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December 2010 E-News


The latest news and information from around the country.

New Projects


Engaged Education Now
In November, a coalition of education and service-learning organizations launched “Engaged Education Now,” a campaign to improve academic achievement and school success by ensuring that all students have the opportunity to participate in service-learning. “Engaged Education Now” is led by Jim Kielsmeier, president of NYLC (National Youth leadership Council); co-hosts include American Association of School Administrators, Campus Compact, Common Cents, NYLC, Points of Light Institute and HandsOn Network, State Farm Insurance, and the University of Minnesota.

Calls to Participate


Parent-School Survey
Parents of students with disabilities are invited to participate in a study sponsored by Peabody College and the Vanderbilt Kennedy Center that will examine parent-school collaboration as it relates to parental and child characteristics. It will involve the parent’s answering a short (20-30 minutes) survey about him/herself, the child with the disability, and the relationship with the school the child attends. The results of the survey will help researchers and practitioners better understand and improve parent-school collaboration. The study is voluntary and anonymous. Results of the study will be available to participants who are interested in obtaining them.

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The Resource Zone

Other National Resources


A Call for Change, The Social and Educational Factors Contributing to the Outcomes of Black Males in Urban Schools  (November 2010)
This report from the Council of the Great City Schools pulls together research on African-American male achievement. Black males continue to perform at lower levels than their peers on almost every indicator, with higher drop-out rates, lower SAT scores, and lower college attendance, yet there has been no concerted national focus on the education and social outcomes of black males specifically – no specified office within the U.S. Department of Education, no primary federal source to collect and maintain data on African-American males, no legislative projects, and no federal education program on the educational status of black males. The report examines indicators in six areas: readiness to learn, achievement on the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), achievement on the NAEP in selected urban school districts, college and career preparedness, school experience, and postsecondary experience.


Annenberg Institute for School Reform Jigsaw Activity Workshops  (July 2010)
The Annenberg Institute for School Reform at Brown University sponsored four “jigsaw activity workshops” in four cities on aspects of community school reform, and has issued reports on the workshop findings, and information for setting up workshops to discuss similar themes in other communities.


Basic Concepts and Definitions for Privacy and Confidentiality in Student Education Records  (November 2010)
Technical Brief
The U.S. Department of Education’s Institute of Education Sciences’ National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) has released “Basic Concepts and Definitions for Privacy and Confidentiality in Student Education Records,” a Technical Brief discussing basic concepts and definitions that establish a common set of terms related to the protection of personally identifiable information, especially in education records in the Statewide Longitudinal Data Systems (SLDS). The Brief also outlines a privacy framework that is tied to Fair Information Practice Principles that have been disseminated in both the United States and international privacy work.


Building a Grad Nation: Progress and Challenge in Ending the High School Dropout Epidemic  (November 2010)
America’s Promise Alliance “Building a Grad Nation: Progress and Challenge in Ending the High School Dropout Epidemic” reports signs that America is reducing the number of high school dropouts. “Dropout factory” high schools (where 40% or more students fail to graduate) fell by 13%, from 2,007 in 2002 to 1,746 in 2008. Common elements to success included strong leadership with clear graduation-rate goals, multi-sector collaboration guided by data, commitment to innovation and continuous improvement, technical assistance for evidence-based solutions, raising expectations, improving policies, and increasing student supports.


Building an Evidence-Based Program to Improve Schools: The Story of Success for All  (December 2010) PDF document
“The Story of Success for All” is a brief report summarizing the origins of Success for All, the research on its achievement outcomes, lessons learned from scaling up the program, and implications for policy. Success for All provides research-based reading programs for Title I schools. (Available in pdf, 337 KB, 6 pp.)


Creating Job Shadowing Opportunities for Youth with Disabilities  (September 2010) PDF document
How to: Build Partnerships for Career Exploration Guide for High Schools on The Monadnock Center for Successful Transitions (MCST) has issued “How to: Build Partnerships for Career Exploration – Using Job Shadowing to Explore the World of Work,” a guide is for high schools on how to collaborate with a postsecondary institution or other organization to plan and carry out a job shadow day. It describes the preparation tasks that take place at the high school and those that take place at partner sites, and provides details for the job shadow day itself and follow-up activities. It includes a suggested task timeline in the back that may be helpful as a planning tool. MCST is a project of Monadnock Developmental Services and is made possible under an agreement with the State of New Hampshire, Department of Health and Human Services, Bureau of Developmental Services. Available in pdf (30 pages, 721 KB).


Edutopia’s Home-to-School Connections Guide: Tips, Tech Tools, and Strategies for Improving Family-to-School Communication  (2010)
Resource Guide
The George Lucas Education Foundation/Edutopia’s “Home-to-School Connections Guide: Tips, Tech Tools, and Strategies for Improving Family-to-School Communication” is a classroom resource guide for teachers, parents, and district administrators highlighting new solutions for connecting home and school in order to improve student learning and success, and to strengthen the bonds between schools, families, and communities.


Employment Activities and Outcomes of College-Based Transition Programs for Students with Intellectual Disabilities  (October 2010) PDF document
“Employment Activities and Outcomes of College-Based Transition Programs for Students with Intellectual Disabilities,” in the October issue of “Insight,” describes findings from the five-year Postsecondary Education Research Center Project established by TransCen, Inc., and funded by the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Special Education Programs. This project tracked 96 individuals with intellectual disabilities in Maryland and Connecticut who had attended college classes as part of their secondary education experience.


Highlights From PISA 2009: Performance of U.S. 15-Year-Old Students in Reading, Mathematics, and Science Literacy in an International Context  (December 2010)
The U.S. Department of Education’s Institute of Education Sciences’ National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) has issued “Highlights from PISA 2009: Performance of U.S. 15-Year-Old Students in Reading, Mathematics, and Science Literacy in an International Context.” PISA (the Program for International Student Assessment) compares the performance of U.S. 15-year-old students in reading, mathematics, and science literacy to the performance of their peers internationally. The performance of U.S. 15-year-old students improved in science, regained lost ground in mathematics, and held steady in reading, according to the assessment.


Midwest Explorer Fall Newsletter  (November 2010)
The Midwest Alliance at the University of Wisconsin-Madison has issued its Fall 2010 newsletter, the Midwest Explorer, with information on developments in the area of postsecondary transition for students with disabilities in science, technology, engineering, and math fields; and on their upcoming opportunities and events. The new issue and the back-issues can be downloaded from the Web site.

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What's Happening

Other National Events


Public Hearing on the Advance Notices of Proposed Rulemaking to Revise the ADA Implementing Regulations

January 10, 2011
Public Hearing
San Francisco, CA
The U.S. Department of Justice will hold a public hearing on four Advanced Notices of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPRMs), seeking public comment on the possibility of revising the ADA regulations to address accessible web information and services, movie captioning and video description, accessibility of Next Generation 9-1-1, and accessible equipment and furniture. The ANPRMs were published in the Federal Register July 26, 2010, and the comment period for them closes on January 24, 2011. Entities, organizations, and individuals who wish to present comments at a particular hearing are encouraged to register in advance by calling the ADA Information Line at (800) 514-0301 (Voice) or (800) 514-0383 (TTY) by January 11, 2011.

Accommodating Students with Disabilities: Resources from Two States and Perspectives on the Future of Accommodating
Web-based Event
January 12, 2011
10:30 AM - 12:00 PM   (Pacific)
Dr. Edynn Sato, Director of Special Populations for the Assessment and Accountability Comprehensive Center (AACC) at WestEd, will introduce projects from California and South Carolina aimed at accommodating students with disabilities and discuss how the development of common core standards assessments may affect how students are accommodated in future. Meredith Cathcart, Special Education Consultant with the California Department of Education, and a representative from South Carolina will share accommodation resources.

Institute on Disability’s National Inclusive Education Initiative Webtour
Web-based Event
January 26, 2011
3:00 PM - 4:00 PM   (Eastern)
The LRE Part B Community of Practice will present a webtour on the National Inclusive Education Initiative (NIEI) of the University of New Hampshire’s Institute on Disability. It will include information on NIEI’s web-based professional development offerings, communities of practice, and relevant resources on inclusive education, including Web sites and bookstores.

Transition 2011: High School to Higher Education – Options for Students with Learning Differences
January 28, 2011
Boca Raton, FL
Lynn University is hosting a conference for education leaders, guidance counselors, teachers, educational consultants, parents, and students on aspects of the transition for students with learning differences from high school to higher education. Information on topics, presenters, hotel accommodations, etc., is available at the Web site.

Current Events in Accommodation
Web-based Event
February 8, 2011
2:00 PM - 3:00 PM   (Eastern)
The Job Accommodation Network (JAN) will hold a webcast on current events in job accommodation, including tough accommodation situations, ADA issues, and technology challenges; and will provide tips for handling these and other job accommodation issues.

Changing Tides: Innovations in Wraparound; Our Legacy, Our Future
February 23, 2011 - February 28, 2011
Cocoa Beach, FL
The Brevard Family Partnership’s conference on innovations in wraparound will focus on how child welfare and system of care agents can engage in and undergo system transformation, through the implementation of wraparound values and principles of practice.

Learning Disabilities of American Annual International Conference
February 23, 2011 - February 26, 2011
Jacksonville Beach, FL
The 48th Annual International Conference of the Learning Disabilities Association of America (LDA) will feature experts in education, special education, psychology, and policy sharing information on timely topics such as: Response to Intervention (RTI) for elementary, middle and high school, common core standards, direct teaching, early childhood education, interventions, learning strategies, transition, learning disability evaluation, social skills, behavior strategies, and recent research on environmental links to learning, behavioral and other developmental disabilities. For adults with SLD/ADHD, and for young people soon to transition into the world of adults, there will be sessions on self-advocacy, and on accommodations in postsecondary education and the work place.

Learning Disabilities Association of America’s 48th Annual International Conference
February 23, 2011 - February 26, 2011
Jacksonville, FL
Sponsored by the LDA of America, the LDA Conference is the largest meeting on learning disabilities in the world, featuring over 300 workshops and exhibits presenting the latest in LD research, effective teaching techniques and strategies, and critical policy issues, with opportunities to network with experts in LD and colleagues and earn graduate or continuing education credits (CEUs). The 2011 Conference is in Jacksonville, Florida. More information is available in pdf (71 pages, 7.1 MB).

Beyond the Sidelines: Let’s Get to Work
February 28, 2011 - March 1, 2011
Phoenix, AZ
The Equity Alliance will hold its 2011 Leadership for Equity and Excellence Forum, on promising practices in education, in Phoenix, AZ.

Pac Rim: Humanity: Advancing Inclusion, Equality, and Diversity
April 18, 2011 - April 19, 2011
Honolulu, HI
The theme of 2011 Pacific Rim International Conference on Disabilities, sponsored by the University of Hawaii and others, in Honolulu, Hawaii, will be “Humanity: Advancing Inclusion, Equality, and Diversity.”

11th Annual Multiple Perspectives on Access, Inclusion, and Disability: From Policy to Practice
May 4, 2011 - May 5, 2011
Columbus, OH
Ohio State University will hold the “Multiple Perspectives on Access, Inclusion, and Disability: From Policy to Practice Conference,” May 4-5. The annual conference is a catalyst for change and for collaborations with partners in education, business, public and social service. Its workshops provide a forum for individuals and organizations to expand their knowledge and perspectives, and an opportunity to increase community resources through collaboration.

5th Annual Secondary Transition State Planning Institute
May 17, 2011 - May 20, 2011
Charlotte, NC
The National Secondary Transition Technical Assistance Center (NSTTAC) will hold its 2011 “Annual Secondary Transition State Planning Institute” May 17-20 in Charlotte, North Carolina. Attendees may represent education, vocational rehabilitation, adult services, families, youth, and other stakeholders in secondary transition from their state. Participating state teams will develop knowledge of and participate in facilitated planning to re-visit or develop plans for building state capacity to improve secondary transition education and services, including school completion, and outcome data collection and use. ^ Top of Page ^

Get Wired!

Web Sites


School Grants Blog
The schoolgrantsblog Web site provides information on getting school grants and making education affordable. It covers different types of grants, their sources, and how to apply for them.



Edutopia’s Weekly E-Newsletter
The George Lucas Education Foundation/Edutopia’s Weekly E-Newsletter is a listserv for educators, highlighting what works in education by reporting new content and resources from Edutopia.

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Funding Forecast

Federal Grant Opportunities


FY 2010-2011 Discretionary Grant Application Packages
This site, from the Department of Education, provides information on grant competitions that are currently open.


FY 2010-2011 Discretionary Grant Application Packages
This site, from the Department of Education, provides information on grant competitions that are currently open.

Additional Funding and Award Opportunities


American Historical Association: Beveridge Family Teaching Prize
The American Historical Association Beveridge Family Teaching Prize recognizes excellence and innovation in elementary, middle school, and secondary history teaching, including career contributions and specific initiatives. Maximum award: $1,500. Eligibility: K-12 teachers. Deadline: March 15, 2011.


Kessler Foundation Offers Grants to Increase Employment Outcomes for People with Disabilities
The Kessler Foundation offers grants of up to $500,000 over two years to nonprofits, schools, public institutions, and state government agencies working on non-traditional approaches designed to increase employment outcomes for individuals with disabilities. Projects must be collaborative, serve a large geographic area, and include multiple funding partners and stakeholders; and must have the potential for growth, scalability, or replication. Any U.S.-based nonprofit organization or other tax-exempt group such as a public/private school, public institution, or government from any state may apply. Deadline: February 15, 2011


Lemelson-MIT: InvenTeams
Lemelson-MIT InvenTeams awards foster inventiveness in high school students. InvenTeams composed of high school students, teachers and mentors are asked to collaboratively identify a problem that they want to solve, research the problem, and then develop a prototype invention as an in-class or extracurricular project. Maximum award: $10,000. Eligibility: High school science, mathematics, and technology teachers (or teams of teachers) at public, private, and vocational schools; intra- and inter-school collaborations are welcome. Deadline: April 22, 2011.


NAMM Foundation Announces Wanna Play Fund Grants for Instruments Available to Schools and Community Organizations for Music Education Programs
The nonprofit NAMM Foundation advances participation in music-making by supporting scientific research, philanthropic giving, and public service programs of the international music products industry. The Foundation awards grants through its Wanna Play Fund to provide instruments to schools and community organizations that are expanding or reinstating music education programs as part of a core curriculum and/or that employ quality music teachers. Eligible applicants are public schools serving low-income students (percentage of free and reduced lunch data required); community organizations serving low-income students and students with special needs (community demographic information required); and schools and community programs that have made a commitment to hiring and retaining high-quality music teachers and providing standards-based, sequential learning in music. Online grant applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.


National Science Teachers Association Shell Science Lab Challenge for Middle and High School Teachers
The National Science Teachers Association and Shell Oil Company invite middle and high school teachers in the United States to compete for prizes of laboratory resources for their schools, in the NSTA Shell Science Lab Challenge. The prizes total up to $93,000, including a grand-prize school science lab makeover valued at $20,000. Middle and high school science teachers (grades 6-12) in the U.S. and Canada (with special attention to urban and underrepresented groups) are invited to describe a replicable approach to science lab instruction using limited school and laboratory resources. Eighteen regional winners will be selected, five national winners from among the 18, and one grand-prize winner from among the five. All winners will receive donated science lab equipment or gift certificates, a grant to purchase additional science lab tools and resources, a $300 gift certificate to the NSTA Bookstore, and membership to the NSTA and the NSTA Learning Center. Application deadline: February 2, 2011.


SEVEN Fund Offers K-12 Teacher Summer Fellowships to Study Solutions to Poverty
The SEVEN Fund (Social Equity Venture Fund) is a virtual nonprofit entity run by entrepreneurs whose strategy is to increase the rate of innovation and diffusion of enterprise-based solutions to poverty. The Fund invites K-12 teachers in the United States to apply for Summer 2011 teaching fellowships. The four fellowship awards will enable teachers to travel to Rwanda and study enterprise solutions to poverty in that country. The objective of the fellowship is to introduce the concepts of business solutions to poverty within a K-12 curriculum. Winners will be invited to spend two weeks in Rwanda, where they will meet with leaders in the private, public, and education sectors. Individual meetings and trips also will be arranged according to the interests of the winning teachers. (For example, a biology teacher might spend time with scientists working in Rwanda's emerging biotech cluster.) Deadline for applications: February 15, 2011.


Special Olympics and Youth Service America Announce Childhood Obesity Service-Learning Grant Program
Special Olympics is partnering with Youth Service America to offer Get Into It grants to help bring together students of all abilities to fight childhood obesity in their schools and communities. The Get Into It program will award grants of $500 or $1,000 to help youth create and implement local hands-on programs to fight childhood obesity. The application must be completed by a teacher and a pair of students (one with and one without an intellectual disability). Get Into It grant projects should launch on Spread the Word to End the Word Day (March 2, 2011) and culminate on Global Youth Service Day (April 15-17, 2011). Students in all 50 states and the District of Columbia are eligible to apply. Special Olympics will host an application training webinar on January 4, 2011, for applicants interested in learning more about how to develop a successful project. Deadline for applications: January 19, 2011.


Toshiba/NSTA: ExploraVision Awards
Inventions and innovations result from creative thinking and problem-solving. The Toshiba/National Science Teachers Association ExploraVision Awards Program encourages youngsters to create and explore a vision of future technology by combining their imaginations with the tools of science. Maximum award: $10,000. Eligibility: students K-12. Deadline: February 2, 2011.


William T. Grant Foundation Invites Letters of Inquiry for Investigator Initiated Grants on Youth Settings
The William T. Grant Foundation awards grants of up to $1.5 million for research that enhances understanding of how youth settings work, how they affect youth development, and how they can be improved, as well as the effects of such research on policy affecting youth. The foundation is interested in supporting research on a range of settings that are important for youth development. These settings include environments with clear boundaries such as classrooms, schools, and youth-serving organizations, as well as environments with less prescribed boundaries such as neighborhoods or other settings in which youth interact with peers, family members, and other adults. Deadline: January 5, 2011 (Letters of Inquiry).

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End of Issue

Excerpting E-News
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E-News was supported in whole or in part by the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs, (Cooperative Agreement No. H326J000005). However, the opinions expressed herein do not necessarily reflect the policy or position of the U. S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs, or any of the six partners of the National Center on Secondary Education and Transition, and no official endorsement should be inferred.

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