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Weekly Reader Partners with AbleNet in Publishing Adapted Editions for Students with Moderate or Severe Disabilities

(PRWEB) August 2, 2007 -- AbleNet, long known for its expertise in the development of research-based curricula and assistive technologies for special education
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 classrooms, developed the new series of adapted student publications in partnership with Weekly Reader, one of the country's most respected publishers of materials for elementary and secondary schools.

 “  Finally, something for special education classrooms! These publications give my students access to the same information as other high school students, but at their level, and I don't have to create it myself...  
Dubbed 'Weekly Reader AbleNet Editions,' these unique publications provide proven, quality content for today's special education
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 classrooms. Teachers receive materials uniquely designed for students with moderate to severe disabilities, utilizing the fresh, engaging, and relevant content of Weekly Reader publications. In essence, this is Weekly Reader magazine adapted for special education classrooms.

Instead of the more traditional magazine-style format found in all other Weekly Reader publications, 'Weekly Reader AbleNet Editions' feature Boardmaker picture symbols, an industry standard for differentiated instruction that has been proven effective in providing meaningful literacy and communication experiences to students with disabilities. A specially designed teacher's guide provides instructional strategies, techniques for incorporating assistive technologies and methods for literacy, grade level content, and functional skills development.

In addition to delivering timely and relevant information, 'Weekly Reader AbleNet Editions' provide direct access to grade-level content/standards with proven strategies unique to the instructional demands of students with significant disabilities. Ira Wolfman, Weekly Reader Senior Vice President, Editorial, sums it up as follows, "Weekly Reader is dedicated to producing content that meets both state and federal guidelines, which is important to educators and administrators. To that end, we recognize that content needs to be modified in a way that allows for differentiated instruction while preserving the full integrity of the content itself. Using the AbleNet framework, we're able to preserve the richness of the content, while allowing for differentiated instruction."

'Weekly Reader AbleNet Editions' give special education teachers a choice between 'Weekly Reader - Edition 2,' which covers a variety of elementary grade-level themes and topics; 'Know Your World,' which covers current events and pop culture news for secondary students; and/or 'Current Health 1,' which covers a variety of age-appropriate and timely topics related to health and well-being also for secondary students To further assist teachers in addressing the unique needs of individual students, all 'Weekly Reader AbleNet Editions'' are available in two formats, one for students with moderate disabilities and one for students with severe/profound disabilities.

After reviewing the 'Weekly Reader AbleNet Editions', Betsy Detlefsen, a special education teacher for Anoka-Hennepin Independent School
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 District 11 in Minneapolis, Minnesota, remarked, "Finally, something for special education classrooms! These publications give my students access to the same information as other high school students, but at their level, and I don't have to create it myself!"

AbleNet CEO Jen Thalhuber sees these exciting new publications as a perfect complement to the products and services AbleNet has been providing for more than 20 years. "AbleNet's mission has always been to provide strong content, meaningful participation and inclusion in the entire school community. The fact that Weekly Reader publications have been a mainstay of U.S. schools for many decades affords our students the opportunity to access rich standards-based content, while building relationships and connection with their peers."

Weekly Reader Publishing Group President Neal Goff is proud to be part of this groundbreaking partnership with AbleNet. "It has always been our mission to reach all students with our publications, and we knew this population of young people needed content adjusted in ways that would allow them to reap the full benefits of our various offerings. Recognizing this unique challenge, we felt partnering with AbleNet was essential. AbleNet has a strong background in curriculum development and the integration of assistive technology ensures participation. The partnership provides assurances that we at Weekly Reader continue to stay true to the No Child Left Behind Act," said Goff.

For more information about the 'Weekly Reader AbleNet Editions' contact Mary Kay Walch at 651-294-2218 or visit www.ablenetinc.com/weeklyreaderae.

About AbleNet
AbleNet, Inc., offers a complete line of assistive technology products, including communication aids for non-verbal students; access aids, such as switches and wheelchair mounting devices for students who require physical supports; and classroom tools that can be used by any individual student or during group activities. The company is also recognized for developing research-based special education curricula that meet state and federal mandates.

Located in Roseville, Minnesota, AbleNet Inc., is an ESOP company that employs 35 people and sells its products through a network of distributors in 49 countries. AbleNet's products and programs have been used in tens of thousands of classrooms nationally for more than 20 years. For more information, visit www.ablenetinc.com.


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