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March 2003 E-News


The latest news and information from around the country.

New Projects


New Nonprofit Venture Opens Technology Careers to People with Disabilities
Business Technology Career Opportunities, Inc. (BTCO) is a nonprofit organization formed by the Cerebral Palsy Research Foundation (CPRF). The technology-oriented company's lead contract is a project for the U.S. Census Bureau through NISH. The project will convert more than 600 million Census 2000 digital images to microfilm format for long-term document storage. The total project will employ more than 20 people with disabilities. Imaging Solution Company (ISC), the Wichita partner, will work as an advisor on the project and will manage the processing of about 3,000 rolls of microfilm each month.

Legislative Announcements


President's Budget Request for Education Department
President Bush's budget request for fiscal year 2004 provides $53.1 billion for the U.S. Department of Education, an increase of $2.8 billion or 5.6% above his 2003 spending plan and the largest dollar increase of any domestic agency. View the archived web cast, budget summary, and more.

Calls to Participate


MTV Seeking Participants for Documentary Film

MTV is currently seeking participants for a documentary about the trials and triumphs of young people who must use wheelchairs to get around. They are searching for individuals who would like the chance to tell their story on camera and show other young people what it's really like to go to school, work, and hang with friends while using a wheelchair. Write to MTV as soon as possible at


The New International Association for Inclusive Citizenship Seeks Members and Founding Committees
Disability activist Judith Snow has announced her intention to develop a worldwide coalition of citizens committed to inclusion, called the International Association for Inclusive Citizenship (IAIC). IAIC seeks membership, founding committees, ideas, volunteer fundraisers, and assistance in getting the message out to other interested individuals.

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The Resource Zone

NCSET Resources


Implementing Communities of Practice in Educational Settings  (November 2002)
NCSET Teleconference Transcript
Communities of Practice are one of education’s newest and most effective ways of enhancing the professional expertise of teachers and administrators. By definition, Communities of Practice are groups of people that are connected by shared expertise and a common focus. Presented by Debra Price-Ellingstad, Education Program Specialist, U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education and Rehabilitation Services; and Joanne Cashman, Project Director, IDEA Policymaker Partnership, National Association of State Directors of Special Education.


Including Service Learning and SSI Work Incentives in Transition Planning  (October 2002)
NCSET Teleconference Transcript
This teleconference explored national and community service opportunities that provide a modest living allowance as well as an education award. Participants learned about basic information and resources related to Student Earned Income Exclusion, the Plan for Achieving Self Sufficiency (PASS), documenting youth participation on their IEP, and information about the National Service Inclusion Project. Presenters included Ray Marzoli, Senior Analyst, Office of Employment Supports, Office of Employment Policy, Social Security Administration; Kris Schoeller, Training Coordinator, NCSET; Paula Sotnik, Project Director, National Service Inclusion Project; and Joani Werner, PASS Cadre, PASS.

Other National Resources


A Principal's Guide to Special Education  (2001)
The Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) published this guidebook that includes information principals need to know about special education. It discusses various topics that are critical to the role of the school principal and to effective school leadership, including discipline and evaluation of students with disabilities, inclusion, adaptations, and due process.


A Tale of Three Cities: Urban Perspectives on Special Education  (2003)
During 2002,The Center on Education Policy (CEP) reviewed the operations of special education programs in Chicago, Cleveland, and Milwaukee, and conducted interviews and on-site forums with the major stakeholder groups in the three cities. The report presents general observations about special education in the three cities, describes common concerns emerging from all three sites, and offers recommendations for revising IDEA to address these concerns. Available in PDF (65 pages)


Effectiveness of Insurance Coverage and Federal Programs for Children Who Have Experienced Trauma Largely Unknown  (August 2002)
A report from the General Accounting Office documents that, for children who need intervention after experiencing a trauma, access to critical mental health services may be hard to come by. This is true even for children with private insurance. Available in PDF(114 pages).


First Response to Victims of Crime Who Have a Disability  (October 2002)
The Department of Justice published this handbook for law enforcement officers on how to help crime victims with a disability. The handbook specifically addresses how to help those with a mental illness, mental retardation, or who are blind or visually impaired, deaf or hard of hearing.


Making it Work: When Families that Represent a Service Population Become Employees  (August 2002) PDF document
Increasingly, human service organizations are recognizing the need to involve families in policy development, and in the planning and delivery of services to special populations. This manual, developed by the Consortium for the Employment of Parent Representatives, the Florida Institute for Family Involvement (FIFI), and the Institute for Child Health Policy addresses the question of how family employees can be supported and respected in a manner that is equitable and comparable to their professional counterparts. Available in PDF (24 pages).


No Child Left Behind Database
The Education Commission of the States has developed an extensive "real-time" database to track states' progress on meeting the myriad requirements of the federal No Child Left Behind Act of 2001. The law is expected to affect most public schools.


Promoting Positive Mental and Emotional Health in Teens  (September 2002) PDF document
This report, published by Child Trends, presents a review of the literature on what works in preventing and treating mental and emotional problems in adolescence. Depression, anxiety, ADHD, conduct disorder, and other areas are addressed. Available in PDF (8 pages).


Transportation Solutions for Caregivers: A Starting Point  (2003)
Easter Seals has launched a new program to provide tips and safe, creative solutions, devised by both family caregivers and professionals that are designed to ease transportation challenges. A video, informational booklet, and a list of helpful products and resources toolkit are offered for family caregivers and volunteer drivers of older adults with cognitive and/or physical impairments.


Workforce Investment Act (WIA): States’ Spending is on Track, but Better Guidance Would Improve Financial Reporting  (November 2002)
The U.S. General Accounting Office (GAO) came out with a report on state spending under the WIA. States are spending their WIA funds much faster than required under the law. Based on findings from the report, GAO recommends that Labor collaborate with states to clarify its definition of obligations and include this information in determining states’ available funds. Available in PDF (49 pages).

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What's Happening

NCSET Events


Preparing Youth with Disabilities for Professional Employment: A National and International Perspective
Teleconference Call
March 18, 2003
1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
NCSET teleconference call held on March 18, 2003 to discuss postsecondary education and employment. Topics of discussion included issues of secondary preparation, career development, postsecondary participation, international perspectives on disability, and cultural competence. Presented by Robert A. Stodden, Director of the Center on Disability Studies, University of Hawaii at Manoa, and Kathy Martinez, Deputy Director of the World Institute on Disability. The transcript of this call is now available.

Other National Events


Education, Disability, and Juvenile Justice
Web-based Event
March 6, 2003
1:00 PM - 3:00 PM   (Eastern)
This videoconference (also available for viewing online) will feature three juvenile justice programs and highlight their work in prevention, education programming, or transition and aftercare services. Program representatives will discuss their successes and challenges, and answer participants' questions. Correctional educators and administrators; legislators and policy makers; juvenile justice professionals, and youth service workers; attorneys and judges; probation and parole professionals; transition and aftercare professionals; and child and family advocates are invited to participate. You may register online to facilitate a downlink site or to view the videoconference online via your computer. Registration is free.

American Council on Rural Special Education’s Rural Survival Conference
March 20, 2003 - March 22, 2003
Salt Lake City, UT
"Rural Survival" is this year's theme of the American Council on Rural Special Education's 23rd Annual National Conference. The conference will highlight teaching strategies and programs that have been used successfully in K-12 classrooms. ^ Top of Page ^

Get Wired!

Web Sites


AbleLink Technologies: Changing Lives with Cognitive Support Technologies
AbleLink Technologies is an assistive technology research and development firm specializing in developing assistive technology systems designed to improve the quality of life for individuals with cognitive and intellectual disabilities by enabling them to live more independent and self-determined lives. They sell a variety of software packages that can be adapted to individual needs. AbleLink also provides Web-based tools for counselors and others who provide services to people with disabilities.


Communities In Schools: Helping Kids Stay in School and Prepare for Life
This Web site highlights community resources and connections with schools. CIS champions the connection of needed community resources with schools to help young people successfully learn, stay in school, and prepare for life.


EP Bookstore
The Exceptional Parent Bookstore offers disability-related books and videos. It also offers specialized monographs on topics such as Cerebral Palsy, Epilepsy, Movement Disorders, and more.


Family Center on Technology and Disability (FCTD)
The Department of Education's Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) created the FCTD to provide information about assistive technologies to organizations that work with the families of children with disabilities. There are currently more than 900 organizations in the FCTD Knowledge Network.


Study of State and Local Implementation and Impact of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (SLIIDEA)
Conducted by Abt Associates Inc. with its subcontractors Westat and SRI, for the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Special Education Programs, SLIIDEA examines how the Amendments of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) of 1997 are being implemented by states, school districts, and schools. In particular, it addresses issues focused on student performance, access to the curriculum, behavioral supports, parental involvement, and transitions for young children to school and youth to adult life.
This is an online summit for youth to exchange information with their peers on a variety of subjects. Youth are also provided information on overcoming adversities.



bridges4kids NewsDigest
This is a free online weekly newsletter regarding issues in special education. Subscribers receive the latest weekly updates on: State and National Education News, Special Education, Disability Issues, Legislative Updates, Resources, Conferences, and more.


LD OnLine Newsletter
Sign up to receive news and information about key issues in reading, learning disabilities, and other areas of learning from LDonline, a Web site on learning disabilities and ADHD.


NISW News from National Inclusive Schools Week
NISW News is your source for updates and information about the Week—and other resources and events related to building more welcoming and supportive schools and communities.

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Funding Forecast

Federal Grant Opportunities


Minority Science and Engineering Improvement Program - CFDA#: 84.120A
The Minority Science and Engineering Improvement Program (MSEIP) is designed to effect long-range improvement in science and engineering education at predominantly minority institutions and to increase the flow of underrepresented ethnic minorities, particularly minority women, into scientific and technological careers. Application Deadline: March 17, 2003.

Additional Funding and Award Opportunities


ELA Scholarship
The ELA Scholarship provides financial assistance to women with physical disabilities who are enrolled in a college or university graduate program in the U.S. ELA Scholarship awards are based on merit and are given in an objective and nondiscriminatory basis. Scholarships range from $1,000 to $2,000 per year. The application deadline is June 1st, 2003.


The Harris Wofford Awards: “Making service to others the common expectation and common experience of every young person in America”
Youth Service America and State Farm Companies Foundation are pleased to present the Harris Wofford Awards, a recognition program for the youth service movement to honor the life work of Harris Wofford in "Making service to others the common expectation and common experience of every young person in America". Recognizing both an individual youth and an institution or organization, the Second Annual Harris Wofford Awards will be presented at the 14th Annual National Service-Learning Conference in Minneapolis, Minnesota – April 23-26, 2003. Winners will receive a plaque commemorating their achievement and the individual youth recipient will be awarded $500. An additional $500 will be donated to a nonprofit service organization of their choice to support program activities. Deadline: March 17, 2003.


Urban Education Research Fellows Program
Los Angeles Unified, the nation's second largest school district, has established the Urban Education Research Fellows Program to support the development of promising urban education scholars. The educational research unit of LAUSD-the Program Evaluation and Research Branch-will provide two candidates each year with professional development and financial support. Applicants must be graduate students at accredited universities in California. Deadline: April 4, 2003. (Link to information on the Fellows Program is on the left hand side of the web page.)

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End of Issue

Excerpting E-News
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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.

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