Sunday, March 31, 2013

Teacher Stands In Place OF the Parent When The Child Is Sent To The Public Schools

Jeff Grisamore Not: Teacher Stands In Place OF the Parent When The Child Is Sent To The Public Schools

Teacher Stands In Place OF the Parent When The Child Is Sent To The Public Schools

Teachers Stands In Place OF The Parent When The Child Is Sent To The Public Schools


The law provides teachers with considerable authority over the control and education of the child, once the parent sends his child to the public schools. The authority of the teacher is given by law and is not delegated by the parent. Authority is granted to the teacher by the state as an essential part of teacher responsibility. The teacher stands in place of the parent when the child is under the teacherʼs supervision and care.

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Policy Perspectives with the Children’s Education Alliance of Missouri is an education reform podcast that will feature topics central to the need for education reform in Missouri. It will feature experts on accountability and transparency, teacher quality, and parental choice. To suggest topics or guests for our podcast please send us suggestions on FaceBook or tweet us at @ceamofficial.
8. Policy Perspectives (3/26/2013): Three things every parent of a special learner should know before attending an IEP meeting.
Click HERE to listen…Legal Services of Eastern Missouri attorney Pat Mobley who works with LSEM’s Children’s Legal Alliance talks about his work with special needs learners and the IEP process with CEAM’s Peter Franzen and Lisa Clancy.
7. Policy Perspectives (3/13/2013): Legislative Update
Click HERE to listen…Listen as CEAM State Policy Director Kate Casas discusses A-F school report card ratings and other education reforms being considered by the Missouri legislature.
6. Policy Perspectives (1/26/2013): Meet CEAM’s new field director, Lorna Kurdi, as she discusses her motivation for being part of the education reform movement in this interview with Peter Franzen.
Click HERE to listen…
5. Policy Perspectives (12/06/2012): Interview with Representative Steve Cookson
Click HERE to listen…
Peter Franzen and Kate Casas interview Representative Steve Cookson.
4. Policy Perspectives (11/13/2012): Interview with Amanda Henry
Click HERE to listen…
Teach for America – St. Louis alumnus Amanda Henry talks about the importance of making teacher evaluation a meaningful and instructive process that helps parents and school leaders understand the effectiveness of classroom teachers by using the “value-added” model.
3. Policy Perspectives (10/24/2012): Mike Malone discusses South City Prep’s finances.Click HERE to listen…Peter Franzen, Kate Casas, and Mike Malone, Founder and School Leader at South City Prep, discuss the Missouri State Board of Education’s declaration that South City Prep is financially distressed.
2. Policy Perspectives (10/18/2012): CEAM Position on St. Louis Public Schools Accreditation Status.Click HERE to listen…Kate Casas and Peter Franzen discuss CEAM’s position on the reclassification of Saint Louis Public Schools.
1. Policy Perspectives (10/12/2012): Meet the CEAM Staff-
Click HERE to listen…
The Children’s Education Alliance of Missouri staff discuss their background and passion for education reform.

Saturday, March 30, 2013

How autism can cost families millions- MSN Money

How autism can cost families millions- MSN Money

How autism can cost families millions

As the rate of reported cases rises, the expense of providing care -- sometimes for a lifetime -- is becoming staggering.

By Jonathan Berr Mon 8:58 AM
daughter, illness, child, parenting, insurance, health, medicalLost amid the recent coverage about the frightening rise in reported cases of autism is any discussion of the costs to families -- which can be staggering.

According to data from the Autism Society, the annual cost to society from the illness is $137 billion, greater than the state budget of California and more than twice the market capitalization of General Motors (GM -0.86%), North America's largest automaker.

No less overwhelming is the cost to individuals and families caring for a person with autism. The Autism Society cites estimates of $3.2 million for the lifetime costs of such care. Behavioral therapies for children can cost $40,000 to $50,000 per year. Caring for an adult with autism in a supported residential setting can cost $50,000 to $100,000 per year.

"Even if no new instances of autism occurred starting today, the number of adults who would potentially turn to the human services delivery system for services and/or supports by 2030 will be 500% higher than it is today," according a statement the society provided to MSN Money.

The costs can be such a burden that parents have known to move to states where children on the autism spectrum get better benefits for care. Parents must often pay for services out of their own pockets because what schools provide is inadequate. Increased emphasis on early detection is no doubt costing taxpayers more money, but it's not clear exactly how much.

And, of course, the concern about the rising rate of reported cases is indeed justified. Data released last week by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicate that that rate in American children is now 1 in 50. In 2007, the estimated rate was 1 in 86. Most of the increase is due to better, early detection of autism, which experts say is critical for successful treatment.

But Michael Rosanoff, associate director of public health research at Autism Speaks, says those figures, which are based on parental surveys, are probably too conservative. Data from South Korea collected by doctors estimate the rate at 1 in 38, or about 2.64% of that country's children.

"We think it's at least 2% (in the U.S.), but it may be higher," he said, adding that the federal government needs to do more. "It's absolutely frightening."

Jonathan Berr is the father of a 6-year-old son on the autism spectrum. Follow him on Twitter @jdberr.

Autistic Girl's 'Broken Cheeseburger' Story Goes Viral | ABC News Blogs - Yahoo!

Autistic Girl's 'Broken Cheeseburger' Story Goes Viral | ABC News Blogs - Yahoo!

Autistic Girl's 'Broken Cheeseburger' Story Goes Viral

A local Chili's restaurant in Midvale, Utah, might have made the grave mistake of "breaking" one little girl's cheeseburger by cutting it in half, but the waitress, manager and line cooks more than made up for it Sunday when they presented her with a brand new "fixed" one.
Seven-year-old Arianna Hill is autistic and she loves cheeseburgers. But apparently, ones that are cut in half just won't do.
"We just decided we were going to get some lunch before we were taking her to see the Easter bunny," Arianna's older sister, Anna MacLean, 25, told "She usually does OK in restaurants. It seemed to be going pretty well. She wasn't too overstimulated. She was really enthusiastic before we were even able to put our drinks orders in. She told the waitress, 'I'll have my cheeseburger.'"
However, when Arianna's burger was delivered to the table, MacLean noticed that Arianna wasn't touching it, but instead only eating her french fries.
"Her verbal skills aren't the best, but she can communicate basic things," MacLean said. "I asked why she wasn't eating and she said, 'I don't want it. It's broken.' She said, 'I need one that's fixed.'"
MacLean loves spending time with Arianna, but is always prepared to come across someone who might not be as understanding of her special needs. Fortunately, the restaurant didn't skip a beat in correcting the broken burger and their compassionate actions have now gone viral.
"Our waitress came back over and I felt bad. I don't really expect people to understand these special requests, so I just told her to add a new burger to our bill," said MacLean. "I just told her to charge it to us and she said, 'No way.' She was just so sweet and played along with Arianna."
The Chili's server, Lauren Wells, didn't hesitate before leaning down to personally apologize for the broken burger and assured Arianna she would bring her a brand new fixed one.
"The manager came over and did the same thing. It was really a big deal. The line cooks even got involved," MacLean said. "When she brought it back out, Arianna said 'Oh, thank you! You brought me a fixed cheeseburger.' She sat there and looked at it and said 'Oh I missed you,' and kissed it over and over again."
MacLean was so touched by the staff's compassion and understanding that something as minor as a cut-in-half cheeseburger would be enough to ruin Arianna's whole day that she snapped a photo of Arianna giving the cheeseburger a kiss and uploaded it to Facebook along with a brief description of how well the restaurant handled the situation.
Before MacLean knew it, the "broken cheeseburger" photo had more than 100,000 "likes" on the social media site, a number that continues to rise rapidly. At the time of this writing, the post had more than 220,000 "likes" and 10,000 comments.
"It's just touching," said Harrison Dixson, the Chili's general manager. "I had no idea. I looked at it this morning and it had a couple thousand likes. I thought someone would say, 'Hey, good job Midvale. But I'm talking to 'Good Morning America.' This is just unbelievable."
Dixson said he's gotten calls from people all across the country, including the president of Autism Speaks, an autism advocacy organization, thanking him for the way his manager, Brad Cattermole, and server, Lauren Wells, interacted with Arianna.
"I can't tell you how proud I am of those two. I've been with this company for 13 years and I've never been as proud as I am today," said Dixson.
"It turned out great and this turned into something way bigger than anything I ever imaged," MacLean said. "The comments on the post just bring awareness to people. This is Arianna's story. And this is Lauren's story, and the manager. They are a true inspiration."
Also Read

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Teachers Should Never Bully Their Students! - The Autism Site

Teachers Should Never Bully Their Students! - The Autism Site

Autistic Boy Injured During Body Sock Incident

Jeff Grisamore Not: Autistic Boy Injured During Body Sock Incident

Columbus, OH – An autistic boy was injured after teachers at his Ohio school used a restraint device known as a body sock on him. Naqis Cochran, 10, was placed in the device without permission, according to the family.The body sock was allegedly used on the autistic boy because he would not stop laughing during class. Naqis Cochran is a student at the South Mifflin Elementary School. The Teacher supposedly felt that spending some time in the body sock would help calm Cochran down.

The restraint device is made of a stretchy purple Lycra material. The boy told his mother that he remembers the teacher helping him step into the body sock and having his arms, legs, and head zipped inside. The next thing the Ohio autistic boy remembers is falling on his face and having his tooth knocked out. Naqis reportedly underwent two emergency root canals, but is doing fine now.

The South Mifflin Elementary School teacher reportedly noted in a statement about the body sock incident that she told the student to stop moving, and that is when he fell down and knocked out his front tooth.

Cochran’s parents maintain that they never authorized the use of a body sock on their child. When the family asked for an incident report about the body sock injury, the Columbus City Schools principal allegedly stated that no such document had been filed.
During an interview with NBC4, the autistic boy’s mother had this to say:
“No reports and the principal doesn’t report it and there is no emergency squad called. There things are very serious to us and our family and when we look at that, we called Children Services and filed a police report.
When the boy was taken to the hospital to care for his body sock injury, the mother recalled thinking that something just didn’t “feel right” about the scenario. She maintains that her child is not violent and would even find it difficult to defend himself. The Ohio mother feels that her special needs child was taken advantage of during the incident.

Naqis Cochran’s IEP (individual education plan) reportedly does not include any process for restraint usage or even address the need to be restrained. Both the teacher who placed the autistic boy inside the body sock and the building principal have been placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of an ongoing investigation.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Wanna Get Crabby With Us? | Think Autism. |

Wanna Get Crabby With Us? | Think Autism. |

Congress Rewrites IDEA Funding Rule - Disability Scoop

Jeff Grisamore Not: Congress Rewrites IDEA Funding Rule - Disability Scoop

A small change tucked inside a government spending bill this month may have big implications for special education.
Lawmakers included language clarifying the penalties that states may face if they fail to adequately fund education programs for students with disabilities. The issue has become significant in recent years as states struggled financially in the recession and some sought to cut education spending.
Under federal law, special education funding must be maintained or increased from one year to the next. If states fail to meet what’s known as “maintenance of effort” without obtaining a waiver from the U.S. Department of Education, they can lose out on future federal dollars.
At least two states — South Carolina and Kansas — got into trouble in recent years for slashing their special education budgets without federal approval. As a result, they faced permanent reductions in their allocations from the Department of Education.
Now, Congress has clarified that any penalties assessed for failing to meet maintenance of effort should only apply for the year or years that the requirement is not met. Moreover, any funds that are taken away from states for being out of compliance will not automatically return to the federal coffers, but instead can be redistributed to other states that follow the rules as bonus special education dollars.
“Without this language, these funds for special education and related services would lapse and be unavailable for the children with disabilities they are intended to serve,” said Michael Yudin, acting assistant secretary for the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services at the Department of Education, in a statement.
The change, which was proposed by the Obama administration, had broad support on Capitol Hill, congressional staffers say.
The move is also winning props from state leaders. Mick Zais, South Carolina’s superintendent of education, had been among the most vocal in pressing for a policy change after his state faced over $36 million in what he called an “absurd perpetual penalty.”
“This is a victory for students with disabilities in South Carolina and across the nation,” Zais said of the congressional action.

Kate Casas: Why I Want to Protect Great Teachers

Jeff Grisamore Not: Kate Casas: Why I Want to Protect Great Teachers

Why I Want to Protect Great Teachers

Posted: 03/26/2013 10:46 am

My third grade teacher was fabulous; in fact, in my 20 years of education I had a lot of really wonderful teachers. However, it is Mrs. Mason who inspired me to take on the challenging work of reforming the way teachers are evaluated, compensated, hired and retained.

Before being in Mrs. Mason's class I didn't hate school, but I didn't want anyone to notice me while I was there. I was terrified that my teachers were going to call on me; I might have to answer a question and worse yet that I would get it wrong. Mrs. Mason had a way of coxing me out of my shell, getting me to answer questions, and even taught me that raising my hand was a risk worth taking.
I will never forget the day she assigned us famous women to study for women's history month. When she assigned me Carol Burnett for my report, she whispered in my ear that she had given me Carol Burnett because I was important enough to have people listen to me the way they listened to Ms. Burnett. To this day, when my natural tendency to be an introvert rears its head and I want to hide in my office instead of make the hard phone call or go to the difficult meeting, I can hear Mrs. Mason whispering to me, telling me to be confident because I have value to add.
Having spent years in the classroom, I now realize that Mrs. Mason must have been doing this kind of thing for each student fortunate enough to be in one of her classes. She clearly knew that for me to be a successful student and adult I would need confidence and the ability to make myself be heard. These "soft skills" she taught me served me well throughout my long career as a student and now in my professional and personal life.
When my organization, the Children's Education Council of Missouri, decided to endorse Initiative Petition that, when passed, will reform teacher evaluations, tenure, and seniority-based layoffs, it was the possibility of protecting and elevating the profession for educators like Mrs. Mason that won me over. Every student deserves a teacher who, like Mrs. Mason, can look at the 25 faces sitting in the desks in front of them and know what each one needs to be successful and most importantly, how to get it for them.
CECM is supporting the Initiative Petition because it will move Missouri one step closer to recognizing the teachers who are doing for Missouri's students what Mrs. Mason did for my classmates and me. I know change is hard, I know teachers and administrators, and maybe even some parents are concerned about overhauling a system that has been in place for decades, but I also know that our current system is broken. Missouri's educators and students deserve a system of accountability that rewards educators who can meet every child where they are and move them forward.

MoCo special ed advocates pushing bill to make it easier for parents to dispute IEPs - The Washington Post

Jeff Grisamore Not: MoCo special ed advocates pushing bill to make it easier for parents to dispute IEPs - The Washington Post

MoCo special ed advocates pushing bill to make it easier for parents to dispute IEPs

Parents in Montgomery County are leading efforts to make it easier for Maryland families to dispute a child’s special education plan in legal hearings.
The parents have been lobbying in favor of a bill that would require school systems to defend Individual Education Programs in due process legal disputes, regardless of who initiates the proceedings.

If approved, the legislation would change the current system in Maryland, which states that the person bringing a complaint in special education disputes has the “burden of proof,” or responsibility of convincing a hearing officer whether the IEP developed for a particular child is appropriate.
Advocates say the special education process is overwhelming, expensive, intimidating and legally burdensome.
Maryland state Sen. Karen Montgomery (D-Montgomery) has sponsored Senate Bill 691, which advocates say would give parents a competitive edge in special education disputes.
Montgomery said parents who believe school systems aren’t providing the right education for their special needs children often are at a disadvantage when they seek more services from school districts. School systems have attorneys, special education experts and staff to fight or defend special education disputes. But parents often don’t have the legal expertise or money to go toe-to-toe against the school systems, she said.
“The school system always prevails because when the parents come in they’re kind of blindsided by all the paperwork they should have done and they don’t know,” Montgomery said.
Federal law says students with disabilities are entitled to a “free and appropriate education” funded by the public schools. Parents work with school administrators to develop IEPs for students, which detail the services children are supposed to receive. But when the two sides can’t agree and mediation fails parents can bring the dispute before a judge or legal officer in a due process hearing.
Advocates of the bill were at a subcommittee hearing in Annapolis last week and were scheduled to speak before the Montgomery County Council’s education subcommittee on Monday. . The Montgomery County Board of Education is expected to consider whether to support the proposed legislation at its meeting Tuesday. Parents also have also launched a petition advocating the bill, which nearly 800 have signed.
The Maryland State Department of Education has opposed the bill, with officials saying it would create an adversarial relationship between parents and school officials. William Fields, with the Maryland Office of the Attorney General, testified against the bill at a hearing last week.
He said changing the law wouldn’t make it any easier for parents to hire attorneys to contest special education plans for their kids.
“We think it would cut down on the collaborative process,” Fields said

Special ed ‘burden of proof’ bill likely to die today in Maryland Senate - The Washington Post

Special ed ‘burden of proof’ bill likely to die today in Maryland Senate - The Washington Post

Special ed ‘burden of proof’ bill likely to die today in Maryland Senate

Maryland state Sen. Karen Montgomery (D-Montgomery) said she will continue to advocate for reform that would make it easier for parents to dispute their children’s special education learning plans even though the bill she introduced this legislative session effectively died Monday.
Some parents in Maryland were advocating for Montgomery’s Senate Bill 691, which would have shifted the burden of proof in special due process cases to school systems.

Senate Bill 691 was a crossover with House Bill 1286, which Del. Aisha Braveboy (D-Prince George’s) pulled on Saturday, Montgomery’s staff said.
“The Senate doesn’t want this bill to die, but if we send the bill back over [to the House], they will vote it down,” Montgomery said. “This is a worthwhile bill.”
Advocates of the bill wanted school systems to defend the Individual Education Programs in due process legal disputes by default, saying it would help parents who don’t always have the resources to hire attorneys and experts to dispute their children’s education plans.
But opponents of the bill said it was unnecessary because complaints are often resolved in mediation or before they go to a due process hearing. They also said placing the burden of proof on school systems would increase adversarial relationships between families and special education administrators

Graphing Evaluation Data – A Skill All Parents Must Master

Graphing Evaluation Data – A Skill All Parents Must Master

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Despite opposition, paddling students allowed in 19 states –

Despite opposition, paddling students allowed in 19 states –

Ulrich Will Represent Principals at Summit - The Missourian: Saint Clair

Ulrich Will Represent Principals at Summit - The Missourian: Saint Clair

Jenny Ulrich will represent all Missouri school principals next month when she attends a national education summit in Louisville, Ky.
Ulrich, principal of Lonedell School, is one of six Missouri educators who were invited to attend the April 9-11 National Summit on Educator Effectiveness sponsored by the Council of Chief State School Officers.
“I consider it a great privilege to be selected to attend the summit that will be focused on educator effectiveness,” Ulrich told The Missourian. “I am honored to attend and very grateful for the opportunity for growth and learning in my own career while being able to be a voice for Missouri principals in this important conversation among many states.”
The goal of the annual summit is creating discussion and ideas centering on how teachers can be supported to be successful in their classrooms.
“The meeting brings together educators from kindergarten through 12th grade with educators from educator preparation programs to explore the overall continuum of development, beginning with an individual deciding to first become a teacher, through their clinical experience, and then becoming a beginning teacher in a school somewhere in our state,” said Paul Katnik, interim assistant commissioner of the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education’s Office of Educator Quality. “All participating states like Missouri will bring a team to think about how we best ensure the quality of the educator, from the preparation process all the way through the practice of educating Missouri students.”
Besides Ulrich and Katnik, other educators from Missouri attending are Gale “Hap” Hairston, director of educator preparation from DESE’s Office of Educator Quality; Patty Corum, deputy superintendent of personnel services, Fort Zumwalt School District; Carole Basile, dean of the University of Missouri-St. Louis; and Kathryn Chval, associate dean for academic affairs at the University of Missouri.
Katnik said Ulrich was selected to participate because “her perspective and experience will assist us in addressing how to provide quality school leaders capable of getting positive teacher and student performance in rural, small school settings.”
In addition, Katnik said “we were looking for districts where student achievement is a priority and data on student performance indicated positive results. We also wanted to include perspectives from both the large and small schools. Jen and Lonedell matched up well for meeting these.”
According to its website, 24 states belong to CCSSE, which is described as a nationwide, nonpartisan and nonprofit membership organization committed to creating a public education system that prepares every child for lifelong learning, work and citizenship.
The group’s promise “is to lead chiefs and their organizations in this effort by focusing on those state-driven leverage points they are uniquely positioned to address and increasing their capacity to produce students ready to succeed as productive members of society.”
The website also states that “through decisive leadership and collective state action, we are committed to delivering on this promise.”
“All member states are working in the area of educator effectiveness,” Katnik told The Missourian. “These areas include educator standards, preparation and evaluation. The consortium was created to explore effective ways to increase educator quality, with the primary purpose being the improvement of student learning.
“This meeting marks the beginning of collaborative work between nearly 40 institutions of higher education, over 500 public school districts and the State Department of Education.”
Ulrich, in her fourth year as Lonedell principal, recently was nominated for the principal of the year award through the Missouri Association of Rural Education. Lonedell also recently was recognized as one of 10 schools in the state that received a perfect score on the Missouri School Improvement Program’s latest accreditation summary report.
Those results, released in February, showed Lonedell earned a perfect 80-of-80 tally. The school received a perfect 48 points in academic achievement, which accumulates 16 points each for English, language arts, math and science. It also scored a 12-for-12 in subgroup achievement, gaining four points in each of the same four subject areas. In high school readiness, Lonedell scored a perfect 10. In attendance, the school also tallied a perfect 10.
In all, there are 574 school districts in the state. Schools that earned a 90 percent or above ranking are accredited with distinction.
“Supporting teachers and building a system of support within your school is the most critical job of a school administrator,” Ulrich said. “Effective educator support systems cultivate a positive culture within your school and provide teachers with the tools, feedback, professional growth, support and resources needed to be successful in the classroom.
“I am looking forward to learning more about what other states and administrators are doing to support their teachers in the classroom. After all, in the classroom is where the rubber meets the road. Ensuring teachers have the tools, knowledge, professional development and resources they need equals more opportunities for student success; the ultimate winners in it all are our students.”

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Future Of Disability Rights Enforcement Unclear - Disability Scoop

Future Of Disability Rights Enforcement Unclear - Disability Scoop

President Barack Obama nominated Perez Monday to be the next secretary of labor. If confirmed, the move would leave Perez’s current job as assistant attorney general of the civil rights division at the U.S. Department of Justice wide open.

Since he was confirmed to the post in 2009, Perez has taken on disability rights head first. Under his leadership, the Justice Department has participated in legal actions in more than two-dozen states to uphold the rights of those with disabilities to live in the community whenever possible, in addition to bringing first-ever hate crimes charges on the basis of disability.

If confirmed, disability advocates say they are optimistic that Perez will be a strong voice for those with disabilities at the Labor Department, perhaps addressing issues like subminimum wage and the use of sheltered workshops.

Who might take Perez’s place at the Department of Justice is unclear, though both Decker and Perriello said they believe the Obama administration’s commitment to disability rights enforcement comes from the top and will outlive any one appointee.