Dear NEALS members,
My, how we miss seeing each other in person! But we are so looking forward to seeing you this April for our month-long NEALS Conference (Deconstructed) on Zoom. We are excited to have neuropsychologist Dr. David Stein as keynote speaker. With a presentation on “Contact Free Testing” of students, he will kick off our professional development theme of adapting and adjusting our practices on Wednesday afternoon, April 7th.
Please join the discussion online with your suggestions for topics for April’s month of sessions and for our successful Summer Seminar Series. Be sure to “subscribe” to receive email updates as fellow members weigh in.
Starting February, 2021 with gratitude: we are so grateful for what NEALS does for teachers of students with learning challenges. Without our learning specialists, well-equipped with excellent professional development, students with learning disabilities would struggle even more with the recent shifts to online learning. For this and more, we are particularly grateful to the NEALS Board as they juggle new responsibilities at work and envision new horizons for our precious and prescient organization. Laura steers us soundly at the helm, Chris creates new connections for us as Vice President, Melissa organizes us all and our documentation as Secretary, and Bethany manages our financial responsibilities as Treasurer. They and our other directors are eager to expand the Board; so please reach out if you’re interested in serving on the Board with us. It’s a joy-filled service whether planning our programs, supporting our members with services and communications, or ensuring the sustainability of this valuable organization.
Personally, I have been bowled over by your support of the Cole Fund for Educational Equity, providing NEALS memberships and benefits to underserved and undervalued schools. This fund means so much to me and to the NEALS Board. On behalf of our most vulnerable students, the Cole Fund brings voices to the table that we need to hear, while it shares our extraordinary network and resources with teachers and schools that would otherwise have no access. We have been overwhelmed by the generosity of like-minded individuals offering Cole Fund donations in excess of $20,000. We have surpassed our initial goal of including teachers from one school with finite resources and hope to reach out to a second school as the endowment grows.
Finally, I am so grateful to Eden Dunckel and those of you who have read Sliding Home: Two Teachers Head for the Mountains to Teach Our Kids for a Yearor contacted me with your kind words about my family’s adventure in learning. I hope it has been a source of support and inspiration for teachers and families schooling kids at home.
Susan Cole Ross, past president (2011-2020)