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News from around the web that concerns the Special Needs Community
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15 Things Never To Say To A Special Needs Parent

15 Things Never To Say To A Special Needs Parent | Special Needs News | Scoop.it
I write this list in the hopes that it will be read by some of those good people who mean well but whose words can still be as sharp as knives....
a4cwsn's insight:

All of the following examples of things not to say come from things that have actually been said to me or other special needs parents.

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Sisters crowned national champs for heart-warming dance routine

Sisters crowned national champs for heart-warming dance routine | Special Needs News | Scoop.it
Gracie, 9, who uses a wheelchair due to Cerebral Palsy and Cystic Fibrosis, has been dancing for years with her sister at a studio near Louisville, Ky.
a4cwsn's insight:

Gracie, 9, who uses a wheelchair due to Cerebral Palsy and Cystic Fibrosis, has been dancing for years with her sister at a studio near Louisville, Ky. This weekend they took the stage together at the Jamfest Dance Super Nationals at the Northern Kentucky Convention Center.

Their duet began with Gracie in her wheelchair and Quincy also sitting in a wheelchair. Quincy then stood up and twirled around the stage with her sister in a choreographed routine to a song titled ‘Reflections'.

"Seeing both my girls on stage together inspires me and shows they have the heart of a true champion," says mom Christin Latkovski. Those who saw the performance were just as inspired by the sisters, with Jamfest representatives saying the girls "awed the audience and warmed hearts throughout the competition."  

At the end of their routine, Gracie and Quincy were named National Champions and received special recognition on stage.

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Caroline's Cart - Timeline Photos

Caroline's Cart - Timeline Photos | Special Needs News | Scoop.it
a4cwsn's insight:

Great news Kroger shoppers! Here is a quote from the corporate office......"We now have this set-up in the Kroger order system, please ask that your store manager order this line item from the Technibilt Company for your store. They can order through the Kroger Facilities Group in their Division. Here is the information to use when asking. This is now approved by Kroger and will be able to help you out." WOW - ALL YOU HAVE TO DO IS ASK!! Kroger has approved Caroline's Cart for ALL their stores!!

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Opening Our Hearts to Special Needs Children

Opening Our Hearts to Special Needs Children | Special Needs News | Scoop.it
The Avonte tragedy has started a conversation that will hopefully continue, hopefully keep things moving to bring about more action and awareness. Every parent should have the confidence of knowing their child is safe when away from home and family....
a4cwsn's insight:

Valentine's Day is a time for romantic love, couples and even families who often celebrate with their children. This year, the pink and red hearts in shop windows and on shelves are reminding me of a mother's heart, and I'm thinking of the emptiness that must be in Avonte Oquendo's mother's heart, my own heart missing a beat when I think of my autistic son and how much he shares with Avonte. Children born with a disability stretch and tug and dip into our hearts in so many ways. At the very moment we don't feel we're up to their special challenges, our hearts enlarge in ways we never thought possible to reveal our deepest purpose in life.

I closely followed the search for 14-year-old Avonte after he walked out of his school and went missing in October. I was heartbroken and shocked when his remains were found. Parents all over the nation are mourning his loss, and it reminds us of the many other children who have lost their lives to tragic situations.

This is the time to come together and honor these innocent children by finding a solution. This is the time to focus on making our schools and neighborhoods safer places for all of our country's children with special needs, all of the special, vulnerable hearts who depend on us for a safe and happy life.

There are many ways to do this, including supporting Avonte's law, which would fund a program to provide electronic tracking devices that could be worn by children with autism, similar to those worn by people with Alzheimer's disease. Parents would have free access to the program. This legislation and these devices are an encouraging first step, and part of a bigger solution.

With one in 50 school-aged children diagnosed with autism, school districts must intensify training and other safeguards to protect kids like Avonte. While tracking devices will help, we also need more resources for early identification and intervention for kids of color with autism, who are diagnosed two to four years later than their white peers. Crucial to better identification and awareness, as well as to a safe and nurturing environment, is better training for teachers and school staff. Schools must also ensure that nonverbal students have argumentative communication devices, one-on-one aides and other supports so they're not vulnerable or subject to harm.

The Avonte tragedy has started a conversation that will hopefully continue, hopefully keep things moving to bring about more action and awareness. Every parent should have the confidence of knowing their child is safe when away from home and family. When you are the parent of a special needs child like Avonte, who was nonverbal, that confidence becomes even more crucial.

As a national advocate for children with autism, I'm asking you to please use this tragedy as an impetus for change and improvement. Get behind Avonte's law and support increased training and awareness in our schools and communities.

Most immediately, schools in America, especially those that care for special needs children, should closely review their protocols and procedures. I urge every school to ensure they are able and ready to protect each student. We have to make sure that what happened to Avonte never happens again. Support this new law in his honor, and begin to put in place the other safeguards needed to protect our children. Because on Valentine's Day and every day, they all hold a special place in our hearts.

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The Center for Autism and Related Disorders: Globalizing Autism Treatment and Awareness

The Center for Autism and Related Disorders: Globalizing Autism Treatment and Awareness | Special Needs News | Scoop.it
a4cwsn's insight:

Autism Insurance Coverage by states.

States with Autism Mandates (Coverage requirements vary by state.)

States with Autism Coverage through the State Exchanges Created By Affordable Care Act (ACA affects small group and individual insurance policies.)

 

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I Am the Person You Hurt When You Say the R-Word

I Am the Person You Hurt When You Say the R-Word | Special Needs News | Scoop.it
You don't have to aim the word directly at me to hurt me and millions of others like me who live with an intellectual disability....
a4cwsn's insight:

To all of you who use it, let me say it one more time, THE R-WORD HURTS. You don't have to aim the word directly at me to hurt me and millions of others like me who live with an intellectual disability. Every time a person uses the r-word, no matter who it is aimed at, it says to those who hear it that it is okay to use it. That's how a slur becomes more and more common. That's how people like me get to hear it over and over, even when you think we aren't listening.

So, why am I hurt when I hear "retard." Let's face it, nobody uses the word as a term of praise. At best, it is used as another way of saying "stupid" or "loser." At worst, it is aimed directly at me as a way to label me as an outcast -- a thing, not a person. I am not stupid. I am not a loser. I am not a thing. I am a person.

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Join Buddy Cruise Inc. and take part in some amazing workshops.

Join Buddy Cruise Inc. and take part in some amazing workshops. | Special Needs News | Scoop.it
a4cwsn's insight:

Join us for Buddy Cruise 2014 and take part in some amazing workshops. A4cwsn presented on board BC 11-12 & 13 and will sail with us in 2014 sharing information on new exciting apps for children with special needs.

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Monica and Andy, kids apparel line, uses models with disabilities

Monica and Andy, kids apparel line, uses models with disabilities | Special Needs News | Scoop.it
A Chicago-based children's clothing company uses models with disabilities.
a4cwsn's insight:

A Chicago-based children's clothing company uses models with disabilities.

 

Monica and Andy has clothing for children up to 3 years old.

Monica Royer is the co-owner of the 3-month-old company. She is also mother to 3-year-old Bella.
'We are trying to make clothing we feel kids can look great in but also have a lot of fun,'' Royer said. ''We also really wanted to focus on the quality of our fabrics,'' she said.

''We wanted to make sure that our prints were very vibrant and fun so that they would be super soft for children's skin,'' Royer said.

One of the clothing line's goals is to get mothers involved.

''Obviously a huge part of the business is marketing and we've been very fortunate thus far that we've had moms involved of every level of our business,'' Royer said.

Katie is a photographer and mother of 4-year-old, Grace, with Down syndrome. Katie is also co-founder of Changing the Face of Beauty.

''We encourage advertisers locally and internationally to include individuals with disabilities in their everyday advertising campaign,'' Katie said.

"Me wanted to just have integrative campaigns that showcased all different children,'' Monica said. ''As soon as I talked to her I just fell in love with her and we quickly invited her to come to the fashion show,'' she said.

''My goal is to provide imagery that is attractive to advertisers and designers so that they too will see the beauty that I see in all individuals that happen to have disabilities and give them a little more encouragement to include,'' Katie said.

''I think one that taught me so much in the short time that I've known her that I definitely that that we will definitely try to find more children just to integrate in our campaigns,'' Monica said.

''I feel like imagery is one of the strongest forms of communication that we have and when you see it you believe it,'' Katie said.

 

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Andover Boy With Autism Gets Birthday Cards From Around The World After Mom’s Facebook Post - CBS Boston

Andover Boy With Autism Gets Birthday Cards From Around The World After Mom’s Facebook Post - CBS Boston | Special Needs News | Scoop.it
He has had 11 birthdays and his family says no one has ever really paid attention. Until now.
a4cwsn's insight:

He has had 11 birthdays and his family says no one has ever really paid attention.

But a boy in Andover is about to have a spectacular 12th birthday – thanks to the Internet, his mom and a stamp.

Logan Pearson can’t talk.

He is severely autistic.

He communicates with kisses.

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