Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Saturday, November 1 is Take A Loved One to the Doctor Day

Are you doing anything on Saturday, November 1? It is Take A Loved One to the Doctor Day at our Durham County Department of Public Health. From 10:00am-2:00PM come to the Human Services Building at 414 E. Main Street for free health screenings, cooking demonstrations and more. Bring yourself and a loved one to get checked out too!

For more information, here are the flyers in English and Spanish at the link:

Take a Loved One to the Doc 11-5

Adaptive Fair on Saturday November 1st--great opportunity to support your special needs child

The November 1st Adaptive Fair will have lots of resources from technology to toys to support learning for those with obstacles to accessing learning or who need support with daily needs. Even, if you're not sure if your special needs child could benefit, it is worth a look.  There's lots of helpful tools out there...

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Voting Party and Parade with Kids Voting

Kids Voting Durham and NC MomsRising with Jack and Jill, LangoKids, Mocha Moms, and other family groups are joining forces to help make voting a family affair. We’ll kick off the first weekend of early voting with a special voting-related party  with voting for kids, snacks, stories about voting, and democracy inspired activities & crafts at the Durham County Main Library. 

Children & adults will make instruments, voting banners, and flags, then we will parade through downtown to early voting location at 201 N. Roxboro St. where parents can cast their vote. The event is nonpartisan.

Check out the event page 

Follow along on Twitter with #WeVote and share photos of your family voting! If you are unable to attend, we still hope to see pictures of your family voting traditions, new and old!

When: Saturday, October 25, 10:00-12:00

Where: Durham County Main Library Children’s room, 300 N. Roxboro St, ending at the downtown early voting location at 201 N. Roxboro St., Durham (Durham Board of Elections).

Questions? Contact Beth Messersmith, MomsRising, at 919-323-6179 or  or Carolyn Kreuger, Kids Voting, 919-560-7321,

Free Therapy Services through Durham County Cooperative Extension

Durham County Cooperative Extension is offering free high-quality therapy services via Pfeiffer Institute Reach.  All therapy sessions will be headed by an advanced master’s level graduate student in the Marriage and Family Therapy (MFT) program at Pfeiffer University. 

Therapeutic services will be provided by an MFT intern who has a strength-based approach to therapy that is designed to help clients achieve optimal health and functioning, and address individuals’ and community needs. 

Through Durham County Cooperative Extension, Pfeiffer Reach MFT intern helps individuals, families, and groups with:
·        ·        Depression and anxiety
·        ·        Grief and loss
·        ·        Managing stress
·        ·        Parenting and family challenges
·        ·        Life transitions
·       ·        Resolving conflict
·        ·        Work and career issues
·        ·        Pre-marital and couples counseling
·        ·        Child Play-therapy

What to expect from therapy service

  •        Confidentiality regulated by professional guidelines and standards within the limits provided by the law.
  •         MFT interns adhere to the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy Code of Ethics.
For more information or appointments, contact
Eric Jordan, MFT Intern
Durham County Cooperative Extension
721 Foster St.
Durham, NC 27701
(919) 560-7150

Hours of Availability
Wednesday and Thursday, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Friday, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Monday, October 20, 2014

DPS Advanced Academics Expo Thursday night 10/23--great speaker!

Durham Public Schools (DPS) is hosting an Advanced Academics Expo on Thursday, October 23 at the DPS Staff Development Center at 2107 Hillandale Road from 6:00-7:30PM

It is a fantastic opportunity to learn more about services and plans for gifted students and to hear from one of our favorite speakers on gifted education, Dr. Rick Courtright from the Duke TIP program who will address the social-emotional needs of gifted children.  See the flyers below for more details and spread the word...

Advanced Academics Expo Flyer in ENGLISH

Advanced Academics Expo Flyer in SPANISH

DPS Advanced Academics Expo:  Even Einstein had Questions...

Free Reading event for K-3 on 10/25-- Explore Science through Stories!

Join Duke students at East Regional Library as we read aloud science-themed children’s books and do activities to talk about the science concepts we encounter in our daily lives! Science through Stories is a program run by the Genome Research and Education Society at Duke that combines support for reading with how fascinating science can be for kids. This Saturday we will be reading “Newton and Me” by Lynne Mayer and talking about forces.

Program details:
Date: Saturday, Oct. 25th
Time: 10:30 a.m. – 11:15 a.m.
Age group: K-3rd Grade
Location: East Regional Library
Address: 211 Lick Creek Lane
Durham, North Carolina 27703
As space is limited, registration is required using the link below. Complimentary copies of the book are provided for the first 20 families who register so that kids can take it home to read over and over again! entcalendar.asp

Please contact Lauren Ord at with any questions. 

All the best,
Elisa Berson and Janvi Shah
FEMMES Program Directors


Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Hispanic Education Parent Fair Saturday October 18 "Mi Éxito, la Universidad"

"Hispanic Education Parent Fair” / Mi Éxito, la Universidad"
The Hispanic Education Parent Fair is an initiative of the NC Society of Hispanic Professionals to promote and disseminate information on the benefits of formal and higher education among the Hispanic youth of North Carolina. 

This event is focused on reaching out to the parents of Hispanic Students in North Carolina in order to provide them with the tools and information to help their kids through school and encourage them to pursue higher education.

Fair 2014 Details
When: Saturday, October 18  – 8:30am to 1:30pm
Where: North Carolina Central University
Alfonso Elder Student Union
1801 Fayetteville Street, Durham

Parent Fair Objectives:
  1. Inform Hispanic parents of North Carolina of the importance of staying in school and the importance of a college education
  2. Equip Hispanic parents with the knowledge and tools necessary to navigate the NC School System and keep their child on the path to college
  3. Provide training and resources on household methods and practices that can be used to supplement student learning and therefore improve academic success


Understanding and Navigating Special Education Services on Saturday, November 8

"Understanding and Navigating Special Education Services"

Saturday November 8, 2014 from 11:00 AM to 12:30 PM EST
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Chapel Hill Public Library
100 Library Drive
Chapel Hill, NC 27514
Driving Directions
Saturday, November 8
11:00am to 12:30pm
Chapel Hill Public Library
100 Library Dr., Chapel Hill
The Family Advocacy Network (FAN), a program at Mental Health America of the Triangle (MHAT) will offer a free workshop for parents of children with special needs and professionals who provide services to this population. Attending this workshop will help participants gain a better understanding on how to navigate special education services in the public school system.

Participants completing the workshop will leave with a general understanding about:
  • Differences between regular and special education services
  • Differences between IEP and 504 Plans
  • Criteria for eligibility of services
  • Essential elements of writing IEP goals
  • How to monitor progress
  • The language of special education
  • How to address conflicts
  • How to organize school records
  • ...and more!
The workshop is offered free of charge, however, donations are gratefully accepted. Training handouts are included.

Advance registration is requested.

For more information, contact Julie Bailey, FAN Program Director, at 919.942.8083, ext. 2, or email

Monday, October 13, 2014

October is Bullying Prevention Month--Good Resources on Bullying

October is Bullying Prevention Month.  Bullying is a challenge for students, parents and schools.  The Journal of the American Medical Association reports that one-third of U.S. students experience bullying, either as a target or a perpetrator.   More than 70 percent of teachers and students have witnessed bullying in their schools.

Mental Health America (MHA) has some good online resources on bullying, including a downloadable fact sheet you can print and share.

Also,  the government website, has many resources, including a phone app and tips on how to respond. 

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Duke Splash Happens for Middle and High School Students on October 25th--Registration Open

Registration is now open for Duke Splash.   It is scheduled for Saturday, October 25th.  
Duke Splash

"Splash is an educational initiative that allows middle school and high school students to participate in small, interactive seminars for one day each semester that are taught and designed by passionate Duke students. These seminars cover a wide range of topics, and we’re proud to offer everything from Advanced Astrophysics to Disney Movie Culture. All of these classes take place on Duke’s campus during the Fall and Spring semesters.
Splash is completely free of charge for all students, and lunch will be provided to all attendees. We will also have t-shirts for sale, if you would like a souvenir from the day."
For more info, or to register, click on the link below.

October is DURHAM READS month featuring March Book One

Durham Reads TogetherMarch: Book One

If you haven't heard about Durham Reads this October, it is an opportunity for the entire Durham community to read and reflect on a book together.  The book for this year is March, a fantastic graphic novel that is a vivid first hand account of John Lewis' experiences in the civil rights movement.  We purchased a copy for about $11 on Amazon and of course the Library will have a bunch of copies.   

It is a good book to read as a family and discuss civil rights with youth, certainly middle school and up and maybe some mature upper elementary age kids.  It probably depends on your child.  See the review on common sense media and be ready for a good family conversation. 

Here’s the website for the Durham Reads in October.  If you go to the website there are many events throughout the entire month, including some youth oriented ones, as well as some exhibits to see.  Saturday is the launch with a March and an opportunity to hear Rep. John Lewis speak about the book. 

Durham Marches TogetherDurham Reads Together Kickoff - Saturday, October 4, 2:30 p.m., B. N. Duke Auditorium at NCCU

Wrightslaw Special Ed Advocate Newsletter "Solving Problems with the School" --Great Info for Special Needs Families and Others

Solving Problems with the School
Yellow Pages for Kids  l   Blog   l    Law   l    Advocacy    l  Training   l     Store    l  Subscribe   l   Contact Us
In This Issue ...
Circulation: 97,336
ISSN: 1538-320
September 16, 2014
boy and mom togther at schoolAlready finding you are having problems with the school?
As a parent, your goal is to make the school want to help your child and your family.
Effective advocacy tactics and strategies - letter-writing, persuasion, and negotiation can empower parents and make school members of the team respect your position.
Think about what you need to do to start this school year right.
In this issue of the Special Ed Advocate you will learn about power struggles between parents and schools and find advice about how to avoid them. Learn advocacy strategies that help you make good educational decisions for your child.
Please don't hesitate to forward this issue to other friends, families, or colleagues.
Not a subscriber?

difficult parent school meeting
How NOT to Roar Through School Meetings in a Mack Truck
Advocate Pat Howey discusses trust, expectations, the parental role, and the need to understand different perspectives.
Learn how to keep disagreements from turning into power struggles in Why Do Schools Draw Lines in the Sand?

negotiation process
Learning to Negotiate is Part of the Advocacy Process
Advocate Brice Palmer describes the negotiation process in special education, explains the rules, and offers excellent advice about tactics and techniques.
Learning to Negotiate is Part of the Advocacy Process

Wrightslaw: All About IEPs
Resolving Parent-School Disputes
Wrightslaw: All About IEPs, Chapter 14
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parent school meeting
What Parents Should...and Should NOT Do
  • Prepare for meetings
  • Prioritize your child's needs
  • Build good relationships
  • Document issues and concerns more about what What Parents Should... and Should NOT Do by attorney Leslie Margolis.

What People Are Saying About The Special Ed Advocate Newsletter
"Thanks for the trustworthy information and support you provide through the Wrightslaw web site and newsletter. You helped our family act when we needed to - we are thriving now."