Disability Evaluation & Second Language Learners. Martha Buenrostro PhD, Education Program Specialist, ODE

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1 Disability Evaluation & Second Language Learners Martha Buenrostro PhD, Education Program Specialist, ODE

2 Learning Objectives Review: Oregon s ELL SPED K-12 data, IDEA requirements for evaluation, Methods to determine Specific Learning Disability, Civil rights legal information, Relevant factors in the context of special education referrals with students who are second language learners. Discuss: Strategies to determine difference vs. disability

3 What is a difference? What is a disability? Think of an example for each word then describe it to a person near you. [2 minute Pair-Share]

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7 What is a Disability? Developmental Delay (DD 98) Intellectual Disability (ID-10) Hearing Impairment (HI-20) Visual Impairment (VI-40) Deaf/Blindness (DB-43) Emotional Disturbance (ED-60) Orthopedic Impairment (OI-70) Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI-74) Other Health Impairment (OHI-80) Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD-82) Communication Disorder (CD-50) Specific Learning Disability (SLD-90) Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) categories of eligibility for special education

8 Colors: pink, fuchsia, mauve, rose? Food: tasty, disgusting, savory? Aesthetics: sophisticated, common, elegant? Cars: reliable, junker, late model? Objective or Subjective?

9 Disabilities across Gender? Oregon Grade 8, ELL Students with IEPs, Source: NAEP 2011 Math Assessment 37% Male 63% Female

10 Disabilities across SES (Socio Economic Status)? Oregon Grade 8, ELL Students with IEPs, Source: NAEP 2011 Math Assessment 35% Free/reduced lunch eligible 64% Not eligible

11 Subjective versus Objective: Developmental Delay (DD 98) Intellectual Disability (ID-10) Communication Disorder (CD-50) Emotional Disturbance (ED-60) Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD-82) Hearing Impairment (HI-20) Visual Impairment (VI-40) Deaf/Blindness (DB-43) Orthopedic Impairment (OI-70) Specific Learning Disability (SLD-90) Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI-74) Other Health Impairment (OHI-80) Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) categories of eligibility for special education

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21 Disproportionality The state of being disproportional Disproportional: out of proportion

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23 IDEA Sec Evaluation Procedures:

24 (a) Notice. The public agency must provide notice to the parents of a child with a disability, in accordance with Sec , that describes any evaluation procedures the agency proposes to conduct. (b) Conduct of evaluation. In conducting the evaluation, the public agency must-- (1) Use a variety of assessment tools and strategies to gather relevant functional, developmental, and academic information about the child, including information provided by the parent, that may assist in determining-- (i) Whether the child is a child with a disability under Sec ;

25 (c) Other evaluation procedures. Each public agency must ensure that-- (1) Assessments and other evaluation materials used to assess a child under this part-- (i) Are selected and administered so as not to be discriminatory on a racial or cultural basis; (ii) Are provided and administered in the child's native language or other mode of communication and in the form most likely to yield accurate information on what the child knows and can do academically, developmentally, and functionally, unless it is clearly not feasible to so provide or administer; (iii) Are used for the purposes for which the assessments or measures are valid and reliable;

26 (iv) Are administered by trained and knowledgeable personnel; and (v) Are administered in accordance with any instructions provided by the producer of the assessments. (2) Assessments and other evaluation materials include those tailored to assess specific areas of educational need and not merely those that are designed to provide a single general intelligence quotient. (3) Assessments are selected and administered so as best to ensure that if an assessment is administered to a child with impaired sensory, manual, or speaking skills, the assessment results accurately reflect the child's aptitude or achievement level or whatever other factors the test purports to measure, rather than reflecting the child's impaired sensory, manual, or speaking skills (unless those skills are the factors that the test purports to measure).

27 (4) The child is assessed in all areas related to the suspected disability, including, if appropriate, health, vision, hearing, social and emotional status, general intelligence, academic performance, communicative status, and motor abilities; (5) [evaluation of children with disabilities when they transfer to other schools] (6) In evaluating each child with a disability under Sec. Sec through , the evaluation is sufficiently comprehensive to identify all of the child's special education and related services needs, whether or not commonly linked to the disability category in which the child has been classified. (7) Assessment tools and strategies that provide relevant information that directly assists persons in determining the educational needs of the child are provided. IDEA Sec Evaluation Procedures: IDEA websites for actual statue language and commentary: (choice of Part B or Part C) or

28 Professional ethical mandate To perform their duties effectively, assessment personnel need to: understand not only standardized assessment procedures, but culturally sensitive assessment procedures first and second language acquisition theory, and impact of culture and socioeconomic status on student performance. Assessment personnel should evaluate their own knowledge, skills and beliefs to determine their qualifications to assess English language learners. A. Artiles, & A. Ortiz, 2002

29 Title VI 1964 Civil Rights Act:

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32 Additional Procedures for SLD Eligibility IDEA: 34 CFR (1) Must not require the use of a severe discrepancy between intellectual ability and achievement for determining whether a child has a specific learning disability, as defined in Sec (c)(10); (2) Must permit the use of a process based on the child's response to scientific, research-based intervention; and (3) May permit the use of other alternative researchbased procedures for determining whether a child has a specific learning disability, as defined in Sec (c)(10).

33 (ii) The child exhibits a pattern of strengths and weaknesses in performance, achievement, or both, relative to age, Stateapproved grade-level standards, or intellectual development, that is determined by the group to be relevant to the identification of a specific learning disability, using appropriate assessments, consistent with Sec. Sec and ; and [Exclusionary factors remain] (3) The group determines that its findings under paragraphs (a)(1) and (2) of this section are not primarily the result of (i) A visual, hearing, or motor disability; (ii) Mental retardation; (iii) Emotional disturbance; (iv) Cultural factors; (v) Environmental or economic disadvantage; or (vi) Limited English proficiency.

34 Reflection ~ What does your district do to make sure these statutory details are represented in each child s assessment?

35 Summarizing what we ve read Like any IDEA disability determination, eligibility can t be based on any single criterion meaning a single test, assessment, observation, or report. An evaluation of a student suspected of having SLD must include a variety of assessment tools and strategies. Evaluation must include input from student s parents and an observation of the student s academic performance and behavior in the general education classroom.

36 Reviewing Evaluation Components Developmental history Assessment of cognition, fine motor, perceptual motor, communication, socialemotional, memory (if student exhibits impairment in one or more of these areas) Medical statement Impact of disability on educational performance

37 Language Loss & Language Shift vs CD (50) & SLD (90) eligibility

38 Influential factors of 2 nd language acquisition process: Parent and community attitudes Degree of parent bilingualism Literacy in the home Use of mixed languages Sociocultural environment & background History of education (interruptions & country) Quality of education Native country Language proficiency in L1 Attitudes Personality Perceived status of L1& English Student s culture and cultural conflict Affective considerations (e.g.. motivation) Learning context Klingner, Hoover & Baca, 2008; E. Lopez, 2001

39 Oregon Grade 8, ELL Students, Source: NAEP 2011 Math Assessment IEP No IEP 27% 11% 73% 89% Oregon Grade 8, English Proficient Students, Source: NAEP 2011 Math Assessment

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41 Latino/a and African American students are less likely than their White counterparts to complete high school or to demonstrate competency in reading, writing, mathematics, history, geography and science. Substantial evidence indicates that educational services offered to students with culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds are not sufficient to meet their needs. The primary reason for leaving school is a lack of academic success. Lack of academic success is also the major reason for referral of English Language learners to special education. A. Artiles & A. Ortiz, 2002

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43 Reflection ~ What procedures and/or practices does your district have in place to avoid mistaking language loss for a disability?

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48 Reflection ~ What 3 big ideas can you take from this presentation? What are 2 things you will do differently in your district? Write down one question you still have.

49 Rule #1 No magic wands or silver bullets in special education. Rule #3 Look in the student s educational file. Rule #4 Look in the educational file again at everything. Rule #5 Talk to the parents Tell me about Rule #6 Talk to the parents again Tell me more Rule #7 Consider research based language acquisition trajectories. Rule #8 Consider other reasons for learning difficulties before special education in the absence of objective eligibility information. Things to consider first..

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