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In This Issue
Parent Connections
Grief of Special Needs Parents
How ADHD Affects Emotions
Support HR 3717
Sign up for NU Research Study
Great Groups Skokie Library
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LogoEvanston Citizens for Appropriate Special Education (CASE) is a community advocacy organization working to improve the range, quality and accessibility of special education services in Evanston/Skokie District 65 and ETHS District 202.

We provide information and support for parents of children with special needs through Parent Connections meetings and our CASEline number.
We are commited to advancing disability awareness in the Evanston community.

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On the CASE 

January 2014

Hello Evanston CASE members,


I hope you are enjoying a peaceful winter break.  Transition back to school after a vacation can be very challenging for some students.  The day or two before they return, ease them back to school day routine -- meals, bedtime, etc. Staying up to see the ball drop at midnight in New York may not be worth the fall-out. Plan a special New Year's Day breakfast instead.


In this issue:

  • SAVE the DATE: Parent Connections meeting February 11th on Executive Functioning Skills
  • Blog post, "The Unique Grief of Special Needs Parents"
  • How ADHD affects emotions
  • HR 3717 Mental Health Crisis Act
  • Sign up for MRI research study
  • Great groups at the Skokie Public Library

I hope you find this information useful.


Warm regards,


Cari Levin, LCSW

Founding Director

Evanston CASE 


Save the Date!

 Parent Connections February 11th Meeting



The topic for February 11th is:

Executive Functioning Skills



 Presented by Sheryl Seef, MAT

Director of Operations and Executive Function Coach at Thinking Outside the Classroom


 **This presentation is for parents only**




Tuesday, February 11th from 7-9 p.m.


Evanston Public Library Downtown Branch



To register:  or 847-556-8676


"The Unique Grief of Special Needs Parents"

This post by Sheri Dacon on her blog "Lyrics for Life" is an honest, uncensored sharing of the pain and guilt that parents of kids with disabilities struggle with as we try to prepare our kids for each new challenge and passing year.

 Here is an excerpt:

"Yes, we love our kids.  No, we wouldn't trade them for anything in the world.  But the love we have doesn't take our pain away.  In fact, it just intensifies it.  Because we can't take their hurt away.  We can try and try and try, and we DO, and it might even help a little, but we can't make the pain that accompanies disability go away."

I can relate to Dacon's story. In my experience, this pain may not be at the forefront of my mind all the time, but it blindsides me at unexpected moments. Two steps forward, three steps back...always hoping that the overall trajectory will be positive. When my child (now 19) is in pain, it still knocks the wind out of me.

I hope you find this helpful and validating.

Read the whole post HERE

How ADHD Affects Emotions 


ADHD Emotions: How They Affect Your Life and Happiness

"The emotion commotion of ADHD can hurt self-esteem, relationships, and just about everything else in life. Here's what you should know to control it."  

 HR 3717: The Mental Health Crisis Act


Congressman Tim Murphy has proposed legislation (HR 3717) to address the crisis in access to mental health care in this country.


" More than 11 million Americans have severe schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and major depression yet millions are going without treatment and families struggle to find care for loved ones.The federal government's approach to mental health has been a chaotic patchwork of antiquated programs and ineffective policies across numerous agencies. Sadly, patients end up in the criminal justice system or on the streets because services are not available. The Helping Families In Mental Health Crisis Act fixes the nation's broken mental health system by focusing programs and resources on psychiatric care for patients & families most in need of services."


To read the text of the legislation and learn more about HR 3717 and Congressman Murphy's efforts, GO HERE


The Honorable Tim Murphy 




Sign up for research study for kids who struggle with reading and/or math


Northwestern University's Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience Lab is dedicated to conducting research studies on learning and learning disabilities, with an ultimate goal of improving the diagnoses and treatment of children with conditions like dyslexia and dyscalculia.


We are looking for children between the ages of 8 and 13 who struggle with reading and/or math. Children participate in up to 5 sessions, and there is an MRI component to the studies, which is a way to take pictures of the brain. The sessions are scheduled after school or on weekends. Families interested in our study can either call us at 847-467-6842, or email


Alternatively, parents can follow the following link to have their family included in our database of interested participants.



Art, Stories,Therapy Dogs and more

at the Skokie Public Library

Club Wonder and Rainbow Therapy Time are two groups offered at the Skokie Public Library.


Club Wonder

Third Saturdays, 10:30-11:30am Jan. 18,  Feb. 15, March 15, April 19, and May 17

Young children are invited to the Library monthly to  experience various classes such as music, art, story-time, movement, play, and communication. Each class will be led by specialists from different therapy organizations. Parents and siblings attend with the child. For children ages 3 to 7. Call 847.324.3149 each month to register.


Rainbow Therapy Time

Third Sundays, 12:15 to 1:15pm Jan. 19, Feb. 16, March 16, April 20, and May 18

Older children with special needs are invited to the Library to  enjoy the benefits of interacting with trained therapy dogs.  Rainbow dog handlers will work with the children to strengthen attention skills, learn social skills, and increase language use. Parents remain in the Library while children attend the program accompanied by volunteer aides. For children ages 7 to 12. Call 847.324.3149 each month to register .