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The Arc of New Jersey Family Institute provides caregivers with the necessary resources and education to access the appropriate supports and services for their loved ones with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
Zoom With Us:
College Options for Students with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
Thursday, February 18th, 6:00pm - 7:00pm

College can be a great option for students with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD). A growing number of programs offer varied opportunities to learn academic, career, and independent living skills as they prepare for employment. Join The Arc of New Jersey Family Institute as we discuss different programs offered in New Jersey and possible ways to pay for college. Additionally, we will discuss how to write IEP goals for post-secondary options when working with the Child Study Team.

This is an online event. After you register, you will receive the link to join the meeting a few days before the event.
Virtually Awesome
Creating an Inclusive Classroom
Wednesday, February 17th, 1:00pm - 2:00pm

Fred Buglione
President & CEO, New Jersey Center for Inclusive Education

Inclusion in general education classrooms is a civil right. Every student has this right; however, we often breach it with students with disabilities based on outdated notions of what we as adults can and should do to effectively support them. Forty years of research has shown that this is not an effective strategy, yet we continue to place students in more restrictive placements. 

In this webinar, we will touch on what inclusive education instructional practices are and how they have been implemented in schools. Inclusive education is a group of practices that structure a classroom and lessons for all students to learn together. An inclusive classroom is a learning environment in which care is taken to ensure that all learners are supported, engaged, and accepted. The instructional practices we implement to include all learners include Universal Design for Learning (UDL), Differentiation, and Modifications and Accommodations.
CLICK HERE for all of our 2021 special education webinars.
Effective Student-Led IEP Meetings
Tuesday, February 2nd, 7:00pm - 8:15pm

Join Regina Ann Smith, Esq., an attorney and former classroom teacher, as she unpacks best practices and practical strategies for ANY student at ANY level can use to take part in the IEP process.

Regina Ann Smith is an educator and advocate with eight years of success in a career as an educator and leader in best practices for special education. She is a law clerk at Disability Rights New Jersey, where she leads their Juvenile Justice and Special Education programs.
In The News
NJ Tweaks COVID-19 Guidance for Schools
"New examples given in the guidance issued to local health departments place priority on dealing with individual classrooms or grade levels in which a potential outbreak is reported, while attempting to allow students and staff not affected by new cases to continue with hybrid or in-person instruction, when possible.
'The more people a person interacts with, the closer the physical interaction, the more
sharing of supplies or equipment there is by multiple people, and the longer the duration of that interaction, the higher the risk of COVID-19 spread,' according to the guidance updated Jan. 19.
All six regions of the state have remained at the orange or 'high risk' level of COVID-19 transmission since late November." Read the full article here.
Students, Parents, and Teachers Tell Their Stories of Remote Learning
From preschool to college, education continues to evolve in response to the coronavirus pandemic. In their own words, people who are living and working through this experience shared their victories, frustrations, and strategies. Read the full article here.
via The New York Times
Bridge Year Pilot Program Allows New Jersey High School Students to Stay Behind an Extra Year
"The Bridge Year Pilot Program is allowing New Jersey high school students to have the chance to stay behind an extra year to help make up what they missed while schools were shut down.
The program gives upcoming juniors or seniors the chance to defer graduation to attend classes at their high schools, participate in extracurricular activities and play sports that were canceled.
Eligible students need to notify their school's Bridge Year Liaison by Feb. 15 of their senior year." See the story here or click here for more information on the program.
Mission to Transition
HOW Series - Planning For Transition: Why it is Vital for Your Student's Future
Thursday, February 4, 2021
7:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Zoom link will be emailed

The transition planning process includes evaluating the student’s skills, abilities, strengths, challenges, and preferences to envision their life after leaving school. Planning involves setting goals for the student to strive toward and identifying the need for supports. Carrying out the transition plan can begin and should be a part of the student’s Individualized Educational Plan (IEP). Students and families must be actively involved in the transition planning process as early as possible and keep it moving forward. This presentation discusses the importance of planning, the steps necessary to plan, and provides hands-on tools to put a plan in place.
DVRS Go Bag
The mission of the New Jersey Division of Vocational Rehabilitation Services (DVRS) is to enable eligible individuals with disabilities to achieve an employment outcome consistent with their strengths, priorities, needs, abilities, and capabilities.
This Go Bag is designed to help individuals and families better understand DVRS, and the services they offer. Inside you will find information on eligibility, available programs, Pre-Employment Transition Services (Pre-ETS), and the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA).
Prep 4 Success
Video: How to File a Complaint with the Department of Education Office for Civil Rights
"A new YouTube video is available that explains how students and their families can file complaints with the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) at the U.S. Department of Education. The OCR addresses complaints of discrimination based on race, color, national origin (Civil Rights Act of 1964), age (Age Discrimination Act of 1975), sex (Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972), and disability (Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and Title II of the ADA). Note that the OCR does not address special education issues under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)."
This video was produced by the U.S. Department of Education.
Reality Tech
Chromebook Accessibility Options Benefit All Students
Accessibility features are often precursors to universally utilized technology. Touch screens, closed captioning, screen readers, and speech-to-text are just a few examples of assistive technology that have been embraced by people with and without disabilities.
Before the abrupt transition to virtual learning, students had been using Chromebooks to complete assignments in school and in some cases for homework. Moving students' entire education to an online platform confirmed a number of certainties, one being that the benefits of accessibility extend to ALL STUDENTS and can be utilized to create more engaging content in and out of the classroom.
To learn more about the accessibility features of Google Chromebooks, click the button below.
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The Arc of New Jersey Family Institute | 732.828.2022 | thefamilyinstitute@arcnj.org
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