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2013 is in full swing!
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Facebook Wow ... if this past week is any indication of what 2013 is going to be like we better all get on our running shoes. Time is definitely speeding by. Hopefully everyone is getting back into the swing of things though some of our universities are not back up to speed. CASE would like to take a few minutes to say a special congratulations to the new CEC President Dr. Christy Chambers (IL). Chambers is a long time CEC and CASE member and in fact is a former CASE president. She ascended to her role as president of the Council for Exceptional Children on Jan. 1. Chambers is especially noted for the work she has done in Leadership development and specifically with her leading with heart. CEC is in for a great year under the leadership of President Chambers. Watch for new ideas, strong collaboration and always the heart showing. Congratulations, Madam President.

Congratulations also goes to Laural Jackson (AK) former CASE secretary for her election and move into service as a CEC Board of Director. President Laurie VanderPloeg (MI) has appointed Julie Bost (NC) to finish Laural's term as secretary. Julie has served in several state offices with NC CEC and has been active in NC CASE. Julie was the NC CASE board representative at the 2011 BOD meeting in Williamsburg, Va. Welcome to the CASE Executive Committee, Julie!

Now is the time to be registering for the CASE Winter Hybrid Conference. See below for the information and the links but all information may be found on the CASE website. Who doesn't need a sunshine break around mid February? The Rosen Plaza Hotel ($117/night) is a beautiful property and in an amazing location — close to all the best Orlando sites. But wait ... if you can't join us, host your own conference — we've done the leg work — you take the credit.

Mark your calendar now for CASE Night tickets. What a great time we will be having in San Antonio at CASE Night (April 4). Tickets will be going on sale on the CASE website on Feb. 1 — $65. CASE Night is once again being sponsored by Cambium Learning Group. The evening will be lots of fun beginning with jazz and appetizers at the St. Anthony Hotel and then will move to guided tours of the Alamo. Dinner will be at the St. Anthony's with lots of collegial networking, music and fun. Don't miss out on these tickets — we sell out each year.


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

CEC attends White House discussion on Sandy Hook Elementary School tragedy
CEC Policy Insider    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
On Jan. 9, at the invitation of Vice President Joe Biden, Deb Ziegler, CEC's associate executive director for policy and advocacy, attended a meeting at the White House to discuss the tragedy that occurred at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., in which a gunman killed 20 first-graders and six adults. More

6 interesting facts about the 113th Congress
CEC Policy Insider    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
With the official start of the 113th Congress, many observers are wondering whether the political gridlock of the last two years will continue — or whether 2013 will bring a new, collaborative approach among Democrats and Republicans that will result in putting politics aside to address the most pressing needs of the country. Alright, maybe that's just a New Year's resolution that will fall short. But, there are many interesting facts about the new Congress may impact business-as-usual. More

Are charter schools expelling students at higher rates than traditional schools?
CEC Policy Insider    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
According to an article in a recent Washington Post, the answer is yes, charter schools in Washington, D.C., are expelling students at far higher rates than traditional public schools. 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

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 — IDEA and Javits grants — 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

 Hot Topics

Making charter schools more inclusive
Harvard Education Letter    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Two years ago, Elizabeth Marcell, the director of intervention services at ReNEW Schools in New Orleans, faced an unenviable challenge. As the charter network worked to open its first two schools in the city, she saw that every special education file she inherited from the schools the network took over failed to fully comply with federal and state laws. Marcell, who wrote her dissertation on charters and special education, knew she had to act quickly. More

Demystifying learning disabilities: Empowering students
The Jewish Press    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Rivka Schonfeld, a writer for The Jewish Press, writes: "Meet Noam, a ninth grader I worked with several years ago. Noam came to my office because he was struggling with his biology curriculum. Though Noam was extremely smart, he had ADHD, which made it hard for him to focus on all of the material presented during class. Before we even looked at the material together, I asked Noam how he learned best. His face was blank as he responded, 'Um, Mrs. Schonfeld, I really am not sure.'" More

National survey reveals parents' deep concern about protecting kids from violence
District Administration Magazine    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
A new nationwide survey of parents commissioned by Common Sense Media and the Center for American Progress and recently released finds that 75 percent of parents say shielding children from violence is difficult. Seventy-five percent of parents blame easy access to guns, and 77 percent of parents believe media violence, such as content in TV, movies and video games, contributes to America's culture of violence. More

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School climate, discipline and safety: Gauging educator attitudes
Education Week    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Teachers and school-based administrators have valuable firsthand experience with school climate, discipline and safety. To learn more about educators' views on those topics, the Editorial Projects in Education Research Center conducted an online survey of teachers and school administrators who are registered users of, the Education Week website. More than 1,300 respondents completed the survey, which was fielded in September. Those respondents included administrators, teachers and instructional specialists (such as curriculum coordinators and instructional coaches). More

ROFF: Education should be customized to meet students' needs
The Washington Times    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
America has become the great nation it is because of its traditions, its values and its constitutional foundations. It is also great because, though the Constitution does not specifically mention it, the people decided at one point to make a priority out of giving every child access to education. For a nation built of immigrants, this was an important, even seminal, decision. Each generation, whether born in the United States or brought here by ship, plane or train, must learn (in addition to reading, writing and arithmetic) what it means to be an American. More

Teachers say they're not equipped to deal with grieving students
The Denver Post    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Seven out of 10 teachers nationwide had at least one student in class who has lost someone close to them in the past year, according to a survey by the American Federation of Teachers and the New York Life Foundation. On average, teachers reported interacting with eight students who'd experienced a loss in the past year. Of those who had grieving children in their classrooms, 67 percent reported the loss in a child's life translated to poor academic performance, and 87 percent said the kids had trouble concentrating in class. Yet only 7 percent of teachers who responded to the survey say they have ever had training in how to deal with a grieving student. More

Study: What makes a good teacher
The Washington Post    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Even as most of the nation's 15,000 public school districts roll out new systems to evaluate teachers, many are still struggling with a central question: What's the best way to identify an effective educator? After a three-year, $45 million research project, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation believes it has some answers. The most reliable way to evaluate teachers is to use a three-pronged approach built on student test scores, classroom observations by multiple reviewers and teacher evaluations from students themselves, the foundation found. More

Call for contributors
MultiBriefs    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
In an effort to enhance the overall content of CASE Weekly Update, we'd like to include peer-written articles in future editions. As a member of the special education industry, your knowledge 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 and our group of talented editors can help with final edits. If you're interested in participating, please contact Colby Horton to discuss logistics and payment. More


Bill seeks K-12 carbon monoxide detectors
The San Diego Union-Tribune    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
California schools could soon be required to install carbon monoxide detectors. "It is common sense to protect our children's safety and ensure they have a healthy learning environment," Assemblywoman Shirley Weber, D-San Diego, said in introducing the legislation. Weber's Assembly Bill 56, which is still being refined, would require that carbon monoxide detectors be installed at all new and renovated schools starting Jan. 1. The measure proposes that detectors be placed near each furnace. More

California schools face rising special education costs
The Associated Press via San Francisco Chronicle    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
California's school districts are shouldering an increasing share of the rising cost of educating students with disabilities as state and federal funding remains flat, according to a state report. The 25-page report by the state Legislative Analyst's Office found that school districts must keep dipping deeper into their general funds to pay for special education. More

ChalkTalk™ - An on-demand video interview series

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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

Brain scans show how kids' brains change with learning
Psych Central    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
New technology is allowing cognitive scientists to watch how a child's brain changes as they learn to read and do math. Specifically, novel use of brain imaging allows scientists to observe the brain's inner workings as a child or adult watches "Sesame Street." This use of brain imaging during everyday activities opens the door to studying other thought processes in naturalistic settings and may one day help to diagnose and treat learning disabilities. More

Bringing passion and collaboration to professional development
THE Journal    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Digital learning advocate and teacher trainer Sheryl Nussbaum-Beach is looking to shake up the way teachers connect, collaborate and work with students — but not in the way you might think. "One of the things I tell [teachers] is that I don't want you to change anything about your teaching. I want you to change everything about your learning, and do that first." For years, Nussbaum-Beach has concentrated her efforts on helping teachers become "connected educators" who are able to leverage both online and face-to-face learning networks to find the right people to connect and collaborate with on topics related to their passions and professional growth. More

What parents and educators need to know about medication for ADHD
Psych Central    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
"ADHD medications turn kids into compliant zombies." "They're only prescribed to simplify a parent's job." "They boost the risk for drug abuse." "They change kids' personalities." These are just some of the many myths about treating attention deficit hyperactivity disorder with medication. And these misconceptions no doubt leave parents confused and overwhelmed about the best ways to treat their child's disorder. More

Reading is easy (illiteracy is hard)
Right Side News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
This country, for the last 80 years, has been living through what future historians might call the Great American Reading Swindle. The experts claimed to believe in a method that didn't work. In order to protect it, and to shield themselves from charges of educational malpractice, they generated endless shock waves of intellectual disorientation. More

Chicago faulted on learning disabilities
The New York Times    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
When Rashaan Payne was 2 years old, his pediatrician noticed that he was not talking at the level of most children his age. After autism was diagnosed, Rashaan began receiving speech therapy once a week at his home on the South Side of Chicago, paid for by the federal and state governments. When he turned 3 in October, federal law mandated that he leave that program and be evaluated for services within the Chicago Public Schools. But while his mother, Treva Thompson, said she has filed paperwork and repeatedly called the neighborhood school, Rashaan has yet to be evaluated. She is worried that after making progress, her son will lose ground. More

Teacher highlighted creative powers of dyslexics
The Age    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Susan Parkinson, who has died aged 87, helped found, in 1992, the Arts Dyslexia Trust, an organization that has significantly affected attitudes to the condition in Europe and America. Herself dyslexic and trained in drawing and sculpture, Parkinson later became a teacher. As a result, she knew that many responsible for managing education considered dyslexia an affliction to be cured. More

Learning with dyslexia doesn't come easy
Rapid City Journal    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
For Austin Rasby, reading aloud to classmates was one of his scariest moments in grade school. "I dreaded it," he said. "You're forced to read in front of your peers. There's that awkward silence." Rasby, now 22, would eventually be diagnosed with a phonetic decoding disorder, which falls under the spectrum of dyslexia, he said. Dyslexia encompasses a variety of reading and writing learning disabilities that interfere with the way the brain processes and acquires language. 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
Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601
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Articles appearing in CASE Weekly include recent stories in the media related to Special Education and may not directly reflect the views and position of CASE. The appearance of advertising in CASE Weekly does not constitute CASE endorsement of any product, service or company or of any claims made in such advertisement.

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