March 2011 E-News
The latest news and information from around the country.
The Free Application for Federal Student Aid FAFSA4caster is on online tool that helps students and parents determine their current eligibility for federal financial aid.
The Federal Student Aid MyFSA is an online account that provides students with access to college and scholarship searches, career and self-assessment tools, and other resources regarding college and financial aid.
United States Education Dashboard
President Obama has established a goal that, by 2020, the United States will once again have the highest proportion of college graduates in the world. The United States Education Dashboard shows the indicators the U.S. Department of Education uses to measure how the nation, and each state, is progressing towards this goal. These include: positive and negative trends for important indicators of educational progress, how each state compares to the rest of the country, progress in eliminating education gaps, and areas where progress is slow and where additional resources and reforms are needed.
IES Grant Competitions
The Institute of Education Sciences (IES) has released FY2012 funding announcements for grant competitions in education and special education research and training. The six competitions are: Education Research Grants (84.305A); Special Education Research Grants (84.324A); Postdoctoral Research Training Program in the Education Sciences (84.305B); Postdoctoral Research Training Program in Special Education (84.324B); Statistical and Research Methodology in Education (84.305D); and Evaluation of State and Local Education Programs and Policies (84.305E). IES will announce additional competitions in late March.
Calls to Participate
100 Best Communities for Young People Contest
America’s Promise Alliance and ING Foundation want to identify the nation’s “100 Best Communities for Young People,” the best places for young people to live, learn, and thrive. Winners receive benefits including technical assistance and training sessions to help strengthen successful local programs. Application deadline: May 27, 2011.
Deadline Extended for Commencement Challenge
Public high schools that would like to have President Obama as this year’s commencement speaker can apply under the Race to the Top Commencement Challenge. Deadline for applications: March 11, 2011.
Interagency Working Group on Youth Programs Invites Submissions to Support Transition
The Interagency Working Group on Youth Programs invites submission from the public of resources to support successful transitions of transition-age youth. Entries that are approved for posting on the website (www.FindYouthInfo.gov) can include state or local strategic plans to support youth, research articles, youth-produced public service announcements (PSAs), etc. All materials and resources posted must be free of charge and hosted on either a government or non-profit website. In addition to information on supports for transition-age youth, submissions also are accepted for a range of other youth topics such as health and nutrition, positive youth development, substance use, and parenting.
National Center to Inform Policy and Practice in Special Education Professional Development’s Technical Assistance to Support Beginning Special Education Teachers
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The National Center to Inform Policy and Practice in Special Education Professional Development (NCIPP) gives technical assistance to schools and districts working to provide differentiated instruction and mentoring supports for beginning special education teachers. This year’s deadline for applications for technical assistance is April 1, 2011.
The Resource Zone
Other National Resources
2009-2010 Counselors & Mentors Handbook on Federal Student Aid
This handbook from the U.S. Department of Education for those advising students on financial aid for post-secondary education includes information about federal student aid programs, the application process, how to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), and how financial need is determined for students who may have expenses related to their disability. Available in pdf (7.24 MB, 88 pp).
America’s Promise Alliance Releases “Building a Grad Nation”
America’s Promise Alliance, Civic Enterprises and Johns Hopkins University’s Everyone Graduates Center have released “Building a Grad Nation.” The number of high schools where 40% or more of the students fail to graduate fell significantly from 2002 to 2008, according to analysis of the latest government data compiled in this report. The report discusses strides that have been made in the past decade in reducing the dropout rate, and showcases the practical and effective strategies that have helped.
Annenberg Institute for School Reform Report on Community Organizing and Reform
The Annenberg Institute for School Reform (AISR) has issued “The Strengths and Challenges of Community Organizing as an Education Reform Strategy: What the Research Says,” on how community organizing fits into systemic education reform. Community organizing for school reform can create equitable changes in schools and districts, finding education solutions from the knowledge of underserved communities to support schools and districts and hold them accountable for improving achievement. AISR’s report includes a directory of 50 community organizations involved in New England education reform.
Blazing the Trail: A New Direction for Youth Development and Leadership: Youth Call-to-Action
“Blazing the Trail: A New Direction for Youth Development and Leadership: A Youth Call-to-Action” is based on findings from the Blazing the Trail summit organized by the National Collaborative on Workforce and Disability for Youth (NCWD/Youth), held in August 2007. The Youth Call-to-Action outlines actions youth can take to enhance their development and become leaders in their community and the nation, including learning about their rights and responsibilities, becoming a self-advocate, learning about disability history, and researching scholarships.
Business Engagement Stakeholders Wheel
Corporate Voices has released “The Business Engagement Stakeholders Wheel,” a tool to help nonprofits to identify all local businesses and business organizations in their community. The Wheel lists different business organizations and business leaders who could partner, as well as information on the roles business can play to ensure all youth are ready for college, work and life.
Casey Family Program’s Revised Supporting Success: Improving Higher Education Outcomes for Students from Foster Care
Casey Family Program has updated its “Supporting Success: Improving Higher Education Outcomes for Students from Foster Care.” This second edition of the framework provides program development tools for college counselors, administrators, staff, and youth advocates. It helps education professionals define a plan for improving their institution’s support for students from foster care and homeless youth.
Child Trend’s What Works in Out-of-School Programs for African American Children
African American children and adolescents often face challenges that differ from other groups of children in the U.S. Although a number of out-of-school time programs serving African American children have been implemented, data on which approaches work for this group are scarce. This Child Trends synthesis reviews evaluations of out-of-school programs to identify programs that work, and the intervention strategies that contribute to program success. The programs targeted outcome areas such as reproductive health, substance use, and physical health and nutrition. Available in pdf (300 KB, 14 pp).
Child Trend’s What Works in Out-of-School Programs for Latino Children
Latino/Hispanic children and adolescents often face challenges that differ from other groups of children in the U.S. Although a number of out-of-school time programs serving Latino children have been implemented, data on which approaches work among these groups are scarce. This Child Trends synthesis reviews evaluations of out-of-school programs to identify programs that work, and the intervention strategies that contribute to program success. The programs targeted outcome areas such as reproductive health, substance use, and physical health and nutrition. Available in pdf (199 KB, 10 pp).
Corporate Voices for Working Families and United Way Worldwide Release Business Engagement Toolkit for Community Organizations
Corporate Voices and United Way Worldwide, in partnership with Workforce Strategy Center, have released a toolkit designed to provide community leaders with resources to help them recruit, engage and develop ongoing relationships with businesses and business leaders in their communities. “Supporting the Education Pipeline: A Business Engagement Toolkit for Community-Based Organizations” and the companion website feature tips, tools, resources and examples of techniques used to engage business. When leaders in education, business, government and community organizations align resources, build on existing high-quality supports and work together, outcomes improve. Business partners play a critical role in supporting community efforts that create a prepared, innovative and competitive workforce.
Cyber Disclosure for Youth with Disabilities
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The National Collaborative on Workforce and Disability for Youth (NCWD/Youth) and the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy released “Cyber Disclosure for Youth with Disabilities,” a supplement to “The 411 on Disability Disclosure: A Workbook for Youth with Disabilities,” which helps youth learn about disability disclosure and what it means for them. Search sites like Google, social networking sites like Facebook, and micro-blogging sites like Twitter have added a new element to disclosure. Now it is possible to disclose disability status on the internet without even being aware of it. This can be as simple as a picture of a person using a wheelchair, a comment on a friend’s blog about disability, or a profile posted on a disability organizations website. This document provides youth with suggestions on how to make informed decisions about their own disability disclosure and to manage their disclosures online
Other National Events
Brain Injury Dialogues
“Brain Injury Dialogues” will be airing on PBS stations across the U.S. in honor of Brain Injury Awareness Month (March) 2011. Greater public awareness about this hidden disability is needed, and information for the millions of Americans who are brain injury survivors on help and supports available. Local stations and air date information are on the website.
Money Where It Matters: Tapping New Funds for Title I Schools
March 9, 2011
1:00 PM - 2:30 PM (Eastern)
This webinar will introduce programs for elementary and secondary Title I schools. These programs were recently funded by the federal Investing in Innovation (i3) program to expand their services to Title I schools. The i3 funds enable programs to provide qualifying schools with grant-funded services. The webinar will describe i3 and evidence-based reform, and will present some of the funded projects.
SchoolsMovingUp: Implementing a Seal of Biliteracy
March 10, 2011
1:30 PM - 3:00 PM (Eastern)
Mastery of two or more languages is an important skill, with economic, social and personal benefits, yet few young people achieve this language mastery, enrollment in world language courses is faltering, and the majority of English learners lose their home language as they develop English. SchoolsMovingUp, an online WestEd initiative, is presenting this webinar on “The Seal of Biliteracy,” an approach to validating and encouraging mastery of two or more languages.
A Tool of Hope: The Building Bridges Tip Sheets
March 15, 2011
1:00 PM - 2:00 PM (Eastern)
Youth M.O.V.E. Oregon and the Building Bridges Initiative will present information on the development and implementation of youth- and family-centered tools to help young adults and supportive family members change the way they experience treatment. The Building Bridges Initiative believes that community and residentially-based treatment providers share responsibility to ensure that mental health services and supports are available, and brings this philosophy to their presentation.
Developing School-Community Partnerships for Enhanced Transition Planning and Assessment
March 30, 2011
3:00 PM - 4:00 PM (Eastern)
Supported by The HSC Foundation, The George Washington University and Kingsbury School developed a university-school partnership, Career Investigations for Transitioning Youth (CITY), to develop a community-based transition program. This program demonstrated how partnerships between universities and high schools can result in transition preparation for students with disabilities. This webinar will explore strategies for developing school-community partnerships, while establishing opportunities for transitioning youth with disabilities.
Effective Methods for Children and Youth with Autism Spectrum Disorders Options and Decision Strategies for Maximizing Positive Outcomes
April 5, 2011
This workshop sponsored by JFK Partners will spotlight the identification, application, and evaluation of practices and strategies that are most effective in educating, managing and supporting the needs of children with autism-related disorders. Registration deadline: March 31, 2011.
Building Early Warning Systems to Identify Students with Disabilities At Risk for Dropping Out of High School and Monitoring Their Response to Intervention
April 12, 2011
12:00 PM - 1:30 PM (Eastern)
To address the high school dropout problem, states, districts, and schools are increasingly interested in using early warning systems to identify middle and high school students who are at risk for dropping out of school. Early warning systems use readily available student data to identify students who exhibit signs, such as poor attendance or course failures, that they are at risk for dropping out. This webinar will discuss key elements of an early warning system, highlight recent related research, and demonstrate the National High School Center’s recently released Early Warning System Tool v2.0 embedded within a seven-step implementation process.
Customized Employment Strategies for Students Who Are Deaf-Blind
April 13, 2011
10:00 AM - 11:30 AM (Pacific)
This webinar will highlight findings and strategies resulting from the National Consortium on Deaf-Blindness’ (NCDB’s) Transition Focus Group as they relate to customized employment for young adults with deaf-blindness, and look at customized employment activities conducted by several state deaf-blind projects.
National ADA Symposium
May 8, 2011 - May 11, 2011
Las Vegas, NV
The 2011 National ADA Symposium will feature sessions on the new ADA regulations, 2010 Standards for Accessible Design, and the EEOC ADA-AA regulations.
Inclusive Communities: Pathways to Realizing the Vision AAIDD National Conference
June 6, 2011 - June 9, 2011
St Paul, MN
The American Association on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (AAIDD) 135th Annual Meeting, “Inclusive Communities: Pathways to Realizing the Vision,” will provide practitioners, researchers, teaching faculty, policymakers, funders, and advocates with effective and emerging practices, research, and information on important policy initiatives. The conference will feature plenary sessions, panel and poster presentations, interactive cafés, task force and special interest group meetings, and networking events. Pre- and post-conference workshops will address special topics in depth.
Mental Health America’s 2011 Annual Conference
June 9, 2011 - June 11, 2011
Mental Health America’s 2011 Annual Conference will gather advocates, consumers, educators, researchers, business and community leaders, health professionals and representatives from its network of 300 affiliates to examine opportunities to strengthen wellness in individuals and communities through advocacy, education and service delivery. The conference provides an opportunity for people in the mental health field to connect with others committed to promoting improvement in health outcomes and decrease in mental health problems and substance use conditions in the United States.
Project Search’s Fifth Annual International Conference & Gala
July 11, 2011 - July 15, 2011
Project SEARCH’s annual conference is an opportunity for its international network of partners to gather for education, training, and shared-learning to assist new and existing program sites in executing the Project SEARCH model.
Keeping Our Eyes on the Prize: Independence! 2011 Annual Conference on Independent Living
July 13, 2011 - July 16, 2011
The National Council on Independent Living (NCIL) will hold its 2011 conference in Washington, DC.
UCPREP – University College Preparation, Rights & Responsibilities, Empowerment, Planning
July 31, 2011 - August 5, 2011
The University of Connecticut will hold a transition-focused summer program, UCPREP - University College Preparation, Rights & Responsibilities, Empowerment, Planning, now open for admission, for high school juniors and seniors with disabilities, giving participants the opportunity to immerse themselves in the college setting. Participants in UCPREP will acquire a broader knowledge of college life, expectations and responsibilities; gain better understanding of their academic and personal strengths and needs, their rights and responsibilities as a student with a disability, and the skills to become an effective self-advocate; and create an individualized college transition plan that will assist with planning, preparation and adjustment.
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Better High Schools
The National High School Center, based at the American Institutes for Research, offers information on research, tools and products, and high-quality technical assistance on high school improvement issues at its website.
Online Parent and Student Financial Aid Center
The Web site of the Parent and Student Financial Aid Center of the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (NASFAA) offers information about applying for financial aid (saving for college, paying student loans, etc.).
Preparing for College: The Online Guide for Students with Disabilities
This website offers guidance to students with disabilities in choosing and preparing for college.
The Forum for Youth Investment’s Ready by 21
Ready by 21 is a set of strategies developed by the Forum for Youth Investment to help communities improve the odds that all children and youth will be ready for college, work and life. The approaches included are built on: building broader partnerships, setting bigger goals, using better data and information, and implementing bolder strategies.
University of Wisconsin Green Bay’s Achievement Gap Conference Online
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The University of Wisconsin Green Bay’s Achievement Gap Conference Online offers nine of the conference presentations from the November 2010 Midwest Regional Achievement Gap Conference on topics relating to achievement gap and student success.
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: Awards for Teaching of History
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. The individual can be recognized either for individual excellence in teaching or for an innovative initiative applicable to the entire field. Maximum award: $1,500. Eligibility: teachers K-12. Deadline: March 15, 2011.
American Honda Foundation: Grants for Education
The American Honda Foundation makes grants to K-12 schools, colleges, universities, trade schools, and other youth-focused nonprofit organizations for programs that benefit youth and scientific education. Maximum award: $60,000. Eligibility: schools and youth-focused nonprofit organizations. Deadline: May 1, 2011.
Coalition for Community Schools: National Award for Excellence
The Coalition for Community Schools is accepting applications for exemplary community schools and initiatives from across the country, in order to highlight the effectiveness and efficiency of community schools. Maximum award: schools: $1,000; initiatives: $2,500. Eligibility: individual community schools that have been operating for at least 3 years, are public schools, and have demonstrated success; community school initiatives that are joint efforts of schools and other stakeholders, that have organized multiple community school sites with demonstrable results, and that have demonstrated a strong commitment to going to scale with community schools across the community or school system. Deadline: March 25, 2011.
Kohl’s Corporation: Kohl’s Kids Who Care Scholarships
The Kohl’s Kids Who Care Program recognizes and rewards young volunteers who transform their communities for the better. Maximum award: $10,000 scholarship toward post-secondary education. Eligibility: youth 6 to 18 years old, not graduated from high school by March 15, 2011. Deadline: March 15, 2011.
Libri Foundation: Books for Children Grants
The Libri Foundation Books for Children Grants donate new, quality, hardcover children’s books to small, rural, public libraries across the country. Maximum award: varies. Eligibility: Libraries should be in a rural area, have a limited operating budget, and an active children's department. The average total operating budget of a Books for Children grant recipient must be less than $40,000. Deadline: April 15, 2011.
National Fish and Wildlife Foundation: Nature of Learning Grant Program
The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation’s Nature of Learning Grant Program seeks to use National Wildlife Refuges as outdoor classrooms to promote a greater understanding of local conservation issues and use field experiences and student-led stewardship projects to connect classroom lessons to real world issues, as well as build partnership among local schools, community groups, natural resource professionals and local businesses. Maximum award: $5,000. Eligibility: schools or non-profit organizations. Deadline: April 1, 2011.
Presidential Awards for Excellence in Math and Science Teaching
The Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching honor teachers of mathematics and science and recognize highly qualified teachers for their contributions in the classroom and to their profession. Maximum award: $10,000; a paid trip for two to Washington, DC, to attend a series of recognition events and professional development opportunities; a citation signed by the President of the United States. Eligibility: teachers grades 7-12 in a public or private school with 5 years experience teaching math or science. Deadline: April 1, 2011.
Questbridge: College Prep Summer Program
Questbridge, a nonprofit organization dedicated to giving high-achieving low-income students resources during the college application process, is accepting applications for its College Prep Program for high school juniors. Maximum award: full scholarship to summer program, college admissions counseling, and attendance at college preparatory conferences. Eligibility: qualified low-income high school juniors. Deadline: March 29, 2011.
Writers in the Schools: Sarah Mook Memorial Poetry Contest
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The Sarah Mook Memorial Poetry Contest acknowledges, encourages, and rewards the efforts of student poets. Its goal is to inspire and acknowledge young poets. Maximum award: $100. Eligibility: students K-12. Deadline: March 31, 2011.
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