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Quality Indicators of Inclusive Education: Policy & Practice

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Presentation on theme: "Quality Indicators of Inclusive Education: Policy & Practice"— Presentation transcript:

1 Quality Indicators of Inclusive Education: Policy & Practice
TASH Inclusive Education Committee & Melody Musgrove, OSEP December 1, 2011

2 Key Questions What are observable indicators of high quality inclusive education? In other words, how do we know it when we see it? What is the role of the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs, in supporting high quality inclusive education?

3 Contributors TASH Inclusive Education Committee *******
Jacki Anderson, California State University Cheryl M. Jorgensen, Inclusive Education Consultant & University of New Hampshire Barbara McKenzie, Parent, Author, TASH Ohio Carol Quirk, Co-Exec. Dir. Maryland Coalition for Inclusive Education, President TASH Board Diane Ryndak, University of Florida, Secretary TASH Board

4 Contributors Melody Musgrove, Director, Office of Special Education Programs, U.S. Department of Education

5 Agenda Presentation of Quality Indicators
Presentation from Melody Musgrove Audience Feedback Given the short amount of time for this presentation, we urge you to seek out the presenters after the session!

6 What IS Inclusive Education?
…school communities based on social justice principles in which all students: Are presumed competent; Are welcomed as valued members of all general education classes and extra-curricular activities in their local schools; Fully participate and learn alongside their same-age peers in general education instruction based on the general curriculum; and, Experience reciprocal social relationships. From TASH Inclusive Education site:

7 But What Does Is Really Look Like?


9 Quality Indicators Quality indicators can help parents, educators, and others have a shared understanding of inclusive education and support continuous improvement at the student, team, classroom, building, district, state, and even federal levels.

10 A Word About Quality Indicators & Evidence-Based Practice
Evidence-based practice in education is usually defined as a strategy or technique that has been shown effective through randomized, experimental, group designs. To date, there have been no research studies on inclusive education using randomized, experimental, group designs, so…

11 Quality Indicators …we still need to know “what to do on Monday morning” that is based on the best evidence we have at this point in time and on our values and desired outcomes for students with disabilities. This is why Quality Indicators have been developed.

12 California LRE Task Force
QI Handout California LRE Task Force & Florida Inclusion Network

13 Common Features Values and school climate Home school attendance
General education class membership in natural proportion Full participation with supports Collaborative teaming Administrative leadership

14 Unique Features

15 Institute on Disability, University of New Hampshire
Presuming competence and high expectations One QI survey addresses individual student, IEP team, classroom, building, and district indicators Highlights augmentative and alternative (AAC) communication Includes indicators about graduation and futures planning Has been converted into Survey Monkey for easy online completion and tallying Contact: Cheryl Jorgensen -

16 Examples The inherent value and dignity of students with significant disabilities is respected. All students with significant disabilities pursue the same learner outcomes as students without disabilities. When students do not currently demonstrate content knowledge or skills, the least dangerous assumption principle applies, and all aspects of their educational programs continue to reflect high expectations.

17 Examples “People First” language is used (e.g., a child with Down syndrome, not a Down syndrome child). ŠLanguage regarding the student’s perceived functioning or developmental level is not used as the primary descriptor; rather, descriptions of the student focus on abilities and needs are used. ŠAnnual goals on the student’s individualized education program (IEP) reflect content standards from the general education curriculum. Predictions are not made that the student will “never” acquire certain knowledge or skills. ŠPeople use age-appropriate vocabulary and inflection when talking to the student.

18 Barbara McKenzie Everyday language, easy to use by parents advocating for their child’s inclusion Based on the “big ideas” of inclusive education Good for conversation/dialogue starter within teams Draws on the power of stories to change attitudes Looks at inclusion as Erin progressed through the grades, culminating in graduation Encourages broader systems change Contact: Barb McKenzie - Contact: Barb McKenzie –

19 Friends’ Reflections…
“Throughout elementary school we all experienced things together like being ‘letter people’… We all had a blast at the haunted gym and helped Erin master the monkey bars and swings… Everyone knew Erin and she was without a doubt ‘just one of the girls’”

20 Friends’ Reflections…
“In middle school, we all went through a change of environment. Even though this was the case, Erin was always there to pick up your spirits…She also joined the drama club with me and Kristin.”

21 Friends’ Reflections…
“I had the privilege of meeting Erin my freshman year when we both took choir…Junior year I had history with Erin. I sat next to her and got to know her a lot better…I am thankful for her acceptance and her willingness to include me in the traditions that were already made.”

22 Friends’ Reflections…
“At the Evening of Reflection, Erin got up on stage and presented a speech… She was able to tell all about herself and her experiences. Then came graduation. Erin had worked hard and had earned herself something wonderful – a high school diploma. As we all prepared to find a college, Erin was able to find herself an opportunity doing something she loved, being part of the theater at Otterbein College.”

23 Maryland Coalition for Inclusive Education
Detailed instructions for who should complete the QI inventory Two inventories: classroom-level and building-level Offers examples of data sources/evidence for each indicator Scoring rubric acknowledges that schools are at different points along a continuum of improvement – initiating, developing, sustaining Contact: Carol Quirk –

24 Examples Teachers use principles of universal design for learning and tiered planning when considering lesson content, structure, and pacing. Teachers vary the way they engage students. Multiple opportunities to access information though different means and media are available. Students have options for demonstrating learning.

25 Examples Teachers consistently use differentiated instruction to support diverse learners Teachers vary the content, environment, process, and products required when teaching the curriculum. Differentiation is based on students’ skills, prior knowledge/learning, interests, strengths, and areas of need. All students regularly have opportunities to learn at their challenge level.

26 California LRE Task Force
Both school and district-level QI tools with lots of focus on infrastructure necessary for successful inclusion (e.g., credentialed teachers, professional development, adequate funding) Suggests establishing a school improvement team to guide the process Forms help summarize and prioritize action items for improvement Includes process guide for weighing pros and cons of strategies for improvement Contact: Jacki Anderson –

27 Examples There are fiscal and organizational supports provided for implementation of LRE. The district provides fiscal, human, and organizational resources for school site implementation of LRE (e.g., collaboration, planning time, IEP planning time, available substitutes, supports for participation at the IEP meeting for all required participants). Textbooks, instructional materials, and technology used throughout the district are available to all students and all teachers. All curricular and extracurricular activities and opportunities throughout the district are available to all students.

28 Florida Inclusion Network & University of Florida
Three different QI tools: IEP team, school/building, and district, all based on the same three categories of indicators: values & climate, access to general education, and policies and support Five point rubric provides detailed descriptions of each “level” of progress towards each quality indicator Separate scoring sheet can be used to prioritize and make action plans Contact: Diane Ryndak –

29 Examples The school mission statement reflects a philosophy that every student can learn, and all instructional and administrative personnel are accountable for demonstrating adequate yearly progress for all students. The provision of effective services in age appropriate general education and natural contexts for students with disabilities, including students with severe disabilities, is stated directly in the school mission statement. The mission statement is distributed to key people–including school staff, parents, district-level administrators, and community members–and posted in the schools, included in handbooks, and referenced repeatedly.

30 Examples School administrators have identified and provide support for a key person at the school to facilitate the inclusion of all students with disabilities, including all students with severe disabilities, with same-age peers without disabilities in general education and natural contexts through the coordination of needs assessments, technical assistance, and professional development activities for school administrators, personnel, students, and families.

31 Welcome Melody Musgrove

32 Follow-Up Please visit the TASH conference website to view a copy of this PowerPoint presentation, links to the actual QI tools, and everyone’s contact information.

33 Institute on Disability/University of New Hampshire
ADJOURN! Jorgensen, CM Institute on Disability/University of New Hampshire

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