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BellaOnline's Children with Special Needs Editor

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 F E A T U R E   A R C H I V E  

Archive by Date | Archive by Article Title

Non-Invasive Prenatal Testing for Down Syndrome
The National Down Syndrome Society has established criteria to evaluate companies that develop non-invasive prenatal diagnostic tests for Down syndrome. Advocates are encouraged to contact the company currently promoting one of the first of these to be available, Sequenom.

Mainstream Classes and Loneliness
Advocates for inclusive education, mainstream academic opportunities and support in regular classrooms find that socialization and lifelong friendships are wonderful side benefits to inclusion for students with developmental disabilities. Special education classrooms are not the cure for loneliness.

Executive Functioning and Behavior Issues
Families of children with Down syndrome and behavior issues may not understand the challenges of executive functioning difficulties. Our sons and daughters need to take the time they need to respond to requests or comments, prepare for new situations, or have other special needs accommodated.

Plastic Surgery and Down Syndrome
Very few families of young children with Down syndrome choose to look into the option of plastic surgery to reduce facial characteristics in hopes that their children find better opportunities and less prejudice in school and community programs. Elective surgeries often carry risks with no benefits.

Camp Prime Time Family Camp
Camp Prime Time is a family camp in the Wenatchee National Forest near Clear Lake and Yakima, WA. Children, teens or adults with a developmental or physical disability or serious health condition and their families can enjoy a relaxed, supportive and inclusive community in a beautiful setting.

Access to Communication and Education Technology
Children and teens with disabilities should have access to technology that can provide alternative communication platforms and educational support and inspiration. A quarter century of research has shown the benefits and accommodations tech hardware and software offers people with disabilities.

Inappropriate Remarks from Other Parents
Topics including prenatal diagnosis, adoption and foster care can be inappropriate when families of children with special needs are sharing their experiences in early intervention, advocacy or support groups. It is important to be considerate and kind when speaking with other families.

Sharing a Prenatal or Newborn Diagnosis
Pregnant women who have received a prenatal diagnosis of Trisomy 21 and mothers of newborns who have Down syndrome may wait to share that news with family and friends until they find resources to share that provide up to date and accurate information about their child's potential and opportunities.

Nursery Rhymes and Political Correctness
Parents of chidren who reflect the diversity of our communities are working to raise awareness of cultural and personal sensitivities that their families experience. Sometimes this advocacy effort is condemned as unnecessary or ridiculous 'political correctness' by those who feel threatened by it

Advocating for Inclusion - Unexpected Benefits
While many parents advocate for inclusive classrooms and community programs in hopes of giving their children the opportunity to make friends and grow up with opportunities to participate in social activities throughout their lives, the unexpected benefits of inclusion are just as valuable.

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