Sunday, September 28, 2014

Fundable Awards Ceremony & Silent Auction

On November 7th, 2014 Able South Carolina will host the second annual Fundable, an Awards Ceremony & Silent Auction at the Columbia Conference Center.

Join them from 6:30PM-9:30PM as we celebrate independence for people with disabilities. The evening will be unforgettable fun and include: dancing, live music, a silent auction, awards ceremony, beer/wine and heavy hors d’oeuvres.

To learn more please visit:

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Friday, September 26, 2014

Signing Time: Free Online Classes

Learn new signs with Rachel Coleman! Sign up for free online classes:
  • Lesson 1 - Family Signs
  • Lesson 2 - Animal Signs
  • Lesson 3 - Signs that Build Self-Esteem
Each lesson includes sign videos, music videos, free MP3s, and printables - plus exclusive coupons

To register:

To access the CDR Library: 

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Webinar: Taking Down the 2 Giants of Inaccessible Web

Need to make your web content accessible but don’t know where to start?

You know that you need to be thinking about web and document accessibility, but understanding how it applies to you and where to start can be a challenge.

Join HiSoftware and NetCentric for our Webinar on Taking Down the 2 Giants of Inaccessible Web Content

We'll look at the basics of web accessibility, and solutions to help you automate testing and remediation of Web content, Microsoft Office and PDF documents in compliance with standards including Section 508 and WCAG.

Attend this webinar and you will learn:
What accessibility is and the different standards that govern it

About faster, easier and more efficient ways to:
Identify inaccessible web content and documents
Remediate web content including Office and PDF documents
How to build accessibility testing into your processes so content starts and stays accessible

Don't miss this Webinar. Register Now!

To access the CDR Library:

Location Change

for those registered for the free training on
spinal cord and traumatic brain injuries!
This Friday, September 26, 2014- 9:30-4:30

The training registration is closed with registration being full. If you have already registered for the training, please note the location change:

William L. Yates Conference Center at SCHA
The South Carolina Hospital Association is located just NW of the intersection of I-20 and I-26 in Columbia.
Physical address: 1000 Center Point Road, Columbia, SC 29210

William L. Yates Conference Center-803.744.3529/803.744.3501

For questions or confirmation of your registration for the training, please contact:
Stephanie Smith-

Medicare Funding of Speech Devices

While the University of SC, Center for Disability Resources and the SC Assistive Technology Program do not engage in lobbying efforts, this publicly available information is being provided as a service to SCATP’s listserv members.

This is from Prentke Romich Company:

“Important News about Medicare Funding of Speech Devices
On December 1, 2014, Medicare is expected to make a decision about a change in funding of Speech-Generating Devices (SGDs). PRC and other organizations that serve individuals with disabilities believe this will have a devastating impact on the quality of life for people with communication disorders.

You should know the facts about this looming rule change so you can take action to help prevent its approval.  Here is some background.

Last March, a “Coverage Reminder” issued by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced an amendment under consideration that would severely limit the functionalities permitted on a Medicare-covered SGD to speech output only. The device would not be permitted to offer any non-speech functions, such as email, Internet access, or environment controls used to turn lights on and off, for example.
Many AAC users depend on these advanced capabilities to communicate in their personal lives and work environments and to maintain maximum independence, so they opt to “unlock” these functionalities at their own expense.  But as ofDecember 1, Medicare will no longer pay for any device that has even the potential to be unlocked.

How You Can Help If You Choose– and Why It’s Important to Act Now

With December 1 quickly approaching, taking action now is vital. We have provided several resources on our website at to help you understand the issue and take action against this proposed rule

  • Learn more about SGD funding, the proposed Medicare change, and its impact
  • Find contact information for CMS executives and your elected Congressional representatives
  • Use our Letter Template to communicate your concerns to CMS officials, members of Congress, and others in position of influence”
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Abundant Life Physical Therapy: Fundraiser Bike Race, October 18th

Abundant Life Physical Therapy would like to invite everyone to our October Festival for Special Needs and Families on the Village Green in Lake Carolina on October 18, 2014.
This event is to support our non-profit organization’s Equipment Lending Library and items such as wheelchairs, walkers, standers and more!

Saturday, October 18th
10:30 AM

Lake Carolina at Village Green
212 Eastcott Place
Columbia SC 29229

Ages: 3 years – 13 years
$10 per child

One mile bike loop for special needs children and able bodied children.
Bring your bikes!
Bring your helmets!
Prizes and fun for all. 

RSVP:  Call (803) 720-5240 or e-mail

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Thursday, September 18, 2014

The Rehabilitation Research and Training Centre - Focus Groups

The Rehabilitation Research and Training Center (RRTC) on Employment of People with Physical Disabilities is asking your help in connecting with individuals who have physical disabilities. Specifically, we are interested in talking with individuals who have physical disabilities such as cerebral palsy, arthritis, muscular dystrophy, spina Bifida, or a physical disability due to a traumatic brain injury or other neurological impairment. Anyone between the ages of 18 and 64 are encouraged to participate! RRTC is  specifically interested in finding transition age youth between the ages of 18 years and 24 to participate.

RRTC is conducting focus groups about people with physical disabilities' work experiences including what has helped them find or keep a job as well as advance in careers. These focus groups will be held over the telephone. Participants will receive a toll free number and the information shared with the RRTC will be confidential! Participants will also receive a $50 gift card that can be used at a location of their choice.

If you want to participate, contact Grant Revell to assist you in signing up at or by phone at: 804-828-6989.

To access the CDR Library:

Register to Vote on September 23rd

September 23, 2014 is National Voter Registration Day! Able South Carolina and Protection & Advocacy for People with Disabilities, Inc. are partnering together for voter celebrations in Columbia and Greenville. Each site will have everything you will need to vote confidently in the coming election.
There will be a chance to:
  • Register to vote
  • Practice using an accessible voting machine
  • Learn your voting rights
  • Learn about voting accommodations
  • Even take a sneak peek at your November ballot
Come celebrate National Voter Registration Day with us between 10:00am and 3:00pm in Columbia and Greenville! We will have short voter trainings at 11:00am and 1:00pm.

For any questions about voter outreach please contact Robbie Kopp at Able SC by e-mail, by calling (803) 779-5121 ext. 129, or by TTY at (803) 779-0949.

To access the CDR Library:

ERIC Guides - Graphic Design, 508 Compliance, and Writing Effective Newsflashes

Practical Guidance on Graphic Design, 508 Compliance, and Dissemination 
Three new guides offer guidance on navigating 508 compliance, using graphic design, and writing effective newsflashes to create engaging products. 

The graphic design guide covers concepts behind good design and how to use photographs, images, color, tables, figures, and type to create useful publications and digital products. It also touches on how researchers can use data visualization to make complex concepts accessible. 

The 508 guide offers tips and tools for making materials, including presentations, websites, and multimedia products, accessible. 

The newsflash guide reviews how to break through clutter with a compelling story, engaging visuals, and electronic tools, including email, video, and social media. 

The guides were prepared for the Institute of Education Sciences' Regional Educational Laboratories.

Source: Mathematica

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Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Economic Study Confirms Growth of Autism

Economic Study Confirms Growth of Autism

The number of autism cases has soared over the past three decades, leading some to wonder if mental health professionals might be overdiagnosing the disorder.
Two economists who used market theory to study the trend in autism growth, however, have confirmed that at least part of the increase is real...

To view the full article, click here.

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Tuesday, September 16, 2014

People With Down Syndrome Are Pioneers in Alzheimer's Research

People with Down Syndrome Are Pioneers in Alzheimer's Research

When researchers at the University of California, San Diego wanted to study an experimental Alzheimer's drug last year, they sought help from an unlikely group: people with Down syndrome.
"I had a CAT scan on my head, and I was in a special machine. It's called an MRI," says Justin McCowan, 39, whose parents drove him 125 miles from Santa Monica so he could participate in the study. McCowan also took brain function tests and spent hours with a needle in his arm so researchers could monitor levels of certain chemicals in his blood...

To view the full article, click here.

To access the CDR Library:

Monday, September 15, 2014

South Carolina's Interagency Transition Conference

South Carolina's Interagency Transition Conference 

Featuring Dr. Mary E. Morningstar, associate professor in the Department of Special Education at the University of Kansas and Director of the Transition Coalition.

Building Bridges: Constructing and Navigating Transition Services for Youth with Disabilities
November 17th and 18th, 2014
Charleston, SC

Hotel/Conference Location: 
Charleston Marriott
170 Lockwood Boulevard
Charleston, SC 29403
Web Group Rate Code: SDCSDCA
$139 -- A limited number of rooms are available at this conference rate. Reservations must be made by October 16.
 Hotel website:

Registration Information:
  • Early Individual Registration - $115
  • Late or Onsite Registration - $130
For questions about the conference, as well as payment information, contact

To access the CDR Library:

Friday, September 12, 2014

Brain Injury Association of South Carolina: 7th Annual Run for Thought

Are You Ready To Work?

Are you ready to work?

Learn how to negotiate reasonable accommodations and understand your employment rights!

Join us on Wednesday, September 17th from 2:00pm to 4:00pm for a free training for people with disabilities.

Registration Info: Phone: (800) 681-6805 or (803)779-5121, ext. 126, or e-mail:
Location: Able South Carolina, 136 Stonemark Lane, Suite 100, Columbia, SC 29210

Please make reasonable accommodation requests (i.e. braille, large print, a sign language interpreter, etc.) for this event a week in advance of the event date.

To access the CDR Library: 

For more information visit:

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Two EASI Webinars in September

Free Webinar: Creating accessible Narrated PowerPoint

Creating accessible narrated Powerpoint, first assumes an accessible PowerPoint presentation. This will only be touched on briefly in this presentation. Next, the presentation will walk participants through the process of setting up the parameters for the show and then recording the content to go with each slide. Last, it will explain the different options for the show's output and the reasons for each choice.

Free EASI Webinar: PDF in the Classroom: The Future of Digital Textbooks

This Webinar will be an one hour webinar on strategies for implementing the PDF/UA (Universal Access) international standard for PDF accessibility and what it means to publishers and students with disabilities.

EASI also has a Webinar series in October on creating accessible
ePub3 documents

Check out EASI's New Synchronous Clinics:

EASI Home Page

Online Courses and Clinics 

To access the CDR Library: 

For more information visit:

Boardmaker Online: Free Live Trainings

Boardmaker® Online Series of Free Trainings
For more information, go to:
(The new Boardmaker Online Editor is set to release this month.  Click here for a sneak peak!) 

Working as a Team: Effectively Using Boardmaker District–Wide
Boardmaker Online District is one system to manage your school, district, or clinic’s Special Education Instruction and therapy. This session will demonstrate how this web-based system can provide consistency and collaboration across your entire district or agency. Using teacher, student, and classroom examples, participants will learn how to deliver instructional activities, track performance and work together with the entire team to ensure student success. 

Monitoring Homework using Boardmaker Online
September 18, 2014
Time:  3:30 - 4:30 EST With Boardmaker Online you can assign homework to support IEP goals and standards to your students using the same on-screen and print activities that you are using in your educational setting with them. You can monitor the progress of their usage and/or performance of the on-screen activities. The students can use the activities after school using a Mac, PC, windows based tablet and, coming soon, on an iPad. Certain activities can be printed out. Attend this session to learn about some implications that monitoring homework using Boardmaker Online can have on your students from real-life testimonials.
*This course will offer .1 ASHA CEU (Beginner level, Professional area). 

Visual Supports for Home and Community
September 23, 2014
Time: 12:30 - 1:30 ESTUsing symbol-based visual supports for individuals with autism and related disabilities has been established as best practice. Boardmaker has been the go-to resource for creating, printing, and implementing these supports. Now Boardmaker Online provides the same symbol-based supports in both print and on-line, interactive formats. This means that visual supports for communication, emotional regulation, behavior, and instruction are accessible on any PC, MAC, and even an ipad. This session will review best practices for finding, sharing, and creating individualized visual supports for print or on-line implementation. 

The SLP’s Guide to Boardmaker Online
September 25, 2014
Time:  3:30 - 4:30 EST Boardmaker is now Boardmaker Online, a complete system for delivering personalized therapy activities and supports. In this session, you will learn best practices for implementation of Boardmaker Online for communication, emotional regulation, positive behavior, and academic support with interactive and print activities that are individualized for your students, aligned with IEP goals and educational standards, and performance-tracking. We will show how to find, create, share, assign, play and print activities from wherever you are, on any PC or MAC, or even on your IPAD.
*This course will offer .1 ASHA CEU (Intermediate level, Professional area). 

To access the CDR Library: 

For more information visit:

Tuesday, September 09, 2014

Could poor stomach absorption of drugs reduce autism medications' effectiveness?

Could poor stomach absorption of drugs reduce autism medications' effectiveness?

Recent research has revealed that many children and adults with autism experience gastrointestinal symptoms and that such symptoms can impact the absorption and availability of medications.

Because approximately 35% of people with autism take at least one psychotropic medication to help control their symptoms, the authors of a Journal of Clinical Pharmacology commentary are calling for a formal evaluation of the potential relationship between gastrointestinal symptoms and the effectiveness of autism medications. Alternative modes of drug administration may be needed to provide more effective therapy for patients...

To view the full article, click here.
To access the CDR Library:

Monday, September 08, 2014

Summerville, SC NEDA Walk

Event Details
Walk Venue:  Town Square
Walk Location: 100-140 S. Main Street, Summerville, SC 29483
Walk Date:  Saturday, November 8th, 2014
Check In Time: 11:30AM
Opening Ceremony: 12:00PM    
Walk End Time: 1:30PM
Walk Fundraising Goal: $2,500
Contact: Renay Marsh
Join the event on Facebook and spread the word!
More questions about the walk?

Read Walk FAQ or contact NEDA at 212-575-6200 or
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Friday, September 05, 2014

Upcoming AbleNet Webinars

EASI has two related to accessible media:

Creating Accessible Narrated PowerPoint
Tuesday Sept. 16th, 2014
11AM Pacific, 2PM Eastern

PDF in the Classroom: The Future of Digital Textbooks
Tuesday, September 23, 2014
11AM Pacific, 2PM Eastern

The ALS Association offers:

Accessing Your iPad With A Switch
Monday, September 15, 2014
11AM Pacific, 2PM Eastern

The Special Ed. Tech. Center at Central Washington University has a number of webinars, including these three:

Who's Who in Social Media (AAC)

Monday, September 22, 2014

3:30 PM Pacific, 6:30 PM Eastern

Nexus: Android Apps for SpEd
Thursday, September 25, 2014
3:30 PM Pacific, 6:30 PM Eastern

iPad: Accessibility
Thursday, October 2, 2014
3:30 PM Pacific, 6:30 PM Eastern

ADA Online Learning says:

Android is Accessible. Really.
Thursday, September 25, 2014
11AM Pacific, 2PM Eastern

To access the CDR Library: 

Thursday, September 04, 2014

2014 South Carolina Down Syndrome Conference

The Family Connection of South Carolina is pleased to announce that Rachel Coleman will be the Keynote Speaker at the South Carolina Down Syndrome Conference.
This conference provides local families in the Down syndrome community the opportunity for networking while gaining vital information and support. For the past 28 years, the conference has provided information and resources targeted specifically to topics pertaining to the needs of individuals with Down syndrome. They strive to support all South Carolina families in the Down syndrome community through education related to their health, wellness, social, and vocational needs.
When: Saturday, September 20, 2014
Conference Time: 8:00am – 4:30pm
Rachel Coleman Keynote Speaker: 9:15am for conference attendees only
Where: Glenforest School 1041 Harbor Dr, West Columbia, SC 29169
Click HERE to register.

Tuesday, September 02, 2014

LAMP - Language Acquisition through Motor Planning

Date: Thursday, November 6, 2014
Time: 9:00 am to 4:00 pm
Location: South Carolina Assistive Technology Program
Collaborative Training Center
8301 Farrow Road
Columbia, SC  29203
Cost: $85 (50% discount is available for parents and students)

Language Acquisition Through Motor Planning (LAMP) is an augmentative alternative communication (AAC) approach designed to give individuals who are non-verbal or have limited verbal abilities a method of independently and spontaneously expressing themselves through the use of a voice output communication device. LAMP was initially developed to give non-verbal individuals with autism a means of communication but can be adapted to benefit individuals with a variety of disabilities. The components of LAMP address the features and vocabulary available on the device as well as the method of teaching communication while taking into account the individual’s sensory needs.

Topics to be covered include:

The 5 components of LAMP: readiness to learn, joint engagement, and pairing a unique and consistent motor plan with auditory output and a natural response.
The role of motor learning in language development and AAC fluency
Device features that support implementation
Choosing and teaching vocabulary
Introduction to the Words for Life AAC iPad app and vocabulary file for PRC devices

For more information:
To access the CDR Library:

Monday, September 01, 2014

SC Department of Education Assistive Technology Workshops - Midlands Region

All workshops will be held at the Assistive Technology Resource Center, Midlands Center, 8301 Farrow Road, Columbia, SC  29203

To register for these workshops, go to the SC Assistive Technology Program Training Page.

September 3, 2014: 3:30pm – 4:30pm
Bookshare (webinar)
This workshop will address the most common questions teachers and parents have about Bookshare. We will review what resources Bookshare has to offer, the eligibility criteria, and types of membership. Reading options, compatible AT software, mobile reading and web solutions for Bookshare will be discussed. Free resources will be provided.

October 8, 2014: 9:30am – 11:30am
Assistive Technology Consideration and Assessments – Utilizing the SETT and the WATI
Conducting student AT assessments can be sometimes difficult, but by using the WATI assessment and SETT framework, your assistive technology team will understand the process and will have the materials needed for documentation. The WATI and SETT are research based and used by many assistive technology specialists throughout the country. We will review resources and materials to show you how to conduct a professional AT assessment with students who need adapted materials, access to technology, help with seating, written productivity, and much more. Free materials and resources will be provided.

November 5, 2014: 9:30am – 11:30am
Visual Supports for Behavior Management
Visual supports constitute an important tool we all use in our daily lives. Given the fact that most students are visual learners, it is essential that we incorporate visual supports in every aspect of planning and instruction as a way to prevent or manage behavior problems. This workshop is designed to provide teachers with the necessary tools to integrate visual supports in the classroom in a meaningful way that will meet the behavioral and emotional needs of studentsWe will explore visual support strategies, their benefits, and simple methods for implementing them in the classroom.

December 3, 2014: 9:30am – 11:30am
Written Productivity
Teachers are often in the position of referring students to an AT team for assessment for enhancing written productivity. During this workshop, we will explore resources that are available to help with writing difficulties. We will address motor skills and processing and organizational concerns that many students struggle with. We will review various programs that are low-cost or free, as well as audio recording pens that help with notetaking, organization, and study skills.  We will also go over speech-recognition programs and the criteria that students need to meet to have success with them.

January 7, 2015:  9:30am – 11:30am
Reading Supports
Students with disabilities or students who are struggling with reading fluency and comprehension can benefit from existing free or low-cost literacy supports. In this workshop, we will demonstrate many of the resources that can be easily implemented in the classroom. We will approach literacy supports through the Universal Design for Learning concept for all learning styles. We will discuss text-to-speech software, Microsoft built-in features, and mobile solutions, as well as various other free resources.

February 4, 2015: 9:30am – 11:30am
Android Resources
With an increasing number of students using Android mobile devices, teachers and parents are finding themselves in the position to make best use of its available resources. In this workshop, we will compare Android to other operating systems. We will discuss pros and cons of using this platform, and address accessibility features and switch access. Free and low-cost apps and resources for communication, literacy, math and organization will be discussed, as well as exciting new technology, including Google Glass.

March 26, 2015: 9:00 – 4:00
SC AT Expo– Free and Open to the Public

April 1, 2015:  9:30am – 11:30am
Introduction to Microsoft’s One Note/Evernote – The Future of Note Taking
Looking for ways to keep yourself and your students organized? This workshop is designed to explore Microsoft One Note and Evernote and how you can use them in the classroom and beyond.  Storing your audio, text, and photo files in the Microsoft Cloud requires an established Hotmail account. We will review creating a digital binder and demonstrate the various templates that are incorporated into the program. 

May 6, 20159:30am – 11:30am
Switch Access to iPad and tablets
During this workshop, attendees will get a chance to take a closer look at alternative access methods for iOS and other operating systems through the lens of the Universal Design for Learning model. We will explore ways to provide alternative access to iPads and other tablets through various hardware and software available options. Considerations for choosing the right access method will be addressed. We will demonstrate switch access solutions proven successful in various settings, and provide troubleshooting tips for common problems. The main focus will be on increasing access and independence, with special attention given to switch access options, Switch Enabled Program for Limited Mobility, and various resources available for students in all educational and vocational environments.

For more information:
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