Monday, March 2, 2015

Hogle Zoo Offers Classes for Children with Special Needs

Kids classes for children with special needs (autism and visual impairment, to be specific) at Hogle Zoo are being offered this year. The classes need to be successful in order for the zoo to feel the need to do more than just a pilot run. Below is a link for the program brochure highlighting all available activities at the zoo, as well as the class registration page. In the brochure, you'll want to focus in on page two (right after the cover page) for the details on these special needs classes, which are under the "Zoo Just for You" section.


Monday, February 23, 2015

Innovation in Our Community

This is an inspiring story about how some classmates helped one of their peers who is not able to speak. The classmates were innovative in how they came up with a way for their friend to access communication technology, but even more importantly, they saw the need and rose to the challenge. It took the collaboration and caring hearts of a teacher, technological support staff, and friends. Watch what happens.

Monday, February 2, 2015

Utah Special Needs Families and Tax Deductions

Here are some great resources to check out when you have a child with a disability or with special needs.

Utah TC-40D

After determining if your child has an eligible disability, use this form on your 2014 taxes. Your family deserves it and you may very well need it to offset some of your costs in caring for your child.

If your child is two years old or younger, take your form to the Utah Department of Health for them to verify that your child is eligible and to sign. For children 21 years old or younger, take the TC-40D form to your child's principal or Local Education Agency (LEA). For those with a child over eighteen years of age, take your form to the Utah Division of Services for People with Disabilities for a support coordinator to sign, to your child's primary care physician, or to a licensed psychologist familiar with your child.

Even though some of these years overlap, more detail regarding Parts 1, 2, and 3 on the TC-40D and eligibility requirements can be found on the form itself.

5 Additional Tax Deductions Which May Apply

Did you know that medical expenses, therapies, specialized diets, and legal fees may be considered eligible tax deductions? In addition, be sure to check if your family qualifies for the Child and Dependent Care Credit or the Earned Income Credit.

Information in this post is strictly as a reference to resources. The author, organization, and blog waive all liability pertaining to taxes and how any individuals interpret or use this information. We hope this is beneficial as information only. Individuals should ensure that they meet the specified requirements by the IRS and/or the state tax commission.

Saturday, January 17, 2015

ADHD Seminar at Davis High School

CHADD of Utah in collaboration with Davis School District

Pre-registration Is Strongly Recommended

DATE: Thursday, January 22, 2015 TIME: 7:00-9:00 P.M.

Invites Parents and Educators to attend...
"Death of a Superhero"

LOCATION: Davis High School Auditorium, 325 South Main Street, Kaysville, Utah

Presented by Mark Patey

(Minimum $5.00 donation request for CHADD of Utah Parent 2 Parent Scholarship Fund is appreciated)

The fastest way to destroy an AD/HD superhero is to get him/her to believe he/she is not one.

All Interested in Attending Please Register by Email with Stacey Stamper OR Kathy Romney

What if you were a gifted sprinter, but were told that because of a condition found in a very small percentage of the population, your legs run too quickly and you’d have to learn to live without them.

For many children and adults with AD/HD that scenario is all too real. The world at large often asks them to limit the power of their sprinting or ‘hyperactive’ brains, when perhaps all they need is a bigger track to run on.

Provide your name, email address, school and school district.

**Educators can earn 2 Relicensure Points for attending. A certificate of attendance will be provided.
This entertaining and informative seminar will investigate how we can "Free the Superhero Within" by learning 5 ways to unleash the strength of an AD/HD brain.
Questions: Contact CHADD of Utah at

Born in Salem, Oregon, in 1972, Mark started life as a high-energy, curious child. In the fifth grade, Mark was diagnosed as having AD/HD and put in a special education class with the slower learners and school "trouble makers," yet went on in life to build multiple successful companies, starting the first at the age of 15 and employing hundreds by the age of 21.

Mark is currently the owner of Prodigy Engineering, BlueStep Technologies, 4Care Pharmacies, and Growth Climate Relationship Education and Therapy Centers. Past achievements have included building several other successful businesses, both large and small. He was the host of his own motorsports show on ESPN, and is consistently rated as one of the top presenters and trainers in the country.

Most recently, Mark received global recognition for breaking the Transcontinental World Speed Record once held by Howard Hughes. Flying a self-built airplane across the United States, Mark bested the previous record by an astonishing 48 minutes and 11 seconds.

Mark enjoys collecting, building, and flying airplanes, and donates his time and personal helicopter to the Utah County Search and Rescue. In 2010, the state of Utah awarded Mark with The Citizen Lifesaving Award.

Mark is the author of Addicts and Millionaires: The Gift and Curse of ADHD, and is also the host of the number one-rated podcast on AD/HD, "Distracted! with Mark Patey." Mark is an identical twin and lives in Spanish Fork, Utah, with his wife and four sons.

Friday, October 3, 2014

Upcoming Autumn Events

Wednesday, October 8                               6:30-8:30 p.m.
Vista Education Center, Rooms 1525 & 1535
97 South 200 East, Farmington, 84025
Online Registration: 
From NO Where to KNOW Where: Transition to Adult Life
Families of youth and young adults with disabilities have learned many things, but most admit that they have much more to learn. The transition to adult life can leave parents feeling they are "NO Where"- totally lost! Get to "KNOW Where" by learning about transition planning and related issues. We will also discuss how to prepare your teen to participate in the transition planning process
as well.

Tuesday, October 14            6:30-8:30 PM 
Vista Education Center, Rooms 1525 & 1535
97 South 200 East, Farmington, 84025
Online Registration: 

Plan for the Future:  Employment and Higher Education 

How can vocational rehabilitation be a partner in your child's IEP or Section 504 process?  Does your young adult have a plan for
 the future? How can your young adult prepare for employment, training and attending college? This workshop helps families to:  look at how vocational rehabilitation can be involved in the students current IEP as you plan for the future and employment goals; Better understand vocational rehabilitation programs and services; Better understand services for students with disabilities in higher education.                               
Wednesday, October 22    6:30-8:30 PM
Vista Education Center, Rooms 1525 & 1535
97 South 200 East, Farmington, 84025
Online Registration: 

Pro Se Guardianship Training 
In a guardianship proceeding family petitioners can save money by choosing to represent themselves in the court process.  This is called Pro Se Representation. Guardianship Associates of Utah has over 12 years of experience teaching families how to represent themselves and is offering a free Pro Se training class for families who would like to act Pro Se as they seek guardianship of a family member. Families will be given all required court documents on a CD. During the training, families will be taught how to fill out these documents correctly. Families will learn how to file the documents with the court and how to represent themselves at the hearing. The CD will also contain detailed written instructions. This class takes two hours. It is recommended that you attend Basics of Guardianship before attending this class. 
Wednesday, October 29    6:30-8:30 PM
Vista Education Center, Rooms 1525 & 1535
97 South 200 East, Farmington, 84025
Online Registration: 

Parents as Partners in the IEP Process 

 Parents are important members of the IEP team. They can and want to be effective partners with other members of the team in developing and delivering special education programs for their student with disabilities. However, they often lack information. This workshop will help parents understand their role, rights and responsibilities in the IEP process. Parents will also learn how to effectively prepare for, participate in and follow-up on IEP meetings held on behalf of their student.  
Wednesday, November 5                      6:30-8:30 PM
Vista Education Center, Rooms 1525 & 1535
97 South 200 East, Farmington, 84025
Online Registration:   

Assistive Technology at Home and School 
What's out there and how can it help?
What apps work?
Guest Presenter:  Erek Engar:  Davis District Specialist
Thursday, November 6        6:30-8:30 PM
Vista Education Center, Rooms 1525 & 1535
97 South 200 East, Farmington, 84025
Online Registration: 

October 15th 7:15pm
Surviving the Holidays
by Utah Easy to Love
The holidays can be one of the most stressful times of the year for families raising
children with special needs. Join us to share ideas & suggestions so you can
survive and still have fun!
Davis County
1246 Flint Meadows #102

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Ogden Organization Helps Families Get a Break

The Family Support Center of Ogden (FSCO) is one place local families can take their children for childcare and a short break. Whether a parent needs to run to the grocery store or take a child to the doctor without having to bring the rest of their otherwise healthy children, the support center can be a source of relief to families undergoing stress.

FSCO began advocating for children in foster care and preventing child abuse. In addition to protecting children, the organization wanted to be a driving force in avoiding costs the state could incur due to the after effects of child abuse. The center offers a variety of supports, but one way they saw an opportunity to help families was to offer short periods of childcare for up to two hour intervals, so that a family would not feel such an intense pressure of their circumstances.

This service has expanded to assisting any local family who qualifies and fills out some brief paperwork at the center. FSCO even offers support to some families of children with special needs. The center is not trained or equipped to handle critical health care needs, such as g-tube feeding or monitoring oxygen. They have, however, provided childcare for children with autism. The two hour break can be provided during normal business hours during the week and many local families have found this to be exactly what they needed to get through a trying time.

Have you ever dreaded going to the grocery store because your child throws tantrums? Use FSK to help. Having food in your home when your family needs it is important, especially if you have a child with special needs. Do you avoid going to the doctor because you do not want to take all of your children and do not have other options? Use this resource. It will help you concentrate on the health of your children. Is your marriage under stress and perhaps it would be nice to have a lunch date, but there is no one to ask to take your children? FSCO can be a source of respite. It will help to relieve your family and may help you avoid building stresses. Family Support Center of Ogden strengthens families and the community.

Family Support Center of Ogden
Family Support Center of Ogden, Inc. | 3340 S Harrison Blvd, Suite 110 | Ogden, Utah 84403
Phone: 801-393-3113 | Fax: 801-394-1910 | Email:

Article by Jeanette Pascoe

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Special Needs - Not Always Black and White

Family Support Clinic: Thursday, August 14th, 6-8 p.m.

McKay Dee Hospital, Education Center

Save this very important date for a fabulous clinic with various presenters who will speak directly to your heart. Northern Utah Pediatrics is partnering with Families of Super Kids to host this special event.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Seizure Smart Conference THIS SATURDAY

7th Annual Get Seizure Smart! Educational Conference
June 7th, 2014
8am to 4pm
Little America
500 S Main St
Salt Lake City, UT
"The Epilepsy Association of Utah is pleased to announce that we have been gifted 16 tickets to conference. If you wanted to attend, but the cost was restrictive, please email letting us know you are interested by giving us your name and your guests' name (if needed). Limit of 2 free tickets per household. See you Saturday!"

Press Release with additional information below:

For Immediate Release

Epilepsy Association of Utah Announces
“Seizure Smart” Education Conference

SALT LAKE CITY – Monday, May 19, 2014

The Epilepsy Association of Utah (EAU) announces its annual “Get Seizure Smart!” Epilepsy Education Conference, presenting the latest in epilepsy science and treatment options, as well as tools and resources for those affected by epilepsy. The “Seizure Smart” conference will be held Saturday, June 7, 2014 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Little America Hotel, 500 South Main Street, Salt Lake City. Individuals with epilepsy, families of those affected, medical personnel, educators, and first responders, as well as the general public, are invited to attend.

Dr. Ian Miller, pediatric neurologist at Miami Children’s Hospital, international expert in treating Dravet syndrome and member of the Dravet Syndrome Foundation’s Professional Advisory Board, will be the keynote speaker and special guest. He is scheduled to discuss the discovery of genetics in epilepsy and the push for research into CBD-based treatment options.

The conference will feature breakout sessions with renowned experts presenting on topics including the complexities of epilepsy, genetics of epilepsy, latest treatment options, alternative therapies, coping and advocacy, managing behaviors and sibling behaviors, mental health, trusts and living wills and patient resources. Several organizations and vendors will be in attendance with tables providing helpful information, a few of which include the Division of Services for People with Disabilities, Hope 4 Children With Epilepsy, Utah Kids, Utah Parent Center, Autism Council of Utah and Brain Balance Centers.

With the recent passage of HB105 “Charlee’s Law” allowing for the possession of high-CBD/low-THC cannabis oil for the treatment of intractable epilepsy in adults and children, the EAU will present the specifics of the new Hemp Extract Registration Program and the safe and effective use of the therapy. Jennifer May, co-founder of Hope 4 Children With Epilepsy, the EAU’s parent advocacy group who lobbied in favor of the bill, will be walking patients through the details of the law and the processes required to gain access to approved extracts for treatment. As the leading provider of high-CBD/low-THC cannabis oil, Realm of Caring’s own Heather Jackson will present information about the oil as a treatment for intractable epilepsy. Realm of Caring is a non-profit organization in Colorado who oversees the cultivation of the Charlotte’s Web plant and its processing and distribution as Alepsia, a non-psychoactive extract infused in oil.

“Our goal with the Seizure Smart Epilepsy Conference is to provide those affected by epilepsy with the tools needed to educate themselves, as well as those around them, and obtain the best treatments possible, whether they be mainstream or alternative,” said April Sintz, EAU Conference Chairperson and H4CE leadership member. “We want to empower people by giving them choices and resources that are available to all of us here in the state of Utah,” Sintz stated.

Cost for the conference is $30 for the public ($15 for EAU members) if registered in advance; an additional $10 charge will apply for those registering at the door. A light breakfast, a catered lunch, and a “loot bag” will be provided for each attendee. Registration is open on the EAU website at


Founded in 1973, the Epilepsy Association of Utah is a 501(c)(3) charity dedicated to enhancing the quality of life
for all individuals living with epilepsy and seizure disorders. One in 26 people will develop epilepsy at some time in
their lives, totaling over 100,000 people in Utah alone. Epilepsy is the fourth most common neurological disorder
in the US, after migraine, stroke and Alzheimer’s. The Epilepsy Association of Utah offers a public education
program, statewide support groups, personal and professional advocacy, college scholarships, art exhibits,
educational conferences, summer camp and more. Visit for additional information.

Media Contact: Jennifer Hardy May

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Northern Utah Dance Class for Children with Special Needs

Friend to Friend

Julie Bouck, a PCMC physical therapist in Ogden, teaches a dance class to children with special needs. One of our former parent partners, Kim Schneider, who immensely contributed to the support of our super kids, danced with Julie for fifteen years. The class is free to all children, ages three to fifteen that have a disability.

Information contributed by Kim Schneider:
"The class is at the Centerpoint Legacy Theater in Centerville on Fridays from 4:15 to 5. There is no limit to the disability either. She has had kids in wheelchairs that teachers or other kids help move the wheelchair to the beat of the music and they love it."


After School Program in Ogden for Children with Special Needs

Enable New Logo Trans.gif
After School Enrichment Program
Location:  2890 South 1900 West, Ogden
Time:  2:30-6:30 Monday–Friday
(Clients are welcome to receive services for any amount of time up to four hours) 
Funding:  We are accepting Department of Services for People with Disabilities and private pay funding
We are excited to announce that our EnableUtah After School Enrichment Program includes support, supervision and habilitation for disabled individuals in elementary, middle school, high school and post high programs.   Our activities can help to maintain or improve a student’s dexterity, stamina, memory, safety, interpersonal relations, self-help, communication, mobility, hygiene and other functional abilities and life skills.  In addition to enriching activities, we offer assistance with homework.  For more information, a tour or to interview staff please call or email. 
Michele Miller, MS, SSW, BC2   Intake Specialist & Behavioral Consultant
801-621-6595 X103
Diane Morris, BA   Program Development Coordinator     
          801-866-1316 X 151   

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Autism Resources for Northern Utah

There is a growing need for autism resources in Northern Utah. Here is a compiled list of helpful organizations and online links. Let us know what you think and feel free to add to the list!

Families of Super Kids

Autism Resources

Families of Super Kids

Click on Northern Utah Summer Programs or

Click on Year Round Programs

Primary Children’s Rehab Ogden


Occupational Therapy

Diane Peake


Home consultations available in Layton to Ogden area

Clearfield Aquatic Center

Special Needs Swimming Lessons



Facebook Pages:


Utah Kids

Utah Medical Supply Exchange

Northern Utah Autism Program (NUAP): 801-394-5936

Early Intervention Specialized for Autism, ABA Program

Children with Special Health Care Needs: Ogden 801-626-3645

Utah Center for Asistive Technology (UCAT)

Helping people with disabilities identify and obtain assistive technology that will enhance the quality of their lives.



1595 West 500 S

SLC, Utah 84104

Service Dogs:

Canine Companions for Independence (CCI)

Wasatch Champions

Inquiries and requests:

Utah Parent Center

230 West 200 South, Suite 1101
Salt Lake City, UT 84101
Phone: 801.272.1051
Toll-Free in Utah: 1.800.468.1160

Easter Seals

Easter Seals-Goodwill Northern Rocky Mountain is a private, nonprofit organization serving children and adults with autism and other disabilities, along with disadvantaged families in Idaho, Montana, Utah and Wyoming.

PCMC Neurobehavioral Clinic
Northern Utah

PCMC provides diagnostic evaluations, neuropsychological assessment, home programs, behavior management, and medication consultations

Disability Law Center

Free consultations

Autism Speaks

Behavioral Modification:

Behavior Stories


Thursday, March 6, 2014

Eagle Eyes Aids Nonverbal Children

Op-Ed Article by Jeanette Pascoe
Family Partner, Northern Utah Pediatrics
Medical Home Project

EagleEyes, offered by The Opportunity Foundation of America, is an eye controlled technology and program that acts as a mouse for adults and children with disabilities. By taping electrodes to the user's temples and connecting the electrodes to the technology box, an individual can control their computer screen.

Wow. So many times, I have thought, "I know my kid is in there. She just can't control her hands or speak." One of the only things in her environment she controls is when she finds a string and plays with it. I want more for her.

I have not had my daughter try EagleEyes, yet I intend to do so very soon. Just imagine my daughter, a twelve year old who is non-verbal and has limited motor function, playing a game on a computer screen with her eyes. She would be able to look at a small area of the screen for a moment which results in a mouse click. My daughter would not even need to hold her head still. Awesome feature, especially since she sways back and forth. She could even use her head movement to control the device to play with many computer programs or the internet.

Through a grant, EagleEyes is available for only $800 during 2014. The Opportunity Foundation of America, a non-profit, only asks for a donation to cover the cost of the system and training. That is pretty amazing considering that it is normally $1200, considering the start up cost for the company as well as the development of the technology. There is even a possibility that Utah DSPD through Medicaid could cover the cost. Let's hope. I am convinced that the makers, INOVAR, Inc. want to help people improve their quality of life.

To obtain EagleEyes, schedule a free evaluation.
Phone: 385.215.9605

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Parenting Children with ADHD

Notes from presenter Melanie Hatch
Coordinator, CHADD of Utah

Navigating life with ADHD can be complex and emotional. Thankfully, there are some great tools that will help children and families with ADHD function happily.

Have your children help make the rules, make the consequences, and post the rules in multiple places throughout the house if you want them to remember.  Help your children go at their pace. Don't rush them.

Children with ADHD need to develop problem solving skills. Sometimes children get stuck, so give them options on how to do the task. There are always different routes.

Give your child immediate feedback. Review strategies on how to manage ADHD, so that it's not just about a misbehavior. Help them see when they are doing something right. Every time your child is doing something right, reinforce that. Whether it is a sticker sheet, a reward at the end of a period of multiple tasks, or a compliment, help them build confidence in the things they do right.

When you wonder why your child is not doing what you want them to do, it may be that they didn't hear you. They may have been distracted for a moment. Talk to your child face to face. Observe if they are absorbing what you are saying and if they seem distracted, have them repeat it back to you. When you need to correct them, do it quietly with a gentle touch on the arm or a pep talk in private. Be sure to not embarrass them.

Your instruction should be clear with individual steps. For example, take a picture of what their room needs to look like when they clean it. Your child may need a picture for each step. When your child with ADHD is working, let them do it in short segments. They can come back to their tasks. Sometimes we need to praise them for partial finishing, for the little things. Reward them for improvement, not perfection. Children with ADHD are consistently inconsistent.  They may not remember the rules and may need help navigating the same task multiple times, even if they did it right a few times before. Always help them see the positive.

ADHD is a physiological condition. When deciding if a child needs medication, realize that it is the choice of the parent and the child. Talk with your doctor and research medications. A teacher should not say the a child must be medicated. Usually, a medication could help a child calm down enough to learn.

There can be several issues for parents of children with ADHD. Parents may have the same condition.  Parents have to deal with multiple issues like work, sports, schools, other children, and keeping a clean home. Parents may get negative messages from neighbors or schools that the parenting needs to improve, however, this may not be the case. If a parent struggles with their child's issues, try to not be at odds with your child. Show unconditional love. Mothers may often get depressed because they want to fix the problems, but celebrating one's own strengths is important as a parent.

There is hope for your child with ADHD.  Solutions for the child include consistency from both parents and follow through with consequences.  Make sure consequences are for the non - negotiable rules such as if a behavior hurts others or self. Clarify your expectations. Use enforceable statements without anger. Try not to use a consequence like, "If you don't clean your room, you are grounded for a month." Statements like that end up grounding the parent. Delay consequences if you or the child are emotional. Wait for five minutes to calm down.

Maintain a sense of humor! Ignore the small behaviors that don't make a big difference. Ask yourself if it really matters. Learn to laugh through difficult situations. Keep a disability perspective because a child with ADHD may look normal, yet needs the extra tools. They may have a 30 percent emotional and developmental delay. Learn where your child levels exist. Remember that parenting is not easy and simultaneously be grateful for the small victories your child makes.