News Digest online!
NC Parents Decry Inner-city Schools
Charlotte Observer, February 20, 2005
They say educational quality suffers in high-poverty CMS areas
Frustrated black parents complained Saturday that their children are
getting a second-rate education in inner-city schools that are filled
with students from poor families.
Schools Feed a Need
Peter Schworm, Boston Globe, February 20, 2005
This wasn't sixth-grader Kevin Roche's day. It was well after 6 p.m.,
and he was still at school, racking his brain to explain the chemical
reactions of acids and bases. Worse, his Dad sat beside him, peering
at his every pencil scratch. And just across the cafeteria table sat
his teacher, making sure he stayed on task. They came to Andrews
Middle School for a ''Family Homework" dinner, where once a month
teachers and students prepare a meal for families in the cafeteria.
After breaking bread, everyone breaks out the books.
In Less Than 2 Years at North High, Principal Restores Discipline,
Improves Test Scores
Roy Wenzyl, Wichita Eagle, February 20, 2005
After Denise Wren took over one of Wichita's toughest high schools,
she did more with less. A lot more. Math and reading test scores rose.
Writing scores jumped 14 percentage points.
A Chance to Teach--and to
Rex Huppke, Chicago Tribune, February 20, 2005
As a schoolteacher fights cancer, her pupils are showing her how to
"live in the moment."
It Is Not What's Gone -
But What's Given
Speech by Jim Abbott, one-handed famed professional
baseball pitcher, 2005
Speech from Jim Abbott, one-handed famed
professional baseball pitcher. “I've learned that there are millions
of people out there ignoring disabilities and accomplishing incredible
feats. I learned that you can learn to do things differently, but do them
just as well. I've learned that it's not the disability that defines you,
it's how you deal with the challenges the disability presents you with. I've
learned that we have an obligation to the abilities we do have, not the
Educators Too Reluctant to Tackle Bullying of Gays, Lesbians
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, February 20, 2005
Last month, 5,500 educators from 36 states signed up as participants in the
second annual No Name Calling Week, an anti-bullying program addressing
verbal harassment of students, including gay and lesbian students, in middle
and high schools.
leading organization promoting and protecting the rights of abused and neglected
children in failing foster care systems, using policy analysis, public education
and the power of the courts.
Court Finds Children Have a Right to Counsel in Dependency Cases (PDF)
The U.S. District Court, Northern District of Georgia Atlanta Division issued an
order on February 8, 2005 in a class action lawsuit brought by Children's
Rights, Inc. against the Georgia state child welfare agencies and officials
regarding children in Georgia's foster care system. Among other things,
plaintiffs allege the defendants have failed to provide adequate and effective
legal representation for children in dependency proceedings. In its order the
court stated that children in dependency cases have a constitutional right to
counsel that may be violated by excessive caseloads. The question of the
excessive nature of the caseloads will now go to trial. Thanks to the National
Association of Counsel for Children for sharing this news.
Moms United is an organization of volunteers
dedicated to enhancing the lives of children through cards and letters of love
and inspiration. We believe that even the smallest acts of kindest can make a
true difference. Our mission is to reach out to children and their families who
are facing some of the most difficult struggles of their lives.
Helpful College Scholarship Information
"The thought of getting scholarships has
always been confusing for me and this site helped me understand what I should do
and helped me avoid scholarship scams. I felt it might help other students as
well." - Bridges4Kids Website Visitor
Test Scores Fuel Laptop Debate
News, August 19, 2004
Eighth-graders' scores on Maine's most
recent annual achievement test are refueling the debate over that state's
groundbreaking effort to give laptop computers to students. Middle-school
students who used laptops for two years performed about the same on a
standardized test as students in the past who did not have access to computers,
the results indicate--though laptop-equipped students did show gains in writing.
Bad Seat on a plane? Here’s a solution. Most major
airlines permit you to choose your seat when you’re buying a ticket online. But
apart from telling you whether a seat is open or occupied, few indicate whether
one seat is better than another. That’s where SeatGuru.com comes in.
This web site shows you the seat configurations offered by many airlines by
Homework, Research & Study Resources
This free tool allows you to zoom in, zoom out, or
point and click your way to a customized map of the U.S. Includes the
basics like roads, counties, and capitals but goes several steps
further to include agriculture (crops), climate, geology,
transportation, water and much, much more.
National Aeronautics and Space Administration where you will find
special sections for students, teachers, researchers, etc. and the
latest information on space travel and exploration as well as
fascinating looks into how space exploration is affecting research on
Over a million topics, covering people, places, words and
names, drawn from reliable dictionaries, encyclopedias, websites, and more.
Check out our Directory of content areas and sample topics.
Online Guide to
Writing and Grammar
Includes easy-to-follow rules of grammar, sentence
construction, quizzes, how to write an essay and a thesis, PowerPoint tips…in
short, everything you need to properly express yourself. The Guide to Grammar and Writing is sponsored by
Capital Community College Foundation, a nonprofit 501 c-3
organization that supports scholarships, faculty
development, and curriculum innovation.
No Child Left Behind (NCLB)
Lawmakers Knock 'No Child'
Deseret News, February 20, 2005
A bill and a resolution viewed as knocking President Bush's signature
education program are headed to full Senate debate this week.
Schools Grapple With
Standards For Special Ed Pupils
Linda Borg, Providence Journal, February 20, 2005
Some educators say their schools are being unfairly labeled as
underperforming because of test scores from special needs students.
eSchool News Guide to Assessment and Achievement
Few issues are hotter than assessment—thanks
to the No Child Left Behind Act and similar measures—but few are more
misunderstood. With the generous support of Software Technology Inc., the
editors at eSchool News have assembled a variety of news and information as well
as outside resources to help put assessment in clearer perspective and to tie it
more closely to its primary purpose—namely, better test scores through improved
Education Board Approves
New Performance Indicators
Gongwer News Service, February 10, 2005
Schools this fall will have a new set of
performance indicators to consider for their Education YES! Report Cards. And
this spring they will see those indicators have a little less weight.
Center for Excellence in Learning & Teaching:
American Association for Higher Education: Assessment Planning
Principles of Assessment
Integrating Assessment & Instruction
AACU: An Assessment Glossary
Microsoft Education: Accountability & Assessment
Toy's Advice on Choosing the Best Products For Your Child
Stevanne Auerbach, Ph.D./Dr. Toy, FamilyEducation.com
What's Right for Baby?
What's Right for Toddlers?
What's Right for Preschoolers?
What's Right for Primary-Grade Children?
What's Right for Older Children?
Family Education Network
Here parents can find information on school solutions, homework help,
parenting tips, expert advice, K-12 Web Resources, and Grade-specific
guides to your child's development.
Parenting Information and Resources
A site that looks
largely commercial, but which offers a rich list of links to parenting resources
on the web, including specialty sites for parents of teens, sports parents,
parents of infants and toddlers, and new parents.
Early On/Early Intervention
Governor, Lawmakers Seek Compromise on All-day K
Chip Scutari, The Arizona Republic, February 20, 2005
Emboldened by a more conservative majority this year, Republican
lawmakers have a new plan of attack on all-day kindergarten, Gov.
Janet Napolitano's top legislative priority.
Early Childhood Newsletter:
Theme - Libraries
Education World Early Childhood Education Newsletter Volume 3,
Shelves and shelves of books! The library is an “exploratorium”-- a
place to explore facts, feelings, and fun found on the pages of books!
Whether your students regularly visit a public library, a school
library, or a classroom library, they are beginning to understand the
value and enjoyment of books.
FIA Funds go to Low-income Child Care in 38 Counties
Gongwer News Service, February 16, 2005
for everything from play kitchens to fire doors were announced
Wednesday as part of $200,000 allocated to registered child low-income
child care providers. The 60 grants, funded by the Family Independence
Agency, will go to providers in 38 counties.
Governor Granholm's Comments on Early Childhood Education & Care
Governor Jennifer Granholm's State of the State
address, February 8, 2005 (distributed by Steve Manchester, Public
Policy Specialist, MiAEYC)
written version of her State of the State address, Governor Granholm
unveiled an early childhood initiative called the "Early Childhood
Investment Corporation" (ECIC). It's common practice for a Governor
not to say everything contained in the written document even though
that document is released to the public. In the speech she delivered,
Governor Granholm did not mention the ECIC. However, the ECIC language
is contained in the official version of her speech displayed on her
Law Enforcement Releases Report Showing High-Quality Preschool
Cuts Crime (PDF)
Fight Crime, Invest in Kids Michigan, February 9, 2005
Michigan law enforcement leaders and crime victims today released a
new report showing that high-quality preschool cuts crime, and called
on the state government to increase investments in quality preschool
De Roche Supports
Study of Teacher Retiree Benefits
Gongwer News Service, February 16, 2005
House Speaker Craig DeRoche (R-Novi)
is supporting the necessary funds, estimated at $2 million to $5 million, that
the State Board of Education wants for a study of the costs associated with the
state's system for paying teacher's pensions and health care coverage during
Michigan Legislative Update
HB 4078 is calling for the
total removal of the cap on the number of Charter Schools that can be
established in Michigan. SB 77 would further define acceptable
instructional time to state that the instructional time that is part of a
Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) program shall be considered to be pupil
instructional time regardless of whether the instructor is a certified teacher.
SB 91 directs school district and public school academy boards to develop
and implement a local school nutrition policy that will apply only to food and
beverage products sold or distributed at school that are not part of a federally
regulated child nutrition program.
Budget, Executive Order Details Released
Gongwer News Service, February 10, 2005
The text for the Fiscal Year 2005-06 budget and Executive Order
2005-3 to revise the current budget are now available on the state website and
can be reached through the following links:
FY 2005-06 Budget at
EO 2005-3 at
$175 Per Student School Aid Boost
MIRS, February 9, 2005
The state subsidy for every high school student in Michigan would go from
$6,700 to $6,925 if lawmakers endorse the recommendation contained in the
governor's new budget due out tomorrow.
FY 2005 Executive Order Details
MIRS, February 10, 2005
Gov. Jennifer Granholm is proposing in a Fiscal Year 2005 executive order (E.O.)
a budget reduction to slice $233.1 million in state spending, but the chair of
the Senate Appropriations Committee predicts the order will be rejected.
Education Board Begins Superintendent
Gongwer News Service, February 8, 2005
How long Jeremy Hughes will be acting superintendent of public
instruction is unclear, but it appears the State Board of Education would like
to have a replacement in place by summer.
State Puts Kids at
Risk, Oakland Says
Mike Martindale and Amy Lee, The Detroit News, February
County officials: Family
Independence Agency investigators have left children in abusive
SBE Invitation to
Provide Input Related to Superintendent Search
Kathleen N. Straus, February 11 ,2005
The State Board of
Education will establish procedures at a February 23, 2005 Special Meeting, by
which it will select a new Superintendent of Public Instruction for the State of
Universal Education Period of Field
Michigan Department of Education, February 7, 2005
At the request of the Michigan State Board of Education, a
referent group, reflecting the full range of diversity of learners and factors,
drafted a document called Vision and Principles for Universal Education, which
is now available for field review.
Symptoms of Learning Disabilities
LDA of America
The symptoms of learning disabilities
are a diverse set of characteristics which affect development and
achievement. Some of these symptoms can be found in all children at
some time during their development. However, a person with learning
disabilities has a cluster of these symptoms which do not disappear
as s/he grows older.
NBC Attacks Autism With "Autism: The Hidden Epidemic?" A Week Long
Series On The Networks of NBC News
"Today," "Nightly News with Brian Williams," CNBC, MSNBC, NBC Owned
and Operated Stations, Telemundo and MSNBC.com will spend the week of
February 21 - 26, 2005 looking at autism from all angles.
New Autism Initiative: Autism Speaks
Autism Speaks is a new initiative devoted to educating the public
about autism, facilitating and funding research, motivating private
and governmental resources, and, ultimately, helping to find a cure
Kids Who Survive Cancer Bounce Back
Lindsey Tanner, The Detroit News, February 7, 2005
Study finds children often are just
as happy and well-adjusted as those who never had the illness.
MI Download the new Project PERFORM brochure (PDF)
Project PERFORM's mission is to provide
information, resources and support to empower individuals, families,
professionals, and communities to enhance outcomes for children and
young adults with special needs in Michigan.
WebMD's Symptom Checker
Need information as you determine what to
do about your symptoms? Get help figuring them out by answering a
series of questions. To get started, click on male or female,
regardless of age, then the part of the body that is troubling you. Note: This tool provides general
information and recommendations, and may not address specific
individual circumstances. Do not rely on it exclusively to make
decisions about your health. Always consult your doctor for personal
PubMed: Easy Access to Medline's 15 Million Journal Citations
PubMed, a service of the National Library of Medicine,
includes over 15 million citations for biomedical articles back to the 1950's.
These citations are from MEDLINE and additional life science journals. PubMed
includes links to many sites providing full text articles and other related
resources. Clicking the "Related articles" link for each abstract can expand
2004: Notice of Request for Comments & Recommendations
Federal Register, December 29, 2004 (Volume 69, Number
Notice of request for comments and recommendations on regulatory
issues under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA),
as amended by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement
Act of 2004.
Special-education Rule Changes Dropped
Tracy Jan, Boston Globe, February 17, 2005
Pressured by dozens of lawmakers and hundreds of parents, the state
Education Department yesterday backed off plans to change rules that many feared
would limit parents' input on how children with special needs should be
Tech-savvy Schools Reclaim Millions
Corey Murray, eSchool News, November 10, 2004
San Diego is one of dozens of
school systems nationwide reportedly benefiting from the use of new technology
designed to track, monitor, record, and report the delivery of special-education
services. These electronic tools promise to reduce dramatically the amount of
paper pushed across administrators' desks on a daily basis, give schools a much
more efficient means of applying for and collecting millions in state-provided
Medicaid reimbursements, and allow service providers to fill out necessary
paperwork from their Palm Pilots almost immediately after meeting with students.
[Free login/registration required.]
Video Review: Intricate Minds: Understanding
Classmates with Asperger Syndrome (VHS)
Jackie D. Igafo-Te'o,
Bridges4Kids, February 2005
"As I watched student after
student with Asperger Syndrome (AS) describe their feelings, it dawned on me
that this is something that EVERY student who has a classmate with AS should
see. The kids featured in the video were candid, open and honest. They really
Taking the GED Tests: Accommodating
Neil Sturomski, President, Sturomski & Associates, GEDTS Consultant
In recent years, the General Educational Development Testing Service (GEDTS) has
worked diligently to develop ways to provide support for individuals with
learning disabilities (LD) and/or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder
(ADHD). GEDTS has been proactive in making sure that individuals, who have not
graduated from high school and want to take the GED Tests, as well as those
providers who support them, understand how to apply for accommodations. In
support of these efforts, GEDTS has designed an easy process for requesting
accommodations by any individual who has been diagnosed with LD and/or ADHD.
Exclusive: Ask the
Attorney with John Brower
Last year, when I saw my child’s record folder it was about 1½" thick. This year
I requested copies of all his records, and at best the file is less than ½"
thick. I suspect a lot of records have been destroyed or moved. I have also
requested that I be given copies of all of my child’s records and they wish to
charge me a fee for the copies. What can I do?
Answer: To read
John's Answer, visit
Upcoming National Events
NEW calendar listings that have been added this week. To view a
complete calendar of National events, visit
NBC & CNBC Series on Autism
NBC's Today show is preparing a 10-part series that will run the week
of February 21 - 26 airing at 8:10 AM and 9:10 AM (Check local
listings). The series will look at autism from a variety of angles,
with segments exploring topics such as etiology, diagnosis, treatment,
educational programs, affect on siblings, and how to be an advocate
for your with autism. In conjunction with the Today show series, CNBC
is airing a four-part series from Tuesday through Friday, Feb. 22-25.
Segments will air at 12:30 PM and 1:30 PM during CNBC's Power Lunch
program. Titled "Autism: Paying the Price," the CNBC series will focus
on the financial implications of the disorder, with segments on the
financial impact on families, the roles of government and private
funding for research, the opportunities in healthcare and
pharmaceuticals and autism in the workplace.
FOR MORE INFORMATION: For
more details, visit
Live Webcast on Work
Incentives: How Work Impacts Your Benefits
WHERE: February 28,
2005, from 2 - 2:45 PM ET
DESCRIPTION: Susan O'Mara
is the Project Coordinator & a Technical Assistance Liaison for the
VCU-BARC Project Office. In this webcast, Susan will cover the basic
principles of work incentives. She will answer the following
questions: What happens when a person who has been receiving SSI and
Medicaid goes to work? Are there any risks to losing benefits if a
person works? What type of things can work incentives pay for that a
person may need in order to work? In addition, Susan will discuss
working with Benefits Planning, Assistance, and Outreach (BPAO)
COST: Cost is $50 per
person or $175 per agency.
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Register Online at
www.vcu.edu/rrtcweb/cyberu/webcast/webcast.htm, by Phone (804)
828-2197 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Visit the T-TAP website
http://www.t-tap.org, for other great training and information on
Comedy Love Call: A Benefit for
Autism Education, Therapies & Services
WHEN: Monday, March 7, 2005 at 7:30
WHERE: The Beacon Theatre, New
DESCRIPTION: Join Adam Sandler, Conan
O’Brien, Jon Stewart, Triumph the Insult Comic Dog and the cast of Saturday
Night Live among many other talented comedians and musicians in a one night only
extravaganza. We hope to raise over $1 million dollars for The Autism Coalition
and The McCarton Foundation!
FOR MORE INFORMATION: Tickets &
Sponsorships available. For more information contact Astic Productions at
212-581-1400 or visit
The Mind of a Child: The Relationship
Between Brain Development, Cognitive Functioning, and Accountability Under the
WHEN: March 10-11, 2005
WHERE: Columbus, Ohio
DESCRIPTION: Unlike other symposia,
which generally have focused on social scientific explanations for juvenile
behavior and crime, this interdisciplinary symposium will look to recent
developments in the "hard" science of brain development and function and the
implications of that research for concepts of mens rea, juvenile culpability and
accountability. Prominent academics, practitioners, and researchers in the
fields of criminal and juvenile law, medicine, psychiatry, and psychology will
discuss these new developments and share their insights.
FOR MORE INFORMATION: For more
information, contact Katherine Hunt Federle, Professor of Law and Director,
Justice for Children Project, Michael E. Moritz College of Law, The Ohio State
University, 55 West 12th Avenue, Columbus, OH 43210. Email
email@example.com or call (614) 292-9177.
TeenPact Tennessee Capitol Class
WHEN: March 21-25, 2005
WHERE: Nashville, TN
TeenPact's mission is to train young people to be leaders who will impact the
nation and the world.
FOR MORE INFORMATION: For more information, visit
Upcoming Michigan Events
NEW calendar listings that have been added this week. To view a
complete calendar of Michigan events, visit
NCA CASI Michigan Midwest
March 3, 2005
Holiday Inn South, Lansing, Michigan
Keynote speaker Thomas Guskey will set the stage for the
concurrent sessions, which will focus on: Developing local and
classroom-based assessments, Choosing assessments for your school
improvement plan, and Reporting student learning.
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
www.nca.umich.edu/assessment_conference05.html for more
University of Michigan/MSHA
Workshop: Listening for Life - Foundations of Hearing & Listening in
Children Who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing
Thursday, March 10, 2005 from 8 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Eagle Crest Conference Resort/Marriott Hotel, Ypsilanti, Michigan
Current hearing technology and research continue to drive clinical
practices so that an increasing number of babies and infants, who are
deaf or hard of hearing, can learn to listen and communicate with
effective, intelligible spoken language. One of the guiding parameters
of this is early identification and intervention. The main objective
of this workshop is to provide information and analytical guidance to
professionals and parents about the development of spoken language
acquired primarily through listening in babies and infants who are
deaf or hard of hearing. The workshop will cover a variety of topics
related to the need for early identification and intervention, current
cochlear implant technology, and the application of auditory-verbal
therapy and practice in children who are deaf or hard of hearing.
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
download the registration form (PDF) click here. If you have any
further questions, please email
firstname.lastname@example.org or contact the Michigan Speech-Language-Hearing
Association (MSHA), 790 W. Lake Lansing Rd. Suite 500-A, East Lansing,
Michigan 48823 or call 517/332-5691.
Worry-Free Advocacy: Dos
and Don'ts for Nonprofits
March 15, 2005 (Detroit) and March 16, 2005 (Okemos) -
(DETROIT AREA-TUESDAY, MARCH 15TH, 12 NOON TO 3:30
P.M. Detroit Area Council, Boy Scouts of America, 1776 West Warren,
(LANSING AREA-WEDNESDAY, MARCH 16TH, 8:30 A.M. TO 12 NOON Child and
Family Services, 2157 University Park Drive, Okemos)
This training opportunity is being sponsored by Michigan League
for Human Services, the Alliance for Justice, and the United Way
Community Services. Strengthen your voice in important public policy
debates with a better understanding of rules governing your
participation in the policy process.
Speaker Shannon Garrett, Law Fellow for the Nonprofit Advocacy Project
at the Alliance for Justice; J.D., University of Minnesota Law School
and recipient of the Public Service Award with over a decade of
experience working with the nonprofit sector.
$40 (includes lunch or light breakfast and materials)
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Register Online at
www.allianceforjustice.org/nonprofit/worryfree.html or by
phone-the (toll free) number is (866) NP-LOBBY (675-6229)
Analyzing Michigan Communities: Demographic Analysis Workshop (One Day
March 16, 17, 18, 2005 (9:00 am - 4:00 pm) Choose a
New Horizons Computer Learning Center, 2800
Livernois STE 250 Troy, MI 48083
The Analyzing Michigan Communities: Demographic
Analysis Workshop will teach you to extract, query, download, analyze,
and map Census demographic data for Detroit and other Michigan
communities. Such data can provide grant writers, social researchers
and community planners with powerful tools for analyzing community
changes. This is a streamlined, hands on workshop where each
participant works on their own computer throughout the day.
Cost is $249 per registrant.
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
To register for this workshop or for more info
www.urban-research.info or call 877-241-6576.
Bridges4Kids NewsDigest Staff
Chief Executive Officer
Director of Information Technology & Information
© 2002-2007 Bridges4Kids