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Wake PTA Special Education and Inclusion Committee
Quarterly Newsletter


Wake-SEIC PTA
Winter Newsletter 2013

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Our mission is to create a network of parents, educators, and administrators who will work cooperatively and constructively to meet the needs of all students receiving special education services in the most integrated environment, with appropriate supports in place, to ensure that the students will learn and be valued members of their school community.
In this issue:
  • Call for Volunteers
  • Upcoming Workshops
  • College Disability Resources
  • Field Trip Grants
  • New Assistant Superintendent of Special Education
  • WCPSS Parent Academy


2012-2013 Officers
  • Kim Rineer
  • Kia Slade
  • Brenda Monforti
  • Lisa McNeill
  • Nancy Ranta
  • Katie Ramsdell
  • Christine Ryan
  • David Simmons
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The 2012-2013 Special education handbook is ready. You can download a PDF copy  today.

Wake-SEIC Updates

Greetings from Wake SEIC!
With the school year half-way complete, it’s a good time to review what we have accomplished to date, set our goals for the rest of the year, and start planning for 2013-2014.  I must say that I’m proud of what our group has done so far, and I’m looking forward to continued success.  
Wake SEIC reorganized for 2012-2013 and brought in new volunteers, without whom we could have never accomplished all we have.  Our committee is made up of fabulous volunteer parents of children with special needs – and inherently maxed-out group – so each role has back-up is built into our structure.  With that said, we are always in search of more volunteers to lighten the load and strengthen our back-up system.  If you would like to take part, please feel free to attend any of our committee meetings or contact us to see how to get involved.  
This year we have greatly increased our on-line presence.  We have updated our website and added a Facebook page.  We have moved to on-line registration and electronic fliers.  This is the first electronic-only version of our newsletter.  These electronic outlets have enabled us reach out to many more people and to deliver updates in real time.  If you haven’t done so already, please check out our website and “like” us on Facebook.
We continue to provide workshops on special education topics.  We have begun to partner with individual schools and outside organizations to spread the reach of our programs.  This fall we worked with Davis Drive Middle School to provide a well-attended College Disabilities Workshop.  In January,  we worked with Davis Drive Middle School again on a workshop entitled Helping Children Cope with Anxiety .  For the upcoming IEP workshop (more information in this newsletter), we will be partnering with ecac and WCPSS.  Please check our website regularly to get information on upcoming offerings.  If your school would like to partner with Wake SEIC to host a workshop, please let us know.
Another service our group provides is quality publications (such as this quarterly newsletter and our website materials) that spread the word about what we are up to and to provide information on special education topics. 
In the upcoming months, our focus is going to be on outreach to school-based PTAs.  We illto spread the word on the fantastic programs that have been initiated at individual schools in order to inspire others to create programs that will work in their own school environment.  We will use the PTA structure to make sure that parents are aware of the resources we offer special-needs families and the resources available in the community.  We hope to make it easy and simple for PTA’s to include and support their special-needs families.  
Best wishes for a fantastic 2013!

Call for Liasions

We are looking for liaisons to serve during the 2013-2014 school year! Each PTA is asked to find a volunteer to serve as a SEIC liaison. Liaisons are asked to attend their schools’ PTA meetings and work with the PTA board to make sure all events/decisions take into account the needs of all children and families in the school community. Also, liaisons are asked to attend 2-3 meetings/workshops per year so that they can share the information with their school community.  As PTAs form for next year and liaisons are appointed, we will have liaison trainings at the end of this school year to prepare you for the role. Not sure if you have enough time to take on all the responsibility? Some schools have two liaisons that share the responsibility! Please help serve in this role to ensure ALL students have their needs taken into consideration in their school community. Please contact Katie Miley to sign up. 

Other ways to get Involved 


Join Your School PTA
A fabulous way to participate is to join your school’s PTA or PTSA.  If your school doesn't currently have a Wake SEIC liaison, volunteer for the role.  Planning for including and supporting special needs families in each school community needs to be a vital part of PTA planning.  Volunteer to host a special needs open house or an administration tea.  Volunteer to staff the book fair for an hour dedicated solely to special needs student who wouldn’t be able to access it otherwise.  This list of ways to help goes on and on and can vary in each school.  The most important thing is to be present, looking for opportunities for make PTA programs more accessible and building an environment of inclusion at your school.
 

IEP Workshop

ECAC, WCPSS Special Education Services and Wake PTA SEIC are teaming up to bring you this important event!
 
Join us Saturday, February 23, 2013 9am-3:30pm
 
Learn about each part of the IEP and how they work together to create a meaningful program that supports your child, including:
Learn about your role in the IEP process and how to prepare to effectively participate in the IEP process.
Learn tips and strategies for effective meetings and keeping communication between home and school on the right track!
Learn how services are delivered in Wake County and what resources they have available to support the special education community

Get more details and register to attend this free event on Eventbrite.

College Disability Resources

Many local schools offer disability services. If college-bound, it is important for individuals with special needs to consider what types of disability services each college offers; for example, housing options, academic accommodations, tutoring services, counseling services, etc. See our list of some local resources on our website

Wake PTA Field Trip Grants

The Wake County PTA Council is pleased to announce a grant opportunity for Wake County PTAs to partner with their schools to enhance student learning with field trips. Grants of up to $500.00 are being offered to help with defraying costs for students with financial need to participate in student field trips both in and out of the classroom. These grants are designed to support student trips and learning experiences that enrich instruction and allow students real-world curriculum connections. For more details click this link

WCPSS News


New Asst. Superintendent for Special Education 

The Wake County school board appointed the new head of special education and an interim principal on Tuesday.
 
Karen Hamilton was named assistant superintendent for special education services with a salary of $120,000. She's been senior director of counseling and student services since 2007.
 
Hamilton was also principal of Longview School, an alternative school in Raleigh, and worked in central office as a program specialist and later director of special education services.

WCPSS Parent Academy

The next series of Parent Academy workshops are now availble on the WCPSS website. Each workshop is offered 3 times in 3 designated locations around Wake County. A few of the upcoming programs are 
  • All About K-12 Assessments in WCPSS 2/05 - 2/07
  • English Language Arts Common Core for K-12 2/19-2/21
  • Transitioning from Elementary to Middle and from Middle to High School 2/26 - 2/28
  • Digging Deeper into the Special Education Process: Evaluations and Monitoring Goals 4/23 - 4/25
Please visit WCPSS to get more details and to register. 

Other Events

The Wake Special Education Advisory Council is holding The 5th Annual Special Education Open House will be held at  Broughton High School, 723 St. Marys Street, Raleigh on Thursday, March 7th 6pm 
You can register to attend on the new SEAC website


The Arc of Wake County will host a Meet & Greet with our new Asst, Supt. of Special Education Karen Hamilton. It will be at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church in Raleigh, in the evening. The event will be free. More details availible from The Arc of Wake's website. 

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