NYC Department of Education Flexible Programming Guide. March 2012

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1 NYC Department of Education Flexible Programming Guide (Using the Full Continuum of Special Education Programs and Services) March 2012 Updated March 20, 2012 Page 1

2 For too long, educating students with disabilities in New York City has meant separating them from their general education peers. We know that this model leads to some schools over-serving students with disabilities, while others under-serve them. Most importantly, we know that not all NYC students are graduating ready for independent living, college and careers. In order to better support students with disabilities, the NYC Department of Education is implementing a special education reform throughout the City starting in September The goals of the reform are to: close the achievement gap between students with disabilities and their peers without disabilities; increase access to and participation in the general education curriculum for students with disabilities; and build school-based capacity to support the diverse needs of students with disabilities through greater curricular, instructional, and scheduling flexibility. To assist schools in implementing the special education reform, we have created this Flexible Programming Guide to highlight some of the special education programs and services available for students with specific needs and provide schools with some concrete examples of innovative models that address students needs in the appropriate least restrictive environment. In particular, we have selected 6 examples that reflect common situations schools have encountered in implementing the special education reform in New York City. Please remember that there are multiple program options and services to serve a student with a disability and the process of deciding special education supports and services should be individualized and unique for every child. Therefore, these examples are meant to help guide your planning, but are not the only approach and should not be viewed as prescriptive in any way. We recommend that you examine the resources available in your school, engage families in every step of the process, and make instructional decisions based on the strengths and needs of each student. For additional assistance, contact your network s Special Education Achievement Coach. Updated March 20, 2012 Page 2

3 Table of Contents What is Flexible Programming?... 4 Special Education Programs and Services... 4 Unified Service Delivery System... 7 Recommended Practices for School Leaders to Build Flexible Programs:... 8 Flexible Programming Examples... 9 ELEMENTARY SCHOOL A ELEMENTARY SCHOOL B MIDDLE SCHOOL C MIDDLE SCHOOL D HIGH SCHOOL E HIGH SCHOOL F Additional Resources Updated March 20, 2012 Page 3

4 What is Flexible Programming? Flexible Programming: Flexible programming involves using the full continuum of special education services to meet each student s needs in the least restrictive environment appropriate. When using flexible programming effectively, schools develop special education service delivery models that are unique to each student and focus on increasing access to the general education curriculum. It is important to keep in mind that the needs of students must match the services delivered. The range of special education programs and services are described below and are part of the Unified Service Delivery System (see page 8). Special Education Programs and Services General Education with Supplementary Aids and Services: Before recommending special education services, a school s IEP team must first consider the full range of special education supplementary aids and services a student can receive in a general education classroom. Supplementary aids and services provide the support to enable students with disabilities to be educated within a general education class alongside to the maximum extent appropriate. Supplementary aids and services may include services provided by various special education providers as well as other materials, devices, and instructional adaptations. Declassification Support Services: The IEP Team may recommend the decertification of a student from special education with the provision of appropriate support services for up to one year following the student's declassification. Declassification Support Services are direct or indirect services intended to support the decertified student while he or she makes the transition from a special education program to a general education program with no other special education services. Declassification services include, but are not limited to, services that provide instructional support or remediation, instructional modifications, individual and/or group speech/language services, individual and/or group counseling, and testing accommodations. General Education with Related Services: Related Services are defined as "developmental, corrective, and other support services" used to help students with disabilities benefit from instruction in a general education setting. They are intended to support a student in meeting the objectives of his or her instructional program, accessing the general education curriculum, experiencing success in his classroom setting, and being educated with non-disabled peers. Related Services may be provided individually or in a group in the general education class or a separate location. Updated March 20, 2012 Page 4

5 General Education with Special Education Teacher Support Services (SETSS): SETSS are flexible services provided by a special education teacher designed to help students remain in the general education classroom and utilize the combined expertise of the general and special education teacher. There are three options for providing SETSS: Direct SETSS in general education classroom, Direct SETSS in a separate location, and Indirect SETSS to staff. Direct SETSS may be provided within the general education classroom or in a separate location to a group of eight (8) or fewer students. Indirect SETSS is a collaborative consultation between the special education teacher and the general education teacher. This collaboration focuses on adjusting the learning environment and/or accommodating or modifying instructional techniques and methods to meet the individual needs of the students in the general education classroom. (All three options for the provision of SETSS are funded in the same manner.) Direct SETSS services in general education class Direct SETSS services in a separate location Indirect SETSS services through collaboration of general education and special education teachers Integrated Co-Teaching (ICT) ICT is an integrated program that allows for students with disabilities to be educated with age-appropriate peers without disabilities in the general education classroom with the support of a special education teacher accommodating and modifying instruction. When the general education and special education teachers team teach, they meet in advance to co-plan and prepare lessons, activities, and projects that incorporate all learning modalities. ICT may be provided full-time, for less than the entire day, or on an individual subject basis. General Education Part-Time and Special Class Support Part-Time in Community School Special Class Support Services Part-Time provides students in community schools with instruction in a special class setting for up to fifty percent of the day, with the remainder of the day spent in general education classes. Any special class provided in community schools, regardless of staffing ratio, can be provided on a part-time basis. For Special Class Support Services Part-Time, the special education teacher provides direct/specialized instructional services in a special class setting for up to fifty percent (50%) of the instructional day. Students can also receive supplementary aids and services including special education teacher support services for the periods they spend in general education. Updated March 20, 2012 Page 5

6 Special Class Full-Time in Community School Special Class Services serve students with disabilities whose needs cannot be met within the general education class, even with the use of supplementary aids and services. Before determining that a student requires Special Class Services, the IEP Team must consider the benefits of serving the student in the general education classroom, whether the student can achieve his or her IEP goals in the general education classroom, and the effect that the student will have on the general education environment, including on the education of other students. Special Class Services may be provided on a part-time or full-time basis. Special classes are found in community schools throughout the city. Special Class Full-Time in Specialized Public Schools Special Class Services serve students with disabilities whose needs cannot be met within the general education class, even with the use of supplementary aids and services. Before determining that a student requires special class services, the IEP team must consider the benefits of serving the student in the general education classroom, whether the student can achieve his/her IEP goals in the general education classroom and the effect that the student will have on the general education environment, including the education of other students. Special class services may be provided either in a community school or in self-contained school sites (District 75) throughout the city. Only when the home zone school cannot provide the unique services required by a student, and with appropriate justification, does a student receive services in a specialized school. State Supported/Operated Schools and SED-Approved Non-Public Schools The New York State Education Department (SED) approves non-public schools provide a range of Special Class Services full-time for students whose educational needs require intensive educational, rehabilitative, and/or clinical services that cannot be provided appropriately in a public school facility on a continual basis. Non-public school programs include both day schools and residential services. These programs are highly restrictive and segregated in nature, providing little or no opportunity for participation with non-disabled peers. Before considering SED-approved non-public school services, a school IEP team must determine that appropriate public facilities for instruction are not available and must document these findings. Home/Hospital Instruction (Temporary) Home and Hospital Instruction are educational services provided to students with disabilities who are unable to attend school in either a public or private facility for an extended period of time. The instructional services in home and hospital instruction follow the general education or alternate performance indicators as prescribed in a student's most recent IEP. They are intended to be temporary in nature and are provided only until the student is able to return to his or her primary instructional setting. Students receiving home or hospital instruction shall be provided instruction and appropriate Related Services as determined by the IEP team in the student s school in consideration of the student's unique needs. Updated March 20, 2012 Page 6

7 Unified Service Delivery System This chart represents the range of special education programs and services. Related Services can be provided throughout the continuum of services Updated March 20, 2012 Page 7

8 Recommended Practices for School Leaders to Build Flexible Programs: Teacher Schedules: Check teacher licensures, preference sheets, and table of organization (TO). Think about how to best utilize the special education teachers in your school to meet the needs of your particular students. In most instances, a special education teacher does not have to teach within only one program model. In other words, there is no such thing as a self-contained teacher or a SETSS teacher. To view licensing requirements, click here. 1 Related Services that are provided indirectly to the student, such as time spent helping the general education teacher better understand how to support a student may be included in a student s IEP in the section entitled Recommended Special Education Programs and Services under the subheading Supports for School Personnel on Behalf of the Student. Parallel schedules, in which instruction in the same content area happens during the same periods for a grade or for the whole school, greatly increase the ability for fluidity between general education and special education settings and mean that no student will be missing a content area by being in another setting for that period. Whenever possible, build in time for both horizontal and vertical teams to meet regularly (including both grade-level meetings and content area meetings to facilitate planning for all students). Student Schedules: In most instances, students with disabilities may be grouped together within the prescribed teacher-student ratio (as listed on the IEP) in more than one setting. (View the continuum and functional grouping requirements here 2 ). Engage in school-wide pre-planning that focuses on how students with IEPs will move along the program continuum toward less restrictive environments. Through this process, think about how you might structure future programming as students meet their goals and are able to move to more inclusive environments Updated March 20, 2012 Page 8

9 Flexible Programming Examples The following flexible programming examples reflect common situations that schools have encountered in implementing the special education reform in New York City schools. The names of students have been changed. We hope that these examples will help to guide your planning as your school implements the reform. There are multiple program options and services to serve a student with a disability; therefore, these examples are not prescriptive. We recognize that schools have varying resources and that students may require different programs or services depending on their needs. We recommend that you learn more about each student s needs, examine the resources available in your school, and make an instructional decision based on the strengths and needs of each student. Elementary School A had 13 4 th graders with IEPs recommendations of full-time self-contained special education class. Elementary School B received 3 kindergarten students Johnny, Melissa, and Brandon with IEP program recommendations of full-time self-contained special education class. Middle School C received a 7 th grade student, Gerry, over the counter, and his IEP recommended a full-time Integrated Co-Teaching Class (ICT) for all subjects. Middle School D, a new small school, received 7 new 6 th grade students with full-time ICT recommendations on their IEPs. High School E received a 9 th grade student, Myrna, over the counter, with a program recommendation of 10 periods of SETSS on her IEP. High School F enrolled a 9 th grade student, Jared, with a full time 15:1 self-contained program recommendation on his IEP. Updated March 20, 2012 Page 9

10 ELEMENTARY SCHOOL A Elementary School A had 13 4 th graders with IEPs recommending a full-time self-contained special education class. The school wanted to ensure that each student had individualized programs and services, which were reflective of the student s strengths and needs and to verify that these 13 students were educated in their appropriate least restrictive environment. What did the IEP teams do to provide access to the general education curriculum in each student s appropriate least restrictive environment? 1. Examine Student Data The IEP teams carefully examined all data related to these 13 students, including their IEPs, state ELA and math exam scores, informal assessments conducted by the special education teacher, attendance, and additional data regarding their behavior. 2. Identify Strengths and Needs of Each Student The IEP teams found: 4 students were reading on grade-level and were recommended for a self-contained class because they were exhibiting behavioral challenges (students A-D); 2 students were performing 2 years below grade level in decoding and were 2 years below grade level in math (students E-F); 3 students were performing 3 years below grade level in decoding and were 2 years below grade level in math (students G-I); 4 students were performing 3 years below grade level in ELA and 2 years below grade level in math (students J- M). Updated March 20, 2012 Page 10

11 3. Identify School Resources The school had a special education teacher providing SETSS to 2 nd and 3 rd grade students. The school did not have an existing ICT class, but was able to move students from a general education class and form an ICT class for ELA. 4. Effectively Engage Parents The students families were contacted and IEP meetings were held to discuss each student s individual strengths and needs and to discuss the benefits of educating students in a general education class with special education supports. 5. Amend IEPs and Implement New Schedules With the families support, individual programs and services were put into place for each of these students. 6. Create Schedules to Meet Students Needs For students A-D who exhibited behavioral challenges, the school provided in-class counseling for 2 periods a week and assigned a group paraprofessional for 3 months for 15 periods per week. For students E-M, the school created a part-time ICT class for ELA to support their decoding and ELA comprehension needs. For students E-I, the school provided direct SETSS in the general education class to support their content needs in math. The IEP team recommended indirect SETSS in order to make the social studies material accessible for these students, since their decoding was below grade-level. For students J-M, the school provided direct SETSS in the general education class to support their math content needs. Updated March 20, 2012 Page 11

12 How did Elementary School A match these 13 students needs with the appropriate services? Academic needs Behavioral needs How did Elementary School A serve these students? Key: *CO= Counseling Student A Reading on grade-level Behavioral Challenges CO 2 (periods per week) x 30 (minutes) x 4 (students); Time- Limited (3 months) Group Paraprofessional x 4 (periods per week) Student B Reading on grade-level Behavioral Challenges CO 2 (periods per week) x 30 (minutes) x 4 (students); Time- Limited (3 months) Group Paraprofessional x 4 (periods per week) Student C Reading on grade-level Behavioral Challenges CO 2 (periods per week) x 30 (minutes) x 4 (students); Time- Limited (3 months) Group Paraprofessional x 4 (periods per week) Student D Reading on grade-level Behavioral Challenges CO 2 (periods per week) x 30 (minutes) x 4 (students); Time- Limited (3 months) Group Paraprofessional x 4 (periods per week) Student E 2 grade-levels below on decoding, but able to comprehend grade-level content None SETSS Direct (in gen ed class) x 3 (periods per week) in math SETSS Indirect x 1 (period per week) ICT Part-Time x 10 (periods per week) in ELA Student F 2 grade-levels below on decoding, but able to comprehend grade-level content None SETSS Direct (in gen ed class) x 3 (periods per week) in math SETSS Indirect x 1 (period per week) ICT Part-Time x 10 (periods per week) in ELA Student G 3 grade-levels below on decoding, but able to comprehend grade-level content None SETSS Direct (in gen ed class) x 3 (periods per week) in math SETSS Indirect x 1 (period per week) ICT Part-Time x 10 (periods per week) in ELA Updated March 20, 2012 Page 12

13 Student H 3 grade-levels below on decoding, but able to comprehend grade-level content None SETSS Direct (in gen ed class) x 3 (periods per week) in math SETSS Indirect x 1 (period per week) Student I 3 grade-levels below on decoding, but able to comprehend grade-level content None ICT SETSS Part-Time Direct (in x 10 gen (periods ed class) per x week) 3 (periods in ELA per week) in math SETSS Indirect x 1 (period per week) Student J 3 grade-levels below in ELA and 2 gradelevels below in math None ICT SETSS Part-Time Direct (in x 10 gen (periods ed class) per x week) 4 (periods in ELA per week) in math ICT Part-Time x 10 (periods per week) in ELA Student K 3 grade-levels below in ELA and 2 gradelevels below in math None SETSS Direct (in gen ed class) x 4 (periods per week) in math ICT Part-Time x 10 (periods per week) in ELA Student L 3 grade-levels below in ELA and 2 gradelevels below in math None SETSS Direct (in gen ed class) x 4 (periods per week) in math ICT Part-Time x 10 (periods per week) in ELA Student M 3 grade-levels below in ELA and 2 gradelevels below in math None SETSS Direct (in gen ed class) x 4 (periods per week) in math ICT Part-Time x 10 (periods per week) in ELA How did Elementary School A adjust teacher and student schedules to accommodate these 13 4 th graders needs? Students A-D were in a general education setting for most of the day with counseling services during lunch and a paraprofessional worked with these students in small groups. These supports were put in place to implement these students Behavior Intervention Plans (BIPs). Students E-I were in an ICT class for ELA, received direct SETSS in the general education classroom for math, and received Indirect SETSS for social studies. Students J-M were in an ICT class for ELA and received direct SETSS in the general education classroom for math. Teacher B provided SETSS and ICT for Students E-M Updated March 20, 2012 Page 13

14 Elementary School A 13 4 th Grade Students Daily Schedule LRE/MRE Scale More Restrictive Less Restrictive Updated March 20, 2012 Page 14

15 Elementary School A Daily 4 th grade Teacher Schedule *Students A-B and Students C-D were split up into different classes for instructional purposes and because of space constraints. **Indicates the number of students in each class. For special education, indicates the number of students the special education teacher serves. Any fluctuation in number of students across a teacher s schedule identifies students who were pulled out for related services. Updated March 20, 2012 Page 15

16 ELEMENTARY SCHOOL B Elementary School B received 3 kindergarten students Johnny, Melissa, and Brandon with IEP program recommendations of full time self-contained classes, but did not have a self-contained kindergarten class. The school wanted to ensure that each student had individualized programs and services that were reflective of the student s strengths and needs. Specifically, the team wanted to verify that these 3 students were being recommended to receive programs and services in their least restrictive appropriate environment. What did the IEP teams do to provide access to the general education curriculum in each student s least restrictive appropriate environment? 1. Examine Student Data The IEP teams carefully examined all data related to these 3 students, including IEPs, informal assessments conducted by the special education teacher, and data from the students Pre-K programs. 2. Identify Strengths and Needs of each Student After the first 2 weeks of school, the IEP teams found: 3. Identify School Resources Johnny needed support with short-term memory and attention; Melissa needed support with expressive language; Brandon needed to decrease inappropriate and increase appropriate behaviors. In Elementary School B, there was an ICT class in kindergarten and in the 1 st grade, and a special education teacher who provided SETSS. Updated March 20, 2012 Page 16

17 4. Effectively Engage Parents The students families were contacted and IEP meetings were held to discuss students individual strengths and needs and to discuss the benefits of educating students in a general education class with special education supports. 5. Amend IEPs and Implement New Schedules With families support, individual programs and services were put into place for each of these students. 6. Create Schedules to Meet Students Needs For the First 2 Weeks of School: The 3 students were grouped together with a special education teacher. For the Remainder of the School Year: After the first 2 weeks, the IEP team convened to discuss the progress of these 3 students. Johnny was provided with direct SETSS in the general education class to support his memory and attention needs. Melissa was provided with Speech in the general education class to support her expressive language needs. Brandon was provided with counseling to address his behavioral challenges. How did Elementary School B match these 3 students needs with the appropriate services? Academic needs Behavioral needs How did Elementary School B serve these students? Key: *CO= Counseling Johnny Struggling with memory and attention None Direct SETSS in gen ed class x 7 (periods per week) Indirect SETSS X 1 (period per week) Melissa Struggling expressive language None Speech x 2 (periods per week) in class Indirect SETSS X 1 (period per week) Brandon Performing on grade-level Significant behavioral challenges CO in-class x 3 (periods per week) CO separate location x 1 (period per week) Updated March 20, 2012 Page 17

18 First Two Weeks Schedule for Johnny, Melissa, and Brandon LRE/MRE Scale More Restrictive Less Restrictive Updated March 20, 2012 Page 18

19 Brandon s Weekly Schedule LRE/MRE Scale More Restrictive Less Restrictive Updated March 20, 2012 Page 19

20 Melissa s Weekly Schedule LRE/MRE Scale More Restrictive Less Restrictive Updated March 20, 2012 Page 20

21 Johnny s Weekly Schedule LRE/MRE Scale More Restrictive Less Restrictive Updated March 20, 2012 Page 21

22 Elementary School B s Daily Teacher Schedule 8:15 8:45 8:45-10:00 10:00-10:45 10:45-11:30 11:30-12:15 12:15-12:30 12:30-1:30 1:30-2:20 Teacher A GE Circle Time/ Morning Meeting Literacy Social Studies Admin Lunch Quiet time books and puzzles Math Prep 25** Teacher B Special Education Direct SETSS 1 st grade 8 Direct SETSS in general education K class (Johnny) 7 Direct SETSS 2 nd grade 8 Weekly Admin With Teacher A for Melissa and Johnny for Indirect SETSS Lunch Direct SETSS 1 st grade 8 Math (Direct SETSS In general education class (Johnny) on alternate days) 8 Prep Teacher C GE Circle Time/ Morning Meeting ICT Literacy ICT Social Studies ICT Prep Lunch Quiet time books and puzzles Math ICT Group Work/Stations 24(Total) 23 (Total) 24 (Total) Teacher D Special Education Circle Time/ Morning Meeting ICT Literacy ICT Social Studies ICT Prep Lunch Direct SETSS 2 nd grade Math ICT Direct SETSS 3 rd grade CLUSTER Teachers Art/Music/ Physical Education Art/Music/Physical Education Art/Music/P hysical Education Art/Music/ Physical Education (kindergarten alt days) Art/Music/ Physical Education Art/Music/Physical Education Art/Music/Physical Education Art/Music/Physical Education (kindergarten alt days) *Indicates the number of students in each class. **For special education, indicates the number of students the special education teacher serves. Any fluctuation in number of students across a teacher s schedule identifies students who were pulled out for Related Services. *** End of day routines/dismissal not shown on above schedules. Updated March 20, 2012 Page 22

23 General Elementary School Considerations: If general education and special education teachers provide instruction in the same content area during the same periods (have parallel schedules), you will greatly increase the ability for fluidity between general education and special education settings. No student will be missing a content area by being in another setting for that period. Schools that have placed grades together in the same hallway have found that it helps to facilitate smooth transitions from one classroom to another. Schools that review student projections and all registration information to inform planning, gathering as much information as possible regarding all new students, are better able to facilitate appropriate matches of programs and services. Common planning time between general and special education teachers, as well as among grade-level teachers, creates opportunities for teachers to collaborate and plan with all students needs in mind. The IEP teacher can provide small-group intensive instruction, support general education teachers, and assist with IEP development and implementation. Related services can and should occur in the general education classroom, when possible and appropriate. This arrangement creates an opportunity for students to become full members of the classroom community and to learn and apply skills in an authentic environment. Updated March 20, 2012 Page 23

24 MIDDLE SCHOOL C Middle School C received a 7 th grade over-the-counter student, Gerry, and his IEP recommended a full-time Integrated Co- Teaching Class (ICT) for all subjects. The school wanted to ensure that Gerry had individualized programs and services that were reflective of his strengths and needs. Specifically, the team wanted to verify that Gerry was in his appropriate least restrictive environment. What did the IEP teams do to provide access to the general education curriculum in this student s appropriate least restrictive environment? 1. Examine Student Data The IEP team carefully examined all data related to Gerry, including his IEPs, State ELA and math exam scores, informal assessments conducted by the special education teacher, attendance and additional data regarding his behavior. 2. Identify strengths and needs of each student The IEP teams found: 3. Identify School Resources Gerry was performing above average in all classes, with the exception of ELA. In ELA, Gerry was 2 years behind in comprehension of text but was decoding above grade-level. Gerry exhibited executive functioning challenges that required class accommodations to support such things as his organizational skills. The school had 2 special education teachers. One special education teacher provided full-time self-contained special class instruction for 6 th grade students. The other teacher provided instruction part-time in an ICT class for 7 th grade ELA and part-time SETSS for 8 th graders, 2 periods per day. Updated March 20, 2012 Page 24

25 The 7 th grade ICT class was full. 4. Effectively Engage Parents Gerry s family was contacted and an IEP meeting was held to discuss his individual strengths and needs, as well as to discuss the benefits of educating Gerry in a general education class with special education supports. 5. Amend IEPs and Implement New Schedules With the family s support, individual programs and services were put into place for Gerry. 6. Create Schedules to Meet Students Needs Since Gerry was performing above average in all classes with the exception of ELA, the IEP team recommended direct SETSS in the general education class for ELA. To support his executive functioning, the team recommended indirect SETSS for math, science, and social studies. The special education and general education teacher collaborated to organize assignments into chunks, create graphic organizers to help Gerry organize his writing and research, and create supports for math basics, such as multiplication tables, so that Gerry could succeed in his pre-algebra class. Whenever possible, the general education teacher incorporated assistive technology to facilitate Gerry s independence in all areas. Updated March 20, 2012 Page 25

26 Student Academic Needs Behavioral Needs How did Elementary School B serve these students? Gerry Gerry was performing above average in all classes, with the exception of ELA. In ELA, Gerry was 2 years behind in comprehension of text but was decoding above grade-level; he needed other class accommodations to support his executive functioning. None Direct SETSS (in the gen ed class) x 5 (periods per week) Indirect SETSS x 5 (periods per week) Updated March 20, 2012 Page 26

27 Gerry s IEP when first enrolled at Middle School C Updated March 20, 2012 Page 27

28 Gerry s IEP after recommended changes by IEP team at Middle School C Updated March 20, 2012 Page 28

29 Gerry s Weekly Schedule LRE/MRE Scale More Restrictive Less Restrictive Updated March 20, 2012 Page 29

30 Middle School C s Daily Teacher Schedule Updated March 20, 2012 Page 30

31 MIDDLE SCHOOL D Middle School D, a new small school, received 7 new 6 th grade students with full-time ICT recommendations on their IEPs. The school wanted to ensure each student had individualized programs and services, which were reflective of the student s strengths and needs. Specifically, the team wanted to verify that these 7 students were in the appropriate least restrictive environment. What did the IEP teams do to provide access to the general education curriculum in each student s appropriate least restrictive environment? 1. Examine Student Data The IEP teams carefully examined all data related to these 7 students, including their IEPs, State ELA and math exam scores, informal assessments conducted by the special education teacher, attendance and additional data regarding their behavior. 2. Identify Strengths and Needs of Each Student The IEP teams found: 3 students were performing 3 years below grade-level in comprehension and decoding of text (students A-C); 2 students were performing 2 years below in decoding (students D-E); 1 student exhibited significant behavioral challenges (student F); 1 student was performing 2 years below in math content and computations (student G). 3. Identify School Resources The school had 3 special education teachers who taught full-time in self-contained class settings. Updated March 20, 2012 Page 31

32 The school did not have an existing ICT class. 4. Effectively Engage Parents The students families were contacted, and IEP meetings were held to discuss students individual strengths and needs and to discuss the benefits of educating students in a general education class with special education supports. 5. Amend IEPs and Implement New Schedules With families support, individual programs and services were put into place for each of these students. 6. Create Schedules to Meet Students Needs Students A-C were performing 3 years below grade level in comprehension and decoding of text, therefore the IEP team decided to recommend direct SETSS in a separate location to focus on direct reading instruction. The IEP team considered how the students would feel if they were learning how to read with their general education peers. Students D-E were performing 2 years below grade level in decoding. The IEP team decided to provide direct SETSS in the general education class, so that the special education teacher could break down assignments for the students in ELA. They also recommended indirect SETSS for social studies so that the general education teacher could work to break down social studies assignments for the students. Student F student exhibited significant behavioral challenges. The IEP team decided this required counseling during lunch 3 periods per week. Student G was 2 years below grade level in math content and computations. The IEP team decided to recommend 2 periods of direct SETSS in the general education class during math and 1 period of indirect SETSS for math. In order to make this work for the teachers schedules, the school had to consider and review all IEPs of students in the 6 th grade self-contained class. They found that students in that class had similar needs to students A-G. They were Updated March 20, 2012 Page 32

33 able to provide a part-time self-contained class for science and social studies for all students previously in the full-time self-contained class and to re-group students (with students A-E and student G) so they received a combination of direct and indirect SETSS, based on their academic needs. Updated March 20, 2012 Page 33

34 How did Middle School D match these 7 students needs with appropriate services? Student Academic needs Behavioral needs How did Middle School D serve these students? Key: *CO= Counseling Students A-C Performing 3 years below grade level in comprehension and decoding of text None Direct SETSS separate location x 3 (periods per week) Students D-E Performing 2 years below grade level in decoding None Direct SETSS (in gen ed class) x 2 (periods per week) Indirect SETSS 2 x (periods per week) Student F Performing on grade-level Significant Behavioral Challenges CO during lunch x 3 (periods per week) Student G Performing 2 years below grade-level in Math content and computations None Direct SETSS x 2 (periods per week) and Indirect SETSS x 1 (period per week) Updated March 20, 2012 Page 34

35 Middle School D Students Daily Schedule LRE/MRE Scale More Restrictive Less Restrictive Updated March 20, 2012 Page 35

36 Middle School D s Teacher Daily Schedule Updated March 20, 2012 Page 36

37 General Middle School Considerations: Review student projections and all articulation documents first. Whenever possible, middle schools are strongly encouraged to review IEPs and student records in the spring or summer prior to the student attending the school. Facilitating articulation conversations with the sending schools is also very helpful. Advanced planning greatly mitigates school opening issues and eases concerns of students, parents, and teachers. Review TO, teacher licenses, and preference sheets. Understand requirements for Highly Qualified 1 teachers and HOUSSE 2. Create parallel schedules in which general education and special education teachers teach the same content areas at the same time. This strategy greatly increases the ability for fluidity between general education and special education settings. No student will be missing a content area by being in another setting for that period. Some schools have found that when special education teachers support the same content area in ICT, the self-contained class, and SETSS, they become more proficient in the content and also build stronger working relationships because they are typically working with fewer teachers. This approach also allows the special education teacher to increase collaborative planning time. Alternatively, one benefit of the special education teacher supporting a group of students across different content areas is that the teacher becomes more deeply involved with those students. These are both options, and they provide different benefits. The students needs and the resources of the school should determine which option is optimal. Common planning time between general and special education teachers, as well as grade-level teachers, creates opportunities for teachers to collaborate and plan with students needs in mind Updated March 20, 2012 Page 37

38 HIGH SCHOOL E High School E received 1 over-the-counter 9 th grade student, Myrna, with 10 periods of SETSS recommended on her IEP. The school wanted to ensure Myrna had individualized programs and services, which were reflective of her strengths and needs. Specifically, the team wanted to verify that Myrna was in her appropriate least restrictive environment. What did the IEP team do to provide access to the general education curriculum in Myrna s appropriate least restrictive environment? 1. Examine Student Data The IEP team carefully examined all data related to Myrna, including her IEP, State ELA and math exam scores, informal assessments conducted by the special education teacher, attendance and additional data regarding her behavior. 2. Identify Strengths and Needs of Each Student The IEP team found: Myrna was performing 3 years below grade level in comprehension; She needed support in sequencing events; She exhibited moderate short-term memory issues. 3. Identify School Resources The school had 2 special education teachers who led a full time self-contained class and an ICT class, respectively. The school shared a campus with another school and they had a special education teacher who provided SETSS for their school. This special education teacher s caseload was not completely full and she was able to provide SETSS for Myrna at High School E. Updated March 20, 2012 Page 38

39 4. Effectively Engage Parents Myrna s family was contacted, and IEP meetings were held to discuss students individual strengths and needs and to discuss the benefits of educating Myrna in a general education class with special education supports. 5. Amend IEPs and Implement New Schedules With family support, individual programs and services were put into place for Myrna. 6. Create Schedules to Meet Students Needs The IEP team provided Myrna with 10 periods of Direct SETSS in the general education class per week. Myrna received 5 periods of Direct SETSS in ELA and 5 periods of Direct SETSS in U.S. history. Updated March 20, 2012 Page 39

40 Myrna s Schedule LRE/MRE Scale More Restrictive Less Restrictive Updated March 20, 2012 Page 40

41 High School E s Daily Teacher Schedule Updated March 20, 2012 Page 41

42 HIGH SCHOOL F High School F enrolled a 9 th grade student, Jared, with a program recommendation of full time 15:1 self-contained class on his IEP. The school wanted to ensure Jared had individualized programs and services, which were reflective of his strengths and needs. Specifically, the team wanted to verify that Jared was in his appropriate least restrictive environment. What did the IEP team do to provide access to the general education curriculum in Jared s appropriate least restrictive environment? 1. Examine Student Data The IEP team carefully examined all data related to Jared, including his IEP, State ELA and math exam scores, informal assessments conducted by the special education teacher, attendance and additional data regarding his behavior. 2. Identify Strengths and Needs of Each Student The IEP team found: Jared s decoding skills were 3 years below grade level and his comprehension skills were on grade level; His mathematical computation skills and comprehension of mathematical concepts were 4 years below grade level. 3. Identify School Resources The school had 2 special education teachers who taught in a full time self-contained class and a full time ICT class, respectively. Updated March 20, 2012 Page 42

43 4. Effectively Engage Parents Jared s family was contacted, and IEP meetings were held to discuss his individual strengths and needs and to discuss the benefits of educating Jared in a general education class with special education supports. 5. Amend IEPs and Implement New Schedules With family support, individual programs and services were put into place for Jared. 6. Create Schedules to Meet Students Needs The IEP team provided Jared with 5 periods of ICT in ELA, 5 periods of self-contained class support services in math, and 2 periods of indirect SETSS in social studies and science respectively. In the self-contained class, the school used the Wilson Reading program to support Jared and other students reading needs. Updated March 20, 2012 Page 43

44 Jared s IEP when first enrolled at High School F Updated March 20, 2012 Page 44

45 Jared s IEP after recommended changes by IEP team at High School F Updated March 20, 2012 Page 45

46 Jared s Weekly Schedule LRE/MRE Scale More Restrictive Less Restrictive Updated March 20, 2012 Page 46

47 High School F s Daily Teacher Schedule Period Teacher A Special Education SETSS ICT (Math) ICT (Jared - Math) Lunch ICT (Math) Admin Prep Advisory/Elective Teacher B Special Education SC SC SC Lunch SC (Jared - English) Prep Weekly Admin period (Indirect SETSS) Advisory/Elective Teacher C GE U.S. History U.S. History U.S. History Prep Lunch U.S. History Admin U.S. History Advisory/Elective Teacher D GE Math Prep Math ICT Math Lunch Math Admin Math Advisory/Elective Teacher E GE Life Science Life Science Life Science Prep Lunch Life Science Life Science Admin (Indirect SETSS) Advisory/Elective Updated March 20, 2012 Page 47

48 General Considerations for High Schools: Review student transcripts, IEPs, and teacher input prior to creating the schedule. Engage in articulation conversations with middle schools whenever possible. A transcript review is very important because checking in STARS and reviewing the IEP may not give you all of the necessary information about the specific courses a student has taken and which ones he or she still needs. Remember special education services may be delivered in a variety of ways depending on the strengths and needs of the student (ICT for ELA only, for example). It is important to remember that out-of-class periods, such as SETSS in a separate location, are not credit-bearing. Special education teachers may be used flexibly; for example, a special education teacher can provide services in a class once a week to ensure that a student is accessing the curriculum and completing assignments or can consult on low-tech assistive technology and other resources that help to make the curriculum more accessible. An advisory period can be used to help keep track of student progress including credit accumulation or transition planning.advisory can also be used as a check-in or Tier 2 level support. These classes are credit-bearing if they are curriculum-based and meet for 180 minutes per week. A study skills period can help with specific organizational strategies. Planning time for teachers is imperative and should be built into the schedule. One way to build content area expertise is by pairing special education and general education teachers. Identify appropriate settings for each student for each subject. Make note of how many students need each subject class in each setting. Review TO, licenses, and preference sheets (understanding Highly Qualified 1 and HOUSSE 2 ). When designing the master schedule, plan the special education classes first, if possible. It is easier to work around fewer classes in order to ensure that appropriate and needed classes are offered for all students Updated March 20, 2012 Page 48

49 Additional Resources: Every network has a coach dedicated to supporting the implementation of the special education reform. For a description of the role and a directory of coaches, please click here.1. Additional guidance on IEP Development 2 Professional development resources 3 to use with your staff Special Education Teacher Page 4 Special Education Educator Resources 5 Please see Special Education Services As Part of A Unified Service Delivery System (The Continuum of Services for Students with Disabilities) 6 You may also direct additional questions to Updated March 20, 2012 Page 49

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