Spectrum Center students will host Assembly Member Joe Coto (San Jose) and other guests on Tuesday, October 26 to celebrate the signing of the “Spectrum Law,” which provides equal access to technology-based learning materials to students with special needs in nonpublic schools throughout the state. Spectrum students developed the idea for the law and advocated for it during the recent legislative session. The legislation passed the Assembly and the Senate and was signed by Gov. Schwarzenegger in August. It takes effect Jan. 1, 2011.

MEDIA ADVISORY
What: Spectrum Center students host Assembly Member Joe Coto (San Jose) and other guests to celebrate the signing of the “Spectrum Law,” which provides equal access to technology-based learning materials to students with special needs in nonpublic schools throughout the state. Spectrum students developed the idea for the law and advocated for it during the recent legislative session. The legislation passed the Assembly and the Senate and was signed by Gov. Schwarzenegger in August. It takes effect Jan. 1, 2011.
When: Tuesday, Oct. 26, 2010; 11 a.m.
Where: Spectrum Center San Jose Campus, 762 Sunset Glen Drive, San Jose, (408) 281-2435
Visuals:

  • Students will welcome Assembly Member Coto, who is a former public school teacher and superintendent, to the campus and show how they use technology in the classroom and in their daily lives. They will show the videos Spectrum students throughout the state created and submitted to the Legislature to express their support for the bill, and they will display photos taken as they participated in the legislative process.
  • Students will talk about their experiences advocating for the bill and discuss or demonstrate how the law will prepare them to participate fully in the technology they will access both in the classroom and in daily life.
  • Students will prepare a cookout lunch to share with their families, Assembly Member Coto and other invited guests.

Background: The “Spectrum Law,” AB 1742, provides all California students with special needs equal access to technology-based learning materials in the classroom. Spectrum students developed the idea for the law after they visited the state capitol in November. Their idea grew into formal legislation that Spectrum Center students in classrooms throughout the state decided to introduce and support.

The students worked with Assembly Member Coto, who authored AB 1742, and personally advocated for the bill in both houses of the Legislature. They met with key staff and Members of the Education Committee, and they wrote letters and created videos to express their support for the bill and describe the personal impact the bill will have on their lives. The bill passed the state Assembly (76-0) and the Senate (34-0) with unanimous bipartisan support. Gov. Schwarzenegger signed the bill into law Aug. 17.

The new law, which is supported by the California State PTA, provides an opportunity for nonpublic, nonsectarian schools to incorporate the use of technology when customizing teaching strategies and curriculum for students with special needs such as autism spectrum disorders, pervasive developmental disorders and developmental delays. In other states, technology-based learning tools have been shown to help students learn skills for use in future jobs and in independent living.

Spectrum Center’s state-certified nonpublic schools and public school integrated collaborative classrooms provide special education services to students ages five to 22 with a wide array of special needs, such as autism spectrum disorders (ASD), developmental delays, behavioral challenges, pervasive developmental disorders (PDD) and emotional disturbance.

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FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Jessica Turner, Lovell Communications Inc.
(615) 297-7766
jessica@lovell.com