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The Fall 2015 Texas Council For Exceptional Children Newsletter

is now available.

 The Newsletter is filled with significant information that will help you be an active member of TCEC.

Please see the following information found in this edition of the newsletter:

Notice of proposed changes to the TCEC Constitution.

Call for Candidates for the TCEC Executive Board.

Several excellent research articles by some of our TCEC Memebers

& other important information.

DownLoad it Here!

Welcome from your TCEC President for 2015-2016 Dr. Kathleen Kyzar

Dear Texas Council for Exceptional Children Members:

It is my pleasure to serve as President of Texas Council for Exceptional Children (Texas CEC) during the 2015-2016 Academic Year, and to serve alongside a strong and energized board and membership. Among the Texas CEC Executive Board, there is a wealth of experience in special education. Board members represent current and former teachers across grade levels, current and former school administrators, and higher education faculty.

The Texas CEC Board is pleased to welcome two newly-elected members: Emily Rutherford, who is an assistant professor of special education in the Counseling, Kinesiology, and Special Education Department at Midwestern State University in Wichita Falls; and Lucretia Gartrell, who is the Executive Director of Special Services at Burleson ISD and also a PhD Candidate at Texas Woman’s University in Denton, Texas.

 The full Texas CEC Board for the 2015-2016 Academic Year is as follows: 

Past President: Dennis Cavitt

President: Kathleen Kyzar

President Elect: Meredith Walling

Vice President: Emily Rutherford

Secretary: Lucretia Gartrell

Treasurer: George Williams

Standards Committee Chair: Brenda Gilliam

Membership Committee Chair: Clark Cavin

Governmental Relations Committee Chair: Lisa Cavin

Constitution Committee Chair: Jerrie Jackson

Publications Committee Chair: Brittany Hott

 In our work this year, the Texas CEC Board and Committee Members will be dedicated to carrying out the mission of Texas CEC, which is to “improve, through excellence and advocacy, the education and quality of life for children and youth with exceptionalities and to enhance engagement of their families.” In the remainder of this letter, I will highlight a few accomplishments and also upcoming activities that align with the Texas CEC mission.

 At the time of this writing, Texas CEC is coming off the heels of a successful annual conference. The conference theme was “Connecting Texas Special Educators in Bridging Research and Practice” and we succeeded in accomplishing this goal. A total of 166 Texas CEC members attended the conference. There were a total of 77 presentations and 85 presenters. Participants and presenters represented a wide range of stakeholder roles: teachers and other practitioners, professional organizations, educational service centers, higher education (students and faculty), private or not-for-profit, state representatives, and self-advocates. Texas CEC was pleased to present awards to leaders in the state in the areas of teaching, research, and service. Please read Clark Cavin’s remarks in this newsletter to learn more about the award recipients.

 At the 2015 conference, Texas CEC was excited to partner with two CEC state-level divisions: Texas Division on Career Development and Transition (Texas DCDT) and the Texas Division of Early Childhood (Texas DEC). Texas DCDT and Texas DEC sponsored conference strands and were active during the conference in networking with members. Over the next year, Texas CEC will be working with those interested in strengthening current state-level CEC divisions and/or establishing CEC divisions in Texas. Texas CEC will host a leadership summit prior to the 2016 conference in Austin as a culmination of this year’s efforts to strengthen CEC and state divisions in Texas. If you are interested in joining this workgroup, please e-mail

 Please mark your calendars for the 2016 Texas CEC Conference, which will take place in late June 2016 (final dates to follow). Meredith Walling, President Elect, is already hard at work on plans. The conference is moving this year from the North Texas area the state capitol—Austin! The conference agenda will include off- and on-site pre-conference sessions and networking opportunities during the conference in addition to traditional presentation formats. You won’t want to miss this conference. We look forward to seeing you there! If you have an interest in participating in the conference committee, please e-mail Meredith at

 The Board will meet this month to plan the year’s activities. We look forward to posting announcements about additional professional development and networking events as they are confirmed. Please look for these announcements in the Texas CEC Newsletter, and also follow Texas CEC on Twitter (@texas_cec) and Facebook (Texas Council for Exceptional Children Fans).

 I look forward to being a part of the continued energy CEC and divisions are building in the state of Texas. Here’s to the exciting possibilities!

 Most sincerely,

 Kathleen Kyzar, Ph.D.

President, Texas CEC 


Save the Date for:
The Division of Early Childhood's (DEC)31st Annual International Conference On Young Children with Special Needs and Their Families

October 7-9, 2015

Conference will be held in:
Atlanta at the Hilton Atlanta Hotel
255 Courtland Street NE, Atlanta, GA 30303

For more information:  Or call 310-428-7209

CEC Convention & Expo

  • Getting around any new city can be an intimidating and daunting challenge. Luckily for you we have compiled some helpful information about getting into, out of, and around San Diego. By Plane If you haven’t booked your airfare yet, the closest airport is San Diego International Airport (SAN). The airport...

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Texas Social 2014

Texas Social 2014 update

This year's Texas Social turned out to be a huge success. The Texas Social was held on Thursday night from 8-Midnight during the National CEC Conference in Philadlphia. We had over 750 give away items (cowboy hats, bandanas, LED Blinkies, and Glow in the dark tubes) that were gone in the couple of hours. We had a superb band, Jakes Country Band as the entertainment. Door Prizes were collected from venders at the expo and winners returned to the expo to pick up door prizes. We had great response from the expo venders. Texas Social next year will be in San Diego, California at CEC 2015 Convention & Expo.  Expected date and time is April 9th from 8-12pm.

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Register for the Texas Assistive Technology Network Statewide Conference June 10-12, 2014,. Region 4 ESC

AIM for Students with Hearing Loss 
This brief discusses two issues associated with the provision of accessible instructional materials (AIM) to students who are deaf or hard of hearing. The first section describes the physical basis of reading challenges experienced by many students who are deaf or hard of hearing. The second section focuses on research pertaining to the use of sign language representations in conjunction with print and digital text for this population of students.

The State of Learning Disabilities 2014
The updated and expanded third edition of NCLD’s The State of Learning Disabilities report captures data about the 5 percent of our nation’s school-age population whose learning disabilities (LD) have been formally identified, and provides a critical lens through which to understand and address the needs of the additional 15 percent or more of students with unidentified and unaddressed learning and attention issues. 

Tool of the Week

  • For many, the holiday season that is upon us will be spent socializing with far-flung family and friends, so we thought it appropriate this week’s FREE tool focus on social skills! We’ve got a quick, 4-step how-to guide for how to assess social skills according to setting. The authors call this an “eco-behavioral assessment” and ...
CEC's Reality 101 blog

CEC's Tool of the Week


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