Oregon Commission for the Blind Student Honored with Dean’s Award

AmyRose

AmyRose with her “Dean’s Award of Excellence.”

AmyRose is finishing up community college and hopes to transfer to a 4-year college in the fall. In May, the dean of Clackamas Community College honored Oregon Commission for the Blind (OCB) student AmyRose Bonano with the Dean’s Award. Over 50 people — staff, family, and fellow students — gathered on May 29 for an inspiring ceremony via Zoom.

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OSEP Releases Two New OSEP Fast Facts

Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services Office of Special Education Programs. Percentage of American Indian or Alaska Native Children With Disabilities by State, Ages 6 to 21, Served Under IDEA, Part B, in the United States (US): School Year (SY) 2018-19. Shows map of the U.S. In school year 2018-19, 1.35% of school aged children with disabilities in the United States were American Indian or Alaska Native. Source: U.S. Department of Education, EDFacts Data Warehouse (EDW): “IDEA Part B Child Count and Educational Environments Collection,” 2018-19. http://go.usa.gov/xdp4T. Data for Wisconsin was suppressed due to questionable data quality. Data for Washington, DC was suppressed due to small cell size.

OSEP Fast Facts:
American Indian or Alaska Native Children
with Disabilities

OSEP Fast Facts: Black or African American Students with Disabilities. Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services Office of Special Education Programs. OSEP Fast Facts: Black or African American Children With Disabilities. Percentage of Black or African American Students with Disabilities by State, Ages 6 to 21, Served Under IDEA, Part B, in the United States (US): School Year (SY) 2018-19 and State Population Estimates of Black or African American, Ages 6to 21 in the United States: 2018. Shows map of the U.S. In 2018, Black or African American children comprised 13.8% of the population of ages 6-21. In school year 2018-19, 17.89% of school aged children with disabilities in the United States were Black or African American. Source: U.S. Department of Education, EDFacts Data Warehouse (EDW): “IDEA Part B Child Count and Educational Environments Collection,” 2018-19. http://go.usa.gov/xdp4T. Data for Wisconsin was suppressed due to questionable data quality. U.S. Bureau of the Census. "2018 State Population Estimates by Age, Sex, Race, and Hispanic Origin". Data accessed July 2019 from http://www.census.gov/popest

OSEP Fast Facts:
Black or African American Students
with Disabilities

By the Office of Special Education Programs

OSEP is excited to release two new OSEP Fast Facts that take a closer look at our IDEA 618 data on race and ethnicity.

For the American Indian or Alaska Native Children with Disabilities and Black or African American Students with Disabilities Fast Facts we present data from the data collections authorized under IDEA Section 618 including that collected through child count, educational environments, discipline and exiting data collections.

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Spotlight on Oregon Commission for the Blind’s Pre-ETS Program: Daniel Bair

Daniel Bair Playing a Violin


Many people are familiar with the Oregon Commission for the Blind (OCB)’s work helping seniors and adults, but helping youth successfully transition from school to the workforce though pre-employment activities, or “Pre-ETS”, is another significant part of what we do.

Perhaps because we’ve held it for 45 years, one of our more well-known Pre-ETS programs is the Summer Work Experience Program (SWEP). Serving youth ages 16-20 with low vision, SWEP helps prepare youth to live independently and enter the workforce. With programs in Portland and Salem, students typically work between 25-30 hours per week at worksites related to their career interests.

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Voices From the Field: Interview with Cindy Hillyer

Promoting Equity in Children’s Vision Health

Cindy Hillyer

Cindy Hillyer is the director of the Office of Early Childhood Education at Minneapolis Public Schools. Throughout her career, Cindy has led public health and education initiatives focused on cross sector collaboration and advancing equity. She currently serves on the University of Minnesota Institute on Community Integration Advisory Board; the Executive Committee of the City of Minneapolis Child Friendly City Initiative and chairs the Minnesota Early Childhood Vision Health Task Force-a National Center for Children’s Vision and Eye Health-Better Vision Together team. 

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Teamwork Makes the Dream Job Work

Daniel Robertson
by Lamisse Williams, Idaho Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (IDVR) Counselor


Meet Daniel Robertson, a management information systems student at the University of Idaho who recently obtained his second paid summer internship at HP.

Daniel worked with counselors at the University of Idaho in Moscow, Idaho who informed him about how the university offers students on the autism spectrum a ray of support services through their Raven Scholars Program. This is how Daniel first heard about HP’s Spectrum Success Hiring Program.

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Voices From the Field: Interview with Mona Qafisheh

Power to the Early Childhood Education Profession

Mona Qafisheh

Mona serves as the director of grants and contracts with the Association for Supportive Child Care which provides early childhood coaching, assessment, and professional development to early childhood professionals, and education for family, friends, and neighbor caregivers and families. Mona’s role includes supporting the organization through the granting lifecycle from identification of potential funding through reporting. Mona also serves as the president-elect for the Arizona Association for the Education of Young Children.


ED: How did you begin your career in early childhood education?

My career in early childhood education began like many others’ have. When I was 19, I needed a job and the only place that would hire me was a child care center. I worked as a camp counselor for 9 and 10-year olds through high school and figured working with toddlers would be a piece of cake. Spoiler alert: working with toddlers isn’t a piece of cake! But it was the most rewarding job I’ve ever had and inspired my love for young children and began my now almost 20-year commitment to them and their families. Also, like many of my peers in early childhood I began my career with a few college credits and was barely able to make ends meet financially. Those early teaching years have made me an advocate for high quality infant and toddler care, livable wages, and accessible, affordable higher education for early childhood educators who are often non-traditional students.

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Federal Partnerships Creating Employment Opportunities for People with Disabilities

logo: Internal Revenue Service (IRS)logo: National Employment Team (NET)

By Kathy West-Evans, Director of Business Relations, CSAVR


VR and the IRS: A Partnership that Produces Positive Returns

To fulfill its workforce needs across multiple states, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) partners with the Council of State Administrators of Vocational Rehabilitation’s (CSAVR) National Employment Team (NET), and the relationship is producing positive returns for the agency and candidates with disabilities alike. 

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Voices From the Field: Interview with Justin Brown

A Father’s Engagement

Justin Brown

Justin Brown is an adoptive father of a 4-year-old boy, and a foster father to two 2-year-old boys. He works as a youth minister for St. Agnes Parish in Dalton, MA and is the co-director of Camp Holy Cross in Goshen, MA. Justin first became involved in early intervention when his 4-year-old was referred for services at 18-months-old. He has become a strong advocate for the strengths and needs of his children and enjoys wrestling, cooking, and going for walks with them.

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Impact Stories — Joe McFadden

Throughout June we will celebrate the graduating high school class of 2020. This final blog in the series highlights a student from a private high school in Maryland.


Congratulations Graduate! A Spotlight on Joe McFadden.

Joe McFadden

By Pauline Peticlerc and Joe McFadden

Joe was diagnosed with autism when he was two years old. He did not speak until age five, and we were told he may never learn to potty train. Fortunately, he was born with great fortitude and never let his disability stand in his way.

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