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Finding a Mentor: Highlights From Our LD Chat

Last week’s #LDchat-ers shared their experiences, concerns and thoughts on how to find a mentor or be a mentor for kids with learning and attention issues. This #LDchat featured guest expert Katie Long from Eye to Eye, a national organization committed to pairing middle schoolers with learning and attention issues with college students who also have learning and attention issues. Here is some of what they had to say and resources Katie and others shared.

Want to join the conversation? Every Wednesday at 12 pm ET, NCLD hosts a discussion on Twitter called #LDchat. People from all over the country and around the world log on each week to discuss a new topic, and you can, too! Here’s how:

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Congress Gets Moving on Early Screening, LD Research and Charter Schools

congress-gets-moving-screening-research-charter-schools

The past few weeks saw movement in Congress on three of our policy priorities—early screening, special education research and inclusion in public charter schools.

Here’s a quick summary of what happened.

Early Intervention and Screening In early April, our executive director James Wendorf met with members of the Senate and other advocates to discuss early education. Everyone agreed we need to help young kids get access to high quality learning. But Wendorf told the Senators that early screening and intervention for learning and attention issues must be part of the solution. He also advocated for more funding to provide services to young students under the Individuals With Disabilities Education Act.

Special Education Research Congress introduced, and we support, a new bill called the Strengthening Education Through Research Act (SETRA). SETRA makes special education research a priority for the U.S. Department of Education. It also sets a goal of eliminating the gap in achievement between students with disabilities and other students. This is a bipartisan bill sponsored by Representatives Kline (R-MN), Miller (D-CA), Rokita (R-IN) and McCarthy (D-NY). While we support this legislation, we remain concerned about recent cuts to research funding. This bill doesn’t solve that problem and we must remain vigilant to see that it is solved.

Inclusion of Students With Disabilities in Public Charter Schools Finally, Congress also introduced a bill called Success and Opportunity through Quality Charter Schools Act. The bill would provide money to some states in order to create and expand quality charter schools. Most importantly, any state receiving the money must help charter schools enroll and retain students with disabilities. The charter schools who receive money must have a plan to meet the needs of students with disabilities. This is a strong step toward equal opportunities for students with disabilities. Again, this is a bipartisan bill. It is sponsored by Representatives John Kline (R-MN) and George Miller (D-CA).


 

megan-casey-policy-associate Meghan Casey is the Policy Research & Advocacy Associate at NCLD. She is part of the Public Policy and Advocacy team which implements NCLD’s legislative strategy in Washington, D.C., and advances government policies that support the success of individuals with learning disabilities in school, at work and in life.

Family and Social Life: Highlights From Our LD Chat

Last week’s #LDchat-ers shared their experiences, concerns and thoughts on how to help their children with social skills, and help their families adapt and understanding LD. Here is some of what they had to say and resources they shared.

Want to join the conversation? Every Wednesday at 12 pm ET, NCLD hosts a discussion on Twitter called #LDchat. People from all over the country and around the world log on each week to discuss a new topic, and you can, too! Here’s how:

Continue Reading

A New Bipartisan Charter Schools Act Strengthens Inclusion of Students With Disabilities

success-opportunity-quality-charter-schools-actRepresentatives John Kline (R-MN) and George Miller (D-CA) introduced a new bipartisan bill in Congress this week called the Success and Opportunity through Quality Charter Schools Act. The bill would provide federal money to a limited number of states in order to encourage the growth and expansion of quality charter schools. One of the most important things about this bill is that it specifically addresses the needs of students with disabilities, an issue NCLD has long been concerned about.

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Disorder, Disability or Difference: What’s the Right Term?

whats-right-termParents of children with learning and attention issues are often bombarded with terms for how to describe their children's challenges. Some people seem to talk about dyslexia and ADHD as "disorders," while others refer to them as "disabilities." Sometimes it seems as though the terms are used interchangeably. But do they actually mean the same thing? And for that matter, why do some people avoid using either word and insist on calling dyslexia and ADHD "differences"? In fact, the three words carry different meanings, and which term is most appropriate may depend on the context.

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