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News and Updates

Webinars - BACK TO SCHOOL WITH DROPOUT PREVENTION IN MIND - Creating a Positive School Climate and Culture:  Recommendations of Success

Source: Barb Gilpin, Assistant Director, Effective Practices

Intended Audience:  Directors, Administrators, Teachers, and Counselors

Date: August 20, 2014

As the school year resumes, educators are focused on a successful year ahead.  It is recommended that "schools" first review their data in order to identify and highlight areas of need and areas of accomplishment, all of which aid in the identification of next steps for maintaining success, building capacity, and continuous improvement throughout the school year.  When considering sustainability and capacity building in the areas of dropout prevention and school completion, teams must first focus on building and maintaining a "positive school climate" that will support and enhance academic, cognitive, behavioral, emotional, and social success for all students, with targeted intervention for students with disabilities.

Please join us for the MO DESE "Graduation Matters" State-wide Initiative for Dropout Prevention 2014-2015 webinar series.  This webinar is the first of the 2014-2015 school year and will focus on "school climate," the first essential area of evidence-based dropout prevention.  Dr. Sandra Covington Smith, Consultant, and Robin Morrison, Instructional Supervisor, Miami-Dade County Public Schools, will conduct the webinar on August 28, 2014, at 1:30 p.m.    

To participate in the webinar, go to http://dese.mo.gov/communications/webinar/webinarSE08-28-14.  The webinar will be recorded and posted under the Webinars-Recorded button at http://dese.mo.gov/webinar/.   

If you have questions, please contact Barb Gilpin at 573-751-7661 or at [email protected].

If you need an accommodation as required by the Americans with Disabilities Act to participate in this webinar, please call 573-751-5739 at least 48 hours in advance of the webinar to discuss the accommodation. 

Seeking Applicants for Transition Liaisons

Source: John Stains, Supervisor, Effective Practices

Intended Audience: Special Education Directors, Special Education Teachers

Date: July 15, 2014

The Transition Coalition with sponsorship from Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) is recruiting school personnel to join the team of secondary Transition Liaisons.  All applications will be considered, however, filling liaison vacancies in Regions 2, 5, 6, 7, and 8 are a priority.

RPDC Region 2 - Heart of Missouri (Columbia) RPDC Region 5 - Northwest (Maryville) RPDC Region 6 - South Central (Rolla) RPDC Region 7 - Southwest (Springfield) RPDC Region 8 - St. Louis (St. Louis)

Missouri Transition Liaisons devote time and energy increasing the capacity of local level secondary special educators and districts.  They work within their own districts to enhance transition programming and reach out to other districts to engage them in opportunities to enhance their practices and programs.  Liaisons disseminate information at both the district and regional levels to develop a collaborative network of colleagues around issues related to secondary transition of youth with disabilities.

If selected as a liaison, an honorarium of $1,000 is provided to offset costs for lLiaisons to meet their responsibilities (travel, lodging, meals for site-based meetings, and trainings).  During the 2014-15 school year, liaisons will be expected to:

*             Contact a minimum of 4 identified school districts to engage them in transition professional development activities and to provide peer assistance and document the contacts using provided materials;

*             Attend 2 face-to-face meetings/training sessions (one in Fall 2014 and one in Winter 2015);

*             Participate in 2 conference calls/web meetings in Fall 2014 and Spring 2015;

*             Participate in online discussions on the Missouri Liaison website and on the Missouri Transition Community of Practice both at http://missouritransition.org/moodle/; and

*             Attend the 2015 Missouri Transition Summer Institute and support liaison activities during the event.

If you or someone you know would like to become a Missouri Transition Liaison, please complete the Transition Liaison application and submit by August 1, 2014.   The application is located at http://dese.mo.gov/special-education/effective-practices/transition

Free Workshop on Assessments for Students with Visual Impairments

Source: Beth Bashore, Assistant Director, Effective Practices
Intended Audience: Superintendents, Special Education Directors/Process Coordinators, teachers working with a student with a visual impairment and additional severe disabilities, paraprofessionals, and parents
Date: May 5, 2014

DESE, through the Office of Special Education, in coordination with the Northeast Regional Professional Development Center would like to invite you to a professional development opportunity; "Functional Vision Assessment/Learning Media Assessment" on June 20, 2014, from 10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. at Northeast RPDC Truman State University. There will be a working lunch - must bring sack lunch, no lunch provided.  Must register to attend!  Participation is limited to 30.

This workshop is intended for certificated teachers of students with visual impairments, paraprofessionals who may be assisting the teachers with functional vision evaluations, administrators who are interested in learning more about Functional Vision Assessments (FVA), and parents who may be interested in knowing what to expect when their child has been referred for a functional vision evaluation.  Components of an appropriate FVA will be discussed, demonstrations of specific instruments, and appropriate report writing will be topics covered.

To register for the workshop, go to the Northeast RPDC web site at http://rpdc.truman.edu (link is external).   Click on 'Workshops"; click on "Northeast RPDC Workshop Registrations"; make sure the between dates in the search options box include June; scroll down the screen to see the workshop offerings (listed by date); click on the workshop title you want; and, follow the directions to enroll.

For more information, contact J. Anthony Blades, Blindness Skills Specialist, Northeast RPDC Truman State University, at [email protected] or Northeast Regional Professional Development Center, 1312 Violette Hall, Truman State University, 100 East Normal, Kirksville, MO 63501.