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December 2015

PACER e-news: Resources and information for children with disabilities and their families

GIVE THE GIFT OF ‘FROZEN’ THIS HOLIDAY SEASON!

Give a very special gift this holiday season – tickets to see Idina Menzel live at PACER’s 34th Annual Benefit! The voice behind Elsa in Disney’s global box office smash Frozen, and powering the multiplatinum Oscar-winning hit “Let it Go,” performs live in Minneapolis on April 30, 2016 at the Minneapolis Convention Center. The Tony Award-winning star has appeared on Broadway in Wicked, Rent, and If/Then, and on the TV show Glee. Reserve tickets now at PACER.org or call (952) 838-9000.

BULLYING PREVENTION: REGISTER NOW FOR THE SAFE AND SUPPORTIVE SCHOOLS CONFERENCE JAN. 22 IN ST. PAUL

Don’t miss the Minnesota Safe and Supportive Schools Conference Friday, Jan. 22, 2016 in St. Paul. This one-day conference, hosted by the Minnesota Department of Education in partnership with PACER’s National Bullying Prevention Center, will bring together educators, school support staff, parents, student leaders, and others to increase knowledge about bullying prevention and how to create a positive school climate. The event is from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at the Anderson Center on the campus of Hamline University. The cost is $20 in advance or $30 after Jan. 4. Learn more

EVERY STUDENT SUCCEEDS ACT (ESSA) IS NOW FEDERAL LAW

A new national education law, the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), was enacted on Dec. 10, 2015, to replace the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act, which had been in effect for 13 years. ESSA is designed to promote accountability for the achievement of all students, including those with disabilities. Building on key areas of progress in recent years, ESSA is intended to hold all students to high academic standards, provide more children with access to high-quality preschool, reduce the burden of testing, and promote local innovation. Learn more.

JOIN TOGETHER AGAINST BULLYING™, DONATE, AND TAG IT FORWARD!

TAG, now you’re it! Together Against Bullying™ is a new campaign for PACER’s National Bullying Prevention Center, inspired by the performer Carrot Top. Visit the website togetheragainst.org to donate, receive both virtual and paper stickers to TAG your friends, and share on social media. Your support means one less student being bullied, one more person speaking out, or one more child knowing that he or she is not alone. Donate today!

REPORT OFFERS PEDIATRICIANS GUIDANCE TO ENSURE THAT CHILDREN WITH DISABILITIES RECEIVE SPECIAL EDUCATION SERVICES

Doctors have a significant role in ensuring that children with disabilities receive the special education services they need. A clinical report published this month by the American Academy of Pediatrics offers pediatricians guidance on the Individuals With Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), detailing school districts’ responsibilities to provide help for children from pre-school through transition to adulthood. The report recommends that doctors identify and refer children who should qualify for special education services and communicate effectively with school-based programs about each child’s needs.

APPLY IN JANUARY FOR PACER’S EX.IT.E CAMP FOR MIDDLE SCHOOL GIRLS WITH DISABILITIES

Middle-school girls with disabilities won’t want to miss the 14th Annual Exploring Interests in Technology and Engineering (EX.I.T.E) Camp in August 2016 at PACER, where students will discover the magic of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). Enrollment is limited for this popular learning opportunity. Visit PACER.org/stc for more information and application forms, or call PACER’s Simon Technology Center at (952) 838-9000.

PLEASE SUPPORT PACER IN DECEMBER

There are seven million children with disabilities in America. One in four American children are bullied each year. PACER is helping children and families by providing assistance and information to make sure children are safe and can reach their full potential. Your support is very important for all children! Please click here to make a tax deductible contribution now in time for the end of 2015. Thank you.

RESOURCES

Children’s Mental Health & EBD Resources
For families of children with mental health and emotional or behavioral needs, it can be complicated trying to navigate multiple systems of care to receive supports and services for their child. PACER provides parents with many practical tools to help overcome these challenges. One resource is the quarterly “Children’s Mental Health & EBD E-news,” a free electronic newsletter that provides helpful information about services for families, changes in systems of care, special events, and PACER initiatives. To subscribe, e-mail PACER@PACER.org.

PACER WORKSHOPS

Three-part Housing Workshop Series – Feb. 8, Feb. 22, March 7
Will you be ready when the time comes for your son or daughter to move to a place of their own? Most parents aren’t sure how to begin planning for the transition, but PACER’s three-part housing workshop series will help you get started. These free workshops will be held from 7 to 9 p.m. on Feb. 8, Feb. 22, and March 7 at PACER Center. Topics will include first steps to independent living, housing eligibility and funding, and individualized housing services and options. Parents are encouraged to attend all three workshops, and advance registration is required. Learn more about PACER’s housing resources and register online for the workshops.

GREAT HOLIDAY OPPORTUNITIES

Shop Amazon this holiday season and throughout the year to support PACER!
Are you buying gifts from Amazon this holiday season? Begin your shopping trip at smile.amazon.com and you’ll be supporting PACER with every purchase! AmazonSmile is a wonderful charitable program that lets you donate a portion of the cost of your purchase to PACER. AmazonSmile is the same Amazon you know – same products, same prices, and the same service – but with a generous twist. It’s quick, it’s easy, and it’s a great way to support children and families this holiday season and beyond. Start shopping now

Send best wishes this year with PACER’s holiday greeting cards
Send best wishes to family and friends than with the 2015 PACER greeting card, which features the winning design from PACER’s 10th Annual Creative Kids Contest. “How to Train Your Dragon” is the name of the special creation by Amanda, a nature-loving 12-year-old who enjoys books about dinosaurs, and animals of all types. Click here tosee the cards and order online, or call (952) 838-9000 to purchase a set of eight greeting cards for just $10. Proceeds support important PACER programs.

CONTACT PACER FOR ASSISTANCE AND INFORMATION

PACER Center is a national nonprofit organization that provides services to families of children and young adults with any disability, as well as resources to prevent bullying through PACER’s National Bullying Prevention Center. For assistance and information, please contact us via e-mail at PACER@PACER.org or call (952) 838-9000. Learn more

CONNECT WITH PACER ON FACEBOOK, TWITTER AND INSTAGRAM

Stay up-to-date with all of the latest PACER news and events through social media. ‘Like’ PACER on Facebook and, ‘follow’ us on Twitter (@PACERCenter) and Instagram to receive ongoing updates.

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