Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Transition Tips for Parents of Adult Children

Disability.gov has new resources for parents who are planning for their child's transition to college, jobs, and adulthood. Read Preparing for Post-Secondary Education.

2010-11 White House Fellows Include Gallaudet Professor

From a White House media advisory today, Gallaudet faculty member Kubby Rashid, who is deaf, has been chosen as a White House Fellow.

"Kubby Rashid has been a member of the Gallaudet faculty since 1994, including a stint as Chair of the Department of Business. In addition to teaching, Dr. Rashid was active in faculty leadership and administration, and was co chair of a major initiative to reconfigure all academic programs at the University. Dr. Rashid served on the board of the World Deaf Leadership Program, guiding development projects for the deaf communities in South Africa and Thailand. She has also worked with individuals from many developing countries, helping deaf people learned to develop leadership skills and advocate for themselves. Dr. Rashid has previously been involved with the National Deaf Business Institute and taught several years for NDBI and Merrill Lynch's summer program for Deaf Business owners and would-be entrepreneurs. She was the first coordinator of the Bernstein Leadership Institute's Deaf Women's Leadership Program, and implemented the program and curriculum that form the core of the DWLP today. In 2008 she was appointed by Governor Martin O’Malley to a six-year term on the Board of the Maryland School for the Deaf and also serves as a Board member of Discovering Deaf Worlds, an NGO dedicated to helping deaf people in developing countries."

Thursday, June 3, 2010

L.A. Official Justifies Cuts for Students with Disabilities: Special Ed "Takes Away from Regular Kids"

Many think it; few say it.  Los Angeles Unified School District is closing 200 classes and a campus for students with disabilities.  The explanation from Superintendent Ramon C. Cortines: "You have to look at it in perspective. When you fund some of the special ed things, you're taking from regular kids."

As reported in the Los Angeles Times, to help close a $640 million budget gap, LA is cutting back on a campus for blind students, closing a special-needs center, and eliminating 200 classes.  As in any district, parents of "regular kids" are also not happy -- other cuts are being made to the arts, music programs, and libraries, not to mention more than 1,000 layoffs.
About 13 percent of students in the L.A. school district have an identified disability.  Now more of these students will be put in larger classes, commute farther to school, and in some cases will have no bus transportation at all.

Yes, the city and the state are facing a tremendous budget problem.  But if you agree with me that Superintendent Cortines should not pit "special ed things" against "regular kids," email him at superintendent@lausd.net.  (The defender of "regular kids" is pictured above.)

Disability Scoop

Special Ed News (Education Week)

Special Education Law