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Air pollution linked to children's low academic achievement
The University of Texas at El Paso via Science Daily
A University of Texas at El Paso study on children's health has found that fourth- and fifth-graders who are exposed to toxic air pollutants at home are more likely to have lower GPAs. UTEP researchers analyzed academic performance and sociodemographic data for 1,895 fourth and fifth grade children living in El Paso, Texas that were attending the El Paso Independent School District. They used the Environmental Protection Agency's National Air Toxics Assessment to estimate children's exposure to toxic air pollutants, such as diesel exhaust, around the location of their homes.
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ADHD evaluations driven mainly by parents, not educators, says CDC report
Education Week
The stereotype that overwhelmed teachers are the ones primarily pushing parents to have their children assessed for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder is not borne out by a new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. ADHD is a common childhood behavioral disorder that often lasts into adulthood. Children with ADHD may be overly active, have trouble paying attention, or be prone to impulsive behaviors. About 65 percent of the time, a family member is the one who first has concerns about a child's behavior, according to a survey of households with children ages 0 to 17. Thirty percent of the time, the concern comes from someone at the child's school or daycare.
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Could open educational resources spell the end of textbooks?
By: Brian Stack
A letter recently arrived in President Barack Obama's digital inbox calling on him to commit to policies that support the development of open educational resources, known more commonly as OERs. The letter was first developed and signed by multiple organizations from the education, library, technology, public interest and legal communities. Educators across the country are wondering, should educational materials be set free for all to use?
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In an effort to enhance the overall content of THE LD SOURCE, we'd like to include peer-written articles in future editions. As a member of LDA and/or reader of THE LD SOURCE, your knowledge of learning disabilities and related issues lends itself to unprecedented expertise. And we're hoping you'll share this expertise with your peers through well-written commentary. Because of the digital format, there's no word or graphical limit. Our group of talented editors can help with final edits. If you're interested in participating, please contact Ronnie Richard to discuss logistics.

ESEA high on agenda of education issues as Congress returns
Education Week
Fresh off a five-week summer sabbatical, members of Congress confront a handful of pressing education issues, high among them brokering a path forward for the Elementary and Secondary Education Act reauthorization, with dueling bills having already passed in both chambers. Perhaps most urgent, however, the federal fiscal year ends Sept. 30, and House and Senate appropriators have yet to pass a spending bill to fund the government past then. When they return, they'll have just 10 legislative working days to negotiate a funding plan for federal agencies, including the U.S. Department of Education and its programs.
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  Student-Paced, Mastery-Based Math
Since 2004, Math-U-See has worked with intervention and special education teachers to reach struggling special needs math students. Math-U-See corresponds to math ability rather than traditional grade levels, so it can be used with students of any age. We provide tools and training for an explicit, structured, systematic, cumulative program using multi-sensory teaching techniques. MORE

 In the News

Back to school? A crucial time for kids' social and emotional development
The Conversation
It’s that time of the year. Summer vacations are almost over. For most kids, this time of summer has been about finishing the readings and completing the packets that were handed out to them as summer work. As a result, school often conjures up ideas about reading, writing and arithmetic (the "three R's"). But this approach is both problematic and myopic. As pressures to meet standards in the three R's increase, other areas fall off the radar. Having an answer to a question becomes more important than knowing how to think about it.
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Looking for similar articles? Search here, keyword SCHOOL.

As Common Core results trickle in, initial goals unfulfilled
The Associated Press
Results for some of the states that participated in Common Core-aligned testing for the first time this spring are out, with overall scores higher than expected though still below what many parents may be accustomed to seeing. Full or preliminary scores have been released for Connecticut, Idaho, Missouri, Oregon, Vermont, Washington and West Virginia. They all participated in the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium, one of two groups of states awarded $330 million by the U.S. Department of Education in 2010 to develop exams to test students on the Common Core state standards in math and English language arts.
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  Leveled Guided Reading - 93% Decodable

Help struggling readers build ACCURACY! Go Phonics teaches a strong foundation of phonics and language arts, applied in 7 volumes of leveled, phonetically sequenced, decodable stories. The phonics sequence minimizes confusion (Orton-Gillingham compatible). Lesson plans, 50 phonics fluency games, worksheets prep them for success. Sample Stories/Overview download:

Dyslexia: Kids no longer lost faces in the crowd
The Baxter Bulletin
Dyslexia screening became law in Arkansas schools at the start of the 2015-2016 school year. That means a district is required to screen students in kindergarten through second grade and other students experiencing indicators of dyslexia. All districts also are required to have at least one interventionist, an employee trained in a dyslexia program.
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The idea vs. the on-the-ground reality of Common Core standards
The Washington Post
The Common Core State Standards that most states have adopted have triggered plenty of political debate. But have they transformed how teachers are teaching — and what students are learning? Not nearly enough, according to Education Trust, a nonprofit dedicated to closing achievement gaps. Teachers are often assigning work that asks far less of students than the Common Core standards require, according to the organization. Children are rarely asked to write more than a few sentences at a time, for example, and are seldom asked to grapple with complex ideas and arguments.
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McLean School Transforms Lives
K-12 college preparatory school supporting bright students’ individual learning styles.
3D Learner Program
We now offer Reading Plus® to further improve reading speed and comprehension. We also leverage both Recording For the Blind and Dyslexic and Talking Books. MORE

Give your ADHD child a sensory break today
ADDitude Magazine
Do you breathe a sigh of relief when your child finally heads off to school? Do you find yourself anxiously anticipating her return home, not knowing what mood she'll be in? The morning routine didn't go so well, so you pray that the afternoon will run more smoothly. You can already see the homework struggles, and the distracted, impulsive behavior at the dinner table. You grab for a chocolate bar as a pacifier. What you may need, instead, are several effective sensory strategies for your ADHD child. Children with attention deficit have a complex sensory motor system. When it doesn't work efficiently, a child may act impulsively, get distracted easily, and become hyperactive. Many parents wonder: "Is my child's behavior due to a brain-based challenge or a sensory challenge?" Often it is both.
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Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

    New rule ends 'modified' tests for students with disabilities (Disability Scoop)
New school year brings testing changes (District Administration Magazine)
For students with learning disabilities, real life often is more satisfying than high school, study suggests (The Seattle Times)
Growth mindset: How to normalize mistake-making and struggle in class (MindShift)
Students with disabilities face special risk of summer slide (City Limits)

Don't be left behind. Click here to see what else you missed.


LDA does not recommend or endorse any one specific diagnostic or therapeutic regime, whether it is educational, psychological or medical. The viewpoints expressed in THE LD SOURCE are those of the authors and advertisers.

Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601
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Hailey Golden, Senior Education Editor, 469.420.2630   
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