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July 2013 Header

July 2013

Meeting of Nebraska's Federal DD Programs
A Discussion of the Implications of the ACA on Individuals with Disabilities and their Families
Jim Stimpson

Jim Stimpson


mary andrus
Mary Andrus
Easter Seals
Sen. Jeremy Nordquist
NE Legislature
On June 14th, The Advisory Board for MMI's Center for Excellence in Disabilities*, the NE Planning Council for Developmental Disabilities and Disability Rights NE's Advisory Council (the three federal DD Programs in Nebraska) held a meeting to discuss the impact of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) for individuals with disabilities and their families. Speakers included Jim Stimpson from the UNMC College of Public Health Center for Health Policy, State Senator Jeremy Nordquist and also Mary Andrus from the National Office for Easter Seals. Many disability advocates and organizations have considered this law to be as significant as the Americans with Disabilities Act. To learn specific facts regarding the ACA and how it may affect you or your family, go to:www.Healthcare.gov                                                                                                *The Munroe-Meyer Institute is the federally designated University Center for Excellence in Disabilities (UCED) for Nebraska.
Does "Grit" have more to do with success than IQ?
Listen to Angela Lee Duckworth, who left the corporate world to teach middle-schoolers. Find about what she learned and how her experience totally changed her career and her belief on what is important to achieve success. Now, a researcher at the University of Pennsylvania, her work involves an unconventional approach to evaluate the predictors of life-long achievements and success. Consider as you view her presentation (click on her picture below) the impact her work could have on the field of disabilities.   
The key to success
handicapped logo  A New Logo for Disability
New York City is adopting a new 'handicapped' logo to represent the active lifestyles of many individuals with physical disabilities. The logo was inspired by a philosophy professor who hopes the new logo will call others to adopt the design. Learn more by going here.
Pilot Project to Address Children's Mental HealthJoe Evans 
UNMC will be participating in a pilot project funded by the Nebraska Legislature which will use MMI psychologists to assess the mental health of children in Nebraska schools.  Responding to concerns from Nebraska's Safe Haven law, LB 157 as well as stories that have recently garnered national attention, Senator McGill introduced LB 566 to provide mental health services in a manner which might reduce the stigma often associated with mental illness. Dr. Joe Evans, MMI Director of Psychology featured above shares that 88 of Nebraska's 93 counties are federally designated as areas with shortages of mental health practitioners. Learn more about this project by clicking here.  
Dept. of Justice's Newly Designed ADA website
Check out The Department of Justice's Civil Rights Office's newly designed website featuring resources, videos, links, regulations and enforcement related to the Americans' with Disabilities Act (ADA.)  Add it to your "favorites" by going here.
Night Bike Ride Expected to Draw Record Riders
owl ride
owl ride
This Saturday the Meyer Foundation for Disabilities will be holding their annual "Owl Ride." To learn more about or register for this event, click here.
School is Right Around the Corner, Are You Ready?
Once the 4th of July hits, many families recognize that the summer vacation is on the downhill slide. For many, this means stocking up on school supplies, purchasing new clothing and if you have a child with a learning disability or special healthcare need, starting to prepare for the IEP or 504 meetings with school staff.  Here are some great resources to help you prepare.
  • Guide to IEPs - Wright's Law
  • 504 Plans vs. IEPs- What's the difference?  Video
  • Nebraska special education law - Rule 51
  • Special Education appeals - Rule 55
  • Parents' Rights in Special Education
  • Guide for parents of children with special needs regarding state assessments - pamphlet
 For Help Navigating Systems and Information: 

 Contact our family support coordinators:


Mark Smith

402-559-5744 or




Sarah Swanson

402-559-4573 or


The Munroe-Meyer Institute is a University Center of Excellence committed to unlocking the potential of children and adults with developmental disabilities and genetic disorders through exceptional patient care, education and research.  
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This is a statewide newsletter that promotes and disseminates information and events to families that have children with special needs. Go here for more info. 






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