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 Top Stories

Schools favor inclusion when forced to report academic progress
Disability Scoop
As Congress debates the role of testing, a new report finds that schools with the greatest accountability for students with disabilities are most likely to promote inclusion. Schools held to more stringent academic reporting standards are more likely to deliberately transition kids with disabilities from self-contained to mainstream classrooms, according to the study from the U.S. Department of Education's Institute for Education Sciences. The findings suggest that educators may be more motivated to help students with disabilities achieve alongside their typically-developing peers when schools must account for progress.
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Looking to share your expertise?
In an effort to enhance the overall content of THE LD SOURCE, we'd like to include peer-written articles in future editions. As a member of LDA and/or reader of THE LD SOURCE, your knowledge of learning disabilities and related issues lends itself to unprecedented expertise. And we're hoping you'll share this expertise with your peers through well-written commentary. Because of the digital format, there's no word or graphical limit. Our group of talented editors can help with final edits. If you're interested in participating, please contact Ronnie Richard to discuss logistics.


How can we increase the value of a student's evaluation?
By: Howard Margolis
An evaluation is only as effective as the questions it aims to answer. And often, evaluators fail to see the precise, critical questions that need answering. They don't know the child or situation well enough to identify them. Therefore, they tend to do what they normally do, often leading to boilerplate evaluations and reports that leave parents and teachers wondering, "What new and valuable answers and recommendations did the evaluator provide?"
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PRODUCT SHOWCASE
  Leveled Guided Reading - 93% Decodable

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House lawmakers push 'No Child' overhaul forward
U.S. News & World Report
The House Education and the Workforce Committee has passed a bill to reauthorize the long-outdated No Child Left Behind Act, despite strong objections from Democratic committee members, the Obama administration and dozens of education advocacy groups. The bill, dubbed the Student Success Act, passed on a party-line vote (21-16). It would significantly scale back the role of the federal government in overseeing public education, give states more flexibility in designing accountability systems and consolidate dozens of federal education programs.
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 In the News


How children learn to read
The New Yorker
Why is it easy for some people to learn to read, and difficult for others? It's a tough question with a long history. We know that it's not just about raw intelligence, nor is it wholly about repetition and dogged persistence. We also know that there are some conditions that, effort aside, can hold a child back. Socioeconomic status, for instance, has been reliably linked to reading achievement. And, regardless of background, children with lower general verbal ability and those who have difficulty with phonetic processing seem to struggle. But what underlies those differences? How do we learn to translate abstract symbols into meaningful sounds in the first place, and why are some children better at it than others?
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PRODUCT SHOWCASE
  Student-Paced, Mastery-Based Math

Since 2004, Math-U-See has worked with intervention and special education teachers to reach struggling special needs math students. Math-U-See corresponds to math ability rather than traditional grade levels, so it can be used with students of any age. We provide tools and training for an explicit, structured, systematic, cumulative program using multi-sensory teaching techniques. MORE
 


Slowing down to learn: Mindful pauses that can help student engagement
MindShift
One way to promote engagement and learning is to consciously create pauses throughout the day. We can create a sense of spaciousness in our classroom by slowing down the pace of our speech and punctuating our lessons with silence. Introduced well, this practice can improve classroom discourse.
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Glimmer of hope in 8-year battle to replace No Child Left Behind
The Christian Science Monitor
The eight-year effort to reauthorize No Child Left Behind, the controversial bill that sets federal education policy, has come down to a battle over testing and accountability among some odd bedfellows. All sides agree that an updated law is an urgent necessity. But the question of what role standardized tests should play and how to hold underperforming schools to account divides deeply.
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PRODUCT SHOWCASE
  Unique Approach to Reading Problems

See how a sandwich and a cake can help your students learn to read! The Stevenson Reading Program uses proven methods in unique and imaginative ways to address the needs of LD students. It often succeeds with students who have struggled with other specialized approaches. Visit our website here or call 800-343-1211 for info.
 


Students struggle to hear teacher in new fad open-plan classroom
Phys.org
Many of us would remember our days in primary school sitting in a classroom with four walls, among 20 to 30 other students, and a teacher instructing us from the front. Recently, some schools have been converting classrooms to more open-plan environments, where several classes share the same space. Classes are still divided into classes of 20-30 students with their own teacher, but all of these classes are in the same room with no walls separating them, which results in 50, 90 or even 200 children in the one area.
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Looking for similar articles? Search here, keyword CLASSROOM.


115 education groups: GOP No Child Left Behind legislation is vastly underfunded
The Washington Post
The Republican-dominated House education committee just approved legislation, H.R. 5, that is a rewrite of the No Child Left Behind Act with funding levels that critics say are inadequate to properly support K-12 public education. Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., the chairman of the Senate's education committee, has released draft legislation that has been hit as well by critics who say the funding levels are below the fiscal 2012 pre-sequestration total and would harm efforts to improve student achievement.
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TRENDING ARTICLES
Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

    The power of observation (By: Pamela Hill)
Study looks to tap strengths of ADHD students (Medical Xpress)
Early childhood programs found to significantly lower likelihood of special education placements in third grade (AERA via Science Daily)
Lawmaker calls for more teacher training, resources to help students with dyslexia (Deseret News)
Questions surround vouchers for students with disabilities (Disability Scoop)

Don't be left behind. Click here to see what else you missed.



Put working memory to work in learning
Edutopia
Working memory involves the conscious processing and managing of information required to carry out complex cognitive tasks such as learning, reasoning, and comprehension. It has been described as the brain's conductor. Memory has long been viewed as a key aspect of learning, but as the emphasis in educational standards has shifted away from rote memorization and toward the knowledge and skills needed to process new information, working memory is increasingly taking center stage.
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Teachers give girls better grades on math tests when they don't know they are girls
Slate
When it comes to explaining why women are underrepresented in science, technology, engineering and math, it's not enough to point to discrimination in hiring, even though that is a real phenomenon. It's also true that STEM fields have a "pipeline" problem, where not enough girls are choosing to pursue education and eventually careers in science and tech. New research suggests that part of the problem is that girls are being discouraged at very young ages from thinking of themselves as capable at math.
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'Fraction phobia': The root of math anxiety?
Education Week
Liana Heitin, a contributor for Education Week, writes: "Over the past year, since I took over the common-core math beat, I've been thinking a lot about fractions. As I wrote in November, the Common Core State Standards for mathematics emphasize fractions as points on a number line, rather than just parts of a whole. Now, more teachers are pinning numbers to clotheslines to demonstrate fractions rather than divvying pizzas and fruit pies. Many experts have called this the biggest shift from previous state standards in math."
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THE LD SOURCE

LDA does not recommend or endorse any one specific diagnostic or therapeutic regime, whether it is educational, psychological or medical. The viewpoints expressed in THE LD SOURCE are those of the authors and advertisers.

Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601
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