|Home > News> Response to "NCLB Weapons of Public Education Destruction" by Sue Heath|
School is stressful for most kids with disabilities. Parents feel the stress too. By spring, many parents and children are counting the days - and the hours - until school ends for the summer.
is off! Maybe things will be better next year.
When you join a parent support group, you meet other parents who have traveled down this road. They will provide you with emotional support and will teach you the rules of the game. Learn from them.
As you look for a parent group, think about your interests and needs.
you want emotional support?
The answers to these questions will help you decide what type of group to join.
for an active parent group that exists to meet the needs of their
members. You may find groups that were established to meet the needs
of children who have different disabilities than your child. Do not
rule these groups out. Parents of children with all disabilities share
common interests and want to get good special education services for
* Organize Your Child's File
Very few parents have
a complete copy of their child's file. Because special education generates
so much paper, folks toss documents into cardboard boxes or bags.
If you do this, you will not be able to find what you need.
You should organize your child's' file in chronological order. File all documents in reverse order. When you finish, the oldest document will be on top, most recent document will be at the end.
Emotions to Advocacy, gives you step-by-step directions about
how to do this.
* Learn to Measure Your Child's Educational Progress
Is your child making progress? Is the child falling further behind? Do you have objective evidence to support your position?
Read our article, Understanding Tests and Measurements. To master this information, you should expect to read this article several times.
* Chart Out Your Child's Test Scores
You need to chart out your child's test scores. If you use a software program like MS Excel, Word or Access, this is easy. After you plug in your child's test scores, the program will make charts of your child's progress or lack of progress.
TIP: Use the Wizard in your software program to help you create graphs of educational progress.
Here is a short
slide show about how to chart educational progress.
* Learn About Rights and Responsibilities
Read the special education
law and regulations. Portions
of the IDEA statute with Pete's comments are available on
the Wrightslaw site. http://www.wrightslaw.com/law/code_regs/20USC1400MyOverview.html
Our book, Wrightslaw:
Special Education Law, includes the full text of the Individuals
with Disabilities Education Act and implementing regulations, Section
504 of the Rehabilitation Act, and FERPA and implementing regs.
If your child has a disability, the child needs to learn to touch type. The process of writing by hand (or handwriting) is extremely difficult for most children with disabilities. One neurologist told us, "Writing is the most complicated neurological process that a human being must perform."
Children learn from their parents. If you "hunt and peck," will your child want to learn how to touch type? Probably not. But, if you use a typing software program like Mavis Beacon Teaching Typingfor 10 minutes three times a day, you will be typing 30 words a minute in no time.
Your goal is to touch type at a rate of 30 wpm or more by the end of the summer. If you are learning to touch type, you can expect and require your children to learn too. After a week or two, they will begin to compete with you - and will try to increase their speed over yours.
Your children will thank you for being such a great role model - in about 10 years!
* Be An Educated Consumer
Spend time this summer
doing research on your child's disability and how your child learns.
Visit web sites for educational and legal information.