New NASET Publications and Articles of Interest in Special Education and Disabilities That Were Reported This Week
April 29, 2011 - Vol 7, Issue 16


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In This Issue
New This Week on NASET
Children with ADHD More Likely to Use Drugs
Half of All Children With Autism Wander and Bolt from Safe Places, Study Shows
Article Headline
Early Intervention is Important in the Treatment of Autism
New York City Flubs 600 Million Dollars in Special Education Funding
Article Headline
Labor and Employment: New Regulations Expand Definition of Disability
Studies Link Prenatal Pesticide Exposure and Later Learning Disabilities.
Over Range of ADHD Behavior, Genes Major Force on Reading Achievement, Environment on Math
Childhood Music Lessons May Provide Lifelong Boost in Brain Functioning
Studies Find 'Easy' Material May Not Be Easy to Learn
Students with Visual Impairments Use Audio GPS to Navigate Around
Earth Day Dawns at Horizon Schools
Doing the 'Stereocilia Wave'.
Article Headline
Radio Show Strives to Erase Stigma Attached to Disabilities
Unfocused? ADD Is Not Just for Kids - Adults Have It Too
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Welcome to NASET's WEEK in REVIEWHere, we provide you with the latest publications from NASET to read and or download, as well as some of the most interesting articles that have happened this week in the field of special education. We hope you enjoy this publication.  Feel free to send us articles for this publication or let us know your thoughts about the WEEK in REVIEW at Have a great weekend.

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New This Week on NASET - Q & A Corner,  &  Resource Review
Q & A Corner

Questions and Answer about Least Restrictive Environment

Least restrictive environment, or LRE as it is more commonly called, is one of several vital components in the development of a child's IEP and plays a critical role, influencing where a child spends his or her time at school, how services are provided, and the relationships the child develops within the school and community. Indeed, LRE is a foundational element in building an appropriate IEP that can improve outcomes for a child-in school and in life. The focus of this issue of NASET's Q & A Corner is to address issues pertaining to LRE.

To read or download this issue - Click here  (login required)

Resource Review

In this issue you will find resources in the following areas:

Early Childhood Education
Infants and Toddlers
Intellectual Disabilities
Participation Requests
Restraint and Seclusion
Reciprocal Teaching
Self Determination
Special Education Resources
Traumatic Brain Injuries.-

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Children with ADHD More Likely to Use Drugs

Children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder are up to three times more likely than other kids to use, abuse or become dependent on substances such as nicotine, cocaine and marijuana in adolescence and as young adults, new research suggests. Adolescents with ADHD also were more likely to experiment with nicotine and illegal substances at earlier ages than those without ADHD, according to an analysis of 27 long-term studies that followed 4,100 ADHD and 6,800 non-ADHD children into young adulthood - in some cases for 10 years or more. The study, by psychologists at the University of California-Los Angeles and the University of South Carolina-Columbia, was funded by the National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. It was published online in the journal Clinical Psychology Review and will appear in the journal's print edition this summer. To read more, click here

Half of All Children With Autism Wander and Bolt from Safe Places, Study Shows 

The Interactive Autism Network (IAN) reveals the preliminary results of the first major survey on wandering and elopement among individuals with autism spectrum disorders (ASD), and announces the launch of a new research survey on the association between pregnancy factors and ASD. The wandering and elopement survey found that approximately half of parents of children with autism report that their child elopes, with the behavior peaking at age four. Among these families, nearly 50% say that their child went missing long enough to cause significant concern about safety. "This survey is the first research effort to scientifically validate that elopement is a critical safety issue for the autism community," said Dr. Paul Law, Director of the IAN Project at the Kennedy Krieger Institute in Baltimore, Maryland. "We hope that advocates and policy makers use this research to implement key safety measures to support these families and keep these children safe." To read more, click here

Lady Gaga Takes Heat for 'Retarded' Comment

Pop star Lady Gaga is apologizing after using the word "retarded" in a magazine interview published this week. The singer got flack from a number of advocacy groups for using the word, which many in the disability community have fought to remove from the vernacular arguing that it's offensive to those with intellectual disabilities. "I've written loads of music. Why would I try to put out a song and think I'm getting one over on everybody? That's retarded," Lady Gaga said as she defended herself against accusations of plagiarism during the interview with NME, a British music magazine. The singer, whose real name is Stefani Germanotta, quickly issued a statement of apology that appeared on To read more, click here

Did You Know That....

Fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASDs) are a group of conditions that can occur in a person whose mother drank alcohol during pregnancy. These effects can include physical problems and problems with behavior and learning. Often, a person with an FASD has a mix of these problems.

HEALTH: Early Intervention is Important in the Treatment of Autism 

There is no doubt that most people are more informed about autism than they were as recently as a couple of decades ago. According to the most recent statistics, autism occurs in one out of every 110 children in the United States and is more common in boys than girls. Experts do know, though, that early intervention is important in the treatment of autism. If parents are concerned about some aspect of their child's development or have had concerns expressed to them by someone who sees the child on a regular basis, they should voice them to their family doctor or pediatrician, she said. To read more, click here

New York City Flubs 600 Million Dollars in Special Education Funding

The city has failed to collect nearly $600 million in federal reimbursement for special-education services such as speech, physical therapy, and counseling over the last six years, The Post has learned. As budget cuts threaten teacher layoffs, the Department of Education has instead shelled out millions more in local-taxpayer dollars for the student services, which cost $1.2 billion last year. The city collected just $8.5 million in steadily dwindling Medicaid reimbursement for special-ed services last fiscal year and zero the year before -- a steep drop from the $120 million it received in 2003, according to the Independent Budget Office. The DOE said it's hampered by rule changes by Medicaid, which requires a doctor's prescription and signatures by providers. It also won't reimburse services by a school counselor or speech teacher, only those by a licensed psychologist or speech pathologist. Jessica Scaperotti, a spokeswoman for Mayor Bloomberg, said agencies that oversee child welfare and hospitals have joined the DOE in "a coordinated citywide effort to aggressively pursue claims for services reimbursable by Medicaid, including special education," yielding $17 million this year. To read more, click here


Crying Babies Linked to Future Behavioral Problems

Babies that are 'difficult' -who are constantly crying and have problems eating or sleeping - are likely to become difficult children. New research has found that a fifth of babies have symptoms that are linked to serious behavioral problems in children, such as ADHD.  A review of 22 previous studies was carried out which compared the results of 117,000 babies and children and their eating, sleeping and crying habits. The group of international researchers found that there was a link between excessive crying and other risk factors and ADHD, anxiety, depression and aggressive behavior in children later on in life. They believe that a baby with more than one risk factor will be even more in danger of having problems when they grow up. To read more, click here

Did You Know That....
According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), "To prevent FASDs, a woman should not drink alcohol while she is pregnant, or even when she might get pregnant. This is because a woman could get pregnant and not know for several weeks or more.  In the United States, half of pregnancies are unplanned."

Labor and Employment: New Regulations Expand Definition of Disability 

Sometimes changes in employment laws are revolutionary, as when Congress passed the Americans with Disabilities Act 20 years ago. That change brought about a new vocabulary with terms and phrases such as "reasonable accommodations" and "direct threat." When Congress passed the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act ("ADAAA") a few years ago, the change was more evolutionary. The foundation for the ADAAA was the belief that the definition of disability had been too narrowly construed by the courts. So, it should come as no surprise that when the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission issued regulations implementing the ADAAA last month (effective May 24, 2011), the regulations would also be more evolutionary than revolutionary. Indeed, when combined with the ADAAA, the regulations emphasize that more individuals will qualify as disabled and will be entitled to reasonable accommodations at the workplace. To read more, click here

Three New Government-Funded Studies Link Prenatal Pesticide Exposure and Later Learning Disabilities 

Pre-natal exposure to an especially toxic class of pesticides called "organophosphate pesticides" or OP's, has been linked to poor memory, learning deficits, and lower IQ when the children are school-aged in three studies just published today. These studies show that the fetus is a uniquely vulnerable time of development, and confirm the wisdom of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) when it cancelled household uses of most (but not all) OP's in 2001 based on evidence of harm from laboratory studies. However, despite repeat calls by NRDC for EPA to cancel the agriculture uses of OPs, millions of pounds are still used every year on our food crops. All three of the studies were done by federally-funded university scientists, and published in the government-supported high quality scientific journal, Environmental Health Perspectives (EHP), which allows free access to all its articles online. These findings are a game-changer - they provide irrefutable evidence from children whose mothers were exposed to household pesticides while pregnant that early-life exposure to OP pesticides causes long-lasting serious neurological impairments. To read more, click here


Board Certification in Special Education Available to NASET Members

As Through an agreement with The American Academy of Special Education Professionals(AASEP), NASET members now have the opportunity to achieve AASEP Board Certification in Special Education - (B.C.S.E.) at a reduced fee.  AASEP Board Certification in Special Education - (B.C.S.E.) is a voluntary choice on the part of the candidate. The candidate for Board Certification wishes to demonstrate a commitment to excellence to employers, peers, administrators, other professionals, and parents. From the standpoint of the Academy, board certification will demonstrate the highest professional competency in the area of special education. Board Certification in Special Educationestablishes a much needed standard for professionals, across disciplines, who work with exceptional children.  
For more information on Board Certification in Special Education, click here
Guess the answer to this week's trivia question and we'll recognize you in next week's Week in Review.
Congratulations to:  Amanda L. Davis-Holloway, Deanna Krieg, Angela Knapp, Marilyn Haile, Christie Miller & Maryanne Levery who knew that "The Big Five" represent that five classifications make up the majority (86%) of all children with disabilities receiving special education. 
What principle under IDEA refers to the rule of providing a free appropriate public education to all students with disabilities and of prohibiting cessation of any such student's right to education? (That is, it is a rule against exclusion)
If you know the answer, send an email to
All answers must be submitted no later than Monday, May 2, 2011 at 12:00 p.m.

Over Range of ADHD Behavior, Genes Major Force on Reading Achievement, Environment on Math 

Humans are not born as blank slates for nature to write on. Neither are they behaving on genes alone. Research by Lee A. Thompson, chair of Case Western Reserve University's Psychological Sciences Department, and colleagues found that the link between Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and academic performance involves a complex interaction of genes and environment. Genetic influence was found to be greater on reading than for math, while shared environment (e.g., the home and/or school environment the twins shared) influenced math more so than reading. The researchers don't know why. Their study of twins, published in Psychological Science, Vol. 21, was the first to look simultaneously at the genetic and environmental influences on reading ability, mathematics ability, and the continuum of ADHD behavior. To read more, click here

Childhood Music Lessons May Provide Lifelong Boost in Brain Functioning 

Those childhood music lessons could pay off decades later -- even for those who no longer play an instrument -- by keeping the mind sharper as people age, according to a preliminary study published by the American Psychological Association. The study recruited 70 healthy adults age 60 to 83 who were divided into groups based on their levels of musical experience. The musicians performed better on several cognitive tests than individuals who had never studied an instrument or learned how to read music. The research findings were published online in the APA journal Neuropsychology. "Musical activity throughout life may serve as a challenging cognitive exercise, making your brain fitter and more capable of accommodating the challenges of aging," said lead researcher Brenda Hanna-Pladdy, PhD. "Since studying an instrument requires years of practice and learning, it may create alternate connections in the brain that could compensate for cognitive declines as we get older." To read more, click here

Studies Find 'Easy' Material May Not Be Easy to Learn 

Emerging research suggests that, contrary to what students may think, material that's easy to understand is not always easy to learn-and working harder can help them hold on to what they've learned. It's a typical school scenario: A student strolls into class on test day, telling classmates how he crammed the night before and certain he will ace the exam, only to be confounded by how little he actually remembers from hours of studying. The cause of that pitfall is something cognitive researchers call the "stability bias," which posits that people rely too much on current memory to predict how well they will learn and remember something in the future. In practice, it means people think they will remember material better if it is initially easy to understand. To read more, click here

Students with Visual Impairments Use Audio GPS to Navigate Around

Legally blind students from Mary Robinson's Group Home Teaching class were on a mission to locate the nearest ice cream shop. Before the quest began, mentors shared with the students their Trekker Breeze, a newer piece of technology. The Trekker Breeze is a handheld talking global positioning system (GPS) for people who are blind or visually impaired. It verbally announces names of streets, intersections and landmarks as the traveler progresses. The Breeze lets the traveler know where they are, where they are going and what is around them, such as stores and public services. Trekker Breeze allows travelers to put themselves in a place and virtually walk around, similar to the sighted population using Google maps. The group accomplished the walk to the local Zesto's ice cream shop in no time at all. To read more, click here

Earth Day Dawns at Horizon Schools: Volunteers Help Provide an Exceptional Celebration for Students with Special Needs. 

Earth Day is more than exceptional when you spend it at one of the Horizon Schools in Livingston. For these students, Earth Day becomes a celebration not just of our planet but of those who experience it in a manner unlike others. Thanks to volunteers from various school systems, including Livingston, West Orange, Millburn, Rutherford, Springfield, Mountain Lakes, Randolph, and the Golda Och Academy (formerly the Solomon Schechter Day School), the Horizon kids were able to visit a number of stations to learn more about how to save the environment. To read more, click here

Doing the 'Stereocilia Wave' 

Whenever you hear a sound, clusters of tiny strands sprouting from the tops of key sensory cells in your inner ear begin to move, which triggers an electrical signal that rapidly scuttles off to your brain. But how exactly do they move? Sonya Smith, Ph.D., a professor of mechanical engineering at Howard University, and Richard Chadwick, Ph.D., chief of the NIDCD Section on Auditory Mechanics, found that the first and third rows of stereocilia rotate to one side, while the middle row doesn't rotate at all, but stretches up and down, as if it were in a stadium doing the wave. To read more, click here

Family with Child with Disability Can Stay in Canada

Following up our story in last week's Week in Review, a French family living in Montreal will be allowed to stay in Canada after facing deportation because their daughter has cerebral palsy. The Barlagne family was originally denied residency because Canadian immigration officials said eight-year-old Rachel would be a burden on Canada's health-care system. However, Quebec's Immigration Ministry has intervened and reached an agreement with the federal government to accept the family's application for permanent residency. Quebec will issue a selection certificate and federal officials have agreed to give the application the stamp of approval. To read more, click here

Did You Know That....

We do not know exactly how many people have an FASD. CDC studies have shown that 0.2 to 1.5 cases of fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) occur for every 1,000 live births in certain areas of the United States.Other studies using different methods have estimated the rate of FAS at 0.5 to 2.0 cases per 1,000 live births.

Radio Show Strives to Erase Stigma Attached to Disabilities 

The man at the microphone has been there. He knows what it's like to be considered as different, how people will think he will be needy. "I became an actor because half of my friends told me I couldn't be an actor," Robert David Hall says into the microphone at the Clear Channel recording studio in Burbank. "They said, `You're disabled." Hall, whose legs were amputated after a 1978 car accident, plays coroner Albert Robbins on the CBS television show "CSI." But last week, his role was of talk show guest, discussing mental health and physical disability issues on a new weekly radio program run by Los Angeles County and a mental health advocacy group. From 7:30 to 8:30 a.m. Sundays, listeners tune in to KTLK-AM (1150) to hear hosts Brian Canning and Wendy Almasy interview guests about topics ranging from bipolar disorder to stress-related anxiety. The goal is to educate listeners and obliterate the stigma surrounding mental illness. To read more, click here


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Unfocused? ADD Is Not Just for Kids - Adults Have It Too 

Attention Deficit Disorder tends to focus predominately on children, leaving the ADD adult largely under served. Most of the information presented about Attention Deficit Disorder focuses on children, parenting and school issues. All but one ADHD medication currently on the market achieved FDA approval for adult Attention Deficit Disorder treatment.  Attention Deficit Disorder simply was not in vogue when the adult of today was a child decades ago. While today many express concerns of over diagnosis of Attention Deficit Disorder in children, many also acknowledge the under diagnosing of adults with Attention Deficit Disorder. Adults with ADD often realize that they have Attention Deficit Disorder when their own child is diagnosed. Looking through the list of symptoms, the parent often sees similarities in their own present or past behavior. To read more, click here 

The Real Damage Wrought to Individuals with Autism by Andrew Wakefield 

Andrew Wakefield is the British doctor who, in a 1998 study, claimed that the measles vaccine might be linked to inflammatory bowel disease, and that this might be connected to autism. That study was retracted last year by The Lancet. Earlier this year, the British Medical Journal (BMJ) published a detailed report about how the case against the MMR was the result of "deliberate fraud" on Wakefield's part; not only was he being paid by lawyers who were representing families involved in vaccine litigation, but five of the twelve children studied were found to have developmental delays that pre-existed their receiving the MMR vaccine. To read more, click here

Food For Thought..........

Do not expect to accomplish your dreams if you're not willing to help others accomplish their's.