Tag Archives: democracy

Agenda for Today

Today I’m attending a conference about Special Education.  I’ll be presenting on a disability the law (IDEA: Individuals with Disabilities Education Act) as Emotional Disturbance.  

Many terms are used to describe emotional, behavioral or mental disorders. Currently, students with such disorders are categorized as having a serious emotional disturbance, which is defined under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act as follows:

“…a condition exhibiting one or more of the following characteristics over a long period of time and to a marked degree that adversely affects educational performance –

  1. An inability to learn that cannot be explained by intellectual, sensory, or health factors;
  2. An inability to build or maintain satisfactory interpersonal relationships with peers and teachers;
  3. Inappropriate types of behavior or feelings under normal circumstances;
  4. A general pervasive mood of unhappiness or depression; or
  5. A tendency to develop physical symptoms or fears associated with personal or school problems.” [Code of Federal Regulations, Title 34, Section 300.7(b)(9)] 

While not as common as high profile disabilities such as Autism and ADHD, disabilities that fall under the umbrella of “serious emotional disturbance” are becoming more common.  While only 473,663 students ages 6-21 received services related to Emotional Disturbance in the 2000-2001 school year, experts consider Emotional Disturbance to be the most under-identified of all IDEA disability categories.  As is the case with some other common disabilities, statistics show that boys are more likely to experience serious emotional and behavioral disorders than girls by a 3 to 1 ratio.

We need a national commitment to educating all students.  Commitment in this sense is linked to dollars–dollars to employ specialists, to train general education teachers, and to provide necessary resources for students with disabilities and their families.  

The Senate will be reviewing the President Obama’s stimulus bill in detail in the coming days.  Please write, call, and email your representatives and tell them that you demand funding for the free, appropriate and equitable education of all students.  

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November 4, 2008

VOTE!

obama_mich_6501

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An Elmwood Halloween: Abuzz for Obama

Saddleshoos and crew made our way to “Abuzz for Obama” in the Elmwood section of Berkeley on Friday night.  “Abuzz for Obama” was this year’s theme for an annual shrine to candy corn at the home of a prominent academic/artist/activist couple.  

As we walked up to the house we were greeted by an extravaganza of candycorn lights, and the whirring of a genny.  It was a sight to be seen.  I was so caught up taking pictures that I actually walked right by a guy standing in the shadows, waved hi, and said, “we’ll be right in!” before realizing that it was a cardboard cut out of Obama.  Everyone got a big kick out of that one.

Squint to read the name on the mailbox:

Everyone who is anyone in Berkeley was there.  Guests all received gift bags with various candycorn accessories, obama pins, and a handheld fan with an LED message programmed to read: OBAMA 2008, BERKELEY IS FOR OBAMA 2008, ABUZZ FOR OBAMA, etc. with alternating messages:

 

The grand finale was the Obama cake, which measured in a conservative estimate at least 3 feet in diameter.  Check it out below. 


There were some aliens from Uranus there who led us all in a big long prayer for Obama.  Many present left the following morning for Nevada to let the people there know what’s up.  On this election eve, may all of our prayers be with Obama and all of us who support him.  Yes we can.  

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