President's Message

November, 2013

To all of our Colorado Council of Learning Disabilities Members,

Welcome to the 2013-2014 school year. It is with great pleasure that I have accepted the position of CCLD Board president and I am honored to serve as your president. I look forward to continue the mission of CCLD in its endeavors to support the instruction of our students with learning disabilities and the community that supports them.

CCLD, in conjunction with the Colorado Metro Math Intervention Team and the Colorado Council for Teachers of Mathematics, will offer Math on the “Planes” again this year. Dr. Mary Pittman, CDE Mathematics Specialist, will be the presenter for the pre-conference workshop on February 20, 2014. Dr. Richard Kitchen, professor and Kennedy Endowed Chair of Urban Education, University of Denver, will be the featured presenter on February 21-22, 2014. Please see more information here to register. We hope to see you all there!

Courage to Risk will celebrate its 25th Anniversary at the Broadmoor Hotel in Colorado Springs, February 7-8, 2014. The two keynote speakers are Dr. Maryanne Wolf and Rick Lavoie. Please visit the Courage to Risk website to register and to find out more information about the conference. Come join us!

This past October, I had the honor of representing CCLD at the Council for Learning Disabilities International Conference in Austin. Icaro Mardones was presented with the Council for Learning Disabilities Teacher of the Year Award. Icaro received recognition for his outstanding teaching practices and for consistently providing quality instruction to students with learning disabilities. Mark Semmler, Colorado Professional of the Year, received the 2013 Floyd G. Hudson Outstanding Service Award for his exemplary performance and commitment in the field of learning disabilities. It was an honor to be present as these two men were acknowledged for their service. Please join me in congratulating both Icaro and Mark for their excellence and passion in teaching students with disabilities. Both recipients are featured in articles available here.

Mark your calendars and plan to attend a one-day SLD Math Project workshop presented by Mark Semmler on December 5. Mark’s presentation is on What if Fractions Were Numbers? — Teaching for Basic Understanding of Fractions to Students with Specific Learning Disabilities. To register and to find out more information about the workshop, please visit Additional information is here.

CCLD’s Research recipients for the 2013 Math on the “Planes” are Ms. Cassandra Parker, Ms. Gayle Niss, Ms. Lori Pruett, Ms. Mary Ziegler Zimmerman and Ms. Annemarie Dempsey. Each of these award recipients received a complimentary one-year membership to CLD and CCLD. Congratulations to these fine research award recipients! You can read more about them in the featured articles here.

Candy Myers' article on the Relationship between the READ Act and the READ Plans and Students with Specific Learning Disabilities is a must read. More information regarding this topic Can be found at this Be sure to check it out.

We appreciate your continued membership and welcome your input. We are all ears to build and offer opportunities to strengthen our community. If you have ideas to share or would like to join a leadership team or steering committee, do not hesitate to contact us. We look forward to you becoming part of our team.

In closing, I want to wish the best for you and your students in this 2013-2014 school year.

Arlene Vigil-Olech M.A.
President, Colorado Council for Learning Disabilities