Wolf Administration Kicks Off 2021 Hispanic Heritage Month (September 15, 2021)

Governor’s Advisory Commission on Latino Affairs (GACLA) Executive Director Luz Coln was joined by Pennsylvania Secretary of Education Noe Ortega, State Representative Manny Guzman and GACLA Commissioner Delma Lytle-Rivera to officially recognize the start of Hispanic Heritage Month 2021 in Pennsylvania with remarks and the reading of Governor Tom Wolf’s proclamation.

The theme for this year’s Hispanic Heritage Month is “Esperanza: A Celebration of Hispanic Heritage and Hope.” The theme invites us to celebrate Hispanic Heritage and to reflect on how great our tomorrow can be if we hold onto our resilience and hope. It encourages us to reflect on all of the contributions Hispanics have made in the past and will continue to make in the future. It is also a reminder that we are stronger together.

To access photos and video from today’s event, please visit PACast.

Gov. Wolf Urges Congress to Consider Key Priorities in American Families Plan That Will Support Pennsylvanians (September 14, 2021)

On September 10, 2021, Governor Tom Wolf sent a letter to the Pennsylvania Congressional Delegation sharing his priorities for Pennsylvania as the US Congress considers major aspects of President Biden’s American Families Plan.

Specifically, Governor Wolf urged Congress to approve such items as universal preschool for 3- and 4-year-old children with strong investments in these programs, access to postsecondary education through investments in the plan’s proposed College Completion Fund, and increased funding that would provide states with enhanced Medicaid funding for home and community-bases services if they carry out certain activities that will support expanding access to these services and strengthen the workforce providing them. Such funding would help provide care to those with disabilities.

Click to access a copy of the letter Governor Wolf sent to the Pennsylvania Congressional Delegation.

Mikayla’s Voice Awarded a Community Response Grant; Provides Free Subscriptions (September 14, 2021)

Mikayla’s Voice was awarded a Community Response Grant from the Pennsylvania Developmental Disabilities Council to offer 267 FREE subscriptions to “Mikayla’s Bookshelf” for families with a child with a disability. This new website includes all three of our books in electronic format and as ASL performances, plus enrichment activities related to inclusion, kindness, and friendship.

Interested schools can contact Rita Cheskiewicz, Executive Director at 570-690-7113 or rita@mikaylasvoice.org or Kimberly Resh, Program Director, at 610-746-2324 or kim@mikaylasvoice.orgto participate in Mikayla’s Voice programming and interested families should email sydney@mikaylasvoice.org as soon as possible because the grant is ending soon.

Click on this link for a flyer you may share with families.

Click here for a quick video tutorial.

PDE to LEAs: Report Expenditures Relating to Exceptional Students Collection #1 by October 14th (September 13, 2021)

On September 13, 2021, PDE BSE Director Carole L. Clancy, disseminated a memo to applicable LEAs titled Reporting of Expenditures Relating to Exceptional Students.  The memo states that Act 16 of 2000 (24 PS §13-1372(8)) requires the Reporting of Expenditures Relating to Exceptional Students. School districts and charter schools must report the number of students with disabilities for which expenditures were between $1 and $26,717.95; between $26,717.96 and $53,435.91; between $53,435.92 and $80,153.88; and $80,153.89 and over for the prior entire school year (2020-2021).

This report will be collected at the student level through PIMS using the Student Fact Template for Special Education Act 16 Funds. The template will be collected during Collection #1 (opening October 1, 2021 and closing with a deadline of October 14, 2021). Data is to be based on expenditures incurred during the entire 2020-2021 school year. Guidelines regarding the Act 16 reporting can be found at Act 16 Information. The Student Fact Template for Special Education Act 16 Funds can be found in the PIMS manual.

Failure to complete the Student Fact Template for Special Education Act 16 Funds report may have an adverse effect on the local education agency’s special education funding.

Questions regarding this reporting requirement may be emailed to ra-edseact16@pa.gov. A copy of this information is being provided to each intermediate unit so they may assist school districts and charter schools with report preparation, as needed.

Mikayla’s Voice Awarded a Community Response Grant; Provides Free Subscriptions (September 12, 2021)

Mikayla’s Voice was awarded a Community Response Grant from the Pennsylvania Developmental Disabilities Council to offer 267 FREE subscriptions to “Mikayla’s Bookshelf” for families with a child with a disability. This new website includes all three of our books in electronic format and as ASL performances, plus enrichment activities related to inclusion, kindness, and friendship. Interested families should email sydney@mikaylasvoice.org as soon as possible because the grant is ending soon.

Click on this link for a flyer you may share with families.

Click here for a quick video tutorial.