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Developing Integrated IEP Goals & Embedding Intervention: A Team Approach. Perry Flynn Consultant to NC DPI in Speech-Language Pathology, UNCG Lauren Holahan Consultant to NC DPI in Occupational Therapy, UNC Laurie Ray

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developing integrated iep goals embedding intervention a team approach
Developing Integrated IEP Goals & Embedding Intervention: A Team Approach

Perry Flynn

Consultant to NC DPI in Speech-Language Pathology, UNCG

Lauren Holahan

Consultant to NC DPI in Occupational Therapy, UNC

Laurie Ray

Consultant to NC DPI in Physical Therapy, UNC

Special thanks to Sandy Steele and Vivian James

part i exceptional children division developing integrated individualized education goals

Part IEXCEPTIONAL CHILDREN DIVISIONDeveloping Integrated Individualized Education Goals

Derived from:

Training Modules 10, 11 & 12

  • Describe essential components of a Present Level of Academic and Functional Performance (PLAFFP) and develop an example
  • Describe essential components of an annual goal and develop an example
  • Describe integrated goals and their development and develop an example
  • Discuss appropriate progress reporting and develop an example
how confused are you

How Confused Are You?

Let’s Play


question 1
Question #1

All IEP goals supported by related services must be integrated.

  • True or False?
the answer is
The Answer Is:

A student’s IEP goal should be written in any way that will best meet that student’s needs.

Sometimes an integrated goal is best, sometimes a traditional goal is best, sometimes both!

question 2
Question #2

If a related service is required for the student to benefit from special education, an RSSD must be completed.

  • True or False?
the answer is8
The Answer Is:

A RSSD is not required in any case, it is one more option to document the services a student needs in the IEP.

question 3
Question #3

A related service provider must write a progress report for goals in which their service is integrated.

  • True or False?
the answer is10
The Answer Is:
  • TRUE

If you are providing services to help a student achieve a goal, you must report on the student’s progress or lack of progress from your disciplines’ perspective.

question 4
Question #4

It is better to have IEP goals clearly separated into OT goals, PT goals,

Speech goals, etc.

  • True or False?
the answer is12
The Answer Is:

The goals should be focused on the student’s function, not the OT, PT or SLP.

Best practice calls for student-centered goals not discipline specific goals.

question 5
Question #5

A student can have both an RSSD and IEP goals.

  • True or False?
the answer is14
The Answer Is:
  • TRUE

A student’s IEP should be individualized and be made to fit their needs.

IEPs should not be made to fit the form or computer program. If it will not fit, write it out!

question 6
Question #6

At the IEP meeting, a related service provider should review goals developed by other team members and select which goals to integrate into.

  • True or False?
the answer is16
The Answer Is:

This is not a shopping opportunity!

If you think an integrated goal will work well, all collaborators should discuss (via email, phone or meeting) what the goal, data collection and progress reporting may look like and present a draft to the team.

question 7
Question #7

If a student has an integrated goal, you must use an RSSD.

  • True or False?
the answer is18
The Answer Is:

What?? No, an RSSD is not required. It is always an option.

An IEP is intended to be individualized, write it as it needs to be written.

“Always” and “never” cannot be used if the process is individualized.

iep development evidence based practice
IEP DEVELOPMENT: Evidence Based Practice
  • Formulate clinically relevant questions
  • Gather evidence that may answer questions
  • Evaluate evidence to determine which is best
  • Communicate evidence during decision-making
  • Evaluate outcomes

AOTA SSSIS Vol. 13, No. 3, Sept. 200

iep development the sequence

1. Team members report findings/review

existing data

2. Team identifies strengths & prioritizes


3. Team writes prioritized goals student can reasonably achieve by end of IEP

4. Team determines least restrictive environment for plan implementation

5. Team determines services & supports student will need to benefit from & make progress in program

domains of academic functional performance standard course of study
Domains of Academic & Functional Performance: Standard Course of Study

  • Art
  • Computer/ Technology
  • Guidance
  • Healthful Living
  • Information Skills
  • English Language Arts
  • Math
  • Science
  • Social Studies
domains of academic functional performance foundations early learning standards
Domains of Academic & Functional Performance: Foundations – Early Learning Standards

  • Approaches to Learning
  • Emotional & Social Development
  • Health & Physical Development
  • Language Development & Communication
  • Cognitive Development


the plaafp is
  • Current
  • Relevant
  • Objective
  • Measurable
  • Understandable
  • Related to one academic or functional domain
major components of plaafp
Major Components of PLAAFP
  • Data-based, student specific information related to current academic achievement and functional performance.
  • Strengths of the student.
  • Needs resulting from the disability.
  • Effects of the disability on involvement and progress in the general education curriculum.

The PLAAFP is comprehensive for each skill area or domain (academic/functional).

present levels of academic achievement and functional performance
Present Levels of Academic Achievement and Functional Performance


The present level of performance is the cornerstone of the IEP. It drives other IEP components. It links all components of the IEP together.


The measurable annual goal is a statement that flows from areas of need identified in the present levels of academic achievement and functional performance. The annual goals can reasonably be accomplished within the duration of the IEP.

measurable annual goals major components
Measurable Annual GoalsMajor Components
  • Any important givens/conditions (when, with what, where)…as applicable.
  • A skill/domain area (academic, behavioral, functional).
  • An observable learner performance (what the learner will be doing, an action).
  • Measurable criteria which specify the acceptable level of student performance (e.g., speed, accuracy, frequency)
measuring progress toward the annual goal
Measuring Progress Toward the Annual Goal

How ?

  • Must accurately measure the criteria stated in the goals/objectives/benchmarks.
  • Must provide clear evidence of progress in the general curriculum.
  • Must be “parent friendly” language.
  • Must be based on data.
common data sources to measure progress
Common Data Sources to Measure Progress:
  • Test results
  • Curriculum-based measurements
  • Work samples
  • Portfolios
  • Teacher/Service Provider observation checklists
  • Behavior observations

Only one measurement of progress is required; however, it must be sufficient to gather all of the data needed to report progress on each annual goal.

progress report to parents must include
Progress Report to Parents must include:
  • Progress made toward achieving goals
  • Extent to which the progress is sufficient to achieve the goals by the end of the year.

The goal should be written out on the progress report.

tips for collaborating
Tips for collaborating
  • Use email, include the entire IEP team
  • Use non-student time during the day (e.g. cleaning up, recess, lunch, walking down the hallway)
  • Begin discussing potential goals/goal areas early, at progress report time
  • Draft goals prior to the meeting and distribute to the entire IEP team, make certain they are marked and understood as draft copies.
tips for collaborating33
Tips for collaborating
  • Think about the big picture, what the student needs to be doing

next year,

5 years from now,

when they are 21.

  • Ask the student what they want to be able to do.
  • Write goals that are ‘real-life’ and foster not only independence but self-advocacy.
references resources

Department of Education Federal Register (August 14, 2006)

North Carolina Policies Governing Services for Children with Disabilities (November 1, 2007)

Domains of Academic & Functional Performance: Standard Course of Study

references resources36

Domains of Academic & Functional Performance: Foundations – Early Learning Standards

Writing Quality Individualized EducationPrograms. Gibb & Dyches, 2007

Writing Measurable IEP Goals andObjectives. Bateman & Herr, 2006.

NC DPI Training Modules:


  • Define embedded intervention
  • Provide rationale for implementation
  • Review models of service delivery
  • Provide tools, including data collection methods
  • Practice strategies

Why Embed?

  • Law
  • Research
  • Benefits

Continuum of Service Delivery

  • Regular Education Service
  • RtI
  • PBS
  • CEIS
  • 504
  • Consultation
  • Screening

Separate School




Education Environments


Special Education



service delivery models
Service Delivery ModelsIndividual Pull-Out
  • Individual pull-out
  • Small group pull-out
  • One-on-one in regular setting
  • Whole class instruction
  • Group activity in regular setting
  • Consultation

Characteristics of

Embedded Intervention

  • Assumes collaborative planning
  • Occurs within daily routines
  • Uses childhood activity as instructional and therapeutic media
  • Recognizes dynamic relationship between student, activity, and/or environment
  • Front-load investment with long-term efficiency

- Frank Porter Graham Child Care Staff & Dr. Robin McWilliam, 2005

becoming an embedded practitioner
Becoming an Embedded Practitioner
  • Team approach
  • Transdisciplinary approach
  • Flexible scheduling
  • Intentional demonstration
  • Collaborative consultation
  • Facilitative intervention
embedding goals into daily routines activities
Embedding Goals into Daily Routines & Activities
  • Team approach
  • Understanding of the relationship between Foundations, Standard Course of Study & IEP
  • IEP with functional goals
  • Daily schedule including planned activities
  • Knowledge of child’s preferences, interests, & motivators
intervention strategies
Intervention Strategies
  • Assistance
  • Change in expectations
  • Delay
  • Forgetfulness
  • Novelty
  • Piece by piece
  • Visible but unreachable
  • Responsive Teaching

Pretti-Frontczak & Bricker, 2004

Wesley, Dennis, & Tyndall, 2007

guidance for data collection system
Guidance for Data Collection System
  • Procedures are linked to


  • Procedures are flexible &

applicable across settings, events, & people

  • Procedures yield valid & reliable data
  • Responsibility is shared by team
  • Procedures are compatible with resources

Pretti-Frontczak & Bricker, 2004

classroom data collection scoring system
Classroom Data CollectionScoring System

1 – Student completes goal independently

2 – Student requires a verbal prompt

3 – Student requires a verbal & physical


4 – Student requires a verbal & physical


documenting embedded intervention
Documenting Embedded Intervention
  • IEP
    • PLAFP/Goals
    • Service delivery
    • LRE
  • Data Collection
  • Intervention notes
  • Progress notes
team communication
Team Communication
  • Prepare team members for change
  • Describe why this student needs embedded approach
  • Pitch the rubber-stamp approach
  • Describe how implementation will occur
  • Invite parent to come observe embedded session
  • Solicit multiple perspectives for review
dpi consultant contact information
DPI Consultant Contact Information
  • Perry Flynn – UNC-G

  • Lauren Holahan – UNC-CH
  • Laurie Ray – UNC-CH