March 7 2015 Update

Saturday, April 04, 2015 2:03:00 PM

News, Events, Disability Rights info

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Contents: Busing News (5 items) , Events (12 items including tomorrow), Links to more Disability Rights information (5 items)



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Citywide Council on Special Education's recently released 2013-14 annual report has two or more sections on busing issues. Some key busing info appears around pages 15-17 and the air conditioning issue is highlighted on 25-27. Go to 



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New E.P.P. bill for retention of experienced school bus personnel is in Albany. 


Please support by contacting your representatives and Governor A. Cuomo.  



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PIST appreciates the Boston school bus union contract for features such as DRIVERS' ABILITY TO GRIEVE ROUTES THAT VIOLATE STUDENTS' DISABILITY RIGHTS!! and Route change clinics at bus yards early in each school year. 

The company is in trouble for ignoring numerous contract clauses (like paying the workers properly) and tried to destroy the union's leadership with firings and court charges, but it failed. See  

Congratulations to the parents, students and workers of Boston busing.



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More about Porter Service


We want our friends to be aware that there are legal precedents for keeping porter service in buildings other than NYCHA. 


Here is an excerpt shared with us by Ellen McHugh:  

In the impartial hearing decision on this case, the Hearing Officer agreed with Ms. Mpi’s challenge to the DOE’s policy, concluding that the IDEA requires school districts to provide porter service to those students who need it. In ruling in favor of Ms. Mpi's client, the Hearing Officer found that the parents had not chosen to live in a building without an elevator, given their circumstances.This decision represents a huge victory for low-income families in New York City with children with disabilities, for whom it is not financially feasible to obtain an apartment in an elevator building.


Those who have shown or expressed willingness to defend any child FREE OF CHARGE who is threatened with a cut to porter service include 

Special Education Attorney Gary Mayerson  and Legal Services NYC-Bronx.

The Public Advocate's office is also interested in monitoring this issue.


Please pass the word to your networks and have them on correspondence around cuts to porter service.



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The importance of including the school bus team in discussions and training with other educators is recognized in this recent opinion piece which seems to be about general education busing in another state.




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SUNDAY MARCH 8 Please join PIST delegation at International Working Women’s Day march and speakout beginning 12 noon at Herald Square, 34th St and Broadway/6th Ave. in Manhattan.  If you arrive later, call 212-633-6646 for latest location.  From 2-4 pm the commemoration continues indoors on the 2nd and 3rd floors of 147 West 24th Street just east of 7th ave.  #2 train is running local.




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MONDAY MARCH 9, 2015 AT 6:30-9:00 PM

The Citywide Education council for District 75
Town Hall Meeting: Stand Up and Speak Out For Education!


Guest Speaker: Karen Sprowal, Class Size Matters 

[On Cuomo's program which robs funding & space from NYC public schools]


45-18 Court Square   *  Conference Room  *    Long Island City, New York 11101
Email:  Office:718.752.7321 




3  of 12

Monday, March 9th at 5 pm

Planning meeting for the March 28th Citywide Rally to Save New York's Public Schools.  The meeting will be held at the headquarters of 32BJ SEIU, 25 West 18th Street, 5th Floor boardroom.  




4 of 12

The elections for parent councils in your school district or citywide councils (English Language Learners, Special Education, District 75) are coming up. 

Candidates cannot be employees of NYCDOE.


We need strong supporters of school bus rights to run and win!

To learn more and to nominate yourself:


   VISIT for more information

  ATTEND:  2015 Council Elections Inform & Apply Night with Chancellor Fariña

Tweed Courthouse

Tuesday, March 10th 2015

5:30 p.m. -7:30 p.m.



5 of 12

March 11-26 Parent Teacher conferences (non-D75, depending on grade level)

If you haven't gotten a notice, ask child's school and See




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Wednesday, March 11, 2015

A Parent’s Perspective on Autism: How to Get Help For Your Child  10:00 a.m. — 12:30 p.m. 

Speakers from Fathers Forum NY and Sinergia 

New York City Health Department 42-09 28th Street, 

Conference Room 14-31, Long Island City, NY 11101




7 of 12

March 12 Protect our Schools 8 a.m. symbolic actions across NYC 





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Friday, March 13

10 am – 12 pm  Workshop

 Advocacy Skills for Parents:

Essential advocacy skills parents need to navigate any

system, including entitlement and benefit, business, medical

or education.


Trustees Room, Central Library

10 Grand Army Plaza, Brooklyn 


Please register at or 212.677.4650

ASL and Spanish interpretation available upon advance request




9 of 12

Tue, 03/17/2015


Understand options, identify goals and develop an action plan for your child with a disability. Help your young adult transition to a meaningful life of learning, earning and independence

6:00pm-8:00pm @ John F. Kennedy Jr. School - 721Q, 57-12 94th Street,  Queens, NY 11373





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Wednesday, March 18

Getting Help for Struggling Readers:

What You Need to Know


10 am – 12 pm

Information Commons Lab, Central Library

10 Grand Army Plaza (see contact info in event #8 above)




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Access-A-Ride: Information Workshops 
March 18 from 2:00 to 3:00 pm (CIDNY-Manhattan, 841 Broadway)
Get information on Access-a-Ride (AAR) from an AAR representative: what is it, how to use it, and quick tips to have your best trip. - See more at:




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March 12-18 -- annual Disability film festival.



***Links to more info and events***



Brooklyn Center for Independence of the Disabled 



Resources for Children with Special Needs March Newsletter



Autistic Self Advocacy Network


Letter urging withdrawal of appeal to U.S. Supreme Court 

because case puts ADA at risk

(exception for police dealing with people with mental health conditions)

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