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BELFAST, Maine — When Patricia Saucier was a teenager, she felt as if her life story would be defined by what she could not do.

As a child, she was diagnosed with an intellectual disability. By the time she was 16, her parents signed her up to receive Supplemental Security Income from the government. They wanted to make sure she would be financially OK, but it made her feel different — and not in a good way.

“The city education department’s inability to meet legal deadlines for resolving complaints filed by families of special education students is causing “material, demonstrable harm” — and  requires an immediate fix, advocates say. These delays disproportionately affect low-income children whose families do not have the means to pay for the services they require on their own while waiting for their claims to be processed…”  The link below will let you learn more details about this situation.

President Donald Trump approved an extension of the nation’s primary autism law, authorizing $1.8 billion in spending on the developmental disorder in the coming years. Trump signed the Autism Collaboration, Accountability, Research, Education and Support, or Autism CARES, Act.  The act, which originated in 2006, allocates funding for research, prevalence tracking, screening, professional training and other government activities related to autism.

Prevent Abuse of People With Disabilities

Abuse can happen to anyone. There are many forms of abuse. Learn more about the types of abuse and who it happens to. Learn what you can do to advocate for prevention. 
endAbuse is a new website funded by the New York State Developmental Disabilities Planning Council that provides a wealth of information and resources about the abuse of people with disabilities

            Advocates met with top officials at the U.S. Department of Education last week after learning that the agency is planning to change or reinterpret policy on IDEA’s requirement that students with disabilities be served in the least restrictive environment, or LRE.

Click here to continue reading. 

Thousands of people with disabilities and their advocates marched through Midtown Manhattan Sunday morning for the city’s fifth annual Disability Pride Parade, many of them public school parents and teachers.

Complaints filed against the city Department of Education by parents of special education students have skyrocketed since 2014 — sparking a “crisis” that leaves some kids without essential service for months on end, a state-commissioned report found.

Confusion among principals and teachers about just what constitutes bullying is one reason New York City schools are not
doing enough to track incidents of bullying, harassment, and discrimination. Read Article

• Required for each State • Evaluates efforts to implement IDEA and describes how the State will make improvements • Includes baseline data, measurable and rigorous targets, and improvement activities for the 17 indicators • Reported to the USDE and published for the public State Performance Plan (SPP) • Annual report of the State’s performance in the SPP targets • Includes data, explanation of progress or slippage, and discussion of improvement activities • Reported to the USDE and published for the public Annual Performance Report (APR) • The State and school districts may be identified a