Iowa Family & Educator Partnership Newsletter Vol 11, Num 2                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Dec. 2017

Website Guide
Parent Support Groups

Iowa Compass is an all in one disability resource database. To find information about disability related programs
& services for Iowa
residents go to www.iowacompass.org

Document Guide 
Toy Guide for Differently-Abled Kids
From Toys "R" Us and Lekotek

For more than 20 years, Toys"R"Us, Inc. has offered the 
Toys"R"Us Toy Guide for Differently-Abled Kids  , a one-of-a-kind resource that offers toy recommendations based on research from the National Lekotek Center, a nonprofit organization that evaluates all toys in the Toy Guide . 

For years, the Toy   Guide   has provided parents and caregivers with toys that aid in the development of children who have physical, cognitive or development disabilities. 

Explore the 2017 Toy Guide at      www.toysrus.com/differentlyabled 

SPARK! Igniting Autism Research, Improving Lives

The University of Iowa is partnering with SPARK (Simons Foundation Powering Autism Research for Knowledge), a national autism research initiative that will connect individuals with a professional diagnosis of autism and their biological family members to research opportunities to advance our understanding of autism.

Anyone interested in learning more about SPARK, go to:

Check out these great newsletters & resources!
The world of special education is complex, challenging and, when done well, enormously satisfying for the educator, parent - and, especially, the student. Each and Every Child  is a newsletter aimed at this particular audience, designed to inform, educate and challenge those who live and work within this field.
A subscription to CenterLines is free.  If you would like to subscribe, please email your name and address to: CenterLines@uiowa.edu or by regular mail to: Heather Roman Univ of Iowa Stead Family Children's Hospital Center for Disabilities and Development 100 Hawkins Drive, Iowa City, IA 52242-1011
Sign up for weekly emails with helpful resources for you and your family.  You will be able to create a profile to get personalized information and connect with other parents.  You can also use this site to g et your questions answered in free expert chats and webinars.

What is it? 
And What Does it Mean?

ESSA is the Every Student Succeeds Act which replaces the No Child Left Behind Act (
NCLB).   Implementation of ESSA began this 2017-18 school year.  NCLB put a lot of power in the federal government for making decisions. ESSA is different in many ways from NCLB such as giving states and local districts the ability to make decisions about testing, teacher quality and fixing failing schools. Students will still take yearly tests in Reading and Math 3rd - 8th grade and once in High School and schools will still report students test scores. ESSA encourages states to look at a broader range of factors beyond academics, which they are calling 'The School Quality Factor'. A few of the ares this will help measure are; if kids are getting an opportunity for Kindergarten readiness, access to and or completion of advanced coursework, college readiness, school climate, & absenteeism.
States still have to identify and fix the bottom 5% of failing schools and those with a high drop-out rate. On September 18, 2017 the Iowa Department of Education submitted to the U.S. Department of Education the state's plan for meeting requirements of the Every Student Succeeds Act.  A summary overview of Iowa's ESSA Plan can be found by clicking  here. 

To get a better understanding in the differences of ESSA and NCLB, 

candy-cane-sm.jpg Holiday Stressors for Kids With Disabilities 

Holidays can be a time to make memories and spend time with family. They can also be a time of   stress   for kids with learning and attention issues. Understood.org has a helpful list of  10 holiday stressors  to look out for, and ways to help.  

Great Prairie AEA  | http://www.gpaea.org
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