programs and competitions previously announced as well as those to be announced at a later date.


FY 2011-2011 Discretionary Grant Application Packages
This site, from the Department of Education, provides information on grant competitions that are currently open.


FY 2011-2012 Discretionary Grant Application Packages
This site, from the Department of Education, provides information on grant competitions that are currently open.

Additional Funding and Award Opportunities


CVS Caremark: Community Grants
CVS Caremark Community Grants give funds to nonprofit organizations for programs targeting children with disabilities, programs focusing on health and rehabilitation services, public schools promoting a greater level of inclusion in student activities and extracurricular programs, and initiatives that give greater access to physical movement and play, as well as some contributions to organizations that provide uninsured individuals with needed care, in particular programs where the care received is of higher quality and delivered by providers who participate in accountable community health care programs. Maximum award: $5,000. Eligibility: nonprofit organizations with programs targeting children with disabilities; public schools with programs for children under age 18 with disabilities. Deadline: October 31, 2011.


New Leaders for New Schools: Aspiring Principals Program
New Leaders for New Schools is accepting applications for candidates who meet their selection criteria (listed on their website) and want to lead change for children in low-income communities by becoming urban public school principals. Candidates should have a record of success in leading adults, expertise in K-12 teaching and learning, a relentless drive to lead an excellent urban school, and an unyielding belief in the potential of every child to achieve academically at high levels. Eligibility: a minimum of 2-3 years of successful K-12 instruction experience; a teaching certificate preferred. This application is for candidates who are not currently in a school-based instructional or instructional leadership role and do not work in a district, charter management organization (CMO), or city that is offering the Emerging Leaders Program. Applications will be reviewed after each of the mini-deadlines of October 13 and December 1, 2011, with a final deadline of February 7, 2012.


Open Society Foundations’ Youth Initiative Seeks Proposals to Curate Web Pages at
The Open Society Foundations’ Youth Initiative seeks proposals from NGOs for up to $10,000 to develop and curate thematic pages on, an online youth portal and community. The Web site aims to consolidate knowledge and information on youth policies across the world. Potential themes for Web site pages:, Participation and Citizenship, Activism and Volunteering, Children and Youth Rights, Global Drug Policy, Community Work, Research and Knowledge, Informal Learning, Environment and Sustainability, Multiculturalism and Minorities, Justice, etc. Proposals must outline how the theme will be addressed, how content will be produced on a regular basis, how and how many contributing authors and bloggers will be involved, and how users interested in the theme will be driven to and engaged at the site. Organizations seeking funding must be registered NGOs. Grants will not be made to individuals or for-profit entities. Proposals must be submitted in English and will be reviewed on a rolling basis.


Sandra Day O'Connor and Verizon Foundation National Civics Contest for Students
Retired U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor and the Verizon Foundation have launched a national contest for middle schools, Civic Impact Challenge, to help renew the teaching of civic engagement by using iCivics (an online education project that O’Connor spearheaded) to teach middle and high-school students civics, including their rights and responsibilities as citizens, and the workings of the U.S. government. The Civic Impact Challenge contest is open to U.S. classrooms, grades 5-12. Classes participating can earn “impact points” by playing any of the 14 civics games in the iCivics curriculum and cover such topics as civil rights, how a bill becomes a law, and the role of local government. The class that earns the most points between October 3 and November 30, 2011, will win a VGo telepresence robot and receive a virtual visit from O’Connor. After the contest, students can donate their earned impact points to benefit a variety of community projects run by other youth, connecting their classroom civic education to real-world civic participation. Deadline: November 30, 2011


Scholastic Art & Writing Awards Invites Entries from Creative Teens
The Alliance for Young Artists & Writers, a nonprofit organization dedicated to recognizing the most talented teen artists and writers in the United States and Canada, is calling for entries for the 2012 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards. Creative teens in grades 7-12 are invited to submit work in 28 categories of art and writing. Student submissions are judged on the regional level by the alliance’s affiliates, and the top winning works are presented to national panels of creative leaders for consideration for the top honors. Fifteen graduating high school seniors will be awarded Portfolio Gold Medals, which include a $10,000 scholarship. Additional scholarships are made available to Portfolio Silver Medalists. To be eligible, students must be in grades 7-12 in a public, private, parochial, home-school, or out-of-school program in the U.S. or Canada, or in an American school abroad. Deadlines for submitting work vary by region and range from December 15, 2011, through January 15, 2012.


State Farm/NYLC: Project Ignition
State Farm and the National Youth Leadership Council are sponsoring Project Ignition, which funds programs that give high school students and their teachers the chance to work together to address the issue of teen driver safety. Maximum award: $2,000. Eligibility: students grades 9-12. Deadline: November 15, 2011.


USGA/Alliance: Grants for the Good of the Game
The National Alliance for Accessible Golf (Alliance) and the United States Golf Association (USGA), believing golf should be open to everyone, support a wide variety of programs that create opportunities for individuals with disabilities to participate in the sport. They especially encourage inclusive programming – opportunities that allow participants with disabilities and participants without disabilities to learn and play the game side by side. Maximum award: $20,000. Eligibility: tax-exempt, nonprofit organizations as defined under Section 501(c)3 of the U.S. Internal Revenue Code or government entities such as public schools or municipalities. Deadline: rolling.

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End of Issue

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E-News was supported in whole or in part by the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs, (Cooperative Agreement No. H326J000005). However, the opinions expressed herein do not necessarily reflect the policy or position of the U. S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs, or any of the six partners of the National Center on Secondary Education and Transition, and no official endorsement should be inferred.

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