LDA Today - May/June 2015

As summer approaches, thoughts generally turn to vacation plans, what books we're going to read, how to keep the kids busy, and home maintenance projects. As we tackle some of the more mundane chores in our lives, perhaps we can make opportunities for reflection and planning for community leadership discussed in President Nancie Payne has provided an insightful article.

Articles from the Conference Committee, Nominating Committee, and the State Presidents’ Representative update you on LDA. The passing of Dr. Janet Lerner, long-time LDA supporter and pioneer in the field of learning disabilities, is reported with great sadness.

Transition issues are covered in Who Owns the Future? and College Support Services and Student Self-Advocacy. Tips for helping your children over the summer are shared in Days of Summer Fun with your Early Childhood Learner. Reminders of supplies you may need in case of a disaster are included in Be Prepared for an Emergency. Be Red Cross Ready.

IDEA Maintenance of Effort Regulations, eliminating toxic chemicals from vinyl flooring, and the formation of a student club, the Student Learning Disabilities Association of The Citadel round out the newsletter.

If you have a suggestion for an article or a topic, please feel free to write us at info@ldaamerica.org. Our next issue will have a Back-to-School theme, including pre-school to postsecondary.

May you all enjoy a great summer as memories of this past winter continue to fade!

Shirley Hilts-Adams
Editor, LDA Today

President’s Message

Writing a good message that those of you in the LDA community will read, and possibly appreciate, in some ways occasionally presents difficulties.  And, so was the case, with getting started on this message. Thus, after some reflective thinking I have decided to share something that was shared with me several years ago.  The authors, Maury Forman, Ph.D. and Michelle Harvey are from Washington State. Dr. Forman is the Director of Education and Training for the Department of Commerce and Ms. Harvey is the Communications Coordinator for the Association of Washington Cities. Together these two highly intelligent and well-published individuals… Read More »

Nominating Committee Requests Recommendations for 2016-17 Officers and Board of Directors

The work to develop a slate of officers and board of directors for presentation at the LDA 2016 Assembly of Delegates in Orlando is underway.  The LDA President will be nominated this year to serve for two years beginning in February 2016.  The nominating committee is searching for candidates with leadership and teambuilding 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 early May and are available either through your state affiliate or the national office (info@ldaamerica.org). Your… Read More »

Reception Starts the Conference with Festivities

More than 100 LDA members, state presidents, past presidents, PAB and board of directors kicked off the week’s activities at the membership reception on the first night of the Annual Conference in Chicago. Greeters handed out gift bags and sent attendees to sign the balloon representing their state. The hot air decorations contributed to the festivities and were constructed by Columbia College in Chicago under the direction of Kathleen Loftus. Multi-colored state balloons bobbed everywhere and LDA videos featuring members ran on a large screen at the front of the room as everyone met new friends,  renewed acquaintances from past… Read More »

Who Owns the Future? Employers Reflect on Jobs of the Future

The LDA Adult Topics Committee hosted an impressive panel presentation at the 2015 LDA Conference in Chicago. The goal of the presentation was to bring in disability compliance representatives of Fortune 500 companies to talk about hiring and accommodating employees in today’s job market. The prestigious panel included representatives from AT&T, Discover Card and Ernst & Young Global. The panelists discussed current policy, procedures, and resources that address hiring and supporting employees with learning disabilities. The panelist discussion revolved around how companies are gearing up to hire more individuals with disabilities due to the recent 7% mandate under Section 503… Read More »

College Support Services and Student Self Advocacy

  A parent’s guide to asking the right questions and preparing your child to be an advocate As a parent of a child with learning disabilities, it is almost certain that one of your major life activities is advocating for your child’s needs at school and remaining vigilant that the school follows through with agreed upon supports.  As you and your child draw closer to the transition from secondary education schooling to post-secondary and college, much of the role you have been playing on behalf of your child shifts abruptly from you to your child.  Unlike K-12 schooling, where the… Read More »

Days of Summer Fun with Your Early Childhood Learner…

If a child has a learning disability, summer months can be thought of as a period of relaxation away from academics and learning. Although, it is also important to remember that students with learning disabilities can lose critical skills over the summer months. The balance is to find fun and creative ways to keep academic skills sharp during this period of time without seeming like you are doing “school.” Here are some ideas to have fun and be creative this summer with your early childhood LD learner. Another name for…Throughout the day, make a game of vocabulary building with everyday… Read More »

Home Depot and Lowe’s Move to Eliminate Toxic Chemicals from Vinyl Flooring

Young children spend countless happy hours on kitchen floors, rolling a ball, pushing a toy car, or better yet, pulling open cupboards to find cans to stack and pots to bang together. Then there’s all the time in and out of the highchair or booster seat, getting down from the table to explore everything that has fallen under it. What grandparents and parents don’t see when they watch a toddler play on the kitchen floor is all the chemicals that travel from the dust and crumbs onto their hands, and often, into their little mouths. Chemicals called phthalates are used… Read More »

Final IDEA Maintenance of Effort Regulations Issued

In September 2013, the Secretary of Education published a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) seeking to amend the regulations governing the IDEA maintenance of effort (MOE) requirements.  After considering and acting on over 300 public comments, the Department issued the final rule (Fed. Reg., Vol. 80, No. 81, Part II, April 28, 2015), which takes effect on July 1, 2015. The changes address the compliance and eligibility standards for local school districts regarding MOE, the level of effort required by a school district in a year after MOE was not maintained, and consequences for failure to maintain MOE.  Rules on… Read More »

Across the States

Hello Everyone! I have the privilege as your newly elected State President Representative to share with you all the wonderful activities that are happening across our state chapters. This year at the National LDA Conference we had several states that submitted Affiliate Accolades and were recognized for their innovative ideas, legislative actions, and recruitment efforts. The states that shared these experiences included: South Carolina, Illinois, Maryland, New Hampshire, New Jersey, and California. In South Carolina our first college LDA club was established. Many of us as educators and parents are excited and proud of this recruitment of young blood to… Read More »

Graduating cadets in Zucker Family School of Education help lead S.C. organization to national recognition 

  First of its kind club formed by Cadets supporting students with learning disabilities CHARLESTON, S.C. – A group of cadets who are in the Zucker Family School of Education at The Citadel shared a goal – they wanted to promote awareness and support for the education of people with learning disabilities, their families, and those who teach them.  That goal led them, with the guidance of their professor, to form a student club called the Student Learning Disabilities Association of The Citadel (SLDAC). They collaborated with the South Carolina chapter of the Learning Disabilities Association of America (LDA), becoming… Read More »

In Memory of Janet Lerner

It is with deep sadness that we share with you that Dr. Janet Lerner passed away on May 26, 2015. Janet was a long-time supporter of Learning Disability Association’s since the late 1960’s, speaking at nearly every annual conference; and chairing the 1991 Chicago Program. She had served on the Professional Advisory Board for many years and was the recipient of our highest recognition, the LDA Award in 1978.  Janet also served as editor or co-editor of LDA’s professional journal Learning Disabilities: A Multidisciplinary Journal until 2012. Janet’s textbook, Learning Disabilities and Related Disabilities: Strategies for Success, currently in its 13th edition,… Read More »

Be Prepared for an Emergency. Be Red Cross Ready!

Being prepared means being equipped with the proper supplies you may need in the event of an emergency or disaster. Keep your supplies in an easy-to-carry emergency preparedness kit that you can use at home or take with you in case you must evacuate.   At a minimum, you should have the basic supplies listed below: Water- one gallon per person, per day (3-day supply for evacuation, 2-week supply for home) Food- non-perishable, easy-to-prepare items (3-day supply for evacuation, 2-week supply for home) Flashlight Battery-powered or hand-crank radio (NOAA Weather Radio, if possible) Extra batteries First aid kit‚ Anatomy of a… Read More »