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Department of Education panel says test consortia need sharper focus on accessibility
Education Week
A technical review panel set up by the U.S. Department of Education is urging both common core assessment consortia to pay better attention to ensuring that their tests are accessible to students with disabilities and those whose native language is not English. That is one of the more stern outcomes of the panel's first appraisal of the work so far of PARCC and Smarter Balanced. The review panel, created in March, issued its reports on July 3. You can read them on a special page of the department's website.
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ADHD drugs don't boost kids' grades
The Wall Street Journal
It's no longer shocking to hear of children with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder — and others simply facing a big test — taking ADHD medicine to boost their performance in school. But new studies point to a problem: There's little evidence that the drugs actually improve academic outcomes. Stimulants used to treat ADHD like Ritalin and Adderall are sometimes called "cognitive enhancers" because they have been shown in a number of studies to improve attention, concentration and even certain types of memory in the short-term. Similar drugs were given to World War II soldiers to improve their ability to stay alert while scanning radars for enemy aircraft.
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 In the News


Education reform movement learns lesson from old standards
NPR
Common Core — the new set of national education standards in math and English language arts — will take effect in most states next year. This move toward a single set of standards has been embraced by a bipartisan crowd of politicians and educators largely because of what the Common Core standards are replacing: a mess. In years past, the education landscape was a discord of state standards. A fourth grader in Arkansas could have appeared proficient in reading by his state's standards — but, by the standards of another state, say Massachusetts, not even close.
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TRENDING ARTICLES
Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

    Learning with dyslexia: The gift of difference (Ledger Transcript)
PARCC adopts special education testing policy for Common Core (Education Week)
If teachers don't believe in kids with learning disabilities, who will? (Take Part)
Study: Music education helps kids learn to read (The Washington Post)
How library summer reading programs can help your child with LD (The National Center for Learning Disabilities)

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


What stops girls from learning math?
Gifted Challenges
Math is for geeks. Nerds. The robotics kids. Definitely not for girls. Really? Why do some girls go from budding math scholars in grade school to a "dumbed down" shell of themselves in high school? What happens to these gifted girls who love the logic, complexity and challenge of math, but feel they must forego their passion to fit in?
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Survey: Most states undecided about Duncan's extra waiver flexibility
Education Week
In the wake of U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan's offer to shift the teacher-evaluation timeline by one year for waiver states, Politics K-12 decided to survey all of the eligible states to see if they plan to apply for this new flexibility. The takeaway? Most are undecided, but a sizable number of states — or 14 — say they don't need or want the flexibility, for a variety of reasons. Some, such as those headed by members of Chiefs for Change, believe any delay is a delay in accountability. Other states, such as New York, Colorado and Tennessee, told us they won't pursue it because their timelines are set out in state law or regulations.
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Looking for similar articles? Search here, keyword WAIVER.


Problems and diagnoses related to childhood ADHD
Psych Central
Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder often does not occur alone in children and teens. Common co-occurring problems include learning disabilities, disruptive mood dysregulation disorder, and oppositional defiant disorder. When your child or teen is affected by additional mental health concerns, these will generally be treated in conjunction with ADHD. The best treatment for your child's or teen's mental health concerns is through a partnership with a well-qualified and experienced mental health professional, such as a child psychologist.
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Everything you need to know about Common Core testing
THE Journal
"When in doubt, just pick B." These words, uttered by teachers, parents and students, have been part of standardized testing folklore for many years. As many current state-level accountability measures are dominated by multiple-choice questions with only four options, guessing has seemed almost strategic. Well, things are about to change.
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House readying K-12 bill for floor
National Journal
Legislation that would fundamentally rework the K-12 education system is headed for the House floor, according to Education and the Workforce Committee Chairman John Kline, R-Minn., The bill passed out of his committee last month. Now its members are promoting it with videos emphasizing different aspects of the legislation. The most recent video deals with one of the more emotional elements of the law — how to hire and evaluate teachers. The Republicans on the committee are touting the bill's removal of federal qualification requirements that they say get in the way of hiring the best teachers.
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Personal discovery on dyslexia may aid many
The Boston Globe
Astrophysicist Matthew Schneps was waiting at a bus stop, scanning a scientific paper he had downloaded onto his smartphone, when it dawned on him: he was reading with ease. That realization surprised Schneps, who has dyslexia, a learning disability that makes reading difficult. He had always felt comfortable in the lab, not the library. His bus stop epiphany led Schneps to wonder whether hand-held gadgets might be an effective reading platform for people with dyslexia. Now, eight years later, his research, which has shifted from studying stars, is beginning to show there may be some benefits. The timing couldn't be better.
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FEATURED ARTICLE
TRENDING ARTICLE
MOST POPULAR ARTICLE
ADHD drugs don't boost kids' grades
The Wall Street Journal
It's no longer shocking to hear of children with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder — and others simply facing a big test — taking ADHD medicine to boost their performance in school.

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read more
Genetics of dyslexia and language impairment unraveled, earlier diagnosis to come
Medical Daily
People affected by dyslexia often go undiagnosed until they're well into high school — living years without intervention and with stunted academic performance.

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Is the Common Core initiative in trouble?
The Washington Post
Education Secretary Arne Duncan recently met with Chamber of Commerce leaders and urged them to be more vocal and forceful in defending the Common Core State Standards. Why?

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IQ tests hurt kids, schools — and don't measure intelligence
Salon
The history of learning disabilities is a tale of multiple conceptualizations, spanning several continents. In the United States, physician Samuel Orton studied children with reading disabilities who had at least average IQ scores. Orton conceptualized language and motor disabilities as brain dysfunction in spite of normal or even above average intelligence. He believed that to adequately diagnose learning disabilities, it was important to combine a variety of sources of information, including IQ test scores, achievement test scores, family histories and school histories. For those who then warranted the learning disability diagnosis, Orton believed the proper intervention consisted of directly targeting the specific area of weakness and using the child's "spared" abilities to help remediate the disability.
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5 learning techniques psychologists say kids aren't getting
Psychology Today
J. Richard Gentry, an author and expert on childhood literacy, reading and spelling, writes: "My guest poster, Steve Peha, founder of Teaching That Makes Sense, Inc., comments on recent psychological research showing that kids spend more time using the five least effective learning techniques than they do using the five most effective and what we should do about it."
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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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Hailey Sasser, Senior Education Editor, 469.420.2630   
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