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Newsmaker: Naomi Zigmond

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The Council for Exceptional Children will award Naomi Zigmond, 71, of Squirrel Hill its Jeannette E. Fleischner Career Leadership Award at its annual convention and expo in April in San Antonio.

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Saturday, March 16, 2013, 12:01 a.m.

Noteworthy: The Council for Exceptional Children will award Zigmond the 2013 Jeannette E. Fleischner Career Leadership Award at its annual convention and expo in San Antonio in April. The award recognizes people who have advanced the field of learning disabilities.

Age: 71

Residence: Squirrel Hill

Family: Husband, Michael; son, Daniel; daughter, Leah; several grandchildren

Occupation: Emeritus distinguished professor of instruction and learning with the University of Pittsburgh's School of Education

Background: Zigmond recently led the development and implementation of a system assessing Pennsylvania students with cognitive disabilities. She is an advocate of including kids with disabilities in mainstream classes, and a critic of the “obsession of everybody getting the same thing” when it's clear that some kids need more help than others.

Education: Bachelor's degree in psychology from McGill University in Montreal; master's and doctorate degrees in learning disabilities from the School of Speech at Northwestern University

Quote: “We've been very worried that kids will feel bad if they're separated out, but I think they'll feel worse if they can't read.”

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