Turner Bill To Establish New Jersey Special Education And Traumatic Brain Injury Task Force Clears Senate

Senator Shirley K. Turner, D-Mercer, speaks on the Senate floor in honor of retiring Senator Bob Martin, R-Morris.

TRENTON – A measure sponsored by Senator Shirley K. Turner which would create the New Jersey Special Education and Traumatic Brain Injury Task force was unanimously approved today by the full Senate.

“Because of the severity of many traumatic brain injuries, it is absolutely necessary that families, caregivers and educators know the best practices and techniques to enable them to provide the best possible care for survivors,” said Senator Turner, D-Mercer. “The State’s Board of Education regulations list the traumatic brain injury as a category of students which may be eligible for special education and other related services, and it is only fitting that educators are able to recognize, classify and properly educate these students.”

Senator Turner’s measure, S-3036, would establish the task force to address the needs of students with a traumatic brain injury, in an effort to prepare them for entry into college and or the work force. The task force would also be responsible for examining how current statues and regulations affect students who have suffered a traumatic brain injury, and help to develop recommendations to be submitted to the Governor and the Legislature.

The 17-member task force would include the Commissioners of Education and Human Services, and an additional representative of each department; a representative of the Department of Health and Senior Services; representatives of the Brain Injury Association of New Jersey; parents of children who have suffered a traumatic brain injury; a school nurse; a special education teacher; and members of the public.

This measure was unanimously approved by the Senate Education Committee on December 7, 2009. It now heads to Governor Corzine’s desk, where his signature would make it State law.

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