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Description: Parents, educators, and community members are also invited to share their thoughts on cell phone-free education with the VDOE. Cell Phone-Free Education in Virginia K-12 Public Schools - On July 9, Governor Glenn Youngkin issued Executive Order 33 to establish cell phone-free education to promote the health and safety of Virginia’s K-12 students.   Executive Order 33 is focused on eliminating cell phone use during instructional time and addressing the mental health...
Description: 5 smart summer routines for kids with ADHD - Kids with ADHD tend to do better with structure and routine in their daily lives. Routines help them to stay on track and strengthen important executive function skills like organization and planning. It’s important to keep that going even when your child is enjoying a break from school. Practice good hygiene. Maintain a bedtime routine. Schedule time for exercise. Keep (some) screen time limits. Work on school skills.
Description: Download: Summer camp toolkit for kids who learn and think differently - Summer camp can be a great experience for kids who learn and think differently. Camp can help kids develop social skills, build relationships, and gain independence. If you’re able to send your child to camp, use this toolkit to communicate with the camp and help your child prepare. Find two items to download: Get to know me summer toolkit DIY summer camp sensory kit
Description: Podcast: Summer survival guide: Hacks to help your family thrive - In this episode, hosts Gretchen Vierstra and Rachel Bozek talk all things summer with psychologist and Understood expert Dr. Andrew Kahn. Andy shares what can make summer easier than the school year for kids who learn and think differently — and what might make it harder.  Tune in for tips on screen time, sleep, summer camp, travel, and more. Plus, learn ways to give kids the structure that many of them need...
Description: All parents of school-aged children and youth with disabilities who receive special education services in Virginia are requested to complete the Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) annual Parent Involvement Survey. This survey will remain open through December 13, 2024. Please complete one survey for each of your children who is currently receiving special education services during the 2023-2024 school year.
Description: Call PEATC (703-923-0010) for free and confidential help with your special education & disability questions. PEATC's help is now available in over 300 languages!
Description: Family Engagement Checklist - It’s important for families and schools to work together to ensure student success. Families will feel and be more involved if they feel that the school is their partner. This easy-to-use checklist has simple ideas to help create and maintain real partnerships.
Description: The Healthy Minds, Thriving Kids Pre-K Project is a video series, based on mental health research, created to make important mental health skills available to preschool children (age 3 to 5). These videos introduce important ideas, taught the way young children learn best: through entertaining, relatable stories set in a vivid, imaginary world. Each video features a memorable song that reinforces the key messages. We invite you to watch the complete series with your children or students. You can...
Description: Prince William County offers Adapted Recreation Programs for youth age 2-18 (Spring-Summer 2024 Adapted Recreation Programs). The PWCS Parent Resource Center has compiled a comprehensive regional list of both general summer camps as well as specialty programs (i.e. equestrian, swimming, dance), organized by area of special need.  Fairfax County Therapeutic Recreation Services Summer Camps are open to residents (ages 5-22; and individuals over 22 who have not yet graduated) of Fairfax...
Description: Families play a crucial role in preparing their child for college and careers through valuable work-based learning (WBL) experiences. WBL facilitates supervised experiences for students with disabilities organized by schools and vocational rehabilitation agencies in real work settings. These experiences help students develop interests and skills for employment. Work-based learning experiences connect classroom learning and real-world work to improve students’ chances of securing...
Description: Dott, Alphabott, and the Alphabotteers are teaching Dusty the Dog to read. That’s what makes them Reading Buddies! Combining the science of reading with lots of laughs, Reading Buddies is the fun way to teach aspiring readers the foundational components of reading.
Description: This section provides Parents & Families with practical ideas and strategies to help with reading and writing based on what works. Topics include: Dyslexia, Beginning Reading, Intervention, Screening, Advocacy and Partnerships.
Description: Resilience for Kids With Dyslexia, Learning and Attention Issues - Hear from Fumiko Hoeft, M.D., Ph.D., a psychiatrist and a cognitive neuroscientist, about how resilience can help kids with dyslexia succeed in school and in life. Learn how you as a parent can build resilience by showing support, providing mentorship, focusing on strengths, and building social/emotional resilience. With these tips, you can create a resilience framework for your child with learning and attention issues....
Description: Medicaid has a new program starting in January 2024. It's called Brain Injury Services Targeted Case Management (BIS TCM). This program can help you or your family member find and get medical and other services in your community.
Description: In response to feedback and collaboration with the field, as well as to legislation passed by the Virginia General Assembly, the Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) has released the Video Guide to the Special Education Evaluation Process for Families as additional guidance to support accurate and consistent eligibility determinations and access to special education services across school divisions. These video modules will provide parents, families, and other stakeholders with a brief but...
Description: Questions to Ask Your Child's Teacher About Math - Math skills are essential for life– including daily tasks, problem-solving, creativity, career options and more. This resource is intended for parents of students in Grades 3-8, and includes questions to ask your child’s teacher as well as tips and resources to support math at home.
Description: The purpose of ORTIi is to provide technical assistance to Oregon school districts implementing Response to Intervention (RTI) systems that provide targeted, effective instruction to meet the needs of all students and provide the framework to identify students with Specific Learning Disabilities (SLD). The focus of the project is on literacy, early intervention, and the use of evidenced-based practices.
Description: MTSS for All: Including Students with the Most Significant Cognitive Disabilities - The purpose of this Brief is to provide suggestions for ways in which MTSS can include students with the most significant cognitive disabilities so that MTSS provides a whole school and whole district approach to be implemented by educators. Ideas for how to make MTSS fully inclusive of all students are presented following a short history of MTSS and a summary of current MTSS models. Resources for Parents on...
Description: Challenging Behavior Tips for Families - Young children need help from adults to learn how they are expected to behave in social situations. Check out these helpful tips for how families can promote their child’s positive behavior during common routines that can sometimes be challenging. Disabilities coordinators can download and share the handouts with educators to use during home visits and family nights, or directly with families. Coordinators and education staff may consider creating a...
Description: As the Virginia Department of Education is working to issue formal guidance in response to Governor Youngkin’s Executive Order 28: Parental Notification, Law Enforcement Collaboration, and Student Education to Prevent Student Overdoses, the department is sharing best practices to support decision-making protocols that school leaders are grappling with when developing parent notification protocols and also re-enforcing best practices for law enforcement collaboration. Parent Notification:...
Description: Executive Directive 6: Student Safety Resources Considerations for Schools and Families - We recognize the impact of violence and trauma on our students, families, and school staff as we all struggle to process the lives lost, continuing violence and current world events, including the recent outbreak of war in Israel and antisemitic demonstrations around the world. School staff and parents may find themselves fielding questions from students and supporting them in processing what they have...
Description: The Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) recognizes the impact that a well-established special education PRC can have on insuring that parents are informed of their rights and responsibilities related to the special education processes outlined in the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEA 2004) and the Regulations Governing Special Education Programs for Children with Disabilities in Virginia and, as such, have a direct impact on increasing outcomes for students with...
Description: Recorded Webinar: Expect, Engage, Empower: Successful Transitions for All - This session targets the recent OSERS initiative 3E: Expect, Engage, Empower. This initiative challenges our field to raise expectations, engage families earlier, and empower all who support students with disabilities to improve postsecondary outcomes. Staff from the National Technical Assistance Center on Transition: The Collaborative (NTACTC) shared information and resources about evidence-based transition practices...
Description: 24 Tips for Traveling With Children - This article discusses how to make flights and road trips easier for children with autism, anxiety, and other challenges. What You'll Learn: How can families help kids with special needs prepare for air travel? What are some ways to make road trips easier for kids with special needs? How can families make hotel stays work for kids with special needs? Hidden Disabilities Sunflower - Some disabilities, conditions or chronic illnesses are not immediately...
Description: An issue in the Impact series that focuses on the brothers and sisters of children, teens, and adults with intellectual, developmental, and other disabilities (IDD) – what we know about them, their roles and needs across the lifespan, their feelings about themselves and their siblings, and how to support them. Siblings of people with IDD are frequently involved in their brother’s or sister’s life longer than anyone else in their family. They have unique experiences,...
Description: These Project Briefs are from VCU Rehabilitation Research and Training Center (RRTC). They provide input from families about the pathway to integrated employment. Project Brief 1: The Voice of Families: Exploring Perspectives on the Pathways to Integrated Employment. (2020). Project Brief 2: Meaningful Work for Individuals with IDD: Insights from Families. (2020). Project Brief 3: Barriers to Employment for Individuals with IDD: Insights from Families. (2020). Project Brief 4: Supporting...
Description: Video Resources: Educator Pathway to Success - Educators often ask, “Where do I start?” While every educator may introduce self-determination in different ways, the Educator Pathway to Success gives you ten bite-sized videos that were created in a way to help answer that question. If you are new to self-determination, it is suggested that you view them in the order laid out below. However, if you want to skip around, it will still make sense, so feel free to go through this...
Description: Tools & Resources for Families - As family members, you are an important part of your student’s success no matter their age. Explore resources and events that will help you support your child along their journey. Parent Path to Success Critical Decision Points Good Day Plan Parent Summit MOVE Program And much more ...
Description: Over eight short episodes, you can learn practical strategies to help you respond more effectively to your child’s outbursts — and manage your own stress along the way. Host Dr. Andrew Kahn is a licensed psychologist who has been working with kids, teens, and adults for more than 20 years. In this how-to podcast, he offers tips you can use in the moment and skill-building exercises you can practice ahead of time.  Listen to "What Now? A Parent's Guide to Tantrums and Meltdowns"...
Description: Moms In Motion (Moms)/At Home Your Way (AHYW) is a Consumer-DirectedServices where the person using them is allowed to select, hire, fire, and train their particular caregiver(s). More Service Facilitation provider for Virginia Medicaid waivers: CCC PlusA Virginia Medicaid waiver program that provides services to elders and people with physical disabilities in the community (as opposed to in a nursing home) to prevent the premature institutionalization of these groups. Services available...
Description: The Early and Periodic Screening, Diagnostic and Treatment (EPSDT) benefit provides comprehensive and preventive health care services for children under age 21 who are enrolled in Medicaid. EPSDT is key to ensuring that children and adolescents receive appropriate preventive, dental, mental health, and developmental, and specialty services. Early: Assessing and identifying problems early. Periodic: Checking children’s health at periodic, age-appropriate intervals. Screening: Providing...
Description: Attendance & School Engagement (VDOE) Attendance has been increasingly the focus of attention among school divisions and educators. Regular attendance impacts a student’s success: Chronic absenteeism correlates to low academic achievement; Absenteeism is a powerful predictor of dropout rates; Absenteeism has been linked to poor outcomes later in life. Attendance Works As a non-profit initiative, Attendance Works collaborates with schools, districts, states, communities and...
Description: A resource dedicated to helping parents and families help to support your children's reading development. CBM stands for Curriculum-Based Measure. CBMs are short timed tests that measure important early reading skills and are designed to help parents and educators understand their children's risk for developing reading difficulties in the future.   
Description: Getting and staying organized is tough for many kids. Learn why kids might struggle with organization skills. Plus, get tips to help them learn how to keep track of things, manage time, and more. Understanding why kids stuggle with organization  How to teach your grade-schooler organization skills 7 color-coding tips to get your child organized
Description: This includes contact information for the School Liason(s) for Air Force, Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Coast Guard and National Guard personnel.
Description: The Virginia Department of Education's Family Engagement Network (FEN) is a group of professionals from local school divisions, university training and technical assistance centers, state agencies, and other organizations whose purpose is to foster family involvement and engagement in education, especially for children with disabilities.  The FEN has created four new resources for military-connected families of students with disabilities. These three one-pager resources, as well...
Description: A Family's Guide to Building Family-Teacher Communication and Relationships - Positive parent-teacher relationships matter. They don’t come by chance, but by intention from all parties. This guide offers practical advice on:  Cultivating Positive Parent-Teacher Relationships Supporting the Classroom Learning Culture Having Effective Parent-Teacher Conferences
Description: Partnering with Your School - As a parent, you are your child’s first and most important teacher. When your child enters school, you and the school become partners in what you both envision will be the successful development and education of your child. Years of research show that the more families are actively involved in the education of their children, the more successful the child will be in school and in life. This article contains tips for creating a positive and productive...
Description: Parent & Caregiver Resources for Virginia Assessments - Engaged parents and caregivers are a critical part of a child’s successful learning experiences. Reading with students and talking about what is being read is important to the development of strong readers. Talking about and doing math within the family is a great way to engage students and encourage success. Some of the many online resources available for reading, mathematics, science, and history and social science are...
Description: Engaging families of children with disabilities is essential to supporting children’s learning and development. It is rooted in foundational Head Start resources, including the Parent, Family, and Community Engagement (PFCE) Framework and Relationship-based Competencies to Support Family Engagement. Learning about the hopes and goals of families of children with disabilities is important. It is equally crucial to communicate to families in culturally and linguistically responsive and...
Description: The Virginia Concussion Initiative (VCI) aims to protect and support all young minds by sharing knowledge, tools, and practical guidance that promotes the tailored implementation of concussion best practices in homes, schools, and communities.   VCI Resource Library- Whether you want to learn about reducing concussion risk, helping a child recover from a concussion, or improving your concussion program, VCI has resources to meet your needs. The VCI Resource Library contains resources based...
Description: Building Authentic School-Family Partnerships Through the Lens of Social and Emotional Learning - The SEL Innovations series aims to help the field imagine new, more expansive and equitable approaches to SEL and wellness to ensure that all children, adolescents, and adults feel safe, supported, and seen so that they can thrive. This report focuses on the conditions and guiding actions to foster authentic school-family partnerships.
Description: Email and Letter Templates - It is very important, when expressing concerns about your child’s educational services or when requesting something from the school division, that you do so in writing. That way, you have a record of your request. Sometimes it can be hard to know exactly what to include in your communication with the school division. To make things easier, PEATC has developed a series of sample emails/letters in a variety of areas that you can use as the basis for your...
Description: The Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) has recently developed a new resource for families whose children are being placed in a private day school by their Individualized Education Program (IEP) Teams.
Description: This Special Education Mediation Toolkit is a guide for helping parents in Virginia understand the Special Education Mediation Process for Dispute Resolution. Mediation is a dispute resolution process that can be less adversarial than filing an administrative special education complaint or filing for a due process hearing. Mediation is a tool that parents can use if they believe that their rights or their child’s rights have been violated under federal or...
Description: Families, especially those who have a loved one on the DD waiver waiting list, are encouraged to apply. After a one-year pause, they are recruiting for Regional Individual and Family Support Program (IFSP) Councils.
Description: Families can participate in Person-Centered Planning activities, with or without Division of Services for People with Disabilities (DSPD) services, to create a vision of a good life using tools from Charting the LifeCourse. We have created a video series that demonstrates how families can use the Life Trajectory, the Life Domain Vision Tool, and the Integrated Supports Star tools to create a vision for a good life for their loved ones with disabilities.
Description: These specific tips can help parents/families make the most of their role as parent and partner during secondary transition planning.
Description: Resources for Educators,  Resources for Families and Caregivers,  Resources for Spanish Speakers -  What is Unstuck? A curriculum and a set of easy to use tools that employ cognitive behavioral techniques to improve flexibility, planning and organization. Unstuck consists of small group lessons and simple, everyday strategies that build a common language for better regulation of feelings, behavior and thinking. Who is Unstuck for? Does it Work? Unstuck is for school-age youth...
Description: The Parent Educational Advocacy Training Center (PEATC) announces the publication of its latest parent-friendly resource, their Special Education Complaint Toolkit. This toolkit provides detailed information on everything you need to know about why, when, and how to file a state complaint and it helps you prepare for the process. This interactive toolkit has been reviewed by the Office of Dispute Resolution in the Department of Special Education and Student...