Project TENDR Featured in JAMA Pediatrics

Lead poisoning affects children in communities throughout the country; even low levels of lead can harm brain development, and result in learning disabilities and attention problems. The good news is lead poisoning is entirely preventable; we can solve this problem and protect children from lead poisoning once and for all. Last month, LDA convened a group of scientists and health experts to take those messages to Congress. The group met with U.S. House and Senate offices to share a national strategy for eliminating lead poisoning in children. The experts published their recommendations for eliminating lead exposures in a May 15… Read More »

Groups Appeal EPA’s Refusal To Ban Dangerous Pesticide

MEDIA CONTACT: Maureen Swanson, Healthy Children Project Director, Project TENDR Co-Director, Learning Disabilities Association of America Chlorpyrifos is linked to long-term damage in children’s developing brains Pittsburgh, PA (June 6, 2017) –Today, a dozen health and labor organizations represented by Earthjustice filed an administrative appeal to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, urging the federal government to ban chlorpyrifos, a widely used agricultural pesticide that has been linked to reduced IQ, loss of working memory and attention deficit disorder in children. It is up to EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt to decide the appeal. This direct appeal to the EPA appeal was filed… Read More »

School Year to Summer Learning: Making the Big Transition

Kristina Scott, LDA State Presidents’ Representative Summer is quickly sneaking up on us! With the school year dwindling down there is often end of the year parties, moving on ceremonies, field trips, and nervous excitement as our children begin to anticipate the summer months that lay ahead. For students that need a highly structured environment these changes are often met with anxiety rather than excitement. To help students navigate this anxious time of the year it is helpful to provide some structure to aide this transition from school routine to summer activities. One way to do this, and to work… Read More »

Be an LDA Advocate: Keep Up with Your State/Federal Legislators!

by Shirley Hilts-Adams, Co-Chair, Public Policy Committee Have you ever wondered what your Representative’s or Senators’ opinion was or how they voted on issues of concern to you? Do you know on what committees they serve? Do you know where their local district offices are or how to contact them? By visiting www.congress.gov/members, you can connect with the webpage of your Representative and Senators and find answers to these questions and more! You can also sign up for their free periodic news bulletins providing insights on pending or future legislation. You can also do the same for your state Representatives and… Read More »

Nominating Committee Requests Recommendations for 2018-19 Officers and Board of Directors

B.J. Wiemer, Chairman, Nominating Committee The work to develop a slate of officers and board of directors for presentation at the LDA 2018 Assembly of Delegates in Atlanta is now underway. The nominating committee is searching for candidates with leadership and team-building skills as prospective leaders for our organization. A commitment to work for the goals of LDA is a requirement for those who will fill these positions. Nomination forms were distributed in May and are available through your state affiliate or the national office info@ldaamerica.org. Your help is needed to find worthy candidates and to submit completed applications to… Read More »

Interview with a Successful Graduate

Julia Frost, Director, Jones Learning Center, University of the Ozarks, Clarksville, Arkansas Janae Cantu graduated cum laude from the University of the Ozarks on May 13, with a degree in sociology.  This in itself is not remarkable until you hear a bit about Janae’s story Describe your learning disability and how it affects you in and out of school.  I have severe dyslexia.  Reading doesn’t come naturally to me.  You can tell me a word, and five minutes later I don’t know it.  It doesn’t stick.  Also, communicating my thoughts on paper is challenging.  In school, it affects me a… Read More »

Retailers to child care programs must act to provide non-toxic products, new report finds

Retailers selling directly to early care and education programs, including child care programs and Head Start, need to do more to screen out harmful chemicals, a new report to be released Monday finds. The report released today by the Getting Ready for Baby coalition, “Selling Safer Products for Early Care and Education,” is the first assessment of these niche retailers who target directly to early care and education programs, including child care and preschools. It assessed policies on chemicals in products they sell, and how transparent retailers were, and found: While nearly all (22 of 24) retailers use certifications to identify chemically-safer… Read More »

LDA Legislative News – May 2017

raw][/raw] Congress Finalizes FY 2017 Spending Eight months into the current federal fiscal year (FY 2017), Congress has finally passed an omnibus spending bill.  At the same time, House and Senate appropriations committees already are deep in discussion on FY 2018, which begins on October 1, 2017.  The FY 2017 numbers are very close overall to the FY 2016 spending levels, with special education among accounts receiving a small increase.  This is significant, since the Department of Education had one of the largest decreases across the federal agencies. The FY 2017 bill provides $68.2 billion for the U.S. Department of… Read More »

Regional Workshops 2017

Removing Roadblocks and Creating Pathways: Supporting Children with LD/ADHD in the Classroom and at Home LDA is proud to present two regional workshops with appropriate tracks for both Parents and Professionals this fall in Dallas, Texas and Nashua, New Hampshire! Who should attend? General Education Teachers, Special Education Teachers, School Administrators, Parents, Caregivers and Anyone who wants to learn more about helping children with learning disabilities. For Professionals: Removing Roadblocks – Understanding and Supporting Students with LD/ADHD in the Mainstream Classroom. Featured Speakers: Allen Broyles, LDA Board of Directors, Assistant Head of School, The Children’s School, Atlanta, Georgia. Dr. Scott… Read More »

Members In Action:

Kimberley Spire-Oh, Esquire
West Palm Beach, FL
LDA of Florida co-president

I have recently been on a campaign to get attention to the problems with current school choice policies and proposals for expansion of privatization of schools. It started out as a simple op-ed in The Palm Beach Post. This led to conversations with reporters from The New York Times and National Public Radio (NPR). I also found a general inquiry for someone to talk to EdWeek about the subject. Although I wasn’t directly quoted in the articles included here, I was able to give them extensive information, including legal background on the issues surrounding school choice policies and current proposals for expansion… Read More »

Thank You to our 2017 Annual Conference Sponsors

by Mary-Clare Reynolds, Executive Director Each year, LDA seeks support for our annual conference and this year was no exception. It is very gratifying to receive the backing from these companies, schools and individuals to allow us to continue to provide this premier conference each year. We are pleased to report the following generous donors who helped fund our 54th Annual Conference in Baltimore in February. We are ever grateful for their support of our annual conference, and of LDA.   Return to LDA Today, Vol.4 No.2- Home Page

President’s Message

by Pat Lillie, LDA President Every February marks the beginning of a new year for the Learning Disabilities Association of America (LDA).  Committees submit work plans and goals for the year, conference planning for the next year’s conference – in this case the 2018 LDA Conference in Atlanta gets underway, and the Finance Committee delves into budget development.  The Public Policy Committee doesn’t start anew, it continues working on what came before, reacts to what is happening now and tries to get ready for what might happen next.  In February the LDA Board of Directors welcomed two new members Rose Calloway from Georgia and Nancy Hammill from New Jersey. We look forward to… Read More »

How is LDA Doing in 2017?

by Pat Latham, Past LDA President As a Past President of LDA, I have had the opportunity to be involved over the years and would like to briefly reflect on the state of LDA in 2017. LDA’s Mission Statement is as follows: “LDA’s mission is to create opportunities for success for all individuals affected by learning disabilities and to reduce the incidence of learning disabilities in future generations.” I believe LDA has been effective in carrying out its mission and, over the years, has worked hard to increase its effectiveness. Overall, LDA is well positioned in 2017 to continue moving forward successfully in… Read More »

LDA Connects with Parents and Teachers in Baltimore

by Ann Kornblet, LDA Conference General Chair The 54th Annual LDA International Conference, February 16 – 19, was a grand success! Attendees from all over the US and from many other countries enjoyed four days of learning, networking and sightseeing at the beautiful Baltimore Marriott Waterfront at the Inner Harbor. LDA of Maryland was the perfect host. Led by Judy Lantz, LDA of Maryland President, the Maryland volunteers did a wonderful job all week by supporting the national staff and the 900 attendees. A special thank you to Bonnie Massimino for managing all the Maryland volunteers. The week began by many… Read More »

Moving, School Records, and IEPs

IDEA provides guidelines for a child with a disability transferring to another school in or out of district within the same state or out of state. The guidelines are specific as to the child’s right to have a free appropriate public education with services that are comparable to those in the previous IEP. It is important that the parents get copies of school records for their files, check with the new and existing schools to be sure the transfer request is made, make sure all records related to special or related services are included, and follow up with both schools… Read More »

Advocates Succeed in Derailing Health Care Bill

by: Myrna Mandlawitz, LDA Policy Director The Administration’s stated intention to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA) prompted swift action from LDA, as the organization engaged with a broad array of national organizations, including disability, education, civil rights, and health care advocates. With the introduction of the American Health Care Act (AHCA) in March, LDA and its partners engaged in direct advocacy on Capitol Hill and mobilized grassroots advocates, ultimately succeeding in defeating a bill that would have caused serious negative impacts on individuals with learning disabilities. LDA had several significant concerns about the AHCA.  First and foremost… Read More »

Across the States: Affiliate Accolades and Volunteer Recognition

by: Kristina Scott, State Presidents’ Representative Welcome home from the LDA National Conference! It was a great conference with a lot of networking and sharing in each other’s accomplishments. There were many affiliate accolades and volunteers to recognize this year. This article looks to provide you with a recap about each of these projects and highlights some amazing volunteers this year! Georgia, where our 2018 annual LDA conference is to be held, has been working tirelessly on a “Revitalizing Georgia” campaign. They have begun this campaign by focusing on new branding and new marketing to rejuvenate their current membership and… Read More »

Summertime is the Right Time to Build Your Child’s Social Skills.

by: Nancy Hammill, Education Committee Social skills are the skills we use to communicate and interact with each other, both verbally and non-verbally, through gestures and body language.  Social skills are basically what the community at large and your grandmother call manners – polite behaviors that are supposed to reflect an attitude of consideration, kindness, and respect for others. Children with poor social skills or manners, often become easy targets for bullies and experience rejection and isolation.  Social skills affect your child’s social relationships, communication, self-esteem, and future career choices.  Manners Matter! People automatically assume that everyone knows these skills… Read More »

2017 LDA Awards

One of the highlights of each LDA Conference is the presentation of awards to our members who have accomplished outstanding feats in fulfilling the mission of the Learning Disabilities Association of America on behalf of all individuals with learning disabilities. The Awards,  presented at the Baltimore Marriott Waterfront Hotel, Baltimore, Maryland, at the 2017 Conference continued this practice. The following individuals were the recipients of this year’s awards. President’s Award The 2017 President’s Award was presented to Jonathan Jones for his many years of outstanding service to individuals with Learning Disabilities and/or Attention Disorders, by LDA of America President Patricia… Read More »

Learning Disabilities Association of America says EPA Decision not to Ban Dangerous Pesticide Ignores Established Science and Puts Children at Greater Risk for Learning, Attention, and Behavior Disorders

MEDIA CONTACT: Maureen Swanson, Director Healthy Children Project, mswanson@ldaamerica.org, 724.813.9684, Project TENDR website: http://projecttendr.com/ Learning Disabilities Association of America says EPA Decision not to Ban Dangerous Pesticide Ignores Established Science and Puts Children at Greater Risk for Learning, Attention, and Behavior Disorders Pittsburgh, PA (March 30, 2017) – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) decision to allow the dangerous pesticide chlorpyrifos to continue to be used on farm fields and crops puts children and future generations at greater risk of learning and developmental disabilities, attention and behavior disorders, according to the Learning Disabilities Association of America (LDA). In 2016, a group of nearly… Read More »

LDA Legislative News – March 2017

President’s Funding Proposals Would Seriously Harm LDA Priorities On March 16, the White House released the president’s proposed budget for Fiscal Year 2018 (School Year 2018-19), which will begin on October 1, 2017.  That budget contains draconian cuts to LDA priority programs, including education, job training, physical and mental health, environmental protection, and juvenile justice.  Overall the budget would cut discretionary spending, except for defense, by $54 billion, while increasing defense, homeland security, and veterans’ affairs by an almost equivalent amount. Among the agencies hardest hit are the Departments of Labor and Education and the Environmental Protection Agency.  As an… Read More »

Manju Banerjee to Serve on Professional Advisory Board of Learning Disabilities Association of America

MEDIA CONTACT: Mary-Clare Reynolds, LDA Executive Director mcreynolds@ldaamerica.org, 412.341.1515, ext. 206 Manju Banerjee to Serve on Professional Advisory Board of LDA Pittsburgh, PA (March 28, 2017) – Manju Banerjee, Ph.D., of Putney VT, was elected to a three-year term on the Professional Advisory Board of the Learning Disabilities Association of America (LDA). Dr. Banerjee is Vice President of Educational Research and Innovation at Landmark College in Putney, VT. A certified diagnostician and teacher-consultant on learning disabilities, Banerjee has over 30 years of experience in the field of learning disabilities, ADHD, and postsecondary disability services. Dr. Banerjee received her doctoral degree from the… Read More »

Court Finds Middle Ground in Endrew F. Decision

LDA joined with the National Disability Rights Network (NDRN) and 42 other national organizations to file an amicus (“friend of the court”) brief in the Supreme Court case Endrew F. v. Douglas County School District.  This case was the first reexamination of the “free appropriate public education” standard by the Supreme Court since the Rowley decision in 1982.  Under the earlier case, the Court held that a child received a FAPE when the services provided to her “confer some educational benefit,” and this has consistently been the standard since that decision. The 10th Circuit which heard Endrew below applied a… Read More »

Request for Comments: Proposed Guidelines on Accessibility of Digital Content

LDA has been asked by the Cognitive Task Force (COGA) of the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) to respond to its request for comments on the accessibility of digital content by individuals with learning disabilities. (This includes how someone with a learning disability accesses information or may take a test via a computer.) You are encouraged to share this request with other individuals (including parents, students, educators, and adults with learning disabilities) or groups who have insights into the needs of people with cognitive and learning disabilities. Comments may be submitted by individuals or groups. Please see below for details.… Read More »

2018 Call for Proposals

LDA 55th Annual International Conference Jennifer Harkins, Program Co-Chair Loreena Parks, Program Co-Chair Learning Disabilities Association of America is seeking submissions for the 2018 Conference to be held in Atlanta, Georgia on February 21-24, 2018. Anyone wishing to present a poster, facilitate a table talk or present a formal lecture style presentation is invited to submit a proposal. LDA values sessions that present current and best practices, including basic information about the nature of learning disabilities as well as innovative approaches to advocacy, assessment, intervention, and instruction. Also sought are sessions that present new ways to ensure successful transition, utilize… Read More »