Monday Message 4.27.20

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April 27, 2020
Happy Monday from your Virtual Parent Resource Center (PRC). We hope everyone had a pleasant weekend, and we hope that you are finding creative ways to enjoy family time together. Kelly and Kathleen have been enjoying virtually communicating with many of you, and were excited to host our first webinar along with The Arc of Northern Virginia last week. Many thanks to Christina Eagle, Lead Transition Coordinator, for coordinating this helpful session for us. We will co-host NOVA Night on Thursday evening in English, with a Spanish session scheduled for May 6th. Look for additional details on our events page and in our Webinar Wrap-Up which will be heading your way on Wednesday. Here are some news items and updates for this week. As always, please keep in touch with us via email to or by phone: 703.228.7239. We are thinking of you all. Have a good week, and be well.

ASEAC – Virtual Monthly Meeting
The Arlington Special Education Advisory Committee (ASEAC) will hold its April meeting virtually  tomorrow – Tuesday, April 28th from 7-9pm.
Register here to attend the meeting.

Arlington SEPTA Seeking Board Nominations and Volunteers
Arlington’s Special Education PTA (SEPTA) is seeking nominations for the following Board positions:

  • Vice President: Communications
  • Vice President: Events/Programming
  • Vice President: Fundraising
  • Secretary

SEPTA is also looking for people to fill non-elected positions such as Webmaster, Co-chairs for Events, Communication and Fundraising, and for individuals to represent SEPTA at various committee meetings and functions  (which generally involves attending a monthly meeting and reporting back via email).

What does Arlington SEPTA do?

  • Facilitates events and resources relating to special education services and learning differences in the Arlington Public Schools (APS) system and Arlington community.
  • Provides a voice of advocacy for the good of our students and families.
  • Supports APS teachers, administrators, and staff to achieve the best outcomes for students with special needs, including mini-grants for educators.
  • Raises awareness and acceptance of disabilities and special needs.
  • Hosts social events for families and stakeholders within our local community.
  • Helps parents learn how to work with the special education teachers, general education teachers, and other specialists who educate their children; understand the special education system and their rights under the law; and connect with and support other parents.

If you are interested in a board position, volunteering, and/or would like to learn more, please contact one of the 2019-20 SEPTA Nominating Committee Members: Nadia Facey, Kimiko Lighty and/or Kelly Mountain or current SEPTA President, Janna Dressel. SEPTA thanks you for your thoughtful consideration and support.

New Resources added to Office of Special Education/Parent Resource Center websites:
A few new resources have been added to our online webpages including:

News from the Virginia Department of Education (VDOE)

  • Thank A Teacher!
    For the fifth year, the Virginia Lottery is encouraging students, parents and the general public to send thank you notes to Virginia’s deserving public school teachers during National Teacher Appreciation Week, May 4 – 8. Your favorite teacher could win a Virginia vacation and prizes for your school! Make your favorite teacher smile with a digital thank-you note featuring custom artwork by the three student art contest winners.
  • COVID-19 Learning in Place Mathematics Resources
    These resources have been compiled to assist teachers, parents, and students during this unprecedented time.
  • Digital Content Provided by Arts for Learning
    Arts for Learning has created “Take 10!” to make the arts virtually accessible to youth and families through live and recorded performances and workshops. Ten minute sessions for dance, music, and storytelling will be live streamed every Tuesday and Thursday, and the sessions can be accessed after they air. Check it out today!
  • Physical Activity, Nutrition and Movement Resources
    Check out these awesome Action for Healthy Kids resources. Learn ways to keep moving and stay healthy while learning from home.
  • CATCH Inclusive Health Video Series
    Check out some best practices for inclusion of kids with intellectual disabilities in physical activity sessions.
  • Tools for an Active Home
    Games and calendar activities are available for families to use to make their home an Active Home. These resources provide meaningful movement opportunities that progress students toward physical education and social and emotional learning outcomes.
  • VA TV Classroom
    Superintendent of Public Instruction James Lane announced that four Virginia public media stations will broadcast teacher-led classroom instruction aligned with the Commonwealth’s academic standards. Blue Ridge PBS, VPM, WETA and WHRO Public Media worked closely with the VDOE to create “VA TV Classroom” to provide instruction to students in grades K-10 who are unable to access other distance learning options. Check out “VA TV Classroom” today!
  • Project HOPE – Virginia at The William and Mary School of Education has put together a resource guide for families who may find themselves in crisis as a result of COVID-19.  Click here for Resources for Families in Crisis.
  • FREE Online Webinar – Supporting Struggling ReadersPlease plan to attend Supporting Struggling Readers, an online webinar presented by The William & Mary School of Education on Wednesday, April 29, 2020 at 2pm.  This webinar is intended for parents of students in kindergarten through eighth grade who are struggling with  or are below grade level in reading.  Join our panel of experts and bring your questions!  An open Q&A session will follow.Click here to register for Supporting Struggling Readers.
  • Keeping your Distance to Stay SafeIt can be difficult to feel connected to others while social distancing.  The American Psychological Association has created a guide to help us cope while keeping our families and ourselves safe. Click here for a guide to Keeping your Distance to Stay Safe.