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November 2003 E-News


The latest news and information from around the country.

New Projects


3rd Annual National Inclusive Schools Week
The 3rd Annual National Inclusive Schools Week will be celebrated December 1-5, 2003, in classrooms, schools, and communities throughout the country to highlight the nation's progress in providing a quality education to an increasingly diverse student population, particularly to those who have disabilities. To help schools and communities plan events and activities for the Week, the National Institute is offering an updated Celebration Kit containing publications that outline the benefits of inclusive schools, suggested readings for children and adults, celebration ideas and lesson plans, and materials to use in promoting the Week. The 2003 kit also includes specific ideas for family celebrations, classroom and school celebration ideas that honor the diverse heritages and cultures of the nation's children, and suggestions for improving family-school partnerships.

Legislative Announcements


CADRE Funded for Another 5 Years
CADRE, the Consortium for Appropriate Dispute Resolution in Special Education, has successfully won a new cooperative agreement with the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs, which begins October 1, 2003 and will continue through September 30, 2008. Visit their Web site for more information about CADRE.


Presidential Commission Supports Mental Health in Schools
Goal 4 of the 6 identified by President Bush's New Freedom Commission on Mental Health focuses on early delivery of screening, assessment, and referral services for mental health. A key recommendation made for attainment of this goal is what community schools strive to be doing, improving, and expanding mental health programs at schools. Background on the importance of this goal and the recommended steps identified for moving towards this goal is provided.


Social Security Announces 2.1 Percent Benefit Increase for 2004
Monthly Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits for more than 51 million Americans will increase 2.1 percent in 2004. The Cost-of- Living Adjustment will begin in January 2004, for people who get Social Security benefits and on December 31, 2003, for people who receive SSI benefits.

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The Resource Zone

NCSET Resources


Issues of Transition for Youth with Disabilities from Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Backgrounds  (August 2003)
NCSET Teleconference Transcript
Transcript of teleconference call held August 13, 2003. The call focused on the issues that face persons with disabilities of culturally and linguistically diverse (CLD) heritage in relation to transition success. Specific considerations that were discussed include perceptions about self-determination, and expectations about the environments that CLD youth with disabilities are expected to transition to once they leave secondary school. Presenters included Dr. David Leake of the Cultural and Linguistic Diversity Transition Success Research Project, Center on Disability Studies, University of Hawaii at Manoa; Dr. Soon Kim Rupnow of the National Technical Assistance Project on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, Center on Disability Studies, University of Hawaii at Manoa; and Dr. Paul Leung of the Rehabilitation Counseling Program, University of North Texas.


Perspectives on Serving Young Offenders with Disabilities: Litigating and Organizing Systemic Change  (October 2003)
NCSET Institute Proceeding
This CBI was held during the 9th Joint Juvenile Services Conference. Participants were provided information, resources, and training regarding the issues, service provision, and alternative methodologies for addressing youth with disabilities involved with the juvenile justice system.


Professional Development  (2003)
NCSET Web Topic
This NCSET Web topic explores the benefits of providing opportunities to teachers, administrators, and other school personnel to acquire or improve their professional knowledge and skills. Like all NCSET Web topics, it includes an introduction, frequently asked questions, related research, emerging practices, Web sites, and additional resources.

Other National Resources


Educational Aspirations and Postsecondary Access and Choice: Students in Urban, Suburban, and Rural Schools Compared  (April 2003)
This study reports that rural students have lower aspirations of going to college after high school than suburban and urban students. This pattern of lower aspirations held true in the study for students considering two-year colleges, four-year colleges, and graduate schools. In fact, two years after high school graduation, a smaller percentage of rural students were attending these institutions, compared to their urban and suburban peers. This article was published in the Education Policy Analysis Archives.


Hissom Closure Outcomes Study: A Report on Six Years of Movement to Supported Living  (August 2003)
This study of 254 persons with developmental disabilities who moved out of a state institution in Oklahoma into supported living settings comes to the conclusion that the belief that community living greatly enhances the quality of life of people with intellectual disabilities is true. Published by the American Association on Mental Retardation.


Identifying and Treating Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder: A Resource for School and Home  (2003) PDF document
This resource guide from the U.S. Department of Education, designed for families and educators, provides information on how attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is identified and treated. The guide includes sections on legal requirements, treatment options, and helpful hints about improving the quality of life at home and at school for a child identified with ADHD. Available in PDF (23 pages).


Job Applicants and the Americans with Disabilities Act  (October 2003)
Fact Sheet
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has released a new fact sheet designed to educate job applicants on how Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) protects their rights throughout the hiring process. The new publication also explains the ADA's rules on when employers may seek medical information from applicants. The fact sheet reviews the types of questions that are prohibited during interviews and on applications, and discusses what questions an employer may ask of applicants with obvious disabilities, such as deafness or loss of a limb.


Learning How to Learn  (2003)
Written for high school and college students with learning disabilities (LD), this thorough manual gently steers students through the process of preparing for college, choosing the right school, and succeeding academically. Drawing from her own experiences, the author offers concrete, step-by-step advice to LD students about: taking standardized tests in a form best suited to their needs, selecting a postsecondary program that will support their future goals and learning styles, taking advantage of a wide range of supports and services, advocating for their rights under the Americans with Disabilities Act, highlighting their learning strengths, and how to survive and succeed in college and beyond.


People with Disabilities and Postsecondary Education  (September 2003)
The National Council on Disability undertook this synthesis in anticipation of the reauthorization of the Higher Education Act (HEA). Students with disabilities, who now are estimated to represent nearly 10 percent of all college students, currently experience outcomes far inferior to those of their non-disabled peers. The purpose of this paper is to provide background that might guide reauthorization of the HEA to better support students with disabilities to achieve equal postsecondary outcomes.


People with Disabilities on Tribal Lands: Education, Health Care, Vocational Rehabilitation, and Independent Living  (August 2003)
The National Council on Disability (NCD) released this report, which documents that American Indians and Alaska Natives (AI/AN) with disabilities living in tribal lands are not receiving the services they are entitled to. The report reflects the results of a project that was developed and guided to completion in collaboration with AI/AN representatives of people with disabilities, their families, and tribal community leaders, and discusses views and perspectives of AI/AN people with disabilities, tribal leaders, and federal agency representatives identified as productive in meeting the needs of people with disabilities residing in tribal lands. This report also assesses and recommends government-to-government (state to sovereign tribal to U.S. government) improvements in the relationships needed for effective coordination across existing federally funded projects and programs.


Safe and Sound: An Educational Leader's Guide to Evidence-Based Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) Programs  (2003) PDF document
A report from the Chicago-based Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL) makes a point that two key aspects of students' success in school, social-emotional development and academic achievement, are intimately connected. Based on a three-year review of 242 social and emotional learning programs underwritten by the Office of Safe and Drug-Free Schools and the Institute of Educational Sciences, U.S. Department of Education, the report reviews 80 multiyear, sequenced SEL programs designed for use in general education classrooms. Also included are research-based guidelines for effective school-based program implementation.


Supports Intensity Scale (SIS) Overview Information  (December 2003) PDF document
The American Association on Mental Retardation (AAMR) is getting ready to publish a unique, new assessment tool specifically designed to measure the level of practical supports required by an adult with an intellectual disability. Called the Supports Intensity Scale (SIS), this instrument provides an objective measure of supports required in 57 life activities, and medical and behavioral conditions commonly associated with persons with intellectual disabilities. Available in PDF (32pages).


The Involvement of Students in Their Special Education Mediations  (October 2003)
This paper, published by the Consortium for Appropriate Dispute Resolution in Special Education (CADRE), identifies some of the benefits and challenges that warrant consideration by families, educators, and dispute resolution practitioners as they create opportunities for students to participate in the mediation process. Perspectives and assumptions regarding student participation are captured and strategies are presented that may contribute to an improved process for all involved.

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What's Happening

NCSET Events


A Review of the National Leadership Summit on Improving Results for Youth
Teleconference Call
November 18, 2003
3:00 PM - 4:00 PM   (Central)
NCSET teleconference call held November 18, 2003 to highlight the outcomes of the National Leadership Summit held on September 18-19 (same year) in Washington, DC. Presenters: (a) outlined the purpose and format of the Summit; (b) highlighted the findings from the data, including the 10 priority content areas and three overarching themes that emerged; (c) shared perspectives from two states on how the Summit has instituted change for them; and (d) communicated Summit follow-up technical strategies. Presented by David Johnson, Director of the National Center on Secondary Education and Transition; Wendy Collison, Education Program Specialist at the Arizona Department of Education (AZ’s State Team Leader at Summit); and David Sienko, Office of Special Needs, Rhode Island Department of Education (RI’s State Team Leader at Summit). The transcript of this call is now available.
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Get Wired!

Web Sites


American Association of School Administrators (AASA)
AASA is the professional organization for over 14,000 educational leaders across America and in many other countries. AASA’s mission is to support and develop effective school system leaders who are dedicated to the highest quality public education for all children. AASA's major focus is standing up for public education. Web site features information on awards and scholarships, career advice, conferences, and government information.


Asperger Information: Targeting Information to Parents and Professionals
The purpose of this Web site is to target information to parents and professionals about Asperger Syndrome with a special emphasis on bullying issues. A free newsletter, access to resources, bookstore, discussion forum, quality links, and more are provided.


Disability Social History Project
The Disability Social History Project is a community history project. This is an opportunity for people with disabilities to reclaim their history and determine how they want to define themselves and their struggles. The Web site features links on art and culture, disability studies, people with disabilities, and history information on specific disabilities. National Technical Assistance Center for Voting and Cognitive Access
A collaboration of eight national organizations have come together to develop a tool that states can use to comply with the Help America Vote Act (HAVA) and make voting accessible to all voters and potential voters in the state. It will be one place to go, nationwide, for anyone (including people with disabilities) to get information that will assist them to register and vote. The Web site is still under construction but information is offered about the project and how you can participate.


Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanic Americans
On October 12, 2001, President George W. Bush signed Executive Order 13230 to establish the President's Advisory Commission on Educational Excellence for Hispanic Americans. The Commission is charged with strengthening the nation's capacity to provide high quality education while increasing opportunities for Hispanic American participation in federal education programs. The Initiative serves as a resource for information relating to the closing of the educational achievement gap of Hispanic Americans.


National At-Risk Education Network
The National At-Risk Education Network (NAREN) is a 501(c)(3) non-sectarian professional educational membership organization dedicated to both promoting the success of at-risk youth in school and life, and supporting the educators who work on their behalf.


National Center on Physical Activity and Disability
The mission of the National Center on Physical Activity and Disability (NCPAD) is to promote the substantial health benefits that can be gained from participating in regular physical activity. This site provides information and resources that enable people with disabilities to become as physically active as they choose to be.


National Organization on Disability's Emergency Preparedness Initiative
The National Organization on Disability’s (NOD) Emergency Preparedness Initiative recently enhanced its Web site to include a bulletin board, research paper, and products and services directories. Developed after September 11, 2001, the Emergency Preparedness Initiative was developed to ensure that emergency managers address disability concerns and that people with disabilities are included in the emergency planning process. NOD seeks to increase communication and cooperation between emergency managers and the disability community, and to educate people with disabilities about what they can do to be prepared. EN ESPANOL (GobiernoUSA)
A federal Spanish-language version of FirstGov, a government-run Web site that provides information about official programs and services, as part of President Bush's plan to use the Internet to improve public access to government information, is now available. FirstGov en Espanol is a centralized collection of major federal agencies' Web pages translated into Spanish.



Technology for Independence: Community-Based Resource Center E-Mailing List
The purpose of the Technology for Independence: Community-Based Resource Center (TI-CBRC) is to facilitate the development of real-world, scientifically rigorous knowledge and research on assistive technology and environmental access for persons with disabilities in partnership with disability researchers, disability advocates, community-based organizations, and other disability community members. The mailing list provides e-mail messages about events and announcements from the CBRC.


TLN eSource from the Teacher Leaders Network
The Teacher Leaders Network, a new project of the Southeast Center for Teaching Quality, is producing a free e-newsletter with a leadership focus. The biweekly TLN eSource includes links to new research, important reports, significant news stories, and interesting resources and dialogue about advancements in teacher and school leadership. The TLN eSource also includes resources on mentoring, cutting-edge staff development, best instructional practices and more.

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Funding Forecast

Federal Grant Opportunities


Rehabilitation Continuing Education Programs (RCEP)--Institute on Rehabilitation Issues (IRI) – CFDA# 84.264A-3
The Rehabilitation Continuing Education Programs train newly employed State agency staff at the administrative, supervisory, professional, paraprofessional, or clerical levels in order to develop needed skills for effective agency performance; provide training opportunities for experienced State agency personnel at all levels of State agency practice to upgrade their skills and to develop mastery of new program developments dealing with significant issues, priorities, and legislative thrusts of the State and Federal vocational rehabilitation program; and develop and conduct training programs for staff. Applications available: October 23, 2003. Application deadline: January 8, 2004.


Rehabilitation Continuing Education Programs (RCEP)--Regional Rehabilitation Continuing Education Projects (RRCEP) – CFDA# 84.264A-1
The purpose of the program is to support training centers that serve either a Federal region or another geographical area and provide for a broad, integrated sequence of training activities that focus on meeting recurrent and common training needs of employed rehabilitation personnel throughout a multi-State geographical area. Applications available: October 23, 2003. Application deadline: January 8, 2004.


Rehabilitation Training: Rehabilitation Long-Term Training--Comprehensive System of Personnel Development – CFDA# 84.129W
The Rehabilitation Long-Term Training program provides financial assistance for projects that provide basic or advanced training leading to an academic degree, provide a specified series of courses or program of study leading to award of a certificate, or provide support for medical residents enrolled in residency training programs in the specialty of physical medicine and rehabilitation. Applications available: October 27, 2003. Application deadline: January 6, 2004.


Research Fellowship Program – CFDA# 84.133F
The purpose of the Research Fellowships Program is to build research capacity by providing support to highly qualified individuals, including individuals with disabilities, to conduct research about the rehabilitation of individuals with disabilities. Fellows may conduct original research in an area authorized by section 204 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended. Applications available: October 16, 2003. Application deadline: December 15, 2003.

Additional Funding and Award Opportunities


AXA Foundation Scholarship Program
AXA Foundation in association with U.S. News and World Report will select high school seniors from each state, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico for its Achievement Scholarship Program. The 52 achievers will receive $10,000 scholarships for undergraduate education. From the state recipients, 10 students will receive additional awards of $15,000. Application deadline: December 15, 2003.


Milagro Foundation
The Milagro Foundation focuses on serving at-risk, underrepresented, and disadvantaged youth through educational programs and health services. The Foundation also supports artistic and culturally enriching programs that strengthen youth and communities. Creative programs from grassroots organizations working with and for underrepresented and underprivileged children and youth take precedence. Application deadline: on-going.

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End of Issue

Excerpting E-News
You are welcome to copy and paste portions of this E-News issue into your own e-mail newsletter; however, please credit the National Center on Secondary Education and Transition E-News and link to as follows: “Excerpted from NCSET E-News, an electronic newsletter of the National Center on Secondary Education and Transition (NCSET), available online at NCSET is funded by the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs.”

Contributing to E-News
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Purpose of the Listserv
E-News features resources, activities, products, and funding information from around the country. E-News is dedicated to assisting youth, parents, educators, service providers, and administrators to stay connected and informed about secondary education and transition issues.

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E-News Disclaimer
The National Center on Secondary Education and Transition disseminates E-News to enhance public access to information about secondary education and transition activities. Our intention is to provide resources that are current and accurate. Although every attempt is made to ensure the accuracy of this information, we can make no guarantees. We will, of course, make every effort to correct errors brought to our attention.

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.

Note: There are no copyright restrictions on this document. However, please credit the source and support of federal funds when copying all or part of this material.

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