Tag Archive for 'Families'

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TZP is “Like Stars on Earth”

Darsheel Safary as Ishaan
Darsheel Safary as Ishaan

Those who remember Taare Zameen Par will find Like Stars on Earth very familiar. For others, who are familiar with the usual stories about children with disabilities who benefit from concern on the part of a
caring adult, the story will be familiar, too. I remark on it here as a reminder about Dyslexia Awareness Month and ’cause I’m sometimes a sucker for smaltzie uplifting stories.
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More on IQ and reading disabilities

Deficits in reading performance may differ in etiology depending on the IQ of the individuals who have the deficits. According to an article in Behavior Genetics, Professor Sally Wadsworth and colleagues confirmed previous research showing that there is a stronger genetic element in the reading deficits of children with higher IQs (mean = 108.97 ± 6.71) than those with lower IQ (mean = 82.85 ± 6.40). The heritability for the former group is 0.75 ± 0.12, but for the latter it is 0.50 ± 0.10.
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Too common a concern?

At the Greenwich (CT, US) Time site, Colin Gustafson described a meeting where parents of students with disabilities expressed concern about the special education services their children received from the local schools. Under the headline “Parents voice rage over special education in meeting with Freund, Board of Ed chairman,” Mr. Gustafson reported some of the concerns parents raised and some of the responses from school administrators.

Parents’ frustration with the district’s handling of their children’s special education needs boiled over several times during a meeting with the school board chairman and superintendent Wednesday morning.

Many attendees said the families who strongly advocate for their children — even wage legal battles on their behalf — are too often labeled as “problem parents” and have their concerns dismissed by district administrators.

I wonder how many of these sorts of meetings occur but are not reported in the press. Perhaps some of the parents who read this blog can comment on how common these concerns are.

Read Mr. Gustafson’s report, “Parents voice rage over special education in meeting with Freund, Board of Ed chairman.”

Finding out about a child’s dyslexia

Over on a Psychology Today blog, Robert Langston has a post about recognizing dyslexia early. He’s putting it through the filter of his own personal experience with dyslexia and the filter of a parent discussing a child’s problems with a teacher. Is dyslexia inherited? in the original.

Liz Ditz talks sense

Reporter Valle Dwight quotes LD Blog pal Liz Ditz extensively in “Searching for the miracle: Parents, in a desperate quest to fix what they’ve been told is broken in their children, are willing to try (or pay) anything to help their kids” available on Great Schools. Check on it. The article is worth a read. It fits right in with the emphasis on evidence-based treatments here on LD Blog.

Canadian kid docs on chiropractic

Over on I Speak of Dreams, Liz Ditz posted an entry showing that the Canadian Pediatric Association understands the appropriate use of chiropractic procedures with children and youths. Jump to Liz’s post, read her entry, and follow her link to the statement: “Canadian Pediatric Society Position Statement: Chiropractic care for children: Controversies and issues.”

New Jersey task force on reading disabilities created

Seventh grader Samantha Ravelli, of Ocean City (NJ, US), is probably one of the youngest lobbyists who ever tasted success. According to Diane D’Amico of the Press of Atlantic City, Sammie (and her team, including her mother and sister) convinced their legislature to form the New Jersey Reading Disabilities Task Force.

Sammie has substantial reading problems, and her contacts with legislators inspired them to draft legislation creating the task force. Assemblymen Nelson Albano and Matt Milam and state Senator Jeff Van Drew collaborated to get it passed. It cleared the assembly in February and the senate in December 2009.

As a part of their efforts to promote awareness of dyslexia and to encourage legislators to create the task force, the Ravellis created Sammie’s Mission. Visit it and also read Ms. D’Amico’s blog post How Sammies’s dyslexia inspired a law and her news story, State Senate approves bill to form reading disabilities task force, about the events. Finally, snag a pdf of “An Act establishing the New Jersey Reading Disabilities Task Force.”

Is inclusion right for your child?

Over on LD Experience, Kathryn Burke posted an editorial recounting some of her experiences as a parent of children with Learning Disabilities who must weigh placement alternatives. She describes an encounter with another parent who disagreed with her decision to place her elder son in a specialized school.

A parent from my son’s school, who had not heard about the lecture from me, came to greet me and ask if I could put her name on the “special education distribution list.” Another woman overheard our discussion and asked about the list, how it had started, and if she could join. I told her that I had assembled the email list from the names of individuals who had been present at events organized by the Parent Council at my son’s school, of which I was a member of the executive. I explained that the school was a specialized site within the public system for students with learning disabilities. Upon hearing this, the woman looked at me with a level of disgust as if I had grown horns, and loudly said, “I will have absolutely nothing to do with people who believe that children with disabilities should be segregated!”

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Many dreams spoken

Yesterday was the anniversary of I Speak of Dreams, the blog that Liz Ditz maintains. Liz has used it to many sensible and helpful posts for parents, teachers, and others. She’s dug through mountains of information (including mis- and dysinformation) to make sense of issues and then reported about them clearly and thoroughly.

Liz, sorry I’m a day late, but Happy Blogiversary!

Suggestions from advocate

Paul Rendine, who chairs the Disability Advocates of Delmarva Inc (DADI), is contributing a series of articles about disabilities to a local publication for the peninsula holding parts of Maryland and Virginia and all of Delaware. The first of the series addresses Learning Disabilities. Although the content is brief and the coverage of Learning Disabilities is not in depth, it is generally accurate and merits note because of the effort.

Link to Mr. Rendine’s article. DADI has its own Website; DADI provides scholarship support to individuals with disabilities.