The Friday Fax

a weekly news bulletin from the National Parent Network on Disabilities
AUGUST 30, 1996 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - Number 9

IDEA Update

In the words of many silver screen western heros, "it's quiet out there ---- tooooo quiet." As you might guess, with the congress out of town participating in the Democratic National Convention, campaigning and doing other politically necessary things, not much is happening here.

However, things are hopping out in the states. Of primary interest is a meeting that Senator Gorton held in the state of Washington. Meeting with educators, superintendents and families, Senator Gorton indicated that he was ready for the IDEA reauthorization process to come to an end. He further informed his constituents that he did not place the amendment in the "manager's package" regarding the elimination of assistive technology.

As you may recall, Friday Fax attributed this provision to him a few weeks ago. If we are in error, we offer our sincerest apologies to Senator Gorton. However, the fact remains that this provision still exists. Hence, this package, as it now exists, is unacceptable. Senator Gorton also indicated that if the bill is to pass, it must pass within the first two weeks of the fall session.

DON'T FORGET THE NATIONAL CALL IN DAY ON SEPTEMBER 3rd (next Tuesday). COMMUNICATE WITH YOUR SENATORS BY PHONE. URGE THEM TO PASS THE IDEA WITH NO FURTHER WEAKENING AMENDMENTS (See Friday Fax of August 16, 1996 for more details). ALL US SENATORS CAN BE REACHED BY CALLING 1-800-962-3524 OR BY CALLING 202-224-3121. If your Senators are making statements about the IDEA in your state, FF would like to know. Please drop us a fax describing the time, place, setting and content of any statements made by your senators.

Kennedy Parent Policy Fellow

The Joseph P. Kennedy, Jr. Foundation is now accepting applications from parents of children with mental retardation to serve as a Kennedy Parent Policy Fellow. The application deadline is October 1. Over the last several years successful applicants have served in key positions in the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services, the Administration on Developmental Disabilities, the Senate Subcommittee on Disabilities and the House Subcommittee on Children, Youth and Families. The Foundation is seeking family members with experience in state-level advocacy, vocational rehabilitation, educaiton, law, community organizing, development of community supports and services, health care, or the development of family training or family support services. Salaried experience in the field is not a requirement. The program, a one-year, full time exposure to public policy decision making includes a stipend and relocation expenses. Applicants should submit a two-page letter stating their interests and accomplishments to date and attach either a resume or summary of their involvement in their field, including at least two letters of support. Address letters of application to:
Eunice Kennedy Shriver; Executive Vice-President; The Joseph P. Kennedy, Jr. Foundation; 1325 G. Street, NW, Suite 500; Washington, DC 20005-4709; Attention: Parent Public Policy Fellowship Program
NPND * 1727 King Street, Suite 305 * Alexandria, VA 22314
(703)684-6763 (V/TDD) * (703)836-1232 (fax) * *