Common core (with special education) basics

by Marty Hobe – In 2009 the National Governors Association began drafting standards that would become known as the “Common Core.” All but six states have now become members of the initiative. The NGA along with the Chief State School Officers commissioned a group of experts to craft standards that “provide a consistent, clear understanding […]

Kids with learning disabilities do not struggle for lack of effort

by Rifka Schonfeld – She has trouble reading. He can’t write in a straight line. She doesn’t focus unless she can see the person speaking to her. He can’t remember something if it’s not written down. She can’t add. He can’t follow directions. All of the above describe symptoms of children who suffer from language-based […]

Young man with Asperger’s teaches how to improve social skills from own experience

by Asher Bayot – Being socially awkward is tough. It limits your options and gives you unneeded stress while in normal situations. Luckily, there are people out there who have successfully overcome the pains of social awkwardness and are ready to give useful advice on how to overcome these stressful social struggles. Meet Dan. He’s […]

Kids with ADHD benefit from psychotherapy but they are not getting it

by Anthony Rivas – Kids who are taught about emotional intelligence learn how to recognize their emotions when they appear, and how to regulate them in a responsible, psychologically safe way. All kids should learn about it, but perhaps more in need of learning it are kids with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Although it’s […]

Understanding learning disability basics

by Nilooka Dissanayake – Today let’s talk about learning disabilities. The first person that comes to my mind when thinking of learning disabilities is Richard Branson of Virgin Group, with over 400 companies. “I left school when I was 16 years old,” says Branson, “Partly because of my dyslexia, I couldn’t always follow what was […]

Dyslexia is very common yet misunderstood

by Jeri Packer – Stupid, childish, slacker, daydreamer – words that hurt and can damage a young person’s self-esteem. These misapplied labels can be signs of someone with dyslexia. The confusion comes in because this same individual appears bright and articulate in a conversation, but is unable to read, write or spell at grade level. […]

Teachers express concern that inclusion model is not the least restrictive for special needs students

by Rafael Guerrero – Hundreds of special education students in Yakima schools are not receiving their share of specialized instruction because of the district’s decision to change its model for special education services, teachers argue in a formal complaint to the state. The Yakima Education Association (YEA) submitted the complaint last week to the Office of Superintendent of Public […]

Early childhood language delay marks brain in autism

A common characteristic of autism – language delay in early childhood – leaves a definite ‘signature’ in the brain, says new research. Delayed language onset – defined as when a child’s first meaningful words occur after 24 months of age or their first phrase occurs after 33 months of age – is seen in a […]

Coping with a son’s mental illness

by Jessica Firger and Eliene Augenbraun – It was Dec. 14, 2012, and Liza Long headed to work at Carrington College-Boise. It was just another Friday morning until Long, the mother of four children, logged on to Facebook, where news of a mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, was just beginning […]

Neighbors complain about yelling to parents of girl with ADHD

The parents of three children say they are “really troubled” by an anonymous letter left in their mailbox last Friday that says neighbors “are exasperated by the screams of your children.” Sarah Cloutier says her kids aren’t perfect and scream from time to time outside, but they mostly play like normal kids. Cloutier’s daughter Laurence, […]