Information on Down Syndrome pamphlets should not come from legislators

by Paul Jablow – There is no escaping the fact that I’m an agnostic, pro-choice liberal still rooted in an era when people didn’t buy Ronald Reagan’s mantra that “government is the problem.” There is also no escaping – and no desire to escape – the fact that I have an absolutely wonderful daughter who […]

Teacher to teacher back to school tips

by Greg Schwanbeck - In late August, the pleasure of summer relaxation begins to overlap with the excitement of a new school year. It’s a wonderful time to be a teacher. While trying to catch my last wave or last fish of the summer, I begin a mental routine that energizes me and prepares me for the […]

Autism drug may not be far off in the future

Autistic children have an excessive amount of synapses, or brain connections between neurons, which doesn’t alter as it should with age, US scientists have revealed. This could help develop a drug normalizing their number even after diagnosis. The results of the research, carried out by US neuroscientists at Columbia University Medical Center (CUMC), were published in the […]

Software crashes special ed in L.A. Unified

APphoto_LA Schools iPads

by Yana Gracile – Two weeks into the new school year, LA Unified administrators are still working out bugs in a new computer system, a disruption that has made instruction particularly difficult for special education teachers, who need specific information for each of their students. The new MiSiS — My Integrated Student Information System — is designed to […]

Assistive technology is not a crutch for special needs students

by Rebecca Ungarino – New gadgets and mobile apps introduced in the past few years are making reading, writing and math more accessible to students with learning disabilities. Text-to-speech apps like Voice Dream Reader and Notability have changed the way students comprehend lessons in areas they normally struggle, said Karen Janowski, an assistive technology consultant […]

Individual dyslexia intervention highly successful

Compelling research shows learning outcomes for children with dyslexia can be vastly improved. Specialized, early intervention can significantly boost success at school for a child with dyslexia, a pilot study shows. One-on-one, personalized tuition resulted in vast and surprising improvements in achievement skills, Karen Waldie, Associate Professor of the School of Psychology at Auckland University, […]

Documentary by dyslexic filmmaker raises awareness on the disorder

by Ann Nyberg – Documentary film maker Harvey Hubbell is dyslexic. Educated in Newtown in the 1960s, life for him was difficult because educators didn’t know then what they know now. A lot of very successful people in the world are dyslexic. They can’t read or write but can be taught to do so if […]

I’M NOT RETARDED I’M SMART NOT A MENTAL GIANT BUT I AM INTELLIGENT

by William Stillman – These are the words that were communicated to me by a 16-year old young man whom I was visiting in his rural high school classroom on a crisp and wintry January morning. Like most teens his age, he took classes in keyboarding and computers, and was a fluent two-handed typist. But […]

Law to provide parents a Down syndrome information kit is signed

by Marie McCullough – Pennsylvania has joined a small but growing number of states requiring that a Down syndrome diagnosis be accompanied by useful, accurate information about the genetic disorder. The Down Syndrome Prenatal and Postnatal Education Act, effective Oct. 1, mandates that medical practitioners give expectant or new parents “informational publications,” to be provided […]