Ninth Circuit Court Rules Student with Down syndrome Can Be Moved to Life Skills Class at New School

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled an Arizona school district can move an elementary student with Down syndrome to a public school outside his neighborhood. The student would receive an additional 20 minutes of Specially Designed Instruction (SDI) in an “academic SCILLS classroom” at this new school.

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Individuals with Down syndrome Making Headlines

Someone recently told me that the head soccer coach at my alma mater -- Xavier University in Cincinnati -- has a little girl with Down syndrome too!  I had no idea.

The Xavier soccer coach's name is Andy Fleming.  He and his wife Amy have four children, and the second -- a little girl named Devin -- has Down syndrome.  Since Devin was born, Andy and Amy have hosted one soccer game per year called "Devin's Game."  Devin gets to go out on the field at this annual game, kick the ball around and show people the beauty (and cuteness) of Down syndrome.

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Why Your Child Needs a "No Consent" Letter For Restraint and Seclusion

A study of 99% of public schools by the United States Office of Civil Rights found that students with disabilities are restrained and secluded at a much higher rate than their typical peers. The office found that although students served under IDEA make up only 12% of the U.S. public school population, they make up 67% of students who were restrained or secluded.

That’s 70,000 students with disabilities who were restrained or secluded in the 2013-14 school year, for which the last data was recorded. Let that sink in for a moment. And assuredly there’s a lot more incidents that are not reported.

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Inclusion; It All Starts With a Hello

s parents of kids who are differently abled, we all strive for one common goal; inclusion and acceptance of our children. You would think it would be easy for kids to make friends with other kids or for people to accept others without questions or hesitations. However, that’s not always the case. But reaching out and educating others is something we can all do in order to help make a change. Kate Manduca, an Ambassador and contributing writer for Save Down Syndrome, did just that. She recently sent a letter to her newspaper, about inclusion and acceptance regarding individuals who have Down syndrome.

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A World Without Down syndrome?

In August 2017 after a CBS news crew traveled to Iceland a report was released titled “Inside The Country Where Down Syndrome Is Disappearing”. Since the introduction of more advanced prenatal screening tests in the early 2000’s the vast majority of women in Iceland, almost 100%, who received a positive prenatal test for Trisomy 21, also known as Down syndrome, elected to terminate their pregnancy. On average, only 2 babies are born per year with Down syndrome in Iceland. Geneticist and founder of deCODE Genetics, Kari Stefansson, has studied nearly the entire Icelandic population’s DNA and has his own perspective on the advancements made in medical technology.

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20 Companies That Employ People With Down syndrome

“Decades ago, people with Down syndrome were institutionalized at birth.  Doctors believed that people with Down syndrome "could not learn, could not add value to the world and could not be employed."

Obviously, this is extremely untrue.  Thanks to full inclusion into mainstream schools, people with Down syndrome are learning right alongside their peers -- and doing great.  Thanks to the generally positive nature and bright light of people with Down syndrome, they are adding exceptional value to the world.  And, thanks to employers that recognize that people with Down syndrome are not only employable but also valuable assets to a workplace, many businesses have opened their doors to employ countless people with Down syndrome.”

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Patsy Christy: Possibility of Shock Parole

On January 10, 2019, Patsy and Albert Christy plead guilty to wreckless homicide for abusing and neglecting their son, Logan, for 20 years until their abuse lead to his death. Logan was kept in his room with a padlock on the door. The window to his room was shattered, the floor covered with glass and feces, since he was locked in and unable to use the restroom. Logan had been starved, and kept from water. At the time of his death, he had also contracted pneumonia, most likely from the winter air coming through his broken window. For all of this, Patsy and Albert Christy were each only sentenced to 5 years in prison with the option for parole by the following April.

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The Eradication of Down Syndrome; The Facts And How To Change It

“In Iceland, every single baby – 100 percent of all those diagnosed with Down syndrome – are aborted”. (Bell, L. 2017, para 2). The statistics are chilling, and the rest of the world is not far behind, “98% in Denmark, 90% in Great Britain and the USA” (Bell, L. 2017, para. 6-7). Advocates and families of children with the gift of Down syndrome are shouting their child’s worth in any forum possible, in hopes of saving a life that is truly worth living. Having a child with a disability can be challenging, but, also one of the most beautiful and rewarding experiences to be encountered. Children with Down syndrome teach patience, unconditional love, how to see abilities, not disability; and that a person’s worth is not measured by their intelligence or societal standing, but, by their determination, capacity to spread kindness and joy and to truly see the good in everyone. The medical community needs to be educated on how to deliver a complete diagnosis that presents the positive side of a life with Down syndrome to expectant families. 

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Odhran Varney: How Medical Professionals Couldn't See Past A Diagnosis

“As he grew older and around 2 y/o he started to have trouble going to the toilet. He would scream in pain and it was glaringly obvious something wasn’t right. We took him to the doctors between the age of 2 and 4 at least 20 times. Always the same answer. He has Ds and constipation was a side effect. We placed our trust in the professionals. I will never forgive myself for that. After multiple trips to the hospital A&E and being made to feel like we were wasting their time. The look and lack of belief in what we were telling them was so evident. Our son was not the weight his age should have been but still it took us 2 years to get a serious appointment to have a look at the problem…”

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The Spread The Word To End The Word Campaign and Why It's So Important

The word retarded first originated as a medical phrase, “mentally retarded,” from the mid 1890’s which was synonymous for slow or delayed. This term was originally used as a replacement for other derogatory terms at the time like moron or idiot. It wasn’t until the 1960’s that this term took on an entirely different meaning used to insult people.

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The New Educational Graphics

When you research Down syndrome online, you will come across several images that will catch your eye. They all have the same format: a sketch of a baby with Down syndrome surrounded by manifestations of Down syndrome. The format is not the only thing these images have in common. They all contain at least one piece of outdated, and sometimes incorrect, information, as well as a sketch depicting someone with Down syndrome that is offensive to say the least.

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An Open Letter to American Girl

Madison’s younger sister, Charlotte “Charlie,” is fascinated by Madison’s American Girl doll. She wants one for herself. Madison has asked me time and time again why American Girl has dolls in wheelchairs or with arm crutches but they don’t have the option to buy a doll with Down syndrome. “I don’t know,” I’ve told her. “Maybe they just haven’t met the right person with the right story,” I’ve said. This isn’t true but I don’t have the heart to tell her that the company doesn’t see the value in adding a doll that looks like her sister just yet.

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Save Down Syndrome: Goals for 2019

We want everyone to know that they are not alone in their efforts to save Down syndrome- we are here with you, and we are doing this together. That is why we always want to be open about our actions and ideas. In this article, we have outlined our biggest goals for 2019.

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Kaitlin PepperComment