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ASD Professional Development
Dr. Ernsperger, BCBA-D

Promoting evidence based practice in the field of ASD with immediate application to the classroom. Please contact Dr. Lori at, or learn more.


 CASE News

Luann's article
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Facebook Last week, CASE President Laurie VanderPloeg (MI), CASE Research Chair Dr. Gina Scala (PA), long time CASE members and past presidents Pat Guthrie (KY) and Dr. Christy Chambers (IL) and I represented you at the IDEA Partnership meeting in Alexandria, Va. The IDEA Partnership reflects the collaborative work of more than 50 national organizations, technical assistance providers, and organizations and agencies at state and local level. Together with the Office of Special Education Programs, the Partner Organizations form a community with the potential to transform the way we work and improve outcomes for students and youth with disabilities. CASE has been an active partner in the partnership along with CEC for the 14 years of the project. During the meeting we got updates on the Assessment Consortia (Smarter Balance, PARRC, DLM, ASSETS and NCSC); heard from Assistant Secretary of OSERS Michael Yudin and OSEP Director Melody Musgrove, as well as updates on various other National Centers and Partnership Tools and activities. A real highlight was introducing the first draft of the Blueprint for the Partnership Way — a how to manual on developing meaningful collaborations with cross stakeholders.

If you haven't been to the IDEA Partnership website lately, you need to go today. The resources available to you through the Collections are practical, high quality and FREE. When I was at the district level, I would have paid a lot of money for the development of the power points, the leader guides, the glossaries, needs of the field, etc in the very areas they exist on the website: Autism, Common Core State Standards and Assessment, Cradle to College, Creating Agreement, RTI, Secondary Transition, Specialized Instructional Support Personnel and Together on RTI.

Speaking of Cross Stakeholders ... if you can't make it to Orlando, Fla., Feb. 13-15 why not consider registering to be a virtual site? Then invite cross stakeholders — parents, business community, school board members, general education, and special education teachers and administrators for the various 3 days of topical discussion. We have a customizable flyer you can use to advertise and a set of hints to help you out. What a deal. What an opportunity to create a local team of supporters. Start your own discussion on reinventing special education. Don't miss out on this great opportunity. For more information see below or go to the CASE website


Special Education Law Symposium
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Designed for a national audience, this intensive one-week, well-­balanced program is available on both a non-­credit and graduate-­credit basis and provides a thorough analysis of the leading issues under the IDEA and Section 504. Among the 19 symposium sessions are the following "hot topics": RTI; discipline, including a mock manifestation determination hearing; child find; transitional services; tuition reimbursement and other remedies; disability-­related bullying; and autism. More

Center on Online Learning
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Online learning programs for K-12 students are enjoying rapid growth nationwide, but there is little understanding of the effectiveness of these programs for students with disabilities. Recognizing the need for research in this area, the Office of Special Education Programs within the U.S. Department of Education created the Center on Online Learning and Students with Disabilities one year ago. The Center aims to improve the accessibility and engagement of K-12 online learning for students with disabilities through a focus on learner variability.

To this end, the center has identified several sites for case studies in online learning. In the last couple of months, the center put into place timelines for a case study with Lawrence Virtual School in Lawrence, Kan., as well as a case study in Washington State, both of which will examine students and parents in actual online learning programs. These studies are scheduled to begin in early 2013.

Representatives from the Center also gathered at several major conferences, including the Council of Administrators of Special Education Conference in November and the National Association of State Directors of Special Education annual business meeting in October, where the center engaged in dialogue with participants on topics including accessibility and accountability of programs and received feedback from state directors regarding state initiatives in online learning. Insight gained from these events guides the center in its research and suggests new avenues of study.

For access to the center's original research and updates on its progress, please visit our website at We encourage those interested in more frequent updates to follow us on Twitter at @onlinecenter1.

Have you registered for the CASE Winter Hybrid Conference yet?
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The theme is Evolution, Re-invention or Revolution: The Future of Special Education, Feb. 13-15 in Orlando, Fla. With some of the great minds in education this interactive professional development will be a wonderful opportunity for team building and truly being a part of defining the field for years to come. The Rosen Plaza is a wonderful location — just minutes from so much of the best of Orlando — and the price of $117 is phenomenal. We will have 3 days with a different emphasis each day: Virtual Education and implications for Special Education, The Re-invention of Special Education and The Evolution of Special Education. Click here for a copy of the agenda.

But, wait ... If you can't travel, why not have your own mini conference. You pay one registration fee and then have as many people as you wish to participate with you — what a really great way to build teams. We have even made up a set of HINTS for you to use to get you started. We will even provide a flyer for you to customize to publicize your event. As part of the CASE strategic plan, our goal is to get the best information out to the most people. Go to the CASE website for more information, or contact Gary Myrah, CASE professional development chair at

Daily Themes:
  • Applying Virtual Education
  • Integrated Education for ALL
  • Re-Inventing/Re-Booting SPED
  • Virtual Education: Jeff Jacobson, Matt Wicks, Bennett Rodick and Andy Morrison
  • MTSS: Drs. George Batsche, Judy Elliott and Neil Guthrie
  • SPED Evolved: Drs. Steve Kukic, Melody Musgrove, Bob Pasternack and Alexa Posny

 CEC Policy Insider

Speak out on behalf of special and gifted education — Share your story with CEC
CEC Policy Insider    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Every year, CEC publishes the Federal Outlook for Exceptional Children, providing an overview of federally-funded programs that impact the lives of children and youth with disabilities and/or gifts and talents. The Outlook is distributed to members of Congress, federal agencies and other leaders in the education community with the hope that a better understanding of such programs will lead to increased federal funding for special/gifted education programs. More

New disability research funding opportunity
CEC Policy Insider    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The Department of Education just announced a new funding opportunity focused on minority entities and Indian Tribes. Specifically, the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research's Disability and Rehabilitation Research Projects and Centers Program-Minority-Serving Institution Field-Initiated Projects is going to fund projects to develop methods, procedures and rehabilitation technology that maximize the full inclusion and integration into society, employment, independent living, family support and economic and social self-sufficiency of individuals with disabilities, especially individuals with the most severe disabilities. Another purpose of the FI Projects program is to improve the effectiveness of services authorized under the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended. More


READ 180 is a comprehensive system of curriculum, instruction, assessment, and professional development proven to raise reading achievement for struggling readers in grades 4–12+. Designed for any student reading two or more years below grade-level, READ 180 leverages adaptive technology to individualize instruction for students and provide powerful data for differentiation to teachers. READ 180 helps target the specific skill deficits and unique instructional needs outlined in a student’s Individualized Education Program (IEP). Learn More

Will education show up in Obama's 2nd Inaugural address
CEC Policy Insider    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
On Jan. 21 President Barack Obama will give his second Inaugural address. If you won't be in Washington, D.C., to attend the ceremony, then tune in Monday morning at 9:00 a.m. to see the start of the inauguration festivities. The president will be sworn in officially at noon EST to begin his second term. More

 Hot Topics

CDC: People with special needs should be on 'high alert' for flu
Disability Scoop    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
With the flu widespread across much of the country far earlier than normal, federal health officials are warning people with developmental disabilities to be particularly cautious. Currently, 47 states are reporting widespread flu activity, according to the latest data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Typically flu season peaks in January and February. This year the illness hit about a month ahead of schedule, CDC experts said. More

Why are children at higher risk for negative health effects of environmental toxins?
Medical Xpress    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
More than 85,000 synthetic chemicals are registered for commercial use with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and only about half of those produced in large quantities are tested for their potential toxic effects on humans. Children are particularly vulnerable to environmental toxins and a detailed look at how and why, and what can be done to protect children's health, is presented in a two-part article published in Alternative and Complementary Therapies from Mary Ann Liebert Inc. publishers. More

Bullying takes toll on kids with autism
Disability Scoop    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Children with autism are experiencing high rates of bullying and face significant emotional consequences as a result, a new study finds. In what's believed to be the largest look ever at autism and bullying, researchers found that 38 percent of children with the developmental disorder were bullied over a one-month period, in many cases repeatedly. What's more, of those who were victims, 69 percent experienced emotional trauma and 8 percent were physically harmed as a result. The findings were published this month in a study in the Journal of Developmental & Behavioral Pediatrics. They are based on a survey of parents of more than 1,200 kids with autism from across the country. More

Some children lose autism diagnosis: Small group with confirmed autism now on par with mainstream peers
National Institute of Mental Health via ScienceDaily    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Some children who are accurately diagnosed in early childhood with autism lose the symptoms and the diagnosis as they grow older, a study supported by the National Institutes of Health has confirmed. The research team made the finding by carefully documenting a prior diagnosis of autism in a small group of school-age children and young adults with no current symptoms of the disorder. More

Study: For girls, teachers' gender matters
Education Week    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Female elementary school teachers' comfort with mathematics has an outsize effect on the girls they teach, according to new research. Girls taught by a female teacher got a learning boost if that teacher had a strong math background, but had consistently lower math performance by the end of the school year if she didn't, according to a study presented at the American Economic Association's annual conference. More

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AutismPro provides online tools to help school districts meet state compliance and due process requirements in supporting students with Autism and Related Disorders. It's a comprehensive suite of professional development and case management resources for educators and professionals working with students with ASDs.

Should STEM become STEAM?
District Administration Magazine    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
STEM, or science, technology, engineering and mathematics education has been a major component to 21st century learning in K-12, but some say the acronym needs to be more inclusive. Several groups created by educators have emerged to support the push for the addition of an "A" to STEM, for STEAM, to represent the disciplines of art. More

Teaching children with dyslexia
The Huffington Post    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Unfortunately, the label of "being dyslexic" is often been seen as a negative one. One which can produce upset, limitations and hurdles to a student. However, with the right training, teaching and encouragement it can also produce strengths, talents and creative gifts. More

School breakfasts now served as widely as lunches
Education Week    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Maybe the message about the most important meal of the day has finally sunk in: In many school districts, more than 90 percent of schools that serve lunch through the National School Lunch Program now serve breakfast at school, too, new data from the Food Research and Action Center show. More


Obama's plan to make our schools safer Blog    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
President Barack Obama introduced a new plan to keeps guns out of the wrong hands, make schools safer and increase access to mental health services. "While reducing gun violence is a complicated challenge," Obama said during the announcement. "Protecting our children from harm shouldn’t be a divisive one," he said. More

Legislation promises help for dyslexic kids in New Jersey schools
NJ Spotlight    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
In 2005, an Ocean City mother started asking legislators, educators and other parents to help address what she saw as the failure of New Jersey public schools to help children with dyslexia — starting with her daughter. Eight years later, Beth Ravelli has seen a state reading-disabilities task force created, a host of recommendations completed and a half-dozen bills submitted to transform them into law. More

ChalkTalk™ - An on-demand video interview series

ChalkTalk™ videos are cost-effective and are available "on demand". The talk show format focuses on educational issues and best practices in educating students with disabilities. Information is available at your fingertips, as the videos become an archived electronic library that you can access at any time. Click here to learn more!
A web-based system that addresses the challenge of intervention scheduling in the schools. It's designed for anyone who needs to schedule and document interventions. MORE

 In the News

Gallup: Student engagement drops with each grade
Education Week    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
With every year that passes between fifth and 12th grade, the number of students who are engaged in school declines steadily, according to the recently released Gallup Student Poll. A majority of elementary school students — almost 8 in 10 — qualify as engaged, the poll found. By middle school, however, that number drops to 6 in 10 students. And when students enter high school, it drops to 4 in 10. More

Report: International tests severely misrank US students
eSchool News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Prominent international tests skew comparisons of test scores, and U.S. student performance actually ranks much higher than believed, according to a new report released by the Economic Policy Institute. The truth, says the report, is that — when comparing apples to apples in weighing U.S. student performance against that of other industrialized countries — U.S. students don't rank 25th in math, but 10th; and in reading, the country is not 14th, but 4th. More

Teen rates of suicidal behaviors similar to adults
HealthDay News via Doctors Lounge    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Suicidal behaviors are common in U.S. teens, primarily in those already seeking treatment for pre-existing mental disorders, according to a study in JAMA Psychiatry. Dr. Matthew K. Nock, from Harvard University in Boston, and colleagues assessed information gathered from face-to-face interviews with 6,483 adolescents (aged 13 to 18 years) and their parents participating in the National Comorbidity Survey Replication Adolescent Supplement. More

University of Utah's iSTAR program helps children with autism shine
The Deseret News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The University of Utah's iSTAR educational program focuses on children with autism — specifically teaching them how to use computers for 3-D modeling. The university held a demonstration for parents and teachers to show how SketchUp, a free downloadable design program, could help children at home and in the classroom. Children with autism often face challenges in school, but this program gives them an opportunity to shine and show people what they can do. The program uses Trimble's SketchUp to display the child's spatial-visual strengths. More


Event       Location     Dates Notes

CASE Winter Conference       Orlando, Fla.     Feb. 13-15 This is a hybrid conference. You can attend in person or via the Internet.
Daily Themes:
Applying Virtual Education
Integrated Education for ALL
Re-Inventing/Re-Booting SPED

CASE EC       San Antonio     April 2 More information to come.

CASE Member/BOD Meeting       San Antonio     April 3 More information to come.

CASE Night       San Antonio     April 4 More information to come.


CASE Weekly Update
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