• Welcome to the 21News page!
    Here's where you can stay updated on all the events, opportunities and staff achievements here
    at the Carbon Lehigh Intermediate Unit #21.

    From our own team creating videos and social media posts, to CLIU 21 being featured in local news!
    It's all right here. 

E-Sports Are Growing! Students Realize the Potential at DeSales University

E-sports, as a formalized club and program, are making their way into high schools all over the country. With inter-scholastic leagues and competition like EPSEL at the grade school level, e-sports is quickly becoming a varsity program at colleges and universities like @DeSalesUniversityBulldogs!

High school students toured the campus and realized the possibilites in and around e-sports. In college, e-sports teams provide personal growth like traditional scholar-athletes enjoy. And even if you don't go pro, there are job opportunities in multiple career paths as the gaming industry continues to grow.

Working Pooch is Welcomed to the CLIU21 Family!

Officially not all employees at CLIU21 are human! We would like to introduce everyone to our newest working dog, LLAsie (pronounced Lassie)! Her name's spelling is a play on words for the building she works in: Lehigh Learning Achievement School (known as LLAS).

LLASie is not a service dog for one particular student. She is a facility dog who will roam the halls and classrooms at LLAS to help calm and sooth each and every student! This canine's effect on our children is already incredibly evident.

We are incredibly grateful for the Carbon Lehigh Special Needs Children's Foundation for funding LLASie and her care! The foundation really is staying true to their mission.

LB Morris Students Go on Virtual Field Trip at LV Zoo!

Happy National SRO Day!

Kutztown Business Owners Donate Free Haircuts to LLAS Students

Sometimes there's nothing better than a fresh haircut to feel better about yourself. Students at Lehigh Learning and Achievement School in Orefield received free haircuts from two Kutztown businesses: New.Vision.Salon and City Cuts Barbershop.

A simple haircut went a long way for our students and their confidence. Not only was it a good day for the kids, but the business owners say giving back to the community made for quite the heart-warming and soul-fulfilling day. We cannot thank you enough for your time and positive energy!

MDS-F Student's Journey is highlighted on PBS39

Carbon County Environmental Center Brings Animals Into the Classroom

CLIU Staff Tours CCTI

Check Out Our New Transition Services Newsletter

Congratulations to E-Sports Champions Parkland High School Varsity and JV

Amid Dr. Eib's Retirement, CLIU21 Seeking Executive Director Applicants

Check Out the New CLIU21 Podcast "Understanding the IU"

Moravian University Students Visit CLIU21 Central Office

Mother and Daughter Continue to Grow Holiday Clothing/Food Drive

It’s not every day a fifth grade student wants to help those in need. But that was the reality for mother Stacey Green when her daughter Iliana came to her with this idea. So they started a warm clothing drive which was grown over the years called Ilie’s Warm Drive.

This is their third year collecting clothing and supporting groups in Carbon and Monroe County who help the homeless and less fortunate. And this is their biggest year yet. It started small in 2019, and has grown into quite the operation. See how Stacey and Iliana are making our community a better place!

CLIU Appreciation Letter Reading 2: Keeping Consistency in the DHH Room

This is our 2nd CLIU Appreciation Letter Readings. It's where an IU21 educator reads a letter from a student or parent they've impacted. We take you to Parkland High School's Deaf and Hard of Hearing Classroom with Mrs. Christine Bloch and her story with student Nathan Moya.

Christine recently took a job with CLIU21 after many years with IU20. Moya has been working with Mrs. Bloch for a couple years now,. When she switched jobs, he and his family decided to follow her for his final year in high school. Nathan says he owes a lot of his success to her because of the consistency in which she has helped him grow.

CLIU Classroom Caroling

As we approach the holiday break for school, we bring you some of our favorite CLIU students giving us the best carols!

Featured is our Project SEARCH students at Lehigh Valley-Muhlenberg Hospital, our emotional support students at Towamensing Elementary, and our MDS-Functional students from Lehighton Elementary!

We all wish you happy holidays and a happy new year!

Santa's CLIU Elves Make Accessible Toys for Children

As a child, opening up a gift for the holidays is an all-time enjoyable moment! But not every special needs child can use some of our favorite toys. That's where the Santa's CLIU Elves come in to make these toys accessible.

For Toy Adaptation Day 2022, we replaced hard to use switches with larger external switches easily tapped or bopped to make a battery-powered toy work! Students from Lehigh Carbon Technical Institute, Jim Thorpe Area High School, Carbon Learning and Achievement School and the CLIU work-based learning program came together. 3D printed switches were wired and soldered into these toys so anyone can use them regardless of their physical disability!

A truly wonderful display of teamwork, altruism and technical skill among a wide array of students. 50 special needs children are receiving a gift they can play with.

As a child, opening up a gift for the holidays is an all-time enjoyable moment! But not every special needs child can use some of our favorite toys. That's where the Santa's CLIU Elves come in to make these toys accessible.

For Toy Adaptation Day 2022, we replaced hard to use switches with larger external switches easily tapped or bopped to make a battery-powered toy work! Students from Lehigh Career Technical Institute, Jim Thorpe Area High School, Carbon Learning and Achievement School and the CLIU work-based learning program came together. 3D printed switches were wired and soldered into these toys so anyone can use them regardless of their physical disability!

A truly wonderful display of teamwork, altruism and technical skill among a wide array of students. 50 special needs children are receiving a gift they can play with.

CLIU Appreciation Letter Reading 1: The Making of Gabe the Weatherman

Just in time for the Thanksgiving holiday break, CLIU21 is starting a video series which will go all year round. It's called the CLIU Appreciation Letter Readings. It's where an IU21 educator reads a letter from a student or parent they've impacted. The goal is show our educators they are recognized and appreciated for oftentimes thankless work.

Our inaugural letter reading goes to Russell Watkins' MDSB team at Panther Valley High School. It comes from a mother and father of a student we've showcased many times before: Gabe "The Weatherman" Watterson.

Support Professional Valerie Borman Retires After 25 Year IU21 Career

American Education Week 2022 - Substitute Appreciation Day

American Education Week 2022 - Educator for a Day: The First and Last People a Student Sees

The theme for Thursday during American Education Week is Educator for a Day, but we're dedicating this day to our IU21 transportation staff. Even though our drivers and driver aides don't teach in a classroom, their impact on students is greater than getting from point A to point B. The truth is they are the first and last people a special needs child sees in the school day.

Nadine (driver) and Cheryl (aide) are educators in their own way every single day. They teach children how to respect one another, work with others, and how to regulate their emotions.

American Education Week 2022 - Support Professionals Day: The Heart of a Special Needs Classroom

For Support Professionals Day during American Education Week, our CLIU teachers are giving thanks and appreciation to their classroom paraprofessionals. There are times when a teacher needs to rely on their instructional aides or emotional support interventionists to get through the day's lesson plan.

We take you to Caitlin Helen's emotional support classroom at Towamensing Elementary in Carbon County. In her class, she lets her IAs and ESIs be themselves while trusting in them to do their job without constant oversight. In turn, she feels like she's getting the best version of them as they help her manage the classroom.

American Education Week 2022: Family Day - How Work-Based Learning Can Make a Family Stronger

For Family Day during American Education Week, we are highlighting the three-step work based learning program at CLIU21 which ultimately helps special needs students develop real world skills in the work force. Yes, we are helping students become better employees through our partnership with employers and service providers.

But the effect of these programs in their home lives might be the most important. Through confidence building and a culture of independence, mothers and fathers are telling us their child has become a better family member and person which in turn makes things a little bit easier around the house.

The 2022 Holiday Basket Raffle for the CLSNCF is Underway!!!

Every year, CLIU21 hosts a holiday basket raffle to support the Carbon Lehigh Special Needs Children's Foundation. Take a chance on 13 different gift baskets! Some have cash, some have gift cards, and some have day passes to water parks and ski resorts! Ticket sales have begun and they are open to the public by visiting www.CLSNCF.org. You can also purchase tickets in person at the main office in Schnecksville or transportation building in Danielsville.

1 Ticket for $1 or 6 tickets for $5! The drawing will take place on December 19th. All money goes toward families in need during the holiday season for things like coats, hats, gloves, presents and dinner preparations.

Bring Back Your District-Wide Teacher Camaraderie with Camp Fowler/CLIU21 Team Building Exercises

Hybrid and virtual learning really threw a wrench in education. Part of that disconnect comes from teachers and staff not being able to work together like they normally would.

That's why Camp Fowler and CLIU21 are coming together to help re-establish camaraderie and cohesiveness with Catalyst Adventure Learning team building exercises. Listen to testimony from teachers at the Northern Lehigh school district about learning how to work together better with fellow colleagues!

Celebrating Deaf Awareness Month, Orefield Middle School is Congratulated For Hallway DHH Murals

September is Deaf Awareness Month, and CLIU21 is acknowledging recent art installations in the hallways of Orefield Middle School. They have two massive paintings with sign language showing their student body how to welcome classmates who may be deaf or hard of hearing.

These works of art are so creative! Watch the video to see some really excellent student art work with a whole lot of meaning. Thank you to OMS and every other school creating a culture of inclusion.

Adaptive Bikes and Stroller Gifted to Lehigh and Carbon County Families

Most of us often take for granted the ability to jump on a bike and feel the breeze whenever we want. For some special needs children, that's not possible.

CLIU staff, on behalf of the special needs children's foundation, partnered up with Variety - the Children’s Charity to gift six families with adaptive bikes and strollers. Parents were given a full rundown on how the bikes and strollers work, how to make adjustments, and how to pack them in a car. A wonderful day for everyone as these kids are able to ride around in style!

Help us celebrate our long standing CLIU employees!

CLIU Teams Get on the Same Page with Opening Day Breakout Rooms

Opening Day 2022 was a blast with lots of music and entertainment along with well-deserved employee recognition. But once the ceremony is over, it's time to get with your department to go over objectives for the new school year!

Each team gets into what is called a "breakout room." It's where they do over new policies, goals for the year and any pertinent information. But not all breakout rooms are the same! Watch how our supervisors carry the Opening Day energy into an otherwise mundane breakout room.

CLIU Celebrates Opening Day In-Person For the First Time in Two Years!

Opening Day 2022 for the Carbon Lehigh Intermediate Unit was truly special. We were all back in the same room for the first time in two years and we celebrated with song and dance like we never have before! This might have been the most exciting Opening Day we've ever had!

We were able to hear inspiring messages from our leaders at the IU and recognize the fabulous work our professionals do including those who have been with us for decades!

This year's Opening Day theme was "Feel the Rhythm." With the pandemic starting to appear in our rear-view mirror, it's time to get back in the groove of how we used to do things while becoming better educators through the lessons we learned along the way.

Get Ready to "Feel The Rhythm" at CLIU's 2022 Opening Day!

This year's Opening Day ceremony is so highly anticipated because we are finally back together in person! And what better way to celebrate that than to get back in the swing of things!

This year's theme is "Feel The Rhythm." It's an encouragement to get in sync with your colleagues and get into your groove again! We can't wait to see you all on Tuesday, August 16th at Parkland High School!

Another Successful Extended School Year is Over!

Extended School Year, or ESY, is a vital program to make sure special needs students don't lose their hard earned skills over the summer months. But this is a bit of a different experience than typical schooling. Students get to have have more fun with more active learning.

Some schools even shake it up with themes! Check out how our students are enjoying ESY.

Sign Your Junior Driver Up for the CLIU Drivers Ed Program

Learning the way of the road is one of the most important skills anyone can have. It's so easy to get into a car crash these days as old roads are flooded with vehicles. To make sure your child is ready to take driving solo on safely, you should enroll in the CLIU Driver's Ed Program at DriversEd.CLIU.org.

CLIU Students Enjoy Week-Long Girl Scout Camping Experience!

As the IU teaches children with special needs, it's so important for us to help them broaden their horizons and explore new things they'll never get in a classroom.

Six girls were granted a trip to Camp Mosey Wood in Carbon County where they had a true camping experience: archery, swimming, zip-lining, cooking over a fire, sleeping in a tent and more!

The goal for this trip (other than fun, obviously!) is to provide an inclusive environment for these girls while they try things they've never done before. Thank you to the CLIU staff who stay by the children's sides, and thank you to the Carbon Lehigh Special Needs Children Foundation for financially supporting our six students during this trip!

June CLIU Board Presentation - Early Intervention

For the June CLIU21 Board meeting, we are highlighting all the good work our teachers and staff in Early Intervention are doing. Early Intervention is often times a family's introduction to everything we have to offer - whether their child is with us for a short time or until high school graduation.

The sooner we can get special needs students into our programs, he better our plan is to see them through.

29th Annual CLSNCF Golf Tournament is the Best Yet!

Every year, the Carbon Lehigh Special Needs Children's Foundation hosts a fundraiser golf tournament at Olde Homestead Golf Club in New Tripoli, Lehigh County. For nearly three decades this event raises money to help special needs students experience life changing programs.

More golfers signed up for the CLSNCF Golf Tournament this year than ever before! Which means more money is being raised for the foundation . Thank you to all the CLIU employees, members of the public, and our sponsors for supporting the cause!

Congratulations to Rose Varano for Graduating!

When a student graduates with the help of CLIU staff members, it's an incredibly proud moment for us. We're so proud and happy for Rose Varano from Emmaus High School for walking across the stage and receiving her diploma!

Gabe the PV Weatherman Gets to Visit a News Station!

It's one thing to watch the news....it's another to actually visit the studio where it all happens! Gabe Watterson is a student with autism at Panther Valley High School, and he absolutely loves the weather! He likes it so much he records his own weekend weather forecasts with the help of his CLIU21 teachers.

WBRE Eyewitness News heard Gabe's story and invited his teachers and family to their studio in Wilkes-Barre! He was able to tour the whole place - including the weather center where got coaching from their meteorologist on the green screen!

Such an inclusive experience for Gabe. He was glowing the whole time! We cannot thank WBRE for stepping up and showing our weatherman an unforgettable time!

CLIU21 Celebrates the LAS Graduating Class of 2022!

CLIU21 is so happy to award eight graduates with high school diplomas, but these students had to take a harder path to achieve this goal. These young men and women graduated from one of our three Learning and Achievement schools to get here.

Their potential and success is exactly why the IU21 provides an alternate form of education for these types of student!

Special Needs Students Dedicate Park Bench They Helped Build

Our special needs students at Carbon Career Technical Institute get the opportunity to learn and build in the carpentry class. They were part of a park bench donation to Baer Memorial Park in Lehighton.

But this is no ordinary bench. It was dedicated to Lisa Cooper, a Carbon County Special Olympics powerlifting coach who passed away this past January. Our students did a great job honoring her memory!

Jim Thorpe Fire Chief Teaches Fire Safety at CCTI

We are so thankful to Bill Diehm and the Jim Thorpe Fire Department for coming to CCTI and showing our special needs kids some fire safety tips!

This included how to check your smoke alarms, what to do when it goes off, and how to safely exit a burning building. And the day ended with students getting to wear some gear!

Acknowledging Teacher Appreciation Week with CLIU's Dr. Elaine Eib

We are coming off of an enormously difficult two years as educators where the pandemic pushed us to our limits. Although it was stressful and challenging, we learned so much about ourselves. We are capable of more than we imagined.

In honor of teacher appreciation week, Dr. Eib would like to thank everyone at CLIU for their tireless work during one of the worst eras in modern history. We look forward to continuing the mission of helping children learn.

Gabe the PV Weatherman Makes the News.....Again!

Gabe Watterman from Panther Valley High School has been a huge hit after everyone found out about his weekly weather forecasts. He's made it to local news on Blue Ridge Channel 13, 69 News, The Times News, and now WNEP Newswatch 16!

In June, Gabe is taking a tour of a WBRE Eyewitness News in Wilkes-Barre! We are so proud of Gabe for showing everyone how students with autism can run through barriers!

CLIU Celebrates Autism Awareness Month of April

April is an entire month dedicated to recognizing students with autism and all the challenges they overcome with the help of their CLIU teachers and staff.

We go to the Northwestern School District where some students are dancing and others are cooking!

Support Staff Shown Appreciation with Bingo Luncheon

Behind every executive, manager and director at CLIU21 is a group of support staff members backing them up! And we took the day to celebrate and appreciate those people at our annual bingo luncheon with live music. We would not be such a well-oiled machine without them!

We appreciate them all every day of the year. Not just today!

April CLIU Board Presentation - DHH/Interpreting/Audiology/Vision

For the April board meeting at CLIU, we showed all the good work done by students who have vision and hearing problems. And we can't forget the staff members who work with them to help them shine! One student who's completely blind gets Braille worksheets to do his work, and he's in AP calculus. The other two students with cochlear implants and hearing aids are working hard toward a career at Lehigh Career & Technical Institute

We are so proud of these students for smashing through barriers and refusing to be anything less than great!

Take the Early Intervention Survey for CLIU!

Early Intervention is so important for children with special needs before they enter the school system. It helps us understand how we can best educate them.

But the program is not nearly as effective without the input of the families we serve. We want to know what we're doing well, and more importantly where families think we should improve. Use the links below to take part in our survey!

English: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/EngFamSurvey2022

Spanish: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/SpanFamSurvey2022

DHH Student Signs the National Anthem at a Baseball Game!

Not all of us get to hear the National Anthem when we go to a sporting event, which is why Athen Orlang from CLIU21 sang the song in ASL sign language! He was representing the Lehigh Valley Deaf and Hard of Hearing Task Force and all people just like him!

This is special moment for Athen as he continues to serve as a role model to younger people with similar disabilities.

CLIU's Dr. Eib and Dr. Schumacher Give Tips to Project SEARCH Interns

Project Search is a national program helping special needs adults get real jobs in the workforce. In the Lehigh Valley chapter, we are partnering with Lehigh Valley Health Network to hire some of our graduates at their Cedar Crest and Muhlenberg campuses. Jobs range from kitchen staff, to patient transport, and even medical tool sterilization.

Dr. Elaine Eib and Dr. Lisa Schumacher came in to speak with the interns to answer questions about going through a job interview, how to handle stress on the job, and how to climb the ladder in their field.

Become a Guest Teacher with CLIU!

For many people, teaching is a calling. But sometimes those people choose a different career path or struggle to find the time.

The Guest Teacher Program is your chance to get in the classroom teaching children without going back to college for a another degree. All you need is any bachelors degree and the desire to be an educator.

Guest Teacher Application: https://www.cliu.org/Page/125

Get Ready for the 2022 Special Needs Golf Tournament!

Hello, friends! Now that The Masters are over, we look ahead to a golfing tradition more helpful than any other. Join the Carbon Lehigh Special Needs Children Foundation on June 21st for the 29th annual golf tournament!

All money raised through this four man scramble goes toward giving special needs children awesome experiences.

Sign up today by visiting www.CLSNCF.org! Or contact Valerie Borman for more information 610-769-4111 ext 1159 | bormanv@cliu.org

Pennsylvania Miss Amazing Was a Huge Success!

Over 30 young special needs ladies got to strut their stuff for a beauty pageant! They were able to show their personality while showing off their skills, their passions and some really nice dresses! This contest is much more than a pageant. This is a special night where parents get to watch their children shine! Thank you to the pageant coordinators for all their hardwork!

Regional Academic Competition 2022 - CLIU21

It's good to be back! This is the first in-person academic competition at CLIU since 2019! What a great day of friendly competition between 12 different high schools. Students were competing with themselves against the clock or against other teams with the buzzer. Congratulations to all the teams who came out, and good luck to Emmaus High School as they move on to the state competition in Harrisburg!

Students See the Career Future of E-Sports Gaming at East Stroudsburg University

East Stroudsburg University is helping students turn their love for video games into a career! There's more to competitive gaming called "e-sports" than meets the eye in a field that is growing rapidly! See how our students enjoyed a campus tour of a state-of-the-art facility.

911 Simulator Gets TV13 Coverage!

We're so happy to see Blue Ridge TV13 continuing to tell the awesome stories of our CLIU21 students! This story aired was about students at Panther Valley Intermediate School learning how to work with a dispatcher after dialing 911.

When should you call 911? Special needs students learn when to call for help

We may take for granted how easy it is to call 911 for help. But for special needs students it's not that easy. Panther Valley Intermediate kids went through a 911 simulator. They first learned what types of incidents need help and those that do not. Then they learned how to respond to a 911 operator on a phone.

National Social Workers Month: March

March is a national celebration of all the social workers in our country! And we're recognizing two of the eleven incredibly dedicated LSWs in CLIU 21 who work with our children and families every day!

March Board Meeting Presentation: Non-Public Schools

During each months board meeting, CLIU highlights a department and shows some of the work they do in the classrooms. For March, we're highlighting our NonPublic Schools department!

Gabe the Panther Valley Weatherman!

Gabe Watterson of Panther Valley is one of our IU21 students with autism, but he doesn't let that stop him from doing his own weather forecast! Watch how he and his teachers get creative to strengthen his verbal skills!

Code Jam 2022

CIU20 and CLIU21 students face off in coding/computer programming speed competition.

Media and Design Competition

From programming to logos and graphic design, students showcase their work in the Media and Design Competition.

Jenn's House 25k Donation

We are so thankful to the non-profit Jenn's House for making a massive monetary donation to the CLSNCF.

Schnecksville DHH Winter Olympics

Look out, winter olympians! Our deaf and hard of hearing kids at Schnecksville Elementary can compete, too!

National School Police Officer Appreciation Day

February 15th is National School Officer Appreciation Day! Thank you to the CLIU policeman who keep our buildings safe!

National School Counselors Week

We are acknowledging our traveling school counselors during National School Counselors Week February 7-11!