The Special Ed Advocate Newsletter
December 7, 2004

Issue - 289
ISSN: 1538-3202

In this Issue

1. President Signs Reauthorized IDEA (12/3/04)

2. What is a "Highly Qualified Special Ed Teacher" Under IDEA 2004?

3. Help for Teachers, Principals, Parapros

4. Free Shipping & Price Cuts - Holiday Special Ends 12/21!

5. What is Your NCLB IQ?

6. The Road to Nowhere - Illusion and Broken Promises

7. Winter 2006: Wrightslaw Programs in FL, NH, OH, NY, MO

8. Subscription & Contact Info

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At Wrightslaw, our goals are to help you gain the information and skills you need to navigate the changing, challenging world of special education.

Highlights: President signs reauthorized IDEA; highly qualified special ed teachers under IDEA 2004; help for teachers, principals, paraprofessionals; free shipping & price cuts - holiday special; what is your NCLB IQ?; free pub - The Road to Nowhere; winter schedule - Wrightslaw programs in FL, NJ, OH, NY, MO. Download this newsletter.

Quote of the Week: Always keep your words soft and sweet, just in case you have to eat them.

Wrightslaw is ranked #1 in education law, special education law, and special education advocacy. (2004 Alexa rankings)

1. President Signs Reauthorized IDEA Into Law (December 3, 2004)

On Friday, December 3, the President signed the reauthorized IDEA into law. The signing ceremony was attended by members of Congress and officials from the Department of Education.

Most provisions of the new Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act of 2004 will take effect on July 1, 2005. Learn more.

2. What is a "Highly Qualified Special Ed Teacher" Under IDEA 2004?

We are writing a series of articles to help you get up and running on IDEA-2004. In the last issue of The Special Ed Advocate, we looked at changes to IEPs in IDEA 2004. This week, we examine the new requirements for highly qualified special education teachers and answer this question from a special ed teacher:

"I am a special education teacher. I have an undergraduate and a master's degree in special education. I hold certifications in LD, ED and MR. Do I meet the highly qualified teacher requirements in IDEA 2004?"

We answer this teacher's questions - and try to "fill in the blanks" about highly qualified teacher requirements - in a new article, What are the New Requirements for Highly Qualified Special Education Teachers?

Coming Soon: New rules about IEP meetings, medicating children, discipline . . .

Articles about IDEA 2004:

How Will IEPs Change Under IDEA 2004? IDEA 2004 includes new requirements about IEPs and scientifically based instruction for children with disabilities.

Rule 11 & Attorneys Fees - IDEA 2004 includes a provision that permits school districts to recover fees from attorneys who represent parents. Pete describes this new provision, improper litigation, frivolous actions, and the practical implications of this new statute.

Learn more about IDEA 2004.

3. Help for Teachers, Parapros, Principals

"I am a special ed teacher. I am struggling to write IEP goals for my students. My district says NCLB requires IEP goals to be tied to annual state assessments. But my students need IEPs that focus on their needs. Help!"

"My school uses a Balanced Reading method for LD students. Does this method meet the requirements for a research based reading program under NCLB?"

"My paraprofessional is wonderful and effective but she does not meet the new NCLB educational requirements. She cannot afford to go to college for two years. How can we keep good paras in our classrooms?"

"I am a high school English teacher. I need information about the laws that affect my students with learning disabilities."

The No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) and the Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA) affect many aspects of education. You will find useful information quickly at Help for Teachers, Parapros & Principals. Topics include:

* The Basics: Legal Requirements for Education
* Highly Qualified Teachers
* Classroom Life
* Teacher Litigation
* Working with Parents Toward Common Goals
* Research Based Instruction
* Keeping an Eye on Graduation
* Different Routes to the Classroom
* Free Newsletters & Training
* Useful Books and Websites

Help for Teachers, Parapros & Principals.
More topics.

4. Free Shipping & Price Cuts - Holiday Special Ends December 21!

Wrightslaw publications make great gifts. When you send a book to a friend, family member, teacher, colleague or advocate, they will receive your gift in a special holiday box. Learn more.

Wrightslaw: Special Education Law $29.95 $24.95 plus free shipping - Save $9.95

Wrightslaw: From Emotions to Advocacy - The Special Education Survival Guide $29.95 $24.95 plus free shipping - Save $9.95

Wrightslaw: No Child Left Behind
$29.95 $24.95 plus free shipping - Save

Personal Message: Pete and Pam Wright will autograph your book and/or write a personal message to your recipient. More holiday specials.

5. What is Your NCLB IQ?

No Child Left Behind (NCLB) is generating confusion, controversy, misinformation, disinformation -- and strong opinions.

With the reauthorization of IDEA, do you know how these laws will
affect children with disabilities? Do you know how schools will test children with disabilities? Are there exceptions to rules about testing? Are requirements to include test scores of disabled students unfair to these students and their schools?

Test your knowledge - take our new NCLB Quiz. (You will get answers quickly by email).

6. Free Pub: "Road to Nowhere: The Illusion & Broken Promises of Special Education"

"Fabulous! You tied all the pieces together." - Sue Heath, Research Editor, Wrightslaw

"The Road to Nowhere: The Illusion and Broken Promises of Special Education Instruction in the Baltimore City and Other Public Schools” by Kalman R. Hettleman was published by The Abell Foundation.

You can download this publication by going to The Abell Foundation site and clicking this link. You can also request a printed copy by sending an email to the author.

Will the reauthorized IDEA tackle the problems identified in this hard-hitting report?

7. Winter 2005: Wrightslaw Programs in FL, NJ, OH, NY, MO

Wrightslaw Special Education Law and Advocacy Training Programs focus on four areas: special education laws, rights & responsibilities; how to use the bell curve to measure progress & regression; SMART IEPs; and tactics & strategies for effective advocacy.

Schedule: Winter 2005

Orlando, FL: January 21-22, 2005 (Mini Boot Camp)

Cherry Hill, NJ: February 18-19, 2005 (Boot Camp!)

Cincinnati, OH - Mini Boot Camp - February 23-24, 2005 - SOLD OUT!

Long Island, NY - LIACSN, Inc. - March 4-5, 2005 (Mini Boot Camp)

Kansas City, MO - Paseo Academy - March 29, 2005

All participants in these programs will receive two books, Wrightslaw: Special Education Law and Wrightslaw: From Emotions to Advocacy, with their registration (Value: $59.90).

f you are interested in bringing a Wrightslaw program to your community, please read FAQs about Seminars. (We are scheduling programs for 2006.)

8. Subscription & Contact Info

The Special Ed Advocate is a free online newsletter about special education legal and advocacy issues, cases, and tactics and strategies. Subscribers receive "alerts" about new cases, events, and special offers on Wrightslaw books.

Law Library Seminars & Training
Advocacy Yellow Pages for Kids
No Child Left Behind Free Newsletter
IDEA-2004 Newsletter Archives

Contact Info

Pete and Pam Wright
Wrightslaw & The Special Ed Advocate
P. O. Box 1008
Deltaville, VA 23043
Website: https://www.wrightslaw.com
Email: newsletter@wrightslaw.com

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