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Virginia Department of Education
Training & Technical Assistance Center 

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An Overview of Secondary Transition Requirements of the Individuals with Disabilities Education
Act of 2004
February 10, 2010
From Indifference to Empowerment: Preparing Students to Lead Self-Determined Lives
February 17
, 2010
Imagine the Possibilities
Part II: Graduation
From Data to Action
Improving Outcomes for Students with Disabilities
February 23, 2010
Skill Building Institute
March 3, 2010
Making Math Meaningful
Evidence-Based Practices for Teaching Mathematics to Struggling Students
March 24-Middle School
March 25-Elem. School
Virginia Council for Learning Disabilities Symposium
March 27, 2010
Transition Practitioner's
April 15, 2010
Annual Content Teaching Academy
June 28-July 2, 2010

Click here for more details
VDOE Updates
VDOE Newly
Revised Documents:

Guidance on Evaluation and Eligibility for the Special Education Process
click here for document

Disability Awareness:
A Primer on People
First Language
click here for document

DBTAC Writing Guide Supplement AP Stylebook
click here for document

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School of Education
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February/March 2010

Connecting with Students: Strategies for
Increasing Graduation Rates

By Elaine Gould, M.Ed., and Lee Anne Sulzberger, M.Ed.

"What do you care what I think anyway? I don't even count ... Right? I could disappear forever and it wouldn't make any difference. I might as well not even exist at this school, remember?" (Tanen & Hughes,1985).  How many of today's high school students echo the frustration expressed by the character John Bender in the 1985 teenGraduation girl classic The Breakfast Club?  What can schools do to help prevent students who feel no connection to their school from dropping out? 

The 2008 Institute of Education Sciences (IES) Practice Guide, Dropout Prevention, recommends six evidence-based intervention strategies aimed at preventing students from dropping out of school. Click here to learn about Check and Connect, an intervention that focuses on designing solutions for more positive academic and social outcomes for students who are disengaged from their school environment and are at risk for dropping out of school.

Click to read full article
Layering Assistive and Educational Technology
to Support Universal Design
By Cathy A. Buyrn, M.Ed., and Mary Murray Stowe, M.Ed.

Educational technology integration, while enhancing the educational opportunities for all students, may be insufficient for meeting some students' needs to accomplish academic and non-academic activities.  Where does educational technology end and assistive technology begin? How can we layer both to meet students' needs?

Understanding the Basics of
Universal Design for Learning

By Cathy A. Buyrn, M.Ed., and Mary Murray Stowe, M.Ed.
NingUniversal Design for Learning (UDL) is not one more "new" idea in education. It is a method of providing access to instruction for all students with or without disabilities.  The components of the UDL process are described and modeled in this article, highlighting the positive impact on all students. The greatest benefit of UDL may be the help it provides educators in aligning their efforts to differentiate instruction, integrate technology, and ultimately meet the demands of adequate yearly progress for all subgroups of students. 
Click here for full article
Transition Time
Creating Powerful Partnerships Between Schools and Centers for Independent Living (CILs)
By Debbie Grosser, M.Ed., and Dale Pennell, C.A.S.

This is the third in a four-part series of interviews with leaders of agencies that serve persons with disabilities. Responses to the questions posed describe how schools may create powerful partnerships with these agencies to facilitate a smooth transition of students with disabilities from school to adult life. The director of Virginia's Centers for Independent Living (CIL) and representatives from two regional CILs were interviewed for this article.

Click here for full article
Family Partnerships:
Creating Powerful Partnerships Between Families and the   Virginia Assistive Technology System (VATS)

By Debbie Grosser, M.Ed., and Dale Pennell, C.A.S.
This is the third in a four-part series of interviews with leaders of agencies that serve individuals with disabilities. In this issue, Kathy Hayfield, assistive technology resource manager for the Virginia Assistive Technology System, describes how families can create powerful partnerships with her agency to support education and community involvement for youth with disabilities.
Click here for full article
Using the Data from Your "Good Day Plan" for Problem Solving, Goal Setting and Progress Monitoring
By Elaine Gould, M.Ed., and Butler Knight, Ed.S.

This is the third in a series of four articles addressing how teachers can support students as they become more self-directed learners who monitor their own academic progress and behavior. This article focuses on revisiting a student's "Good Day Plan" in order to continue skill development in the areas of goal setting, problem solving, and progress monitoring.

Click here for full article
Check it Out!

The following materials are available to individuals in Superintendents Regions 2 and 3 on loan from the T/TAC College of William and Mary lending library. These resources are companions to the articles in this issue of Link Lines, providing more in-depth coverage on the topics in the newsletter.


Making the Writing Process Work: Strategies for
Composition and Self-Regulation

By Karen Harris


Never Work Harder Than Your Students and
Other Principles of Great Teaching

By Robyn R. Jackson


Student-Directed Learning
(Teachers' Guides to Inclusive Practices)

By Martin Agran, Margaret King-Sears,
Michael Wehmeyer, and Susan Copeland


All My Life's a Circle

By Mary Falvey


Disability Awareness in the Classroom

By Lorie Levison


Because We Can Change the World: A Practical Guide to Building Cooperative Inclusive Classroom Communities

By Mara Sapon-Shevin


Social Relationships and Peer Support

By Rachel Janney and Martha Snell

Click here for more details (page 5)

The T/TAC Library Announces
Blackberry and iPhone  Access
iphoneTo search the T/TAC Library on your phone, follow a few easy steps.
  1. Enter on your phone browser. This will bring up the login page.
  2. Enter the name of our library TACLIB . Do not enter an optional password. Then press the Sign-in button.
You are now in the main search page of the T/TAC Library. You may now find the call reference number and book title for the item you wish to borrow. Please email your request and contact information to our librarian at
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