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August 2010 E-News


The latest news and information from around the country.

New Projects


The “Make It Stick” Campaign
The “Make It Stick” Campaign is a social marketing effort to bring to life A New Day for Learning, by showing what is working to advance expanded and out of school time learning opportunities. The Campaign’s message is that everyone plays a role in providing high-quality learning opportunities to children and youth, as young learners, parents, teachers, business leaders, members of the community, and elected officials. The Campaign uses blogs, online videos, case studies, and other media, to equip advocates with messaging techniques, research, and outreach tools to make the case for the need of expanded and out-of-school time learning opportunities.

Legislative Announcements


Voters Want an Overhaul of Nation’s High Schools
A new poll released by the Alliance for Excellent Education finds that improving the quality of public high schools through the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (in its current version, No Child Left Behind) is a voting issue for over 80% of voters. Those polled believe the nation’s public high schools urgently need improvement, more so than middle schools or elementary schools. Over half say that their decision to vote for a current elected official in the 2010 congressional elections will be affected if Congress takes no action to reform NCLB.

Calls to Participate


Administration on Developmental Disabilities (ADD) Priority Survey Announcement
ADD is seeking input as they begin to consider future plans and how they can best meet the diverse needs of individuals with developmental disabilities, and their families, across the country. ADD seeks resources to use on the priorities of the developmental disabilities community, especially on the most pressing and relevant concerns affecting people with developmental disabilities and their families. They are looking for stakeholders’ thoughts regarding the focus of future Projects of National Significance.


Mobility International USA Seeks Blogs on International Exchange Participation
People with disabilities are invited to send in personal blogs about participation in international exchange programs. Qualifying authors will earn $50, and their blogs will be posted to the Stories and Blogs page ( of the National Clearinghouse on Disability and Exchange (NCDE). NCDE seeks people with disabilities who have studied, worked, or volunteered abroad, and written an essay or kept a blog about the experience, and would like to share it with other people with disabilities who are interested in going abroad. Deadline for submissions: September 1, 2010.

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The Resource Zone

Other National Resources


Charting the Course: Supporting the Career Development of Youth with Learning Disabilities  (2010)
Published by the Institute for Educational Leadership, National Collaborative on Workforce and Disability for Youth, in Washington, DC, this guide is intended for practitioners, administrators, and policymakers in secondary and postsecondary education programs, transition programs, One-Stop Career Centers, youth employment programs, and community rehabilitation programs, to help them improve services and outcomes for youth, ages 14 to 25, with diagnosed and undiagnosed learning disabilities. It includes reference charts, tables, and tools for counselors, career advisors, and other professionals who work directly with youth; and in-depth information on a such topics as the types and impact of learning disabilities, needed supports, and research-based interventions. Support is especially needed for youth in the workforce development system with learning disabilities that have not been identified and others who know they have a learning disability but choose not to disclose it. Many of the approaches advocated in this guide are based on universal design, making them useful to all youth, with or without disabilities.


Council of State Governments Releases Survey and Findings on State Disability Policy  (July 2010)
On the 20th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Council of State Governments (CSG) released a comprehensive survey of state policy related to disabilities, featuring nearly 149 different entries from 31 states, to help spread awareness of these programs from across the nation. Challenges and issues facing disability are numerous. State and federal governments continue to struggle in developing policies on housing, employment, and independent living. This document provides policymakers with information on policies that they can pursue in their own states.


Documenting What Works  (2010)
This report from the Achievement Gap Initiative (AGI) at Harvard University looks at 15 outstanding public high schools from Massachusetts, Illinois, Ohio, Maryland, Texas, and Washington, DC. Teams from each school made presentations at the 2009 AGI conference and were questioned by experts about the methods by which they had achieved progress (e.g., high value-added test score gains on statewide assessment tests and narrowing test-score achievement gaps).


Improving Transition Outcomes for Youth Involved in the Juvenile Justice System: Practical Considerations  (March 2010)
This InfoBrief from the National Collaborative on Workforce and Disability-Youth describes the characteristics of and issues faced by youth involved with the juvenile justice system, including those with disabilities. It provides a framework for youth service professionals to help youth avoid or transition out of the juvenile justice system, promotes cross-systems collaboration, and highlights promising practices being used around the country. (This InfoBrief is based on “Making the Right Turn: A Guide about Improving Transition Outcomes for Youth Involved in the Juvenile Corrections System,” available at: Available in pdf (12 pages, 291 KB).


Learning from Leadership: New Report Finds Effective School Leadership Is Strongly Connected to Student Achievement  (July 2010)
“Learning from Leadership: Investigating the Links to Improved Student Learning,” a report on the Wallace Foundation’s study of the importance of strong school leadership, confirms that strong school leadership is influences student achievement. Among school-related influences on student achievement, school leadership is second in importance only to classroom instruction. The report stresses that leadership must be “collective,” a collaborated effort among educators, parents, students, principals, and community members. The combined influence of these stakeholders has a greater impact on student learning than any one leader, according to the study. Available in pdf (338 pages, 3.31 MB).


Making the Move to Managing Your Own Personal Assistance Services (PAS): A Toolkit for Youth Transitioning to Adulthood  (2010)
The Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP), through its Youth Technical Assistance Center, has released “Making the Move to Managing Your Own Personal Assistance Services (PAS): A Toolkit for Youth Transitioning to Adulthood,” a guide designed to help transition-aged youth with significant disabilities, as well as their family and friends, navigate the complex world of PAS. Transitioning into adulthood can be awkward for nearly everyone. For transition-age youth with disabilities, issues surrounding managing Personal Assistance Services (PAS) can be intensified by the normal concerns of navigating the road into adulthood. Accessing and maintaining long-term supports, such as PAS, can be a significant barrier to employment of youth and adults with disabilities.


National High School Center’s “Tiered Interventions in High Schools: Using Preliminary ‘Lessons Learned’ to Guide Ongoing Discussion”  (May 2010)
The National High School Center has released an analysis of Response to Intervention (RTI) in several high schools, “Tiered Interventions in High Schools: Using Preliminary ‘Lessons Learned’ to Guide Ongoing Discussion.” It reports the initial work of the High School Tiered Interventions Initiative (HSTII), a collaborative project of the National High School Center, the National Center on Response to Intervention, and the Center on Instruction, and summarizes what HSTII has learned about effective RTI implementation in high schools. It includes a brief description of the RTI framework and the essential components of RTI, illustrates how the essential components of RTI were implemented at eight visited schools, highlights contextual factors unique to high schools, and examines how these factors can affect school-level implementation of tiered interventions.


NCWD/Youth and ODEP Release Cyber Disclosure Workbook for Youth with Disabilities  (2010)

The National Collaborative on Workforce and Disability-Youth (NCWD/Y) and the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) have released “Cyber Disclosure for Youth with Disabilities,” a supplement to “The 411 on Disability Disclosure: A Workbook for Youth with Disabilities,” to help youth learn about disability disclosure and what it means for them. Search sites like Google, social networking sites like Facebook, and micro-blogging sites like Twitter have added a new element to disclosure. Without even being aware of it, an individual can disclose disability status on the internet, for instance, by including a picture of oneself using a wheelchair, or commenting on a friend’s blog about disability, or posting a profile on a disability organization’s website. This document provides youth suggestions on how to make informed decisions about their own disability disclosure and to manage their disclosures online.


Preventing Mental, Emotional, and Behavioral Disorders among Young People  (March 2009)
Mental health and substance use disorders among children, youth, and young adults are major threats to the health and well-being of younger populations, often carrying over into adulthood. The costs of treatment for mental health and addictive disorders are an enormous burden on the affected individuals, their families, and society. This burden can be lessened by finding prevention practices that impede the onset or reduce the severity of the disorders. “Preventing Mental, Emotional, and Behavioral Disorders Among Young People” updates a 1994 Institute of Medicine book, “Reducing Risks for Mental Disorders,” focusing special attention on the research and work with younger populations that have been done since that time.


Program Quality Matters for Adolescent Outcomes  (August 2010) PDF document
Research Report
Child Trends has released a report, “How Out-of-School Time Program quality is Related to Adolescent Outcomes.” The report finds positive outcomes for adolescents in high-quality out-of-school time programs, but no significant differences between adolescents in low-quality programs and those not in a program at all. It is based on data from the “Every Child Every Promise” survey commissioned by the America's Promise Alliance. High-quality out-of-school time programs are defined as those that promote a sense of physical and emotional safety, enable youth to build positive relationships, allow youth a role in decisions, and support development of social skills, like conflict resolution, leadership, and teamwork. Available in pdf (260 KB, 8 pp).

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What's Happening

Other National Events


Data Driven: Making Student Data Accessible and Meaningful to Families
Web-based Event
August 10, 2010
3:30 PM - 5:00 PM   (Eastern)
The U.S. Department of Education has adopted using data for school improvement as a major education reform priority. In the past decade, the Department, school districts, and states have spent more than a billion dollars to build data systems to foster improvement and now can transform this data into information that can promote student success by tracking academic progress and by guiding the daily actions of families, schools, communities, and the students themselves. This third webinar, “Data Driven: Making Student and School Data Accessible and Meaningful to Families,” will look at practical examples of how districts and schools use data to engage families in their children's education. The webinar will introduce tools that help practitioners, districts, and schools to incorporate data into their own family engagement strategies.

Strategies to Increase School Completion Rates for Students with or at Risk for Emotional/Behavioral Disorders
Web-based Event
August 20, 2010
12:00 PM - 1:30 PM   (Eastern)
Students with Emotional/Behavioral Disorders (EBD) continue to demonstrate the worst post-secondary outcomes among all groups of students, in part due to their large dropout rate. This webinar will focus on two current federally funded Centers that focus on prevention and intervention among high school students at risk for school failure due to problem behavior. First, the need for consistent pro-active environmental supports across a continuum will be discussed through School-wide Positive Behavior Supports. Second, preliminary work will be presented from a recently funded research center focusing specifically on students with EBD within high schools. Participants will be provided with promising ideas and directed to available resources to assist them in implementation.

TRN, Inc., Career Development for Youth and Adults with Disabilities Web Course
Web-based Event
September 14, 2010 - September 27, 2010
Career Development is a 2-week, approximately 20-hour web training on developing career goals through vocational assessment, career development skills, and vocational profiling for youth and adults with disabilities. Topics will include principles of self-determination, the discovery process, and situational assessment, as well as entry jobs versus dream jobs, self-employment, career exploration strategies, self-presentation, and other approaches. Participants can log on at any time from any computer with internet access during the course access period to participate in the training. Successful completers receive a certificate. The course will be facilitated by Rob Hoffman, a well-known consultant who has taught extensively on the employment of people with disabilities.

Think College/TASH Webinars
Web-based Event
September 15, 2010 - October 13, 2010
3:00 PM - 4:30 PM   (Eastern)
Think College and TASH are holding a series of webinars together on issues relating to persons with disabilities in September and October: Sept. 15, “Postsecondary Education For People With Intellectual Disabilities: Overview, Higher Education”; Sept. 22, “Funding Postsecondary Programs For Students With Intellectual Disabilities”; Sept. 29, “Transition To College For Students With Intellectual Disabilities”; Oct. 6, “Creating Inclusive College Options: Strategies And Promising Practices”; and Oct. 13, “Strategies To Support Employment In PSE Programs.”

“Honoring Our Past, Shaping Our Future”
September 27, 2010 - September 28, 2010
Orlando, FL
The National Association of Councils on Developmental Disabilities is sponsoring “Honoring Our Past, Shaping Our Future: 40 years of Councils on Developmental Disabilities,” in Orlando, Florida. The conference provides opportunities to share resources and ideas that highlight Council accomplishments and best practices on a range of issues affecting people with developmental disabilities. This year’s conference will have sessions on employment, transition, capacity building, housing, technology, health, and self-advocacy.

“Transition in the 21st Century”
October 14, 2010 - October 16, 2010
Groton, CT
The “Transition in the 21st Century” Regional Conference, sponsored by the Division on Career Development and Transition (DCDT), will be held in Groton, Connecticut. It will feature keynote speaker, LeDerick Horne, a nationally recognized motivational speaker, poet, and advocate for people with disabilities. ^ Top of Page ^

Get Wired!

Web Sites


American Institutes for Research’s National High School Center
The National High School Center, based at the American Institutes for Research, provides the latest research, user-friendly tools and products, and high-quality technical assistance on high school improvement issues.
Formally known as Connect for Kids, SparkAction has re-launched a new, improved site: The new site merges the comprehensive CFK library of articles and resources with the Youth Policy Action Center’s high-tech online advocacy tools and the National Youth Development Information Center’s publications. SparkAction was developed with input from hundreds of organizations and young people across the country.

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Funding Forecast

Federal Grant Opportunities


FY 2009 - 2010 Discretionary Grant Application Packages
This site, from the Department of Education, provides information on grant competitions that are currently open.


FY 2009-2010 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


ASCA: School Counselor of the Year
The American School Counselor Association’s School Counselor of the Year program honors school counselors who are running top-notch, comprehensive school counseling programs at either the elementary, middle or high school level. The program brings up to 10 finalists and their nominators to Washington, DC, in early February, where they participate in a Congressional briefing, meet with their members of Congress, and are honored at the School Counselor of the Year Gala. Deadline: September 15, 2010.


Barbara Bush Foundation: Grants for Literacy
The Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy’s grant-making program seeks to develop or expand projects designed to support the development of literacy skills for adult primary care givers and their children. Maximum award: $65,000. Eligible are organizations with current nonprofit or public status in existence for two or more years as of the date of the application that have maintained fiscal accountability and operated an instructional literacy program in existence for at least two years that includes one or more of the following components: literacy for adults; parent education; pre-literacy or literacy instruction for children pre-K to grade 3; intergenerational literacy activities (Parent and Child Together Time). Deadline: September 10, 2010.


Best Buy: Teach@15 Award
Best Buy’s Teach@15 Award program improves classroom learning by helping schools (grades 7-12) meet technology needs. A teen member (age 13-18) who is a registered member on can nominate his/her school to win a Teach@15 Award. Eligible are accredited, nonprofit junior or senior public, private, parochial, magnet, and charter high schools in the U.S. serving any grades 7-12.


Character Education Partnership: National Schools of Character Awards
The National Schools of Character Awards program twofold purpose is: to identify exemplary schools and districts to serve as models for others; and to help schools and districts improve their efforts in effective character education. Eligible are schools that have been engaged in character education for a minimum of three years, starting no later than December 2007; and districts that have been engaged in character education for a minimum of four years, starting no later than December 2006. Deadline: December 1, 2010.


Lowe's Charitable and Educational Foundation: Toolbox for Education Grant
Lowe’s Toolbox for Education grant program funds school improvement projects initiated by parents, in recognition of the importance of parent involvement in education. The maximum award is $5000. Eligible are K-12 schools (including charter, parochial, private, etc.) or parent groups (associated with a non-profit K-12 school). Deadline: October 15, 2010.


Nominations Invited for National I Love My Librarian Awards
Grants of $5,000 plus a $500 travel stipend will be awarded to up to ten librarians in recognition of their accomplishments at public, school, college, community college, and university libraries. The award encourages library users to recognize the accomplishments of exceptional public, school, college, community college, or university librarians whose work improves the lives of the people in the school, campus or community. Deadline: September 20, 2010.


NSTA: Distinguished Fellow Award
The National Science Teachers Association Distinguished Fellow Award recognizes NSTA members who have made extraordinary contributions to science education through personal commitment to education, specifically science teaching or science; educational endeavors and original work that position recipients as exemplary leaders in their field; or significant contributions to the profession that reflect dedication to the NSTA as well as the entire educational community. Winners are recognized at the NSTA Awards Banquet in conjunction with the NSTA National Conference. Deadline: November 30, 2010.


TASH: Breakthroughs in Inclusive Education Awards
The TASH Breakthroughs in Inclusive Education Awards honor contributions of individuals and school districts in advancing inclusive education and equitable opportunities for students grades K-12, particularly those with the most significant disabilities and support needs. Awardees will be selected from these categories: Inclusive Education Administrator of the Year; Inclusive Education Teacher of the Year; Inclusive Education Advocate of the Year; Most Promising Inclusive School; Most Promising Inclusive School District. All awardees will be recognized at the TASH 2010 Conference in Denver, CO, December 8-10, 2010, in the conference program, on the TASH website and at the general session. Attendees will receive a commemorative plaque, and TASH will promote awardees' accomplishments to the trade media and local press. Eligibility: school districts and education professionals that work inclusively with students K-12 with disabilities. Deadline: October 1, 2010.

Scholarships and Awards


Global Challenge Award
Global Challenge’s mission is “to provide high school students worldwide the tools and confidence to solve global problems together” by providing students with project-based learning experience working in small global teams to solve climate change issues. Global Challenge’s contests are held in spring and fall and, upon request, award students who make a good effort with letters of recommendation and certificates of participation and accomplishment. Other awards vary, and may include sponsorship to courses, organizational membership, opportunities for study or engagement in science, technology engineering and mathematics, prizes, discounts on “green goods,” cash, and travel support (or some combination) to the members of selected winning teams. Deadline for fall contests: October 30, 2010.

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End of Issue

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