September 23, 2005

In this Issue:

  1. Updated Information on Hurricane Katrina
      Source: Department of Education / CEC / NECTAC - September 21, 2005
  2. New Reports on the Early Learning and Educational Experiences of American Indians and Alaska Natives
      Source: Institute of Education Sciences - September 20, 2005
  3. Promoting Children’s Healthy Mental Development: Lessons and Accomplishments from Five States
      Source: The Commonwealth Fund - September 22, 2005
  4. Child Health USA 2004
      Source: Maternal and Child Health Bureau - September 16, 2005
  5. Supporting Peer Social Skills in Early Childhood Settings - Internet Chat
      Source: CSEFEL - September 22, 2005
  6. Easing the Transition from PreK to Kindergarten: What Schools Can Do to Address Child Readiness
      Source: Southwest Educational Development Laboratory - September 23, 2005

1. Updated Information on Hurricane Katrina

Source: Department of Education / CEC / NECTAC - September 21, 2005

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

  • September 21, 2005—Letter to Honorable Cecil J. Picard in response to Louisiana's requests for flexibility
  • September 21, 2005—Letter to Honorable Shirley Neeley in response to Texas's requests

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.

2. New Reports on the Early Learning and Educational Experiences of American Indians and Alaska Natives

Source: Institute of Education Sciences - September 20, 2005

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.

  • American Indian and Alaska Native Children: Findings From the Base Year of the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study, Birth Cohort, profiles data from the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study, a nationally representative study following some 10,700 children born in the United States in 2001. The Office of Indian Education provided support for increasing the sample of Native births so that the study could report on these children's early learning experiences. Some 600 Native children and their families from across the country are participating in the study that will follow the children into kindergarten. Available online at http://nces.ed.gov/pubsearch/pubsinfo.asp?pubid=2005116
  • Status and Trends in the Education of American Indians and Alaska Natives examines the educational performance and challenges facing Native children and adults in the United States. Available at http://nces.ed.gov/pubsearch/pubsinfo.asp?pubid=2005108

3. Promoting Children’s Healthy Mental Development: Lessons and Accomplishments from Five States

Source: The Commonwealth Fund - September 22, 2005

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

4. Child Health USA 2004

Source: Maternal and Child Health Bureau - September 16, 2005

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/

5. Supporting Peer Social Skills in Early Childhood Settings - Internet Chat

Source: CSEFEL - September 22, 2005

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

6. Easing the Transition from PreK to Kindergarten: What Schools Can Do to Address Child Readiness

Source: Southwest Educational Development Laboratory - September 23, 2005

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.