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Posted: 8/13/2014

Last month President Obama signed a law that seeks to maximize opportunities for all youth and adults to succeed in postsecondary education and in high-skill, high-wage and high-demand jobs. It's called the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA).  

You now have the opportunity to help the Department answer some questions on our minds as we work to implement this important law that holds great promise for Americans with and without disabilities.  

Please check out the joint BLOG here from OSERS and OCTAE inviting comments from you until Friday, August 29, 2014.

Posted: 7/23/2014

Following is a statement by U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan on President Obama signing today at the White House the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act of 2014.

“The signing of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act of 2014 today creates a blueprint for job growth and makes key improvements to the nation’s workforce development system. For the unemployed, the new law offers hope; for the young, it offers encouragement; and for people with disabilities, it brings opportunity. This law helps workers attain the foundation skills necessary for 21st century jobs and fosters a modern workforce that can compete in a global economy. It emphasizes the creation of career pathway programs, improved training, and streamlined service delivery to individuals - especially for underserved youth and adults.”

view the press release

Posted: 7/9/2014

Music is a powerful force, and this summer teens and young adults across the country have a unique opportunity to turn their personal experience into a musical rallying cry against bullying. PACER is partnering with Galderma Laboratories, L.P., the makers of Epiduo® Gel, for the “Band Together to Banish Bullying” campaign, which encourages individuals who have been affected by bullying, or who want to speak out against it, to share artwork, photos, videos, or brief stories about their bullying experiences. This inspirational content will be used for an original song that will serve as the bullying prevention anthem, to be written, produced and performed by renowned producer Clinton Sparks and hit recording artists The Mowgli’s and Kylie Morgan. Learn more about how to participate.

Posted: 6/25/2014

The U.S. Department of Education announced a new Results-Driven Accountability plan that will be used to measure the effectiveness of state special education programs. States will be evaluated both on procedural compliance with the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and also educational results and outcomes for students with disabilities. Read more>>>

Posted: 6/20/2014

The U.S. Department of Education is requesting input on action it should take to address significant disproportionality based on race or ethnicity in special education, specifically disproportionality in: identification of children with disabilities, placement in particular settings, and in type of disciplinary action. Comments are due July 21. Read more>>>

Posted: 6/9/2014

Federal Resources for Educational Excellence (FREE) is an online teaching and learning resource from federal agencies. Each month high-quality educational materials, items like the ones below, in FREE and other free websites will be shared. Parents and teachers, use this site to supplement your child’s and students' learning.

  • Civic Hacking

    Show kids how they can help their community by using computer technology with resources from the White House and more.

  • Flag Week

    Help kids learn more about our nation’s history, government, and related topics with resources from the U.S. Senate, Smithsonian, National Park Service, and more.

Posted: 5/13/2014

From Social Security Administration, Office of Exiernal Affairs: We are proud to announce the launch of Social Security’s disability education and awareness initiative, “The Faces and Facts of Disability.” Through this campaign, we hope to educate the public about the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) program and dispel common misconceptions. To learn more about the campaign, visit our Faces and Facts of Disability website at

Faces and Facts of Disability Video

Posted: 5/9/2014

“Despite the highest high school graduation rate in our history, and despite growth in student achievement over time in elementary school and middle school, student achievement at the high school level has been flat in recent years. Just as troubling, achievement gaps among ethnic groups have not narrowed. We project that our nation's public schools will become majority-minority this fall—making it even more urgent to put renewed attention into the academic rigor and equity of course offerings and into efforts to redesign high schools. We must reject educational stagnation in our high schools, and as a nation, we must do better for all students, especially for African-American and Latino students.”

Posted: 5/9/2014

The Minnesota Department of Human Services today announced $45.4 million in grants that will increase access to mental health services for thousands of Minnesota children.

Under five-year grant contracts with the department, 36 mental health organizations will provide school-linked mental health services to approximately 35,000 students in more than 800 schools across 257 school districts and 82 counties by 2018. More than half of those students will receive mental health services for the first time. … Continue Reading about National Children's Mental Health Awarenes Day Press Release from the Minnesota Department of Human Services

Posted: 5/8/2014

In Minnesota, 9 percent of school-age children and 5 percent of pre-school children are estimated to have a serious emotional disturbance. This is a mental health problem that has become longer lasting and interferes significantly with the child’s functioning at home and in school. An estimated 109,000 Minnesota children from birth to 21 need treatment of serious emotional disturbances, which include depression, anxiety and attention-deficit, conduct and eating disorders.
The Child Mind Institute has produced a series of public service announcements (PSAs) about depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder and attention deficit disorder and how treatment can help.

More information is available on the SAMSHA website and the children’s mental health page on the DHS public website
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Career Planning: An in-depth workshop for families
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