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SEDOL Parent Mentors Provide IEP Training to Parents

SEDOL Parent Mentors Joy Bux and Priscilla Cuba conducted a 4-week course on Individualized Education Program (IEP) process.  Approximately 10 parents and educators attended each morning session.  Topics covered included

  1. January 18 — Laws, Eligibility, Evaluations, IEP Overview.
  2. January 25 — Establisheing Present levels of Performance; Setting SMART Goals.
  3. February 1 — Progress Monitoring, Accommodations and Modifications.
  4. February 8 — Communication and Collaboration in the IEP process

Previously this course was offered as a 2 1/2 hour evening overview, but the mentors felt that there was need for an additional program that went into greater detail.    This expanded course could be offered again next year if there is interest.  To contact the parent mentors visit

Several attendees had children in high school or transition  programs.    Even though they were reaching  the end of the formal process, they indicated that they gained a great deal of helpful information in the sessions.

The IEP is the core document that governs the education, services and environment of children receiving special education services.  It is developed annually by the school team and the parents to govern goals and progress for the next year.

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Creating Options Town Hall Meeting — November 9, 2011

The Mayer Kaplan JCC auditorium was packed for a Town Hall Meeting titled “Creating Housing and Full-Life Options for Adults with Intellectual/Developmental Disabilities.”    The meeting was convened by a task force concerned with the unmet needs for housing and community services in the area.   The Task Force principally consists of representatives of the Jewish Federation, Jewish Child & Family Services and Keshet.  In addition to launching a pilot project, they hope to develop a model for other communities to adopt and replicate.

Cathy Ficker-Terrill, CEO of the Institute on Public Policy discussed “How to Get from Here to There?”, a summary of current status, trends and opportunities.  Then she emceed a lengthy question and answer session with the audience.  Members were asked to answer three questions:  1)  What is your dream for the future for adults with intellectual/developmental disabilities regarding a sustainable model that would allow them to live withing the community? 2)  What do you consider to be the biggest challenge in creating a sustainable model for adults with intellectual/developmental disabilities who wish to live within the community? and 3)  How can you help?

Following the lively discussion, attendees were invited to participate in committees studying services, funding, communications, development, and outreach.

For more information email

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SEDOL Grant-O-Rama

Over 30 grant-funded programs were showcased at the annual SEDOL Grant-A-Rama on November 30, 2011.  Booths describing the programs filled the Gages Lake School Gym as students, staff and parents described the programs to attendees.  The Grant-A-Rama preceded the quarterly Governing Board Meeting.

Grants were used to support innovative, “extra” programs such as these.

  • Acquiring Technology — Touch activated SMART Boards, specialized assistive equipment, hearing technologies
  • Job Training & Support — Support a Service Learning Project, Obtain Job Skill Kits, creation of student-run copy center, Building Trades class and the College First preparatory program, Employment Literacy
  • Health and Wellness — Eating Fresh, CPR Training, Therapeutic Horseback Riding, Treadmill fitness, Play with Heart lifestyles
  • Parent Support — Sign language class, Parent Mentor Project, Parents as Partners for Reading, Relatives as Parents Program, Summer Outreach Social Work
  • Basic Skills –Book Bonanza, E-Books, English Language Classes, Early Childhood Preparation

The Grant-A-Rama was sponsored by SEDOL and the SEDOL Foundation.  In addition to celebrating these innovative programs, they further recognized the many community partners that contribute to the education of SEDOL students.  For more information the the Grant-A-Rama, contact Ann Subry, or Carole Brooks

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Shepherd’s College Earns Accreditation

Shepherd’s College, an innovative, three-year training program for individuals with developmental disabilities, earned accreditation from North Central Association Commission on Accreditation and School Improvement in December.  It is described in this article from the Journal-Times in Racine.  Shepherd’s College is located in Union Grove, Wisconsin.

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SEDOL Social Work Field Trips — Life after 22

Special Education students “age out” of the public education system when they turn 22 years of age.  After that time, these individuals and their families are required to manage the services they need without help from the school district.  Issues to be addressed in adulthood include housing, employment, health, social life, quality of life and more.

To help parents prepare for this role, the Social Work department of SEDOL has set up a series of field trips for parents to visit the workshops, living facilities, day programs, and camps they may find of interest.  Field Trips include:

  • February 15        Riverside Foundation           Day and Residential Programs
  • March 7               SRACLC                              Day and Recreation Programs
  • March 15             Clearbrook                          Vocational Program
  • Apr 13                 Center for Enriched Living   Day Program
  • Apr 27                 Shepherds College              Post Secondary Training
  • May 2                  Glenkirk Morain CLF            Semi-Indepependent Residential
For more information or to register for a Field Trip, Contact
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