Archives for September 2016

Safeguarding the Rights of Our Children

by Patricia Lillie, LDA of America President Children with specific learning disabilities are served under all federal education laws. Two major laws impact their daily school lives — the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA, replaced No Child Left Behind) and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). Each law provides certain rights and protections for students, but parents and advocates must be diligent to ensure those rights are maintained. With the recent passage of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), the role of the federal government in the education system has been significantly reduced. State boards of education and local… Read More »

U.S. Department of Education Announces $2.5 Million in Grants to Operate Centers for Parents of Children with Disabilities

The U.S. Department of Education recently announced the award of $2.5 million in grants to operate 23 Community Parent Resource Centers in 17 states and a Parent Training and Information Center to serve American Samoa, the Federated States of Micronesia, Guam, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, and the Republic of Palau. The centers provide parents with the training and information they need to work with professionals in meeting the early intervention and special needs of children with disabilities. For a list of Department-funded parent training and information centers, visit   The… Read More »

What Does a Reader Look Like?

I asked several teachers from around the country (Dallas, TX, Denton, TX, Brooklyn, NY, and Salem, OR) to respond to the question, “What does a good reader look like?” I compiled five responses and they were extremely similar. Each wrote of using decoding, fluency, and comprehension strategies to connect with written text. A couple of them detailed specific comprehension skills (predicting, questioning, and summarizing) while others included the value of accessing background knowledge and reading in different environments (with a teacher, peer, or independently). Surprisingly absent was any discussion of students selecting their own texts, even when the teachers wrote… Read More »

Across The States

by: Patricia Useem, State Presidents’ Representative I have received updates from many affiliates across the country; much is going on in  LDA at the state level. Many affiliates and contacts, including Arizona and West Virginia, field calls and/or emails asking for help finding diagnosticians, locating tutors to provide specialized remediation, answering questions about IEP’s and other school issues to name a few. Other affiliates are planning workshops and conferences this fall. A sampling of these include: LDA-Iowa’s 45th conference is on October 23-24; LDA-New Jersey presents Navigating the Maze Conference on October 23; LDA-Washington is holding a Workshop in November focusing… Read More »

First Quarter Check/Review of Your Child’s IEP or 504 Plan

by Analisa Smith, LDA Board of Directors School is back in session and now is the perfect time to review your child’s IEP or 504 Plan for this academic year. Over the summer you may have reflected on your child’s educational progress from last year and now are ready to make sure his or her needs are well addressed in the present IEP. So, this is the perfect time to consider reviewing your child’s IEP (Individualized Educational Program) or 504 Plan. If you find that changes need to be made or other options considered, you should be prepared to schedule… Read More »

Sam Kirk Educator of the Year Award

Each year the LDA of America selects an outstanding educator to receive the Sam Kirk Educator of the Year Award. This is an opportunity to give educators a well-deserved “thank you” and lets them know that they are greatly valued for their contributions to individuals with learning disabilities. The award is designed so that exceptional educators can be honored at the local, state and national levels. We hope that every local and state affiliate will participate! The Procedures for Nominations were sent out from the National Office to state and local affiliates. Local LDA affiliates or members-at-large may submit a… Read More »

Pre- and Post-Job Offer Questions: Guidance for Employers and Human Resource Personnel

Download/Print Pre- and Post-Job Offer Questions: Guidance for Employers and Human Resource Personnel Info Sheet Introduction According to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), employers and their human resource personnel are limited in the types of questions they can ask during the pre- and post-job offer phase of employment. Specifically, this refers to disability-related questions as well as requirements for medical examinations. The act does not allow employers to ask disability-related questions or require medical exams until after a conditional job offer is made. During the Pre-Job Offer Stage The pre-job offer stage includes both the job application and the job… Read More »

Disclosing Your Learning Disability

Download/Print Adults with Learning Disabilities – Disclosing Your Learning Disability Info Sheet What is disclosure? In a disability context, “disclosure” is the act of revealing personal information about a disability for the specific purpose of receiving accommodations in postsecondary school, job training, or the workplace. An accommodation is an adjustment to an environment which makes it possible for people with disabilities to participate equally. There is no standardized form or set of requirements regarding what people must share about their disabilities, and the choice to disclose is a personal decision that individuals with disabilities must make for themselves. They should decide to whom they choose to disclose and how much information to provide. When should you… Read More »