Helping Hands

The ETCSD Special Education Parent Newsletter, March 2018

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Fun experiences for warmer times!

With our brief tastes of spring weather, I think we are all looking forward to warmer and sunnier days ahead! Since time always seems to move quickly, we wanted to share the information that we have about summer camps, training opportunities and resources for connecting with others that we have now and we will continue to send them your way as we receive additional opportunities. Please use the provided links or contact us for more information about any of these opportunities.

ARCh Camp Pow Wow: Are you looking for a way for your child to make friends and gain skills through swimming, gardening, canoeing, singing, hiking, cooking, dancing, playing, learning laughing and more? Camp Pow Wow offers 8 weeks of summer recreation (day camp, some residential camp) in Menomonee Falls. Camp Pow Wow also offers Transition Camp (ages 15-25) and a 3 day adventure trip to Lake Geneva.

Camp Akeela: Camp Akeela opened last year in Appleton and is considering a second location in Glencoe, IL. Camp Akeela provides social growth opportunities within a traditional camp program for boys and girls ages 9-17 with mild social communication challenges. Camp Akeela's goal is to support character, confidence, community and connection.

Easter Seals Camp Wawbeek: Easter Seals offers general camps for youth and teens from ages 7-18 throughout the summer as well as weekends in the fall and spring. In addition to the general camp, Easter Seals Wisconsin has created sessions for campers ages 10-25 who have high-functioning autism or other related diagnoses. Additionally, transition weekends throughout the school year and summer are available for campers aged 15-25 who are ready to learn about setting goals, caring for themselves independently, work, money, how to cook and how to work together with peers.

While these camps are specifically designed opportunities for children and youth with special needs, there are many more opportunities that are for all learners including parks and recreation programs or other local day camps. We will continue to share resources about additional special needs camp opportunities as we receive them. Should you require any additional information, please contact us or the camp program directly.

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Parents United Event: Child and Adolescent Anxiety

Wednesday, March 14th, 9-11:30am

12800 N Lake Shore Drive

Mequon, WI

Parents United welcomes David Jacobi, PhD from Rogers Memorial Hospital to discuss Identification, Intervention and Parent Education for Child and Adolescent Anxiety. This talk will provide an overview of the most frequently occurring anxiety disorders. The identification and differential diagnosis of these disorders will be discussed within the framework of current DSM 5 criteria.

The basic principles of cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) will be reviewed and exposure-based interventions for anxiety disorders will be offered. Family accommodation and guidance on how parents can effectively manage anxiety related behaviors will be discussed.

Please register here.

Parent Survey

The East Troy Community School District is working with the U.S. Office of Education and the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction to ask parents about how schools develop partnerships with parents. As part of this, we will be contacting you to ask for your help by completing a survey.

This survey is an important opportunity to share what you think about your child's education. While East Troy is required to collect the information by federal and state law, the survey is confidential so you can feel free to share any information that you would like. In fact, filling out this survey gives information to the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction about resources that can assist Wisconsin schools in areas of family engagement.

What do you need to do now? Nothing! You will receive an individualized link to the online survey. Once you get that link, you will use your specific Username and Password to complete the survey online. Should you prefer it, you can call the school district and a staff person will read the survey to you and type your responses or a paper survey will be provided to you.

Please be on the look out for more information to come. If you have any questions in the meantime or upon receipt of your survey code, please contact us.

Thank you for helping us collect this important information!

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Parents United: "Angst" Screening

Tuesday, April 10th, 6-8pm

641 East Forest Street

Oconomowoc, WI

Join Parents United as we partner with the Oconomowoc Area School District for a screening of the film Angst. Angst is a 55-minute film and virtual reality experience that explores anxiety, its causes, effects and what we can do about it. The filmmaker's goal is to have a global conversation and raise awareness around anxiety. Angst features candid interviews with kids and young adults who suffer, or have suffered, from anxiety and what they've learned about it. The film includes discussions with mental health experts about the causes of anxiety and its sociological effects, as well as help, resources and tools. The screening will be followed by a panel discussion and question and answer opportunity including Dr. Jacobi (see above presentation opportunity in March for more about Dr. Jacobi).

6:00-6:30 pm Resource Fair

6:30-8:00 pm "Angst" Screening and Panel.

Register here!

Did You Know?

In addition to the Parents United trainings that are offered throughout the year, did you know that there are agencies and organizations that are available for parents throughout the state? Please visit this list of links to state and national organizations that may be helpful to you and see below for information for a training from the Family Voices of Wisconsin.

What’s After High School? is a broad overview of the transition to adult life for youth with disabilities and special health care needs and includes the following topics: envisioning a youth’s future in the community; the role of schools; long-term supports; transitioning to adult health care; legal options; advocacy; and the fundamentals of self-determination. This training will be available throughout the greater Madison and Milwaukee areas this spring on the following dates:

April 16 5:30-8:00 pm--Middleton

April 26 5:00-7:30 pm--Menomonee Falls

May 10 5:00-7:30 pm--Cedarburg

Learn More: To find out more and register go to the Family Voices of Wisconsin website at or contact

Cost: All training sessions are free to participants and a light meal and resource binder will be provided. Stipends for childcare and travel expenses are available.

Contact Us!

Questions or Concerns? Please contact Kate Harder or your child's case manager with any questions or concerns that you have regarding the above information or with specific concerns regarding your child.

Special thanks to Matt Katzenberger for the use of his photo on the background of this newsletter.

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