Louisiana APSE Employment First Policy Symposium to be held at HDC November 15
The symposium will focus on current public policy issues impacting the workforce and will include speakers from various State Level Organizations such as OCDD, LRS, Dept of Ed, and the Governor's Office of Disability Affairs. The Symposium is being sponsored by the Louisiana chapter of the Association of Persons Supporting Employment First (Louisiana APSE: www.laapse.org) and is being hosted by LSU HDC. The intended audience includes Vocational Rehabilitation Counselors, Community Rehabilitation Providers, School Transition Educators and Self-Advocates & Families. Five Hours of CEUs and CRCs are available.
* Mark A. Thomas – Assistant Secretary for the Office for Citizens with Developmental Disabilities (OCDD)
* Mark S. Martin – Director for Louisiana Rehabilitation Services (LRS)
* Bambi Polotzola – Executive Director Louisiana Governor’s Office of Disability Affairs (GODA)
For more information and to register, see the Louisiana APSE Website.
HDC Employee Spotlight: Ritu Dua
My name is Ritu Dua. I have a Bachelor’s degree in Arts majoring in English, Economics, and Political Science, a bachelor’s degree in Education, and Master’s degree in Literature. I chose to work in the field of early education because it’s very rewarding putting smiles on faces and I leave every day very satisfied. I believe that there is no school greater than childhood and no teacher greater than curiosity. I’m amazed every day to see that such little people can have such big personalities! I will be working as an Early Education Specialist for LSUHSC.
I’m happily married for 24 years to my loving husband and we recently celebrated our anniversary by travelling to Europe to celebrate our 25 years of togetherness. We have a twenty-three year old handsome son who works at UMC and is crazy about Ultimate Frisbee. I like to travel with my family and have seen some very beautiful cities of the world. I also like to read and love to cook.
Nutrition is for Everyone, October 2016
AUCD has released Volume 1, Issue 2 of Nutrition is for Everyone. HDC employee Lauren Griffiths is the Nutrition Ambassador for Louisiana mentioned in the following highlight.
Nutrition is for Everyone Ambassador Updates
The Louisiana Nutrition Ambassador is working to partner with the Second Harvest Food Bank to provide Cooking Matters Classes to people with disabilities and their families and are adapting the curriculum and recipes to be more accessible. The Nutrition Ambassador has chosen six deputy ambassadors who will assist her with the education trainings. Trainings will be held in three regions this fall with additional ones next year. They are also partnering with Families Helping Families and state Employment Agencies. They have created a Facebook page, and are in the process of creating short videos to supplement their trainings.
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Early Head Start
The Human Development Center’s Early Head Start Child Care Partnership assists low income families with young children under 3 years obtain high quality childcare services while they work and/or pursue career related education or training. Currently, the project collaborates with four community childcare centers: Clara’s Little Lambs, Kid’s Kingdom, McMillian’s First Steps, Toddler’s University. This partnership provides high quality child care to 210 families. The HDC Early Head Start Child Care Partnership makes a significant difference in the lives of the families we serve. However, much work remains to be done to ensure that young children living in poverty are supported to develop and learn in a manner that prepares them for school and eventually careers and lives as productive and contributing citizens. Click the following link to learn more about the challenges of providing high quality child care to families living in poverty : http://www.theatlantic.com/education/archive/2016/09/the-state-budget-cuts-trapping-poor-parents/502103/.
$900,000 Grant to Improve Educational Delivery to Hearing Impaired Preschoolers and Other Students With Disabilities
Michael Norman of the LSUHSC Human Development Center has been awarded a three-year $900,000 grant from the Louisiana Department of Education to develop resources that will help educators better serve hearing impaired preschoolers as well as other students with disabilities who struggle to communicate. As part of the grant, he will lead an interdisciplinary group of health and education professionals from across Louisiana as they develop a training curriculum designed to provide direct technical assistance to local school districts and support individual students across the state. The work is designed to specifically target preschoolers with cochlear implants and other students with multiple disabilities, including students with autism spectrum disorders, who often lack a formal means of communicating in school.
A Louisiana native and long-time service provider in the greater New Orleans area, Norman currently coordinates the Louisiana Deafblind Project for Children and Youth. The organization is a federally funded technical assistance grant though the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs and it is housed within the LSU Health New Orleans, School of Allied Health Professions, Human Development Center. Michael is on track to receive his Ph.D. in special education from UNO’s Department of Special Education and Habilitative Services within the College of Liberal Arts, Education and Human Development this December.
HDC Awarded a Three Year Post-Secondary Apprenticeship for Youth (Pay Check) Pilot Contract with LRS/LWC
On July 25, 2016, the Human Development Center (HDC) received confirmation of being awarded a long-anticipated 3-year contract between LSU Health Human Development Center and Louisiana Workforce Commission (LWC)’s Louisiana Rehabilitation Services Division. This three year apprenticeship pilot proposal will target students who are interested in pursuing post-secondary education and employment.
The Pay Check pilot is a three semester post-secondary transition pilot between HDC, LRS, two public school systems, two public Charter school associations, Delgado Community College, and the University Medical Center-New Orleans. Pay Check will prepare selected youth with disabilities who are eligible for LRS services age 18-22 years to acquire, practice and become competent in a wide range of Post-secondary, community and employment environments and settings to include Delgado Community College, the University Medical Center-New Orleans and the surrounding community. Pay Check is a first of its kind program in the entire United States, and quite possibly the world.
Participating youth were recruited from partner public high schools and will maintain a “concurrent enrollment” status. This arrangement allows for public high schools to collaborate with Pay Check staff to support participants to continue to address IEP goals and to pursue an alternate path to high school diplomas.
Louisiana Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and other Disabilities (LA LEND)
Jenny Lin, one of the LEND participants, shows off Chinese numbers. The only pictures we took during training were those of her posing in front of the board.
The Human Development Center was awarded a Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and other related Disabilities (LEND) grant from U.S. Department of Health and Human Resources, Health Resources and Services- Administration – Maternal Child Health Bureau on July 12, 2016. This 5-year grant will support an interdisciplinary core faculty including Audiology, Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics, Occupational, Physical and Speech-Language Therapy, Psychology (school and clinical), Special Education, Early Childhood Special Education, as well as Family and Self-advocate faculty. In addition, consultant faculty for the Louisiana LEND include Physician Assistant, Pediatric Dentistry and Nursing with plans to expand to Public Health and other disciplines in the future.
The overall purpose of LA LEND is to prepare health and education professionals, families and self-advocates, who represent the diversity of society to become leaders in Maternal Child Health-related fields. These future leaders advocate for policies that encourage development, implementation and access to supports and services designed to improve the health and education of children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) and other neurodevelopmental and related disabilities (NDD).
LA LEND provides interdisciplinary training and experiences for graduate students, families, self-advocates, and early-career professionals. The program provides a stipend to Trainees who complete the 300+ hour program. Over the course of 5-years, the program will prepare more than 45 future leaders in Maternal Child Health-related fields to understand and work toward enhanced quality of life outcomes achievable by people with ASD/NDD. The inaugural class of LA LEND includes: two students pursuing Masters in OT, two community college students with ASD, an AUD candidate, a PTD candidate, a parent of a young man with ASD, and a student pursuing a Masters in Communication Disorders (SLP).
To read more about LEND programs follow this link: http://www.aucd.org/template/page.cfm?id=473 (EXTERNAL LINK)
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