October 9, 2001
Guest Speaker : General Meeting
November 11, 2001
Notice from Shirley Shea
of the Tennessee Protection and Advocacy Center
Ms. Shea reports she talked at length with Margaret Romer, the Education Program Specialist with the Office of Special Education Programs in Washington D.C., who recently took Ann McNeal's position. Ms. Romer stated that parents should utilize the administrative complaint process when they are having real issues with a school system including, but not limited to the following: extended school year, IEP not being implemented, independent evaluations being denied, etc. Ms. Romer advised that it would be helpful for her to be carbon copied on those administrative complaints when they are sent to the Tennessee Division of Special Education so that Ms. Romer can monitor where there are recurring issues within school systems. Ms. Romer indicated that OSEP relies on the administrative complaints rather than anecdotal comments to indicate whether IDEA is being implemented within a state.
Ms. Romer's address is featured below.
Ms. Margaret Romer, US Department of Education,
Please nominate potential board members, including yourself, by calling the
Lending Library Ideas
Please provide us your ideas of books or publications that you have read
that would be helpful to other parents or books/publications that you are interested
in. As we all know, there are reference materials available regarding
autism but many cost $20 to $50 each and no one can afford to purchase all these
items. As a result, FEAT Chattanooga will start a small lending library
of these books/tapes that families can 'check out' to read or listen to without
the enormous costs. Please leave a voice mail on our FEAT hotline at 296-0092,
email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
If you have been to a STEP workshop before, this is a good time to go again. The new State Rules are now in effect and included in their new parent manual. STEP is the federally funded PTI (Parent Training Information Center) for the state of TN. Their goal is to empower parents as their child's advocate through workshops, technical assistance, a library, referrals to other agencies, and much more.
For information about STEP or how you can have a workshop in your community,
contact your regional training coordinator,
2nd Presbyterian Church, Knoxville.
State Office Building at 1304 McCallie Ave
FEAT Chattanooga has a few autism lapel pins left over from April,
National Autism Awareness Month. The pins sell for $5 (half price) for
FEAT members. These pins could be great holiday presents for that
special person that helps your child or for you to share with family
members. These pins will be available while supplies last
Administrative Law Judge A. James Andrews has held in a 45-page decision that the Hamilton County Department of Education (HCDE) repeatedly violated federal law in failing to provide an appropriate education to Zachary Deal, a seven-year-old Chattanooga boy with autism. To read the full article and the Judge's entire opinion, go online to http://www.chattanoogan.com/ then search "autism".
Parents of children with disabilities across Tennessee
are invited to give comments regarding the strengths and weakness of the special education services.
The State of Tennessee is conducting a self-assessment of how early
intervention and special eduation services are provided to children
1. Are students with disabilities receiving the special education
5. How is the state involved in assuring that appropriate services
6. By the child's third birthday, does transition planning result
Ms. Brenda Bledsoe, Division of Special Education, Tennessee State
Department of Education, Andrew Johnson Tower, Fifth Floor,
Group for Dads
A Dad's e-group, for fathers who have children with autism is
being formed. The group is an extension of the ASA conference presentation,
"For Dad's Only." We hope this will be a valuable asset to the autism
community, and offer ideas, support and information to all the Dads out there.
Please pass this information on to your members, friends, husbands, family members