• Speaker Magazine recognizes Special Education Day

    "Why do you want a holiday? First, decided what you want to accomplish. Miriam Freedman, JD, MA,[with colleagues in SPEDCO--the Special Education Day Committee] started Special Education Day to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the signing of the first fedearl special education law in 1975. Freedman writes, 'Our holiday has been a huge success. It has helped us focus our efforts and gain a community of reformers. We are now launching SpedEx, an alternate dispute resolution model, which the [...]
  • More! It’s about time!

    There's more to add to the last blog! We take inspiration from Bill Cosby, Dr. Alvin Poussaint, and, most notably, our new president, Barack Obama.These leaders tell us some truths-- that it's time for parents, as well as schools, to work to improve outcomes for children. This week's Education Gadfly picked up on the President's inaugural speech in calling for a new "Era of responsibility." www.edexcellence.net/gadfly.Our President is certainly on to something many of us have felt and known [...]
  • It’s about time!I loved hearing Bill Cosby and Dr. Alvin Poussaint describing their book, Come On, People—On the Path from Victims to Victors on today’s Meet the Press. They are on to something! Parents need to parent.It's about time! President- elect Barak Obama told parents the same thing--turn off TVs, be present, not MIA, and support their children’s education. Poussaint suggested a national conference on parenting. [...]
  • Following up on the last blog about advice to the new president, once you get on the site, click on "Listen to it here," and then "Hear advice."The website is: http://www.merrow.org/ed_advice.There's some good stuff on it. Altogether, 76 voices. I was happy to be included and hope that changes will be a-coming in special education!Miriam
  • Hear Miriam’s advice to the new president!

    Visit the special website of John Merrow, the PBS education contributor! He's collected the opinions of many thought leaders and reformers--what advice would they give the new president? I am honored to be included and minute or two is included among today's contributors. It's at http://www.merrow.org/ed_advice/. Enjoy! Let me know what you think!Miriam
  • Report cards and transcripts–NEW OCR letter!

    Hello again,Just want you to know, the OCR just issued a new 'Dear Colleague' letter. You can find it at:www.ed.gov/print/about/offices/list/OCR/letters/colleague-20081017.html. Check it out! It's in a Q & A format, and pretty much follows earlier letters that have been discussed on this blog--Letter to California and Letter to Runkel.Miriam
  • What Wall Street and education have in common

    Like many of you, I watch and listen to the news with great anxiety... and am aghast at developments on Wall Street. Why did we get no warnings. Real warnings. Why did this come upon us as such a bolt seemingly out of the blue. But did it? Or did people know and not tell.And that got me thinking--what do we know in education, and specifically, in special education that needs to be told to a wider audience. So we can bring about necessary changes before a jolt hits all of us. I'm writing [...]
  • My Ed Week letter about SAT and ACT scores!

    Published online on September 16, 2008Published in print on September 17, 2008Education WeekLetterA Dearth of Standardization in College-Entrance ExamsTo the Editor:As reported in your recent articles "SAT Scores for Class of 2008 Halt Slide of Recent Years" (Sept. 3, 2008) and "ACT Scores Dip Slightly as Participation Soars" (Aug. 27, 2008), scores on the SAT and ACT college-entrance exams remain flat or trend slightly downward, while score gaps between groups of students remain wide. Are [...]
  • Education Week: The Elevator Theory Of Special Education

    Back in 1995, I wrote the attached piece which appeared in Education Week. Briefly, it speaks about the fact that we spend too much time, money, and effort on evaluating children and putting them into various categories--and that we should spend more time, money, and effort on teaching ALL students.The article received LOTS of responses at the time. As a school attorney, I visited many schools back then. Often I saw the piece on school bulletin boards. Fun! I'd love to know what you think [...]
  • Ah, SAT and ACT scores–what do they mean now?

    Have you been following news of the SAT and ACT scores? Education Week, August 27 and September 3, 2008 reported that SAT scores are flat. Gaps among groups remain wide. ACT scores “dip slightly.” Are these numbers the meaningful gold standard we need? Unfortunately not. We assume reported scores reflect a standardized norm. But, alas, they no longer do. While Ed Week headlines SAT scores and the ACT’s one tenth of a point (on a 36 point scale) decline as a “slight dip,” where is mention [...]