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Resources and Articles
(Dis) Ability Fact Sheets
SRVUSD has compiled fact sheets on many disabilities affecting students in our district. These sheets may be used to share information on common characteristics of a specific disability - great for your child's teachers, your relatives, and more! View the Fact Sheets.
Over the years, the PTA Special Needs Committee has purchased a collection of books and DVDs, which we store at the library at Iron Horse Middle School. These books and DVDs are part of the library's Parent Resources, and any parent, teacher or staff member in SRVUSD can check out these materials. Please check out the Parent Resources section at IHMS. You can access the list as follows:
Go to http://library.ihms.srvusd.net
Click on the Catalog tab
Click on Copy Categories
Click on Parent Resources and browse the list.
Email the librarian at firstname.lastname@example.org to request materials. She will email you back when the materials are ready for pick-up at Iron Horse.
Safe Schools Tipline
To report any acts of school violence, bullying or vandalism, students, staff members, parents and community members are encouraged to call the district's anonymous tipline: (925) 820-5632.
Local Special Needs Organizations
CARE Parent Network:
SEED (Special Education Enrichment Development Foundation) Lafayette:
CHADD Children and Adults with Attention Deficit (Hyperactivity) Disorder
Let us help connect you with AD/HD professionals and resources and, together, we can chart a path for the healthy growth of your loved one and, in the process, make life a little easier.
Group based in Walnut Creek with monthly meetings featuring a variety of speakers. For more information, go to www.aspergersresource.org.
Down Syndrome Connection
Support group based in Danville. Go to www.dsconnection.org for more information.
POISE - Parents of Orinda Individuals in Special Education
Support group based in Orinda with monthly meetings featuring a variety of speakers. Go to www.orindapoise.org for more information.
PRAISE - Piedmonters for Resources, Advocacy, and Information in Special Education
Piedmont parents who support and provide information to fellow parents of children with special needs. Go to www.piedmontpraise.org for more information.
Tri-Valley Special Needs Fun Group
Group based in Pleasanton that plans playgroups and other social outings for children with special needs and their families. Go to http://www.meetup.com/Tri-Valley-Special-Needs-Fun-Group for more information.
National Society for the Gifted and Talented Connecting gifted and talented children and youth with opportunities and resources. Go to www.nsgt.org for more information.
AB 1369 is in the "Home Stretch" - Call to Action!
After being unanimously approved by the Senate Appropriations Committee, 7-0, AB 1369 (Dyslexia Bill) goes to the Senate Floor early next week (week of Aug. 31) for a vote. If successful there, it goes to the Governor for signature. Please help this important bill become law by calling Senator Glazer's Sacramento Office (916-651-4007) by Aug. 31 and asking for his support for AB 1369 and sending a letter to Governor Brown. Instructions and letter template are provided in the link below. This bill is important because it will finally recognize dyslexia as a real, educational concern and provide guidelines for appropriate, evidence-based intervention, so that all children in California may learn to read. It doesn't address all aspects of the issue, but it is a meaningful first step.
Thank you for your support and your action!
Posted by: Rachel Hurd
September Parent Education Event
The San Ramon Valley Council of PTAs' Special Needs Committee
How is Special Education like Coffee?
Come and meet a fantastic team that supports our children with special needs. Each team member will discuss their roles and how they work collaboratively with each other and with families. Following the presentation there will be a Q & A session along with time to speak with the presenters
Wednesday, September 16, 2015
7:00 to 9:00 PM
Iron Horse Middle School MPR
12601 Alcosta Blvd., San Ramon, CA 94583
The new SELPA Executive Director, Jean Anthony Ed.D., along with the new Special Education Director, Cindy Perez and new Special Education Assistant Director, Carol Unterseher, will share their vision for SRVUSD. Also attending will be Helene Momita, Special Needs Ombuds, and Todd Gary, Community Advisory Committee (CAC) chairperson to share on their roles working together with families with disabilities.
This event is free with registration.
To register, click http://srv-snc-specialed.eventbrite.com
The presentation is open to all and endorsed by both the San Ramon Valley Council of PTAs’ Special Needs and Parent & Community Concerns Committees.
To learn more about either of these committees, visit www.srvcpta-ca.schoolloop.com
If you have any questions, please contact email@example.com
Posted by: Rachel Hurd
Community Advisory Committee honors "Bright Lights"
The Community Advisory Committee honored selected SRVUSD staff in our school community who best exemplify quality education for, inclusion of, and service to our students with special needs. One paraprofessional, one general education teacher, one special education teacher, one administrator and one support staff (psychologist, counselor, nurse, SLP, OT, etc.) were all honored at the May 12, 2015 Board of Education meeting.
The five school site recipients were Kathleen Martins (sixth-grade teacher, Charlotte Wood Middle School), Mimi Quan (principal, Quail Run Elementary), Leigh Gregory (school psychologist, Live Oak and Green Valley elementary schools), Karen Rush (paraeducator, Golden View Elementary) and Karen Macaulay (special education teacher, Stone Valley Middle School).
The committee also presented an award to Judith Cameron, the district's outgoing special education local plan area (SELPA) executive director.
Congratulations to SRVUSD Bright Lights recipients! For more information on the CAC click here.
Posted by: Rachel Hurd
Events sponsored by other organizations serving special needs children & families
Please note that these events are not sponsored or endorsed by the PTA, but are listed solely for informational purposes. If you you would like to provide feedback regarding these listings, please email the Special Needs Chair at firstname.lastname@example.org
Down Syndrome Connection of the Bay Area
A Bay Area Non-Profit Organization Passionate and Dedicated to Encouraging the Unlimited Potential in Children and Adults with Down syndrome Since 1998. The Down Syndrome Connection of the Bay Area consists of a group of caring individuals, educators, therapists and involved community members whose passion and commitment is to serve families who have members born with Down syndrome. We do this through education, advocacy, support groups for the entire family and developmental based classes for babies, children, teens and adults. Our goal is to enrich the child and adults lives through pre-academic, academic, language skills and social/behavioral interaction, ultimately preparing them for community integration as a valuable participant and contributor. For more information, please visit their website at http://www.dsconnection.org.
City of San Ramon Therapeutic Recreation
The City of San Ramon offers a variety of therapeutic recreational programs for children and adults with special needs. Please visit their website at http://www.sanramon.ca.gov/parks/recreation_guide/index.htm
RADD (Recreational Activities for the Developmentally Disabled)
Sponsored by the Town of Danville. The program provides a range of activities from meals out at local restaurants, bowling, trips to the theater, basketball, and baseball games for people with disabilities ages 15 and up. These activities are on Friday nights and Saturdays. For a detailed schedule and registration form, go to the Town of Danville Parks & Recreation Activity Guide.
Special Olympics offers numerous sports programs throughout the year, free of charge to athletes. In order to participate, the athlete must have a current application/medical form on file with Special Olympics. The application form is valid for three years. If you would like to register your child or find out if your application is still on file, email email@example.com or call (925) 944-8801.
Special Olympics Sports – San Ramon Parks and Community Services Registration
The City of San Ramon together with Special Olympics Northern California provide year-round sports training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic style sports for persons eight years of age and older with developmental disabilities. All sports training and competition opportunities are free for Special Olympic Athletes. Special Olympic medical forms must be on file prior to the first day of training. Sports offered include basketball, bocce, swimming, bowling.
Through games and activities our athletes will build self-esteem, develop motor skills, learn proper stretching and basic rules of the sports. The program is a collaboration between the Parks and Community Services Department and the CSU East Bay Recreation Department. (www.sanramon.ca.gov/Parks/recreation_guide/index.htm)
Special Needs Committee Meetings & Events Calendar
Contact the Special Needs Committee:
Special Needs Committee meetings are held from 9:15 to 11:00am on the fourth Wednesday of each month, except for November and December. They are held in Board Room A of the SRVUSD Offices at 699 Old Orchard Drive, Danville. Please refer to the calendar above for meeting dates and times.
Parent Education Evening Speaker Series
The Parent Education Evening Speaker Series is held on the 3rd Wednesday evening of every month, September through April (except if noted otherwise), 7-9pm at Iron Horse Middle School MPR, 12601 Alcosta Blvd., San Ramon, CA, 94583. Many of our speakers address topics that are of interest and applicable to both families of children with special needs and families of children who may not be identified as having special needs. All are welcome to attend.
Background on the PTA Special Needs Committee
The committee was formed in Fall 2002 to:
- Provide information and support to parents and staff so they can help children with special needs succeed.
- Help ALL children and adults understand and appreciate challenges faced by children with special needs.
- Work legislatively to secure and retain adequate laws and funding for children with special needs.
In 2002, the school district was faced with many parents unhappy with how their children's educational needs were being met, pending litigation, and a long list of compliance issues. The initial committee included seven parents with varying PTA experience, a school board member, and the school district's Assistant Director of Special Education. We knew that parents of children with special needs often feel disconnected from the schools and are craving information and support, and we hoped that this committee could help meet some of this need. We define “special needs” broadly - as applying to any child with learning or processing differences, physical disabilities, speech & language difficulties, social or emotional issues, etc., as well as gifted learners.
Eager to start making a difference, the new committee hosted a series of four educational evening programs. Each of the schools were encouraged to appoint a PTA special needs representative for the following year, and a handful did. The following year the committee hosted an evening program almost every month as well as a full-day Saturday conference. The committee's events consistently drew large audiences by providing information on a variety of topics to parents craving support as well as educators eager to learn.
The number of PTA special needs representatives has continued to grow and as a result we now have an active, collaborative committee. We host 5-6 evening programs a year and collaborate with PTA's Parent Education group to put on a full-day Saturday conference in February.
The school district has moved from being initially hesitant about our efforts to being fully supportive and appreciative. They now encourage teachers and staff to attend our programs, and provide facilities and support whenever asked. The high attendance at all of these programs, the appreciation from parents and staff members who attend them, and the resulting cooperation and collaboration that has positively changed how parents and educators view one another, prove that this program is helping children.
We look forward to another productive year of providing information and support through our evening programs and other events, and the networking and support opportunities that result from participating in these events. We hope you'll check out our events planned for the 2015-2016 school year!
Chairperson, Special Needs
San Ramon Valley Council of PTAs