From the Department of Education: The following new policy letters on Hurricane Katrina were recently released by the Department of Education. They can be accessed online with other Katrina related policy letters at http://hurricanehelpforschools.gov/letters/index.html
From the Council on Exceptional Children: This week, members of Congress introduced legislation aimed at assisting those affected by Hurricane Katrina, including the Hurricane Katrina Education Relief Act (S. 1715). Introduced by Senator Mike Enzi (R-WY), and Senator Edward Kennedy (D-MA), Chairman and Ranking Member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee (HELP) respectively, this legislation authorizes funds and provides waiver authority for the Secretaries of Education and Health and Human Services. In addition, the legislation contains provisions that provide emergency assistance to individuals with disabilities to ensure they continue to receive free appropriate public education and job training, and to fund the replacement of damaged or lost assistive technology devices. To learn more about S. 1715, visit: http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/bdquery/z?d109:SN01715:
NECTAC will continue to compile and organize information on Katrina relief efforts and implications for early intervention and early childhood special education programs at http://www.nectac.org/announce/katrina.asp.
The National Center for Education Statistics, within the Institute of Education Sciences, recently issued the following two reports, which describe the early learning and educational experiences of American Indians and Alaska Natives.
The Commonwealth Fund-sponsored Assuring Better Child Health and Development Initiative (ABCD II) helps states strengthen primary health care services and systems that support the healthy mental development of young children, ages 0-3. On Friday, October 14, the National Academy for State Health Policy (NASHP) is hosting a live, interactive Web conference co-sponsored by the Fund that will include representatives from the five states participating in ABCD II. These speakers will share early lessons and accomplishments, and the conference will include opportunities for questions and answers. The conference will be held from 2:00-3:30 EST. To register and receive information about how to participate, go to http://www.nashp.org/_docdisp_page.cfm?LID=876C5644-9686-4019-91E41E76706F73A6
The Health Resources and Services Administration's Maternal and Child Health Bureau (MCHB) recently published Child Health USA 2004, the 15th annual report on the health status and service needs of America's children. To assess the Bureau's progress toward achieving its vision for a nation where all individuals enjoy equal access to quality health care in a supportive, culturally competent, family and community setting, MCHB has compiled this book of secondary data for 55 health and health care indicators. It provides both graphical and textual summaries of data and addresses long-term trends where applicable. Available online at http://www.mchb.hrsa.gov/mchirc/chusa_04/
The Center on the Social and Emotional Foundations for Early Learning (CSEFEL) announces Supporting Peer Social Skills in Early Childhood Settings, an online chat session with Ted Bovey. This chat session will be held on Wednesday, October 5, 2005 at 8-9 pm ET (7-8 pm CT/ 6-7 pm MT/ 5-6 pm PT). It will focus on teaching positive social skills to young children and strategies for embedding meaningful social opportunities into the daily routine of an early childhood classroom. For complete information go to http://www.vanderbilt.edu/csefel/chat/bovey-trans.html
The full transcripts from previous chat sessions can be accessed at http://www.vanderbilt.edu/csefel/chat.html
Easing the Transition from PreK to Kindergarten: What Schools Can Do to Address Child Readiness, a new strategy brief from the Southwest Educational Development Laboratory (SEDL) discusses the importance of school-family connections in ensuring a successful transition from PreK to Kindergarten. It is available online at http://www.sedl.org/connections/resources/rb/rb6-readiness.pdf.