Welcome to the sixth issue for the first year of the new incarnation of Special Education Today. As I assemble this issue, it’s the 25th of July 2021. We've been busy with lots of activities and the coming week promises to be a doozy for this old man.
Here’re notes about what’s appeared in the magazine in the week since the previous issue. You’ll find the usual contents: some fundamental notes, a list of recent posts, and some half-baked commentary.
The two spurts of rapid growth in the number of addresses for the first month of the SET mailing list seem to have abated. There are more than 260 addresses now. In fact, two people cancelled subscriptions recently. As I mentioned last week, one departing subscriber kindly wrote to me to explain that she had hoped for more international content, but wasn't seeing it; fair enough; I think I've used international sources on only about 3 of the 24 posts so far (not counting newsletters, which would be like getting a two for every one post with international content). I'd be happy to consider more frequent posts using international sources; please send me leads!
At least three folks pitched in to the magazine and its well-being this past week. Shout outs to Jane B. (two likes!), Michael K. (like and a retweet!), and Rhonda B. (a couple of likes and a couple of comments!). Thanks for the likes and the comments last week! I keep hoping that some comments will develop lives of their own and we'll have useful conversations about topics among the SETters.
There were three posts in this past week's magazine. Read those that you find interesting. Of course, I hope you find each of them of interest and read them all (and comment, like, share)! Here they are, from oldest to newest.
Olds: Evidence about notes home—Do daily report cards communicating between parents and teacher help?
News: How have siblings with disabilities (and their family) responded to the pandemic?—Big surprise: It was different!
Editorial: Police, law enforcement, and disabilities—Kids, parents, educators, and police officers need help.
To paraphrase Garrison Keeler, "It's been an interesting week here at Lake JohnsInOverHisHead." I have a few of the proverbial metal pokers in the flames; don't get too close, 'cause I might turn around suddenly, forgetting that I'm holding one of those pokers, and brand you by mistake.
Brand #1 is EC: Bill Therrien, my colleague, co-editor for Exceptional Children, and pal are preparing to submit materials for the next issue of the journal. We work about three months ahead of the publication date for the physical journal, so this will be the fall 2021 issue, which is the first of the next volume year. We anticipate having papers that demonstrate a sophisticate research method for studying programs such as multi-tiered systems of intervention as well as reviews of research and original research papers. We hope readers find it helpful.
Brand #2 is FH (i.e., family history): I noted that I've been working on efforts to memorialize the "slave burying grounds" associated with an ancestral family home. Work's continued on that front and there are a couple of events this coming week. In fact, tomorrow I plan to start searching deeds and titles to ascertain whether some of my forebears may have added a "reservation" to the transfer of the property where I think the graves are located. Such a reservation would prevent certain uses of the property, especially digging on or close to the gravesites.
Brand #3 is BW (for "board work"): I am a member of a volunteer advisory board for a local non-profit early childhood center. Current tasks include (a) interviewing candidates for the position of executive director for the center and (b) applying for a small grant that would secure a few $1000 from a charity event that supports local projects.
Brand #4 is P (for "Personal" or "Pat?"): Pat and I went out for, like, the fourth time (?) in the last 15 months! We had dinner on a windy patio downtown and then attended a movie in a theater (gasp)! Well, we shared the ~1000 seats in the theater with maybe 50 people (talk about social distancing!). The show was a 20-year-old release called “Standing in the Shadows of Motown” about the Funk Brothers, the band that backed scores of hit songs for the Motown sound of the 1960s and 70s—and went largely uncredited for their work (Wikipedia entry). Highly recommended…but take your dancing shoes, and some tissues so you can dab your eyes when you realize how these guys did so much, got so little credit, and recounted the times without animosity or enmity. They were a great band.
In case anyone was wondering, as nice as retirement is, there are still plenty of things to do! Please don't let that catalog of activities dissuade you from remembering that I hope you are practicing good hand hygiene, keeping appropriate social distance, and (of course) teaching your children well.
SET should not be confused with a product with a similar name that is published by the Council for Exceptional Children. SET predated CEC’s publication by decades.