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March 2011

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

Save the Date!
PACER’s May 7 Benefit Features Sheryl Crow. Buy Tickets Now!

Grammy Award winner Sheryl Crow will rock the house during PACER Center’s 29th Annual Benefit at the Minneapolis Convention Center on Saturday, May 7. With a solo career spanning nearly 20 years and nine Grammy Awards, this singer-songwriter will have a long list of hits to choose from, including “All I Wanna Do,” “Every Day Is A Winding Road” and “A Change Would Do You Good.” You won’t want to miss this performance! Purchase your Benefit tickets here or call PACER at (952) 838-9000.

New ADA Rules Expanding Accessibility Standards Take Effect

Revised regulations governing the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) took effect March 15, the U.S. Department of Justice announced. These new rules are the department’s first major revision of its guidance on accessibility in 20 years. They include requirements on making swimming pools, parks, golf courses and other recreation facilities accessible for individuals with disabilities, and apply to more than 80,000 units of state and local government and more than seven million places of public accommodation. The amended regulations also contain many new or expanded provisions on general nondiscrimination policies, include selling tickets for wheelchair-accessible seating at entertainment venues and guaranteeing accessible rooms at hotels. More

PACER Staff Attend White House Conference on Bullying Prevention

PACER Executive Director Paula F. Goldberg and PACER advocate Lynn Miland, both with PACER’s National Bullying Prevention Center, along with Lynn’s daughters Kelly and Maggie, took part in the White House Conference on Bullying Prevention on March 10 and heard remarks from President Obama and Michelle Obama on bullying prevention. The conference included students, parents, teachers and others who have been affected by bullying, as well as those who are taking action to address it. Conference participants spoke with President Obama on how communities can work together to prevent bullying. Read a news article on PACER’s participation at the White House conference here.

New Tots ‘n Tech Resource Brief Focuses on Assistive Technology Reuse

Want to know more about saving money and helping children with disabilities by reusing assistive technology? Tots ‘n Tech (TnT), a research institute that provides up-to-date information and resources about adaptations for infants and toddlers, recently released “Assistive Technology Reuse,” a resource brief for parents and professionals. It includes information on assistive technology reuse, tips for starting a reuse program and helpful reuse resources. More

Apply Now for 2011 EX.I.T.E. Camp

Calling all middle school girls: Be part of PACER Center’s ninth annual EXploring Interests in Technology and Engineering (EX.I.T.E.) Camp! During this free, five-day camp, girls with disabilities will have the chance to engage in hands-on experiments, work alongside mentors, and explore scientific principles in a fun, creative way. Space is limited to 30 girls, and priority is given to new campers on a first-come, first-serve basis. EX.I.T.E. is sponsored in part by IBM and other technology companies. For more information, call (952) 838-9000 or visit Applications are due May 1.

Support a Deliciously Great Cause at March 25 Pancake Breakfast

Eat a great breakfast for a great cause! Support the Minnesota Statewide Family Network at its pancake breakfast on Friday, March 25, from 8 to 10 a.m., at Nine Mile Creek Senior Living in Bloomington. Fluffy pancakes, sausage, flavored syrups, juice and coffee will be served. Tickets are $3. For more information, call PACER at (952) 838-9000.

Find Updated PACER and NEFE Financial Guide Online

“Possibilities: A Financial Resource for Parents of Children with Disabilities,” a booklet first published in 2004 by the National Endowment for Financial Education (NEFE) and PACER, has been revamped and expanded in an online format. This guide offers tips and information on organizing financial records, managing money, dealing with debt, preparing income taxes, understanding insurance and more. Each section includes links to additional resources. More

National Center on UDL Newsletter Highlights Digital Textbooks

The February issue of “UDL Focus,” a monthly e-newsletter from the National Center on Universal Design for Learning (UDL), contains information on digital textbooks and other learning topics. More

Book the PACER Puppets for Your School!

Looking for a child-friendly way to educate young children about disabilities or bullying prevention? PACER’s two puppet programs, Count Me In® and Kids Against Bullying, are your answer. These entertaining and interactive shows are presented in the Minneapolis and St. Paul metro area by trained volunteers. Puppets and scripts are also available for purchase. For more information on how to bring the puppets to your school or organization, e-mail PACER or call (952) 838-9000.

National Early Childhood Inclusion Institute May 16-18

Teachers, administrators, health professionals and parents in leadership positions are invited to the Eleventh National Early Childhood Inclusion Institute, co-sponsored by the National Early Childhood Technical Assistance Center (NECTAC), on May 16-18 in Chapel Hill, N.C. The institute will give participants an opportunity to broaden their knowledge of the latest inclusive practices and further their professional growth. This year’s keynote speaker will be Beth Harry, a parent of a child with a disability and author of “Melanie, Bird with a Broken Wing: A Mother’s Story.” More

PACER Publications

Resource List of Disability Organizations

This PACER handout lists the names and contact information for Minnesota disability organizations, state of Minnesota disability agencies, and national disability organizations and agencies. A single download for personal use is free. Order PHP-c36 for multiple copies. More

Plan Ahead for Academic Success Using the IEP Meeting Checklist

Parents can use this easy-to-understand PACER handout as they plan for their child’s annual Individualized Education Program (IEP) meeting. The handout also includes questions to ask at an IEP meeting and a glossary of commonly used IEP words and phrases. A single download for personal use is free. Order PHP-c183 for multiple copies. More

Parent Centers Helping Families: Outcome Data 2009-2010

“Parent Centers Helping Families” highlights the important work of more than 100 Parent Training and Information Centers (PTIs) and Community Parent Resource Centers (CPRCs). The report includes data on the number of parents and professionals served by Parent Centers, outcomes of the services provided, and success stories exemplifying Parent Centers’ positive impact on families of children with disabilities. $8.50. Order ALL-30     

Great Opportunities

Connect with PACER on Facebook and Twitter

Want to stay up-to-date with all the latest PACER news and happenings? Find us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter @PACERCenter. Be the first to hear about PACER news, information and events, no matter where you are!

Join IBM's World Community Grid

The World Community Grid is an IBM effort to link computers worldwide and put idle computer time to use in aiding projects that benefit humanity. The grid is built upon an IBM infrastructure and includes IBM support. To become part of the grid, members install a small, free software program on their computers. When their computers are on but not being used, the program connects to the World Community Grid’s server, performs computations and sends the results back to the server. Members’ donated resources help increase the pace of research. Visit and join the team! It’s safe and easy.

Programs and Resources

PACER Center is a Minnesota nonprofit organization that provides services to families of children and young adults with any disability. More

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