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Special Education

This section is dedicated to providing our special education families with information, resources and a forum for responding to and supporting your journey advocating on behalf of your teen. Feel free to contact Jane Winant, PTSA Special Education Liaison, with any comments, questions, content recommendations or suggestions on how we can improve.


Jane Winant

PTSA Special Education Liaison


Volunteer Thursdays

Volunteer Thursdays is a weekly event
When: Any Thursday at 9:00 am
Where: Room 72 at AHS
If you have time on any Thursday morning, feel free to come join us in Room 72 and help support the Cat B program by preparing materials for Cat B teachers.

Special Olympics

A number of parents have been asking about upcoming Special Olympics tournament dates, so I'm sharing what I have. More details (times, etc.) will be going home from school staff in the week ahead, but these are the dates and locations I have from our Special Olympics regional coordinator:

Sunday, 2/25- Episcopal High School (1200 N Quaker Lane Alexandria VA)
The first tournament was great fun with the energetic leadership of hard-working Coaches Bamberger, Lee and Ariaswonderful support from Leadership Class peers and tremendous turnout from Annandale staff. And cheers to all of our Special Olympics players - we hope more students will be able to participate in the upcoming tournaments!
New Photo Source from recent Special Olympics games
Photographer Richard Fink takes great photos of Annandale sports activities. He was working hard at the Special Olympics games on Sunday and has posted some of the photos up on his website. More photos will be uploaded as he has time to process them. The photos can be accessed at richfinkphotography.com. Click on galleries. Scroll down to the photo of Max with his dad (you have to know exactly what you are looking for - I think it is the only father-son photo). Click on that photo and it will ask for a password. The password is specialolympicsva. The password request comes up twice, so you have to enter it twice, but then it should let you in to scroll through more photos. 
Good luck! Feel free to email me if you need help accessing the photos.

AHS Family Support Group

The Family Support Group is going into its fifth year. This group provides support and information for parents who have a student in the Cat B Program at Annandale High School. The meetings are moderated by Dan Campbell, LCSW. Light refreshments are served by the Culinary Arts students. This is a school-enabled event paid for by donations from the PTSA. Groups are held on Friday mornings in the Learning Center from 8:00 to 9:30 AM on October 27, January 19, March 16 and May 18. If you have a student in the Cat B Program and would like more information please contact Anne Brosnan at 703-642-4207.
I know the new 8:00 am Friday timing is challenging for many. Please attend if you can, and if you would like to attend but cannot, please let me know by email at thewinants@yahoo.com or by calling or texting to 401-637-2097 with information about your preferred times and days for family meetings.

Cameron’s Coffee & Chocolates

Cameron's Coffee & Chocolates is the first business enterprise of the non-profit foundation, Every1 Can Work. 9639 Fairfax Blvd. (a gem hidden in the Fairfax Center strip mall).

AHS Cat B Family Newsletter

February 2018


October 2017

Calling Parents of Cat B Graduates!

A few of you are on this email list, and current Cat B parents could benefit from your experience. Would you be willing to sit on a parent panel to talk informally about your lives after high school and answer questions from current Cat B parents? We would love to hear from you if you are able and willing to share. Thanks for your consideration, and just email me if you are interested! Jane

A note from Cat B teacher Ms. Reap:  we really need plastic bags.  If anyone has their groceries/other retail purchases bagged in plastic bags, instead of recycling the bags or throwing them out, please send them in with their son/daughter to school. Thank you!

Parent Information Relating to Special Education

All these opportunities are FREE unless noted.  
In most cases you must register if registration information is provided.
When other events become available they will be posted at:
The FCPS Parent Resource Center (PRC) helps parents of students with disabilities.  It sponsors workshops, has a lending library, and has Parent Liaisons to help parents solve problems.   2334 Gallows Rd. Rm 105, Dunn Loring    English:  703-204-3941  Espanol: 703-204-3955  The PRC can often provide translation services for their events into Spanish, Arabic, or other languages if you contact them well in advance.
Plan Ahead --Youth Leadership Academy 2018 -- Developing Young Leaders
July 9-12, Virginia State University
Application Deadline:  March 16
Information & Application:  https://www.vaboard.org/YLA.htm
Plan Ahead -- 2018 Cecily's Advocacy Workshop
Unlocking Potential: Strategies for Success 
Sat. Mar. 3, 8:00 am - 2:30 pm, McLean Sch. 8224 Lochinver Ln. Potomac, MD  
Early registration:  before Feb 9 -- $50  includes breakfast & lunch  
Plan Ahead -- 2018 Youth & Parent Summit Application due March 9, 2018
Event: June 13-15 James Madison University, Harrisonburg, VA
This conference for youth (ages 13-21) and their parents focuses on self-determination skills and issues of importance to youth and young adults with disabilities.
Plan Ahead -- Virginia System of Care Slogan and Logo Contest
Entries due March 1
The Virginia System of Care needs a new slogan and a new logo. Youth contest winners get $500 towards their education. 
Plan ahead -- Cecily's Advocacy Workshop:  Unlocking Strategies for Success    
Sat. March 3, 8 am-2;30 pm McLean Sch. 8224 Lochinver Ln. Potomac, MD
Choose four topics from among more than a dozen including the fundamental skill of sensing time and the relationship between motivation and executive control.
Early registration (before Feb 9)   $50  includes lunch & continental breakfast
Plan Ahead -- Wrightslaw Special Education Law and Advocacy Conference  
Thu.-Fri May 3-4, 4:30 pm to 4:30 pm, Comfort Inn Hotel, 4500 Crain Hwy. Bowie, MD   
Learn about special education law, rights, and responsibilities; tests to measure progress; SMART IEPs; and tactics and strategies for effective advocacy.
Register:  www.loudvoicestogether.com/events-1.html  $180 includes meal & books
REVIVE Trainings
Tue. Feb. 13, 11:30 am Merrifield Ctr. Rm. LL 419, 8221 Willow Oaks Corp. Dr. Fairfax
Wed. Feb. 21, 1 pm Gatlan Ctr. Rm. 168, 8119 Holland Rd. Alexandria
Sun. Feb. 18, 3 pm A New Beginning Gym, 4213 Walney Rd. Chantilly
Learn what to do and not do in an overdose situation, how to administer naloxone, and what to do afterwards.  Supplies are provided for use when needed.
Understanding Evaluations in the Special Education Process
Thu. Feb.15, 7:00 pm  Lee HS Lancer Hall, 6540 Franconia Rd. Springfield
This presentation takes participants through the reasons for evaluations, timelines, and special education eligibility meetings, and develops a basic understanding of scores.
Employment Opportunities for Individuals with Special Needs  
Thu. Feb. 15 7–9pm, JCCNV, 8900 Little River Turnpike, Fairfax 
Learn about employers who have employees with special needs, supportive employment organizations and other resources for those seeking employment. 
Understanding Your Twice Exceptional Child
Fri. Feb.16, 10-11:30 am, The Sycamore Sch. 4600 N. Fairfax Dr. Ste. 300, Arlington
Twice-exceptional children have both disabilities and above average intelligence.  Learn how to bring out the best and raise self-esteem for a twice-exceptional child.
Reducing The Impact Of Anxiety In Our Children
Thu. Feb. 22, 11:45 am-1:15 pm The StudyPro 6849 Old Dominion Dr. #200  McLean
Learn specific skills that parents can use to respond to anxiety in children and teens, and how to teach healthy coping strategies.
Robinson Secondary School's Partnership Program
Thu. Feb. 22, 7 pm Recital Hall, Robinson SS 5035 Sideburn Rd. Fairfax
Join the Fairfax County Special Ed. PTA Liaisons to learn about an inclusion class and club from a teacher and students at this school.
Contact Joanne at spedliaisons@fairfaxcountysepta.org if you need childcare.
Screamfree Parenting: Peace Begins with Pause
Fri. Feb. 23, 10 am-12:30 pm, Dunn Loring Ctr. 2334 Gallows Rd. Door 1, Dunn Loring
Join us for this first workshop in our series of 4 interactive workshops to learn strategies to become the cool, calm, connected parent your child really needs. 
Morning at the Museum -- Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden
Sat. Feb 24, 9-10 am, Independence Ave & 7th St SW, Washington, DC
Early entrance to the Museum for families with students with cognitive or sensory processing disabilities.  Activities on the 3rd floor.  
The Motivation Meltdown:  When Parents Care and Kids Don't -- Webinar
Wed. Feb. 28, 12:15-1:00 pm 
IEPs: Knowing Student’s Rights and How To Achieve Them (Part II)
Wed. Feb. 28, 7:00-8:30pm. Auburn Sch. 3800 Concorde Pkwy., Ste 500, Chantilly
Learn more about IEP review meetings and student’s rights in the IEP process.  

Support Groups for Youth

Youth and Young Adults: Stronger Together 
Alternate Tuesdays, Oct. 10 through May 2018,  6:30-8:00 pm  in Fairfax.
This peer-to-peer support group for youth ages 14 - 22  meets twice a month through May.   Parents, caregivers and guardians meet at the same time.  Light dinner included.
Support Group for High School Students with ADHD  meets the 1st Sunday of each month 3:30 - 5:00 pm 4031 Univ. Dr. Fairfax,  Enter on South St.  No parents!
Call 703-403-3335 to enter building.  Contact:  coach@BrainRelief.org  703- 641-8940
People First for Young Adults
2nd Tue. monthly, 6:30 - 8:00 pm  The Arc , 2755 Hartland Rd Suite 200, Falls Church
Youth with disabilities age 14-26 practice public speaking skills, plan social outings, learn from guests on topics of life skills and advocacy, and do projects to enhance social skills.
Information:  Diane Monnig  703 208-1119 x 118
Community of Solutions  Helping Teens Cope with Life Stress   www.facebook.com/cosdcmetro/

Support Groups for Parents

Alpha Moms  This support group for adoptive parents meets monthly in McLean.  
CHADD: Children & Adults with Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder  
Alexandria CHADD Parent Support Group  4th Mon. of each month at 6:30 pm
West Fairfax CHADD Parent Support Group   1st & 3rd Tues. of each month at 7:30 pm Contact:  Sharon  clintob@aol.com  703 716-4646 
CSB Family Support Group at Gatlan Center  2nd and 4th Wed. of each month 6-8 pm in Alexandria Contact:  Samar.Chwairy@fairfaxcounty.gov 703-799-2882
D.A.D.S.  Dads Appreciating Down Syndrome 3rd Thur. each month, 7-9 pm in Alexandria; and last Wed. of each month in Tysons at 7-9 pm  Contact:  rich_westhoff@hotmail.com   571-490-1268
Fairfax Juvenile Court Parent Support Group for problems including runaway behavior, truancy, alcohol/drug abuse, and serious behavioral problems at home, at school, or in the community. 7:30 pm every Tues. Room 201.1 Fairfax County Courthouse  703-246-2495
JCCNV Special Needs Parent Support Group  1st Wed. each month, 7:00–8:30 pm  
Contact:  Melissa at MelissaH@jccnv.org Cost: $15 per meeting. 
NAMI:  National Alliance on Mental Illness builds better lives for affected families.
Arlington Family Support Group meets one Sunday of each month at 7:00-8:30 pm 
Contact:  Michelle Best  mczero@yahoo.com
Fairfax Family Support Group meets on the 2nd Thur. of each month  7:30-9:00 pm
Contact:  Heather   daviesva@gmail.com  or  703-362-4985
Springfield Family Support Group  meets the 4th Thur. of each month 7:00-8:30 pm
Contact:  Heather    daviesva@gmail.com  or  703-362-4985
OCD Family Support Group   1st Mon. of each month, 7:30 pm  
POAC: Parents of Autistic Children of Northern Virginia  
Bimonthly Support Group  Contact:  Nicole Zupan at nicizupan@gmail.com
Northern Virginia Tourette Support Group meets the 2nd Sunday of each month at noon at the Chantilly Public Library.  Contact:  mark.bramer@gmail.com