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April 2002 E-News


The latest news and information from around the country.

New Projects


Alternative Schools: Research on Policy, Practice, and Implications for Youth Project
The number of alternative schools serving youth has significantly increased in recent years. Some suggest it is the only way to meet the needs of youth that are not succeeding in traditional public schools. This project examines the policies and practices of alternative schools around the country. Housed at the Institute on Community Integration at the University of Minnesota, the project includes a policy scan of national practices; case studies of alternative school policies and practices in five states; field visits to collect information from students, parents, and teachers, and a synthesis of findings. Funded by the Federal Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP).


National Center on Accessible Information Technology in Education (AccessIT)
AccessIT, a new national Center at the University of Washington, focuses on increasing the access of individuals with disabilities to information technology in educational institutions, at all academic levels. The Center works nationwide with NIDRR-funded Disability Business and Technical Assistance Centers by providing training, support, dissemination materials, and technical assistance to facilitate adoption of policies and practices leading to the increased use of accessible information technology. AccessIT’s Web site includes accessibility checklists, best practices, links to resources, case studies, and more. Funded by the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR), U.S. Department of Education.

Legislative Announcements


Surgeon General Report Highlights Unmet Healthcare Needs for People with Mental Retardation
Surgeon General David Satcher issued a report in February, 2002, calling attention to the failure of U.S. healthcare system in responding to changes in the lives of people with mental retardation. The report notes that people with mental retardation have received inferior care in the nation's residential institutions. It includes six major goals for the healthcare system. The complete report, entitled, "Closing the Gap: A National Blueprint to Improve the Health of Persons with Mental Retardation," is available online.

Calls to Participate


Parents with Disabilities and Their Teens (11-17 yrs) Sought for National Survey
Through the Looking Glass, founded in Berkeley, California in 1982, is nearing the end of their three-year nationwide research project--Parents with Disabilities and Their Teens--to learn more about the experiences of families in which a parent with a disability is raising a teen. Parents with disabilities and teens are still needed to participate in their national survey. Teens get $5 to complete the survey! See the project Web page for additional ways to participate in this national research, which is funded by the National Institute on Disability Research and Rehabilitation (NIDRR), U.S. Department of Education.

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The Resource Zone

NCSET Resources


No Child Left Behind: Implications for Secondary Education and Transition  (January 2002)
NCSET Teleconference Transcript
Transcript of NCSET Teleconference held January 22, 2002, and presented by Robert Pasternack, Ph.D., Assistant Secretary of the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services in the U.S. Department of Education.


Parenting Postsecondary Students with Disabilities: Becoming the Mentor, Advocate, and Guide Your Young Adult Needs  (March 2002)
NCSET Parent Brief
This brief focuses on the importance of involving parents in the transition from high school to the post-secondary environment, and provides concrete recommendations to help parents learn to mentor and advocate for their post-secondary youth. Includes parent resources and references. See Spanish Version of this Parent Brief.


Providing a Quality Accommodated Experience in Preparation for and During Postsecondary School  (March 2002)
NCSET Information Brief  • Volume  1 ,  Issue  1
This brief provides clarification regarding the difference between meeting minimal standards for accommodation in postsecondary school, and providing a quality educational experience including accommodations. The brief includes a case example to illustrate the challenges youth with disabilities face without appropriate accommodations. Additional resources are also provided.

Other National Resources


K-12 Service Learning: A Strategy for Rural Community Renewal and Revitalization  (July 2001)
Using case studies and in-depth research, this report found that when students take part in service learning that is both a part of their school curriculum and the local community development agenda, both the community and the students benefit. Produced by Steven Henness and the Corporation for National Service Fellowship Program, the report includes recommendations for student engagement in service learning, supporting teacher and administrator involvement in community work, and beginning dialogue between schools and communities about common goals for youth. Available in PDF (486k, 141 pages).


Postsecondary Education and Transition for Students with Learning Disabilities (2nd ed.)  (2002)
This best-selling book has been completely updated and expanded to include eight entirely new chapters and an accompanying CD-ROM appendix. Includes new information on transition planning, determining eligibility for services and testing accommodations, policy development, and more. The CD-ROM appendix contains nearly one hundred entries with examples of policies, procedures, and Web sites that describe an array of resources. Cost: $49.00.


Special Education Mediation: A Guide for Parents  (July 2001)
This booklet, aimed particularly at parents and family members, provides an overview of the special education mediation process and how it works. It includes an overview of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, tips on how to request mediation, information on the benefits and concerns of mediation, and how to prepare for the process. This product was jointly developed by the Consortium for Appropriate Dispute Resolution in Special Education (CADRE) and the Technical Assistance Alliance for Parent Centers (the Alliance), located at PACER Center. Free online in English, Spanish, and Hmong.


Strategies for Recruiting and Supporting Underrepresented Groups within High Quality Special Education Teacher Preparation Programs  (2002) PDF document
Fact Sheet
Summarizes actions and initiatives that might be undertaken to increase the number of high quality teachers from diverse cultures to provide essential instruction and support to children and youth with disabilities. Includes resource and program listings, as well as recommendations for recruitment and support. Part of Developing the Special Education Workforce, a series of peer-review publications describing the activities of the National Clearinghouse for Professions in Special Education (NCPSE). Available in PDF (132k, 2 pages).


The Road Ahead: Transition to Adult Life for Persons with Disabilities  (March 2002)
Written by twenty nationally recognized transition experts, this book provides strategies and ideas for improving the lives of people with disabilities, from assessment and instructional strategies, to career development, supported living, and postsecondary education. The vast majority of youth with disabilities leave high school either unemployed or underemployed with low wages and no benefits. Edited by Keith Storey, Paul Bates, and Dawn Hunter and available for order online at the Training Resource Network, Inc., in April, 2002. Cost: $32.95.


Vocational Rehabilitation: Trends and Issues Alert No. 31  (2002)
Identifies important issues and trends in vocational rehabilitation that can affect the relationship between vocational rehabilitation and the One-Stop system, including differing definitions of disability and eligibility for services, availability and appropriate use of services and resources from all partners, and consumer choice in selecting One-Stop services. Includes an exhaustive list of resources relating to vocational rehabilitation, the One-Stop system, and the Workforce Investment Act. Written by Michael E. Wonacott, published by the ERIC Clearinghouse on Adult, Career, and Vocational Education.

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What's Happening

NCSET Events


Connecting to Success: Mentoring Through Technology to Promote Student Achievement -- The Iowa Experience
Teleconference Call
April 23, 2002
1:00 PM - 2:00 PM   (Central)
NCSET teleconference call held April 23, 2002 to explore the state of Iowa's experience with Connecting to Success. Presenters included Mary Mack, the Associate Director of the National Center on Secondary Education and Transition; Katharine Hill, Program Coordinator for Connecting to Success; Barbara McClannahan, Project Manager for the Iowa Paths Systems Change Grant; and Tammy Rogers, School-to-Work Coordinator for Bettendorf, Iowa. The transcript of this call is now available.

Other National Events


Including Students with Challenges in High Performing, Restructured High Schools
Web-based Event
April 29, 2002
3:00 PM - 4:30 PM   (Eastern)
To what extent is it possible for high performing high schools to include and effectively serve all students, including students with disabilities? This Webcast, presented by L. Allen Phelps, Director of the Center on Education and Work at the University of Wisconsin, is free and registration is not required, however, participants are advised to test their hardware/software capabilities ahead of time. In addition, a live chat will be available during the Webcast. This Webcast is part of the Professional Development Speaker Series sponsored by the National Dissemination Center for Career and Technical Education; the Office of Career, Technical, and Adult Education at the Ohio Department of Education; and The Ohio State University.

Providing Culturally Competent Disability Services to Persons Born in Other Countries
May 6, 2002 - May 8, 2002
Washington, DC
The first conference in the U.S. to focus on disability services for persons who were born in another country, this conference will examine the impact of culture on attitudes toward disability and how this can affect communication between service providers and consumers. Best practices in cross-cultural rehabilitation will be presented and discussed. A pre-conference workshop on Cultural Brokering will be held May 6. Sponsored by the Center for International Rehabilitation Research Information and Exchange (CIRRIE).

Great Lakes Regional Special Education Mediation Institute
May 11, 2002
Milwaukee, WI
Features national leaders in special education mediation and includes such workshop topics as the role of attorneys and advocates in the mediation process, mediation session role-plays, shifting from an adversarial culture to one of collaboration in the mediation process, and strategies for special education classes. A valuable educational and professional development opportunity for mediators, attorneys, parents, advocates, teachers, students, and more. Co-sponsored by the Consortium for Appropriate Dispute Resolution in Special Education (CADRE) and the Wisconsin Special Education Mediation System. ^ Top of Page ^

Get Wired!

Web Sites


Adolescent Health Transition Project: A resource for adolescents with special health care needs, chronic illnesses, and/or physical or developmental disabilities
Along with specialized information for providers, parents, and young adults, this recently redesigned Web site includes a transition timeline and extensive list of transition resources and other online attractions specifically for youth with disabilities, downloadable and printable versions of the Adolescent Autonomy Checklist, and Web sites of interest to teens. Although many resources are Washington State specific, the project has worked with programs nationally to adapt this information to specific populations or states.


Caring Communities for Children in Foster Care
This Web site highlights strategies and best practices to increase comprehensive health care services for children in foster care. Includes strategies usable by foster parents and caseworkers in advocating for the healthcare and service needs of youth in foster care, as well as local and national resources for foster youth, foster families, and providers. Foster parents and service providers will benefit from a series of issue briefs and tips for raising awareness and foster collaborative relationships with multiple service providers. Directed by the Parent Educational Advocacy Training Center (PEATC).


Employer Assistance & Recruiting Network (EARN)  (2001)
The Employer Assistance & Recruiting Network (EARN) is a national toll-free telephone and electronic information referral service designed to assist employers in locating and recruiting qualified workers with disabilities. EARN streamlines the hiring process by matching job postings with job-ready candidates with disabilities. EARN, which is a service of the Office of Disability Employment Policy, can also provide technical assistance on general disability employment-related issues. Call toll-free 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. at 1-866-Earn Now (1-866-327-6669).


Global Access News Disabled Travel Network: Accessible Travel for Wheelchair Users & Mobility-Impaired People
Provides a number of resources for the global traveler with a disability. Features such as travel guides of accessible destinations and accommodations, an accessible trip planner, and a regularly-updated "feature trip" help travelers to coordinate their vacation plans based on first-hand reports from fellow travelers. The free Global Access Travel E-Zine offers monthly reports on new get-away destinations, innovations in recreational technology (including accessible sailing adventures), and more.


Project ACTION National Accessible Travelers Database
This online database provides easy access persons with disabilities to the availability of accessible transportation anywhere in the country. It includes public transit operators, rental companies, bus and tour companies, taxis, airport information, hotel/motel information, and much more. The search function allows users to highlight the state and city they plan to visit, and view all transportation services available to them. The user is also able to view the travel agencies specializing in travel arrangements for persons with disabilities.


Reading First
Offers information on the Department of Education's ambitious national effort to help every child become a successful reader. Includes a description of how the program will work, an estimated timeline for distribution of state funds, and links to reading reports and related associations and organizations. The Web site initiative is run out of the Department's Office of Elementary and Secondary Education and is a helpful resource for providers and families eager to understand this federal effort.


U.S. Department of Education: Satellite Town Meetings
A live, interactive television program about what works in schools and communities. Thousands of people in sites all over the country meet virtually to discuss the most critical and timely issues in education. Renowned national experts, local educators, and community leaders share ideas on what it takes to create successful school improvement programs and keep them going and offer practical advice for your school and community. Past topics include testing for results, improving and ensuring teacher quality, expanding parent choice in their children's education, and more. Tune in for a live Webcast or download archived programs.


USA Freedom Corps
Provides information and links for youth, teens, adults, and others to connect with local, national, and international volunteer opportunities. The "record of service" feature allows participants to document volunteer hours, a helpful tool for IEP goals and career preparation for youth with disabilities.

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Funding Forecast

Federal Grant Opportunities


Projects with Industry (PWI) - CFDA#84.234Q
Creates and expands job and career opportunities for individuals with disabilities in the competitive labor market by engaging the talent and leadership of private industry as partners in the rehabilitation process. PWI projects identify competitive job and career opportunities and the skills needed to perform those jobs, create practical settings for job readiness and training programs, and provide job placements and career advancement services. Granted by the U.S. Department Education (DOE). Grant deadline: May 31, 2002.

Additional Funding and Award Opportunities


Coming Up Taller Awards
Recognizes and rewards excellence in community arts and humanities programs for underserved children and youth. The Coming Up Taller Awards support community programs that are tangible examples of the power of the arts and the humanities to encourage young people's creativity and provide them with learning opportunities, chances to contribute to their community, and ways to take responsibility for their own future. Ten awardees will receive $10,000 each and an individualized plaque. Sponsored through the President's Committee on Arts and Humanities. Grant deadline: April 26, 2002.

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End of Issue

Excerpting E-News
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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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