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June 2009 E-News


The latest news and information from around the country.

Calls to Participate


Adobe Youth Voices /What Kids Can Do: International Photo Competition
Adobe Youth Voices and What Kids Can Do invite youth, ages 12-19, around the world to submit photographs based on the theme of “Crisis and Hope,” expressing themselves on both what is challenging and what gives hope in today’s difficult world. Winning photographs will be showcased online, in a traveling exhibit, and in a book. Eligibility: all young people, anywhere in the world, between the ages of 12 and 19. Deadline: July 31, 2009.


Education Week’s 2009 Fall Calendar of Events
In an ongoing effort to provide educators with the latest information on relevant conferences and workshops, Education Week will publish its 2009 Fall Calendar of Events as a supplement to the August 26, 2009 issue. The Fall Calendar lets organizations share their upcoming events with Education Week and readers, including administrators, counselors, parents, policymakers, reading specialists, researchers, school board members, teacher educators, teachers, and technology personnel. Listings are free. All events submitted online will be listed in the online calendar, including those sponsored by for-profit organizations and those submitted after June 30. Deadline for submitting events for the 2009 Fall Calendar: June 30, 2009.


Nominate a School Counselor for the American School Counselor Association’s School Counselor of the Year Award
The American School Counselor Association’s School Counselor of the Year Award is given to school counselors who run top-notch, comprehensive school counseling programs at the elementary, middle, or high school level. The award program brings up to 10 finalists and their nominators to Washington, DC, in January to participate in a Congressional briefing, meet with their members of Congress, and be honored at a gala. From these 10 finalists, one School Counselor of the Year is selected. U.S.-based practicing school counselors who’ve completed at least five years of service as a school counselor, belong to ASCA, and are practicing school counselors at the time of the awards may be nominated. Nomination Deadline: July 17, 2009.

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The Resource Zone

Other National Resources


Cities in Crisis 2009: Report Pegs Average Graduation Rate in Nation’s Largest Cities at 53%  (May 2009)
The nation’s largest cities showed some progress in increasing their graduation rates from 1995-2005, but their average graduation rate of 53% is well below the national average of 71%, according to “Cities in Crisis: Closing the Graduation Gap, a report released last month by Editorial Projects in Education, Inc. with support from the America’s Promise Alliance and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.


eSchool News’ Educator Resource Center  (2009)
web page
K-20 graduates will need “21st Century Skills” for the U.S. to succeed in the global economy success. In 2012, “tech literacy” will be added to our Nation's Report Card, measuring student proficiency in the application of technology for the first time. To prepare for the coming technology assessment, educational leaders need to provide data on how well their students are progressing, how effective their teachers are, and how technology instruction is helping students solve real-world problems. eSchool News has compiled an extensive resource library that addresses these issues and shares experience from educators who have met the challenges.


Family Routines and Relationships Strengthen Poor Families  (May 2009) PDF document
research brief
Although poor families experience socioeconomic disadvantages, these families may be strengthened by their family routines and relationships, according to a new Child Trends research brief. “The Strengths of Poor Families” analyzes data for more than 100,000 families from the 2003 National Survey of Children's Health to find the similarities and contrasts between poor and more affluent families. Available in pdf (8 pages, 213 KB).


FCTD’s Summer Camp: Trees, Tents & Technology  (May 2009)
In this year's Assistive Technology (AT) Goes to Camp issue, the Family Center on Technology and Disability (FCTD) interviews Darla Motil, R.N., from the Achievement Centers for Children in Ohio, on using AT to support a child’s camp experience, provides resources to help families of children with disabilities who use AT for their child's camp experience, and features organizations that focus on aspects of the summer camp experience and the role of AT in enriching that experience.


Learning Supports and Small Schools: A Policy and Practice Analysis Brief  (May 2009) PDF document
This UCLA Center for Mental Health in Schools brief focuses on “How do small schools provide student and learning supports and how can they do it better?” It describes the current movement toward establishing small schools, discusses the problems small schools confront in addressing barriers to learning and teaching, and offers recommendations for how small schools can enhance learning supports and draws on previous policy and practice analyses done by the Center, other reports and analyses available online, and perspectives solicited directly from colleagues working at state departments, districts and schools, and professional associations. Available in pdf (40 pages, 196 KB).


Linking Academics, Technology and 21st Century Skills: New Tech High Schools, a Scalable Model for Public Education  (March 2009)
This brief from the American Youth Policy Forum reports on the New Tech high school model, focused on project-based learning, innovative uses of technology in the classroom and fostering a strong culture of student responsibility, which has emerged as a successfully-replicated approach to transforming high school education in the U.S., with 42 public schools across nine states.


Lost Opportunity: A 50-State Report on the Opportunity to Learn in America  (2009)
“Lost Opportunity,” from the Schott Foundation for Public Education, contains a state-by-state analysis, based on student performance data reported by state departments of education, that determines the opportunity to learn in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. The Schott Foundation used resource models to identify the four core minimum resources that are necessary if a child – regardless of race, ethnicity, or socioeconomic status – is to have a fair and substantive opportunity to learn: high-quality early childhood education; highly qualified teachers and instructors in grades K-12; college preparatory curricula that will prepare all youth for college, work, and community; and equitable instructional resources.


ODEP’s New Disability Employment Resource for Employers: Diversifying Your Workforce: A Four-Step Reference Guide to Recruiting, Hiring, and Retaining Employees with Disabilities  (2009) PDF document
reference guide
To meet the need for a comprehensive, portable, and easy to understand guide for employers who want to recruit, hire, and retain employees with disabilities, the U.S. Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) has released its new guide, covering topics such as Incentives & Return on Investment (ROI), Recruiting, Interviewing & Hiring, Achieving Workplace Success, Retaining Valued Employees, and more. It also provides links and lists other resources. The on-line version of “Diversifying Your Workforce: A Four-Step Reference Guide to Recruiting, Hiring & Retaining Employees with Disabilities” is available in pdf (11 pages, 901 KB).


Parsing the Achievement Gap II  (April 2009) PDF document
This report by the Educational Testing Service follows up on a 2003 study that examined how life experiences and life conditions correlated with cognitive development and student achievement. It brings the 2003 synthesis of research up-to-date, and asks if the gap among various population subgroups has narrowed in the intervening years. (Answer: No.) As with the first report, the follow-up report identifies 16 factors as they correlate to achievement. Available in PDF (38 pages, 2.42 MB).


Post-High School Outcomes of Youth with Disabilities up to Four Years After High School  (June 2009)
This report from the National Center for Special Education Research (NCSER) uses data from the third wave of data collection from the National Longitudinal Transition Study-2 (NLTS2) to provide information on youth with disabilities who had been out of secondary school for up to four years in several key domains, including: 1) postsecondary education enrollment and educational experiences; 2) employment status and characteristics of the youth’s current or most recent job; 3) productive engagement in school, work, or preparation for work; 4) household circumstance (e.g., residential independence; parenting; financial independence); and 5) social and community involvement.

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What's Happening

Other National Events


Breaking the Cycle: Investigating the Intersection of Educational Inequities and Health Disparities
Web-based Event
June 9, 2009
1:30 PM - 4:00 PM   (Eastern)
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Program for Ethnicity, Culture and Health Outcomes presents this 15th Annual Summer Public Health Research Institute and Videoconference on Minority Health.

Diplomas Count 2009: Broader Horizons
Web-based Event
June 11, 2009
3:00 PM - 4:00 PM   (Eastern)
At a time when only seven in 10 American students leave high school with a diploma, President Barack Obama is demanding that the nation lift its educational sights by asking all Americans to commit to at least one year of education after high school. The 2009 edition of Education Week’s Diplomas Count report, produced with support from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, investigates the issue of college readiness, exploring national policy debates as well as state and local initiatives to prepare all students for postsecondary education; and includes the EPE Research Center’s latest graduation-rate analysis, which identifies several dozen big-city school systems that exceed expectations. This free webinar will discuss the college-readiness agenda, the state of American high schools, and the future of the movement to improve them.

Special Education and the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act (ARRA)
Web-based Event
June 16, 2009
3:00 PM - 4:00 PM   (Eastern)
Larry Wexler, Director, Research to Practice Division, Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) of the U.S. Department of Education will lead this free webinar. He will discuss the ARRA funds and OSEP's technical assistance efforts.

FCTD Summer Institute 2009
Web-based Event
July 20, 2009 - July 31, 2009
The Family Center on Technology and Disability (FCTD) will provide a free, two-week online summer institute, July 20-31, 2009. FCTD’s summer institutes connect educators, disability professionals, and parents across the country with leading national experts in assistive and instructional technologies. This year’s institute will have two learning strands: “Accessible Instructional Materials: NIMAS and Beyond” and “Social Media Tools.” Participants can register for continuing education units (CEUs).

Safe and Drug-Free Schools National Conference
August 3, 2009 - August 5, 2009
National Harbor, MD
The U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Safe and Drug-Free Schools 2009 conference will focus on “The Power of Change” and will address issues of civic and character education, crisis planning, mental and physical health, substance abuse, and violence prevention, among others. There is no registration fee, but early registration is recommended as space is limited. Registration deadline: July 10, 2009.

Sixth Annual National Urban Service Learning Institute
August 5, 2009 - August 7, 2009
Philadelphia, PA
Sponsored by the National Youth Leadership Conference, this annual two-day event focuses on applying the principles of service-learning in urban environments. It brings together community members, young people, and school leaders to discuss service-learning outreach and application techniques that help urban students achieve academic excellence and become strong community leaders. Participants have an opportunity to explore current trends and topics affecting urban communities, and to share and learn from colleagues from other urban districts.

US BLN Annual Conference and Career Fair
August 15, 2009 - August 18, 2009
Landover, MD
Sponsored by the US Business Leadership Network (BLN) and Job Accommodation Network (JAN), this conference is a national event for business, community leaders and BLN affiliates that have an interest in hiring, retaining and marketing to people with disabilities. This year’s theme is “Connecting the Dots: Business Solutions.” ^ Top of Page ^

Get Wired!

Web Sites


Chapin Hall Rolls Out New Web Site with Improved Access to Research
Established in 1985, Chapin Hall is an independent policy research center whose mission is to build knowledge that improves policies and programs for children and youth, families, and their communities. Its new Web site provides new content and features and an updated navigation bar to help visitors browse more than 200 publications and abstracts of ongoing research projects.


National Clearinghouse on Disability and Exchange: Including Youth with Disabilities in Study and Travel Abroad Programs
The National Clearinghouse on Disability and Exchange (NCDE) is sponsored by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs of the U.S. Department of State, and is managed by Mobility International USA. NCDE provides resources on how special education teachers, transition and VR specialists, and parents of youth with disabilities can encourage high school students to explore overseas opportunities, both broadening their interests in other cultures and their future career options; and on how they can welcome and work with international youth with disabilities hosted in their home communities.

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Funding Forecast

Federal Grant Opportunities


FY 2008-2009 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


American Legion Child Welfare Foundation
Nonprofits can apply for grants ranging from $1,500 to $70,000 for projects that disseminate knowledge about new and innovative organizations and programs that contribute to the physical, mental, emotional and spiritual welfare of children and youth. Grants must have the potential to help American children in a large geographic area (more than one state). Deadline: July 15, 2009.


By Kids for Kids/NYSE Foundation/K12: NYSE Financial Future Challenge
The NYSE Financial Future Challenge asks kids to come up with new ways to teach their peers about finance, money management, and investing in the stock market. Entries may include games, books, websites, videos, and other media that illuminate the fundamentals of the stock market, enhance financial literacy, and make it easy for young people to learn about and even participate in the markets. Maximum award: $2,500 to invest in stocks, as well as media attention at the NYSE. Eligibility: youth ages 6-19 who reside in the U.S.; Washington, DC; and U.S. territories and possessions. Entry Deadline: August 31, 2009.


Gale and Library Media Connection Invite Nominations for TEAMS Award
Three K-12 public and private schools in the United States and Canada will be awarded $2,500, plus Gale products, and other media items, for classroom techniques that promote learning and increase student achievement through a collaboration of teachers and media specialists. All K-12 public and private schools in the United States and Canada are eligible to enter. Nominations will be evaluated based on demonstrated collaboration between media specialists and teachers during the 2007/08 school year, effective techniques that promote student learning and achievement, support received from school leadership, and ability for others to replicate this best practice. The nomination may be submitted by a library media specialist(s), teacher(s), principal(s), student(s), or parent(s). Deadline: June 15, 2009.


High School Teachers Invited to Apply for Classroom Earth Professional Development Grants
Twenty high school teachers who are new to the field of environmental education, who want to increase the environmental literacy of their students and are working to increase the environmental literacy of their students, will be awarded $1,500 to take two graduate-level courses offered online by the University of Wisconsin Stevens Point’s Environmental Education and Training Partnership. The courses for the upcoming year are: Fundamentals of Environmental Education (Fall 2009) and Making Environmental Education Relevant for Culturally Diverse Audiences (Spring 2010). Applicants must teach 9th to 12th grades in a public or private school in a state or eligible jurisdiction of the United States, have at least two years of teaching experience, be full-time employees of a school or school district, and anticipate a classroom teaching assignment for the coming year. Deadline: June 12, 2009.


Lead Agency Applications Invited for 2010 Global Youth Service Day
Grants of $2,000 sponsored by State Farm companies Foundation plus travel expenses to attend the Youth Service Institute in Washington, D.C., will be awarded to youth-focused nonprofits selected to be lead agencies for Global Youth Service Day in April 2010. Organizations engaging youth in community service in one or more of the 50 U.S. states, the District of Columbia, and the Canadian provinces of Alberta, Ontario, or New Brunswick are eligible to apply. Lead agencies increase the scope, visibility, and sustainability of Global Youth Service Day by leading city, regional, or statewide service projects. In previous years, lead agencies have been successful in garnering national media attention, developing new partnerships, and engaging elected and public officials in their service and service-learning projects. Deadline: July 17, 2009.


National Association of Independent Schools: Challenge 20/20 Program
Challenge 20/20 is an Internet-based program that pairs classes at any grade level (K-12) from schools in the U.S. with their counterpart classes in schools in other countries; together the teams (of two or three schools) tackle real global problems to find solutions that can be implemented at the local level and in their own communities. Elementary or secondary private, public, and charter schools from the U.S. and any other country are eligible to apply. Application deadline: August 17, 2009.


Open Meadows Foundation: Grants for Women and Girls
Open Meadows Foundation is a grant-making organization for projects that are led by and benefit women and girls. It funds projects that reflect the diversity of the community served by the project in both its leadership and organization; promote building community power; promote racial, social, economic, and environmental justice; and have limited financial access or have encountered obstacles in their search for funding. Maximum award: $2,000. Eligibility: 501(c)(3) organizations with an organizational budget no larger than $150,000. Projects must be designed and implemented by women and girls. Deadline: August 15, 2009.


Share Our Strength to Offer Great American Bake Sale Grants to Help Fight Childhood Hunger
Grants of up to $10,000 will be awarded by Share Our Strength’s Great American Bake Sale to nonprofits, schools, and local government agencies working to ensure children have access to after-school and summer meal programs. Grants for Program Sponsors will be awarded to organizations that directly sponsor USDA-reimbursed after-school and/or summer meal programs for children and will support efforts to increase the organization’s participation in these programs. Grants for Advocacy will be awarded to organizations that work to increase participation in USDA-reimbursed after-school and summer meal programs through outreach and advocacy, working with schools, community organizations, local businesses, and with a range of government officials to increase participation in summer and after-school meal programs. Applicants must be: nonprofit 501(c)(3) organizations, schools with a valid NCES code, or local government entities that work to ensure children have access to after-school and summer meal programs. Deadline: September 30, 2009.


Youth Service America Grants to Support Middle School STEM-Focused Service-Learning Programs
Contingent on federal funding, Youth Service America (YSA) will implement a program to support middle school science teachers and service-learning coordinators to strengthen their classroom practices through service-learning, a teaching method that combines meaningful service with curriculum or problem-based learning. The grant program will target students from disadvantaged circumstances in states with the highest dropout rates in the nation (AR, AZ, CO, DE, GA, IL, LA, NV, NM, NY, NC, WA). Application deadline: July 15, 2009.

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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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