Special Education 101 A teachers guide to basic understanding of special education.
Congratulations and Welcome to SFDRCISD! “The secret of education lies in respecting the pupil.” Ralph Waldo Emerson
List of Included Documents • Acronyms and Common Terms • Notice of Procedural Safeguards • Guide to the ARD Process • Sample Sped Forms • Strategies and Accommodations • Staar Accommodations • Co-Teach Guidelines
List of Included Documents • IDEIA and Section 504 Comparison • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xU-E2pzFbF8&feature=fvwrel • A Teacher’s Guide to Section 504 (Q&A) • Notice of Rights under Section 504 • Sample Section 504 Accommodations • Teacher’s Guide to Dyslexia
IDEA/IDEIA • IDEA – Individuals with Disabilities Education Act This Federal Law was reauthorized in 2004 and is now…. • IDEIA – Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act • IDEA/IDEIA are used interchangeably when referring to the same law.
IDEA/IDEIA This federal law grants children with disabilities the right to receive a “Free Appropriate Public Education” (FAPE). IDEA lays out the minimum requirements that each state must meet in order to receive federal special education funds.
IDEA/IDEIA What are the 4 parts of IDEA/IDEIA? • Part A – General provisions, definitions, and other issues • Part B – Assistance for education of all children with disabilities • Part C – Infants and Toddlers with disabilities • Part D – National activities to improve education of children with disabilities
Special Education Process • Step 1. Request for evaluation • Step 2. Notice of rights • Step 3. Evaluation • Step 4&5. THE ARD/IEP meeting • Step 6. On-going assessment & data collection • Step 7. Examine data and make recommendations
Step 1Request for Evaluation This occurs when someone believes that a student has a disability AND needs special education or related services to be involved in and make progress in the general education curriculum.
Step 1Request for Evaluation What follows is a referral for an individualized initial evaluation that is initiated either because the child is: a. Not developing at the same rate or sequence as other children b. Experiencing unusual or prolonged difficulties with general education curriculum and instruction; varied interventions strategies have been tried(RTI) and documented before request is initiated.
What is Response to Intervention (RtI)? An early intervention model for addressing the learning needs of all students through a continuum of services.
RtI RtI services should include: • High quality instruction and scientific, research-based strategies aligned with individual student need; • Frequent monitoring of student progress to help make results based academic or behavioral decisions; • Data-based school improvement • The application of student response data to make important educational decisions
RtI Under IDEIA, students who are at risk should receive RtI interventions before a referral to special education can be considered. Why??? To cut down on the number of referrals to special education for students who have NOT received adequate instruction in the general education setting. (NCLB)
Step 2Notice of Rights IDEA says the school must give parents a notice explaining the procedural safeguards available to parents (their rights) at least one time per year.
Step 3Evaluation The student is evaluated using a variety of assessment tools and strategies to gather relevant functional, academic and developmental information, including information provided by the parent, that may assist in making a determination of……
Step 3 Evaluation …whether the child meets the federal definition of a “child with a disability” …the content of the child’s IEP, including information related to enabling the child to be involved in and progress in the general curriculum or, for preschool children, to participate in appropriate activities
Step 4& 5ARD/IEP meeting In Texas, we call the meetings that determine the special education supports and services of a student, an ARD. ARD is an acronym for Admission, Review and Dismissal. Other states call these meetings IEP meetings.
Step 6 On-going assessment/data collection • Instructional and related service providers collect data and maintain records of student progress as soon as the IEP is developed and continue until the next scheduled annual ARD/IEP review.
Step 7 Examine data and make recommendations This step should begin at least 4 to 6 weeks before the next scheduled annual ARD/IEP meeting.
Admission, Review and Dismissal (ARD) Committee This is the name of the team that meets at least annually to: • Decide if a student has an eligible disability • Determine whether special ed. and related services are appropriate and will be provided • Develop an individual ed. plan (IEP)
ARD Committee Meeting Annual review of a student’s special education program includes a review of the following: • Student progress • Current IEP • And, the development of a new IEP for the upcoming year
Types of ARD Committee meetings • Initial Placement • DNQ • Dismissal • Annual Review • Re-evaluation / Triennial • Manifestation • Graduation • Temporary • Transfer • Brief • Failure
Who is invited to the ARD meeting? Decision makers which include the following: • Parent • Adult student • Administrator • General ed. Teacher • Evaluation personnel • If necessary (LPAC Rep., AI, VI certified teacher)
What should a general ed. teacher bring to an ARD meeting? • Relevant information from other general ed. teachers • Progress reports in the gen. ed. Program • Behavior, grades, and attendance • Samples of modifications • Student work samples • Student’s educational levels in the gen. ed. setting
What should a special ed. Teacher bring to an ARD Meeting? • Relevant information from other Sp. Ed. teachers • Up-dated progress on objectives • Competencies (strengths/weaknesses) • Draft of a BIP if appropriate • Last progress report • Student’s educational levels • Work samples, TAKs or alternative assessment scores, current grades, attendance, informal assessment results, and other information necessary.
In order for an ARD to be duly constituted, it must include: • A campus administrator • Parent (invited with a 5 day notice) • At least 1 sp. Ed. Teacher (VI/AI) • At least 1 gen. ed. Teacher • Providers of relevant services (including related services) • A professional who can interpret evaluation results • The student, as appropriate
A highly effective ARD Committee: • Gets participation from all members. • Discusses important issues thoroughly. • Uses multiple valid measures of evidence to support decisions. • Assists the parent in understanding the discussion and in being an active participant.
What are some decisions made at an ARD? • Accommodations • Modifications • Assessment decisions
Accommodations Practices and procedures that allow students with disabilities to learn, have access to, and be tested on the same curriculum as students without disabilities.
Accommodations Accommodations do not change what the student is expected to learn but rather how he/she learns the curriculum. Providing accommodations during instruction and assessment may also promote equal access to the general curriculum.
Accommodations • Practices that provide equitable access to grade-level curriculum during instruction and assessment. • Do not reduce learning expectations and do not replace the teaching of subject specific knowledge and skills in the TEKS. • May be needed more often at some grades than others.
Types of Classroom Accommodations • Presentation (Alternate Format) • Response (methods other than paper and pencil or machine scorable responses) • Setting (change the location or condition) • Timing and Scheduling (increase the standard length of time or change organization or test)
Monitoring accommodations • Is it important?
Modifications A change in what the student is expected to learn that is different from the general education curriculum (TEKS). Modifications are only for students with an IEP. Not all students with an IEP need modifications. The curriculum is adjusted or reduced. The achievement standard is lowered.
Examples of Modifications • Teacher creates a separate test for student (remove some answer choices, abstract concepts removed) • Teacher chunks test for student in assignments and assessments • In accordance to the IEP, the teacher removes parts of the grade level TEKS that students’ disability keeps student from learning
Assessment Decisions • Do special education students participate in the Texas Student Assessment Program? • NCLB tells us that All students including those receiving special education services, must be assessed on grade-level curriculum. • NCLB calls for reasonable adaptations and accommodations for students with disabilities
What does IDEIA tell us? Requires participation in state wide and district wide assessments. Requires necessary accommodations.
Alternate Assessments • STAAR is a general assessment that may also be administered to students receiving special education. • STAAR-M For only 2% • STAAR-ALT Only 1%
STAAR • General Assessment • Same grade-level achievement standards for all students • Format change: larger font, fewer items on page • Same grade level and subjects for students. • SSI and exit level retest opportunities same as STAAR
STAAR-M • An alternate assessment • Modified achievement standards • Same grade level content as STAAR • Format: larger font, fewer items per page • Test design: fewer answer choices, simpler vocabulary and sentence structure
STAAR-ALT • Alternate assessment • Alternate achievement standards • Designed for students with significant cognitive disabilities • Format: not a traditional paper/pencil test • Administered using students primary language
What are the 13 eligibility categories identified under IDEIA? • AI: Auditorially Impaired • AU: Autism • DB: Deaf-Blind • ED: Emotionally Disturbed • LD: Learning Disability • MD: Multiple Disabilities • ID: Intellectual Disability
13 Categories Continued • NC: Non-Categorical • OHI: Other Health Impaired • OI: Orthopedically Impaired • SI: Speech Impaired • TBI: Traumatic Brain Injury • VI: Visually Impaired
ACRONYMS, ACRONYMS How many are there? Will I ever remember them all?
Who can I ask for help? • If you are unsure about a student then ask your campus administrator or the campus special education diagnostician. • If the student is either receiving special education services or section 504 support make sure that you have a copy of the students accommodations.
What happens if I don’t follow accommodations? • Trouble • May have to go to ARD and explain to parents why they have not been followed. • Could result in a “HARD ARD”. • Could result in a Due Process Hearing due to denial of FAPE.
Districts Expectations • Know your students • Be an active and effective member of your students ARD Committee meetings • Make instructional and testing decisions based solely on individual student needs and eligibility requirements • Consistently follow and document accommodations for instruction and testing
Quote: Haim Ginott “I’ve come to a frightening conclusion that I am the decisive element in the classroom. It’s my personal approach that creates the climate. It’s my daily mood that makes the weather. As a teacher, I possess a tremendous power to make a child’s life miserable or joyous. I can humiliate or humor, hurt or heal. In all situations, it is my response that decides whether a crisis will be escalated or de-escalated and a child humanized or dehumanized.”