Managing Holiday Temptations for People with Special Needs or Disabilities

By Guest Blogger Laura O’Reilly, R.N., B.A., AVP Health and Wellness, Easter Seals New Jersey
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Celebrating the Holiday Season is a reason to eat, drink and be merry. Who can resist? Is it possible to get through the holiday season without gaining weight? I cannot promise that, but it is possible to minimize weight gain and use each day as a chance to get back on track by trying some of these tips.  It is important to know that all of us, whether or not we live with a disability or other special need, can enjoy a healthy and productive holiday season!

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Guide to Understanding an Individualized Education Plan (IEP)

1In New Jersey, as well as other states across the country, an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) is a written document that outlines a child’s (with a special need or disability) education, ages 3-21.  The plan is tailored specifically to the individual student, so they receive maximum educational benefit.  The key word is individual.  A program that is appropriate for one student, may not be right for another.

For a child with a disability, the IEP is the cornerstone for their education.  It identifies the services that a child needs so that he/she can grow and learn during the school year in a manner that recognizes their disability and challenges.  An IEP is also a legal document that outlines three key topics:

  • The child’s special education plan that includes their goals for the school year
  • Services needed to help the child reach those goals
  • A strategy to evaluate the student’s success and progress

Read moreGuide to Understanding an Individualized Education Plan (IEP)