Happy New Year!Theme: Parent Center Priorities

Happy New Year to everyone, and welcome to the January 2016 edition of Buzz from the Hub, the newsletter of the Center for Parent Information and Resources (CPIR).

The holiday season is behind us, and an entire new year beckons ahead, so we’ve decided to focus this first issue of the 2016 Buzz on resources you can use to address the 14 Parent Center priorities, the needs and realities of the families you serve, and the importance of being involved in the decision making that’s going on with respect to your state’s educational system. Hopefully, these resources will come in handy.

It’s truly an honor to support the great work that Parent Centers do, and we look forward to the year ahead, as full as ever of challenges and possibilities.

The CPIR Team | Debra, Lisa, Indira, and Myriam

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Hot Off the Press from CPIR!

ESSA | Every Student Succeeds Act.
As you likely know, the general education law we know as NCLB and as ESEA has been reauthorized by Congress and signed into law by the President. Changes are a’coming, that’s for sure! CPIR is pleased to offer this page of resources on the ESSA, which will streamline your search for accurate information on this newest version of our education law.

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New Resources in the Hub | Federal Guidance and Resources

CPIR’s resource library is ever-growing, so it’s helpful to know what’s been recently added. Here are several you may find useful in the coming days and months.

37th Annual Report to Congress on IDEA.
The latest report to Congress on implementation of IDEA is hot off the press. Very useful for any data discussions you might be having or proposals you might be writing. The report includes national and state-level exhibits about infants and toddlers, children, and students with disabilities served under IDEA Part C and Part B. The most recent data presented in the report represent the reporting periods associated with fall 2013 or school year 2012-13.

Supporting Undocumented Students: Resource Guide.
The U.S. Department of Education published Supporting Undocumented Students: A Guide to Success in Secondary and Postsecondary Settings to help educators, school staff, and community organizations support the academic success of undocumented youth, including Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipients. The guide clarifies the legal rights of undocumented students, shares helpful information about financial aid options open to undocumented students, and describes how to support youth in applying for DACA consideration or renewal.

Parents for Healthy Schools.
CDC has developed a set of resources called Parents for Healthy Schools to help schools and school groups (e.g., PTAs, school wellness committees) engage parents to create healthy school environments. These resources inform parents about school nutrition environment and services, school-based physical education and physical activity, and managing chronic health conditions in school settings.

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Spotlight on…Multicultural Materials

Parent Centers serve an incredible diversity of families and are always on the look-out for multicultural materials and resources in other languages. Hope these help!

Raising Young Children in a New Country: Supporting Early Learning and Healthy Development.
(Available in English, Arabic, and Spanish) | The Office of Head Start collaborated with the Office of Refugee Resettlement to produce this handbook for programs serving refugee families and newly arrived immigrant families. It may be used with parents to help ease their transition to a new country, because it provides families with information on family well-being, health and safety, healthy brain development, early learning and school readiness, guidance and discipline, and family engagement in early care and education.

Cultural backgrounders.
Here are several briefs that will provide you with general cultural information about refugee families, while recognizing that every family is unique and that cultural practices will vary by household and by generation. Briefs are available on Bhutanese refugee families as well as those from Burma, Iraq, and Somalia.

Partners in Education | Online course.
(Available in English and in Spanish) | This 3-hour self-directed course was created to help parents of children with developmental disabilities understand and maximize the special education system. The course reviews IDEA 2004 and includes current thinking on educational reform and the importance of teaching children to use digital technology to improve educational outcomes and better prepare children to work in the future.

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Resources You Can Share with Families

This section of the Buzz identifies useful resources you might share with families or mention in your own news bulletins.

10 Defusing Phrases to Use at IEP Meetings.
(Available in English and in Spanish) | Emotions can run high at IEP meetings. But it’s important for parents to focus on the end goal: helping their child. Here are 10 stay-calm phrases parents can use to redirect conversation and defuse tense situations. From understood.org.

Help for Someone with an Eating Disorder.
Need to share easy-to-read and practical info on eating disorders with any families you serve? This help guide describes types of eating disorders, common myths, and warning signs, and includes suggestions for how to address eating disorders, both personally and through professional treatment.

Health Observances in 2016.
The Health Observances Calendar for 2016 can help your Parent Center plan disability-specific events for families throughout the entire year, as well as connect your Center with lots of new materials about specific disabilities. Check out what health issues will be spotlighted when.

Child Outcomes Step-by-Step | Video.
This video describes and illustrates the 3 child outcomes adopted by OSEP and reported on by all state early intervention (Part C) and preschool special education (Part B/619) programs as part of their Annual Performance Report (APR). The video can be used to provide an overview to the outcomes for professional development and training, orienting families, and introducing the outcomes to other constituents such as policymakers or funders. The video explains functioning necessary for each child to be an active and successful participant at home, in the community, and in other places like a child care program or preschool. There’s also a Spanish transcript of the video.

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Resources Just for Parent Centers: Priorities, Priorities!

Aligning 3 key initiatives to create change.
Currently, states are pursuing 3 separate initiatives that, if aligned, have the potential to create lasting and meaningful changes to instruction and to provide support for at-risk learners. Those initiatives are: College and Career Readiness Standards, Educator Effectiveness, and Multi-tiered Systems of Support (MTSS) [which includes Response to Intervention (RTI), and Positive Behavioral Supports (PBIS)]. In this Special Issues Brief, the Center on Great Teachers and Leaders outlines a framework for coherence that supports states in connecting these 3 initiatives by capitalizing on their shared goal: improving instructional quality to enhance educational outcomes for students.

MTSS, RTI, Special Education…Oh My! Gaining an understanding of MTSS and RTI | Video.
RTI and MTSS are frameworks for integrating instruction, evidence-based interventions, and assessments to meet the academic and behavior needs of all students. Listen to this 14-minute interview with Dr. Lynn Fuchs and Dr. Joe Jenkins to learn more.

MTSS and RTI | From Parent Centers.
Visit Idaho Parents Unlimited’s pages on MTSS and RTI and share them with the families you serve. Parent-friendly! (And, as we mentioned in November’s Buzz, there are also the English and Spanish webinars of the Family Resource Center on Disabilities in Illinois on this very subject!)

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Logo of the Center for Center for Parent Information and ResourcesThe CPIR hopes that you’ve found useful and relevant resources listed in this month’s Buzz from the Hub. Please feel free to write to the editor, Lisa Küpper, at lkupper@fhi360.org to suggest the types of resources you’d like to see in the future. CPIR’s listening! Your input is extremely valuable to helping us to craft newsletters that support your work with families.

Our very best to you,

Debra, Indira, Lisa, and Myriam
The CPIR Team

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Publication of this eNewsletter is made possible through Cooperative Agreement H328R130014 between OSEP and the Statewide Parent Advocacy Network (SPAN). The contents do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the Department of Education, nor does mention of trade names, commercial products, or organizations imply endorsement by the U.S. Government or by the Center for Parent Information and Resources.