THE SPECIAL ED ADVOCATE, JANUARY 7, 2003 (ISSUE 192)

In this issue of The Special Ed Advocate, we look at No Child Left Behind, meet an abused child who finally returns to school, learn how to start an advocacy group, download free publications and subscribe to free
newsletters, and learn what Pete and Pam are up to this winter.

Download printer-friendly version of this newsletter:
http://www.wrightslaw.com/nltr/03/nl.0107.htm

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FLYER! If you want to help others learn about special education law and advocacy, please download, print and distribute the Wrightslaw flyer. The flyer is in two formats: html and pdf.
http://www.wrightslaw.com/flyers/wrightslaw2.flyer.htm

http://www.wrightslaw.com/flyers/wrightslaw2.flyer.pdf

Where can you distribute the flyer? At school meetings, doctor's offices, hospitals, and day care centers!

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1. NO CHILD LEFT BEHIND ACT: WHAT EDUCATORS, PRINCIPALS & ADMINISTRATORS NEED TO KNOW

2. ABUSED CHILD RETURNS TO SCHOOL WITH LEGAL PROTECTIONS

3. ON THE FRONT LINE: MOTHERS FROM HELL2

4. WRIGHTSLAW ADVOCACY TRAINING: JANUARY & FEBRUARY 2003

5. FREE PUBS FROM WRIGHTSLAW

6. LEARN ABOUT ADVOCACY - START A FETA GROUP

7. EDUCATIONNEWS.ORG - SUBSCRIBE TODAY!

8. SUBSCRIPTION & CONTACT INFO

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1. NO CHILD LEFT BEHIND ACT: WHAT EDUCATORS, PRINCIPALS & ADMINISTRATORS NEED TO KNOW

In 2002, the single most important educational event was the No Child Left Behind Act. No Child Left Behind gives parents new options, including transfers from failing schools and free supplemental services - tutoring,
after-school programs and summer school.

The law also includes new requirements about educating teachers and paraprofessionals, school and school district report cards, and annual testing of math and reading skills.

We have been flooded with questions from educators, principals, and school administrators about the No Child Left Behind Act  about what they need to know and be able to do. Our NCLB expert Suzanne Heath answers these questions in "No Child Left Behind: What Educators, Principals and School Administrators Need to Know:" This article is available as an html file and as a 4 page printer-friendly pdf file.

http://www.wrightslaw.com/info/nclb.teachers.admins.htm

http://www.wrightslaw.com/info/nclb.teachers.admins.pdf

You will also want to read Sue's article, "A Parent's Guide to No Child Left Behind" This article is also available in two formats:

http://www.wrightslaw.com/info/nclb.parent.guide.heath.htm

As a 4-page printer-friendly document for easy printing and distribution:

http://www.wrightslaw.com/info/nclb.parent.guide.heath.pdf

To learn more about the No Child Left Behind Act, go to:

http://www.wrightslaw.com/info/nclb.index.htm

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2. ABUSED CHILD RETURNS TO SCHOOL WITH LEGAL PROTECTIONS

Sometimes, we learn about a case that triggers intense emotions and a strong desire to right a wrong. Alex R.'s case triggered these responses. We are waiting to hear if Illinois school officials will right this wrong.

The following information is taken directly from the news release about Alex R's case. If you download the decision, keep in mind that the file is very large so please be patient.

"A young Illinois boy who suffered abuse and harassment at the hands of
public school staff, under the direction of a superintendent who then lied
under oath to protect himself, will soon return to his classroom with
legally ordered protections."

"Alex, a student at Forrestville Valley school district in northwest
Illinois who has been diagnosed with an epileptic disorder with autistic
characteristics (Landau Kleffner Syndrome Variant), had become terrified
of attending school . . . "

"The superintendent amassed secret documents, derided Alex to members of
the local community, and committed other acts aimed at removing him from
the school district . . . The demeanor of the school staff when testifying
with the superintendent present evidenced how they were intimidated by the
superintendent into furthering his agenda to rid the district of student’s
presence.”

"One of the most egregious examples of the school district’s violations
occurred last October. As huge pieces of dangerous agricultural equipment
were swarming local fields to harvest corn, Alex, then nine years old,
walked from his school playground into the vast density of an unharvested
cornfield in an attempt to find his way home. This occurred as school
personnel stood by and watched."

"Instead of making it safely home – some 15 miles away – Alex fell into
what was described as 'quicksand' -- a muddy section of the Leaf River in
Ogle County. For three hours, Alex sank lower into the muck, water
covering his nose. Alex lost feeling below the neck. He cried out and
called for his mother until he had no strength left."

Alex survived his ordeal but suffers from post-traumatic stress sydrome.
He is receiving intense therapy to return his security and trust in
people, and to alleviate his fear of school.

According to Charles Fox, Alex's attorney, the district was ordered to
train their staff, hire experts to assist in Alex’s re-inclusion, and
monitor implementation of positive behavior management and sensory
integration therapy. The district was also ordered to develop a disability
sensitivity and awareness curriculum for all district classes K-12, and
provide compensatory and other services and other remedies.

Full text of news release:
http://www.wrightslaw.com/news/2002/randall.abuse.dp.htm

Full text of decision in pdf:
http://www.wrightslaw.com/law/caselaw/2002/randall.dp.pdf

Summary of decision: http://www.mothersfromhell2.org/august02update.htm

Learn more about damages: http://www.wrightslaw.com/info/damag.index.htm

Learn more about retaliation:
http://www.wrightslaw.com/info/retal.index.htm

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3. ON THE FRONT LINE: MOTHERS FROM H*LL2

Alex' mother is Beth Randall, president Mothers From H*ll 2, a parent
advocacy organization:

http://www.mothersfromhell2.org/index1.htm

MFH2 is a membership organization that promotes humor to entertain,
relieve stress and isolation, and empower families and inviduals. For
humor, go to: http://www.mothersfromhell2.org/humor/

In addition to the website, MFH2 publishes a quarterly newsletter, The
Brimstone Bulletin, that is available to members. Please consider joining
this group - you'll be glad you did! To learn how you can join MFH2, go
to:

http://www.mothersfromhell2.org/benefits.htm

As Beth Randall says, "The front line is not a pleasant place to be - but
if someone doesn't start taking a stand it'll always be this way. Why else
is it that nearly 30 years after the federal law IDEA was enacted, it
still isn't being implemented as written?"

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4. WRIGHTSLAW ADVOCACY TRAINING: JANUARY & FEBRUARY 2003

Knowledge is power. We help you gain knowledge and skills so you can be a
more effective advocate for your child. Please join us for an advocacy
training program this year.

* JANUARY 15-19: FROM EMOTIONS TO ADVOCACY CRUISE *

Do you want to learn more about special education law and advocacy? Do you
want to network with others who share your interests? Do you want to have
fun in the sun? Join Pete and Pam Wright on the From Emotions to Advocacy
Cruise II - A Very Special Cruise Seminar and Fund-Raiser for Special
Education.

http://www.wrightslaw.com/speak/03.01.cruise.htm

On Wednesday, January 15, Pete and Pam Wright will do a full day of legal
and advocacy training at the Radisson Resort Hotel in Port Canaveral. On
Thursday, participants will leave for a 3 day cruise to the Bahamas.

* This program has been approved for 7 CLE credits *

http://www.wrightslaw.com/speak/03.01.cruise.htm

* FEBRUARY 12-17: LOUISIANA TOUR *

In February, we hit the road for the WRIGHTSLAW LOUISIANA TOUR with stops
in Shreveport, Baton Rouge, and New Orleans!

General Info: http://www.wrightslaw.com/speak/03.02.la.htm

* February 12, 2003: Shreveport, Advocacy Training

This one-day advocacy training program focuses on four areas: special
education law, rights and responsibilities; how to use the bell curve to
measure progress & regression; SMART IEPs; and how to use tactics &
strategies for effective advocacy.

http://www.wrightslaw.com/speak/03.02.12.la.htm

* February 14-15, 2003: Baton Rouge, BOOT CAMP

On Friday, you'll learn about special education law, rights and
responsibilities, tests and measurements, and how to use the bell curve to
measure educational progress or regression. On Saturday, you'll learn
about SMART IEPs and tactics and strategy for effective advocacy.

We will test your skills and knowledge and give you feedback about your
progress. Learn more about the Baton Rouge Boot Camp:

http://www.wrightslaw.com/speak/03.02.14.la.htm

* February 17, 2003. New Orleans, Advocacy Training

This one-day program focuses on special education law, rights and
responsibilities; how to use the bell curve to measure progress &
regression; SMART IEPs; and how to use tactics & strategies for effective
advocacy.

http://www.wrightslaw.com/speak/03.02.17.la.htm

For more information about the Louisiana Tour, call Families Helping
Families of Greater Baton Rouge at 225-216-7474 or Toll Free at
866-216-7474, or call the Baton Rouge Autism Society at 225-929-6544.

* FEBRUARY 25: ORLANDO - FREE ADVOCACY TRAINING *

If you are a Florida resident, join us for a FREE advocacy training
program in Orlando. No fee is required to attend the “Seeds for Success”
program but you must pre-register by mail or fax. Registration must be
received on or before February 10, 2003.

* Space is limited to the first 150 registrants.* 

http://www.wrightslaw.com/speak/03.02.fl.htm

Please download and distribute the flyer designed by UCF- CARD

http://www.wrightslaw.com/flyers/fl.02.03.pdf

To learn if we are coming to your area, please check our Seminars &
Training page:

http://www.wrightslaw.com/speak/index.htm

* HOW TO PLAN A TRAINING PROGRAM, SEMINAR OR BOOT CAMP *

If you want to bring Pete & Pam Wright to your community, please read our
FAQs about Seminars:

http://www.wrightslaw.com/speak/faqs.htm

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5. FREE PUBS FROM WRIGHTSLAW

Overwhelmed and overloaded? Need help? Even if you are an experienced
Internet user, you can feel overwhelmed by the amount of material you
find. You can easily spend hours looking for information without finding
what you need.

Download free publications about IEPs, special education, transition
planning, reading, children's mental health, harassment, high-stakes
testing, retention and social promotion, zero tolerance and discipline
from our Free Pubs page: .

http://www.wrightslaw.com/links/free_pubs.htm

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6. LEARN ABOUT ADVOCACY - START A FETA GROUP

Do you want to learn advocacy skills? The best way to learn is by doing -
and by teaching others. As Confucius said, "I hear and I forget. I see and
I remember. I do and I understand."

Learn how to start a FETA group, how to recognize and deal with pitfalls,
how to get free publicity for your group, how to manage emotions, and stay
on task:

http://www.wrightslaw.com/info/advo.feta.groups.htm

* 50% Discount on Wrightslaw Books *

Interested in starting a FETA Group? Get a 50% discount on bulk purchases
of Wrightslaw books. For more info, go to:

http://www.wrightslaw.com/bks/advo_discount.htm

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7. EDUCATIONNEWS.ORG - SUBSCRIBE TODAY!

Are you interested in education and special education? Subscribe to
EducationNews at http://www.educationnews.org/

Every morning, you will receive an issue of EducationNews with links to
news around the world. Nationally recognized experts provide commentaries
on various aspects of education. EducationNews.org staff writers cover the
latest education issues and bring you a thorough, complete analysis of
events, policies, and situations that affect education.

EducationNews.org is a remarkable resource!

Daily News: http://www.educationnews.org/daily_educationnews.htm

Subscribe: mailto:educationnews-subscribe@yahoogroups.com

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8. SUBSCRIPTION & CONTACT INFO

The Special Ed Advocate is a free online newsletter about special
education legal and advocacy issues, cases, and tactics and strategies.
Subscribers receive "alerts" about new cases, events, and special offers
on Wrightslaw books.

Subscribe: http://www.wrightslaw.com/subscribe.htm

Newsletter Archives: http://www.wrightslaw.com/archives.htm

Seminars & Training: http://www.wrightslaw.com/speak/index.htm

Yellow Pages for Kids with Disabilities:
http://www.fetaweb.com/help/states.htm

Help us spread the word about special education law and advocacy. Download
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CONTACT INFORMATION

Pete and Pam Wright
Wrightslaw & The Special Ed Advocate
P. O. Box 1008
Deltaville, VA 23043
Website: http://www.wrightslaw.com
Email: webmaster@wrightslaw.com

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