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Parent Advocate’s Guide to Special Education Bill Doolittle, National PTA Special Needs Committee, Co-Chairman Dr. James Pulos, National PTA Legislation.

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Presentation on theme: "Parent Advocate’s Guide to Special Education Bill Doolittle, National PTA Special Needs Committee, Co-Chairman Dr. James Pulos, National PTA Legislation."— Presentation transcript:

1 Parent Advocate’s Guide to Special Education Bill Doolittle, National PTA Special Needs Committee, Co-Chairman Dr. James Pulos, National PTA Legislation Committee Member Elizabeth Rorick, Deputy Exec. Director, Government Affairs and Communications 2014 Legislative Conference

2 Workshop Style Interactive Inquisitive There are no bad questions or ideas Participant directed Parking lot to hold ideas

3 Who are we ? Parents Educators Administrators Clinicians Policy makers Concerned individuals Others

4 Advocating for children with disabilities Your child Parent Educator Others Other’s Children PTA Advocates Volunteer parent advocate Volunteer educator advocate Parent information and resource center advocates Issue group advocates Paid advocates Y our LEA, Your state, USA and beyond

5 Advocacy Core Your child Educating yourself Advocating for your child Individual children Parental request Parental education and support Parental permissions and wishes Advocating for the child

6 Advocacy Core continued Broader advocacy Base advocacy knowledge Identifying common areas of need and concern Communicating common areas of need and concern Identifying others with common concerns Intermediate advocacy knowledge Contacting decision makers Contacting partners Building coalitions Getting to work Advanced advocacy knowledge Strategic planning Systems change NPTA Special needs committee

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8 Background and History Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) Main federal program authorizing state and local aid for special education and related services for children with disabilities. Requires states to provide a free, appropriate public education (FAPE) to children with disabilities so that they can be educated to the greatest extent possible along with all other children. Created to help states and school districts meet their legal obligations to educate children with disabilities, and to pay part of the extra expenses of doing so. Today, approximately 6 million children currently receive special education services.

9 Background and History Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) 2000s 2004: President Bush signed the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act, a major reauthorization that worked to remove the barriers separating special education from general education.

10 Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) Free appropriate public education (FAPE) to meet the unique needs of a child with a disability. no cost to the parent. meets state education standards. consistent with your child's Individualized Education Program (IEP).

11 What is Special Education? Set of services, rather than a specific place for your child to go. The general education classroom is considered the least restrictive environment or LRE for most kids. Most special education students spend the majority of the day in general education. “Push in" or "pull out" support from the special education staff.

12 What is Special Education? IEPs are mostly implemented in the general education classroom. Besides instruction in general education, other options for receiving special education services may be considered –special classes, –special schools, –home instruction, and –instruction in hospitals and institutions.

13 Parental Involvement Provisions under IDEA Create and preserve constructive relationships between parents and schools. Ensure parent involvement in planning and decision making. Assist parents to develop skills they need to participate effectively in the education and development of their children. Support parents as participants within partnerships. Help overcome economic, cultural, and linguistic barriers to full parent participation.

14 Parents have the right to… Informed Consent: Each LEA must obtain informed consent from parent before conducting an evaluation. Notification: Must be notified early enough to ensure the one or both of the child’s parents or guardians can attend IEP meetings. Parents may request that IEP meetings are scheduled at a mutually agreed upon time. Native Language: Have access to an interpreter if their native language is not English. Alternate meeting mediums: LEAs and parents can agree to use alternative means of meeting participation such as video or audio conferencing.

15 Parent Resources Parent Training Information (PTI) Centers Provide training, information and support to parents who have a child through the age of 26 with special needs. Authorized in Part D of IDEA and are funded by the U. S. Department of Education Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP). PTI Center in each state --some states also have Community Parent Resource Centers (CPRCs) which focus on reaching underserved populations, including low income families.

16 Parent Resources Parent Training Information (PTI) Centers Currently there are 104 PTI Centers, 32 of which are CPRCs, which operate under a unified system to provide technical assistance and resources for parents, family members, professionals, and school personnel. PTI Centers assist parents in the development of their child’s IEP, as well as assist parents in obtaining the appropriate information about the range, type, and quality of programs and services.

17 Individualized Education Plan Individual Education Program (IEP): Title 34 CFR §321 IDEA requires children to have an individualized education program (IEP), in order to receive special education services. The IEP includes information about a child’s present levels of performance on various tests and measures and includes information about goals and objectives, specifically how the child’s educational problems will be addressed.

18 Individualized Education Plan The IEP must be developed with input from: At least one of the child’s parents; At least one regular education teacher; At least one of the child’s special education teachers or providers; A representative of the school district who is qualified, knowledgeable, and authorized to commit the district to the delivery of resources to the child; A qualified professional who can interpret the evaluation of child; and Others at the discretion of the parent or the school district and, where appropriate, the child with a disability.

19 Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports

20 Where we are… Teachers report “uncivil” behavior is increasing and is a threat to effective learning (Skiba & Peterson, 2000) There is a link between general level of disruptive behavior and more extreme acts of violence (Skiba & Peterson, 2000)

21 Hardwired vs Programmed Which of the following do you think children are born with as hardwired emotional responses? 1.Patience 2.Joy 3.Anger 4.Embarrassment 5.Sadness 6.Empathy 7.Surprise 8.Disgust 9.Gratitude 10.Fear 11.Forgiveness

22 Hardwired vs Programmed Which of the following do you think children are born with as hardwired emotional responses? 1.Patience 2.Joy 3.Anger 4.Embarrassment 5.Sadness 6.Empathy 7.Surprise 8.Disgust 9.Gratitude 10.Fear 11.Forgiveness Jensen, E. (2009). Teaching with poverty in mind. ASCD.

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24 Why Should We Implement PBIS? Problem behavior is increasing Educators often rely on reactive and crisis management interventions to solve chronic behavior problems Educators often lack specialized skills to address severe problem behavior Teachers are being asked to do more with less Students have limited opportunities to learn social skills and to receive feedback on their use

25 Special Needs Students Research shows that students with special needs are more likely than students without special needs to be involved in the school disciplinary process. For the 2009-10 school year, the out of school suspension rates for all racial groups combined were 13 percent for students with special needs 7 percent for those without special needs.

26 Special Needs Students A staggering 25 percent of African-American students with special needs were suspended out of school at least one time in 2009-10.

27 It Doesn’t Make Sense! When a student can’t read… we teach. When a student can’t calculate… we teach. When a student can’t write… we teach. When a student can’t behave… we punish?

28 What Happens if we don’t Intervene? Three years after leaving school, 70% of antisocial youth have been arrested (Walker, Colvin, & Ramsey, 1995) 82% of crimes are committed by people who have dropped out of school (APA Commission on Youth Violence, 1993)

29 Meaningful Differences Observed in homes in the 1960s Professional vs. Poverty 11-18 month olds (in one year) Language Professional: hear 4 million words Affirmative statements = 30 per hour Poverty: hear 250,000 words Affirmative statements = 6 per hour (Hart & Risley, 1995)

30 Hart and Risley conclude… Thousands of hours of affirmative feedback are needed in preschool to even begin to overcome what child has learned about himself/herself in the first 3 years of life (p. 188) To provide average welfare child with the amount of weekly language experience equal to that of average working class child would require 41 hours per week of out-of-home experiences (p. 201)

31 Hart and Risley conclude… 1,100 more instances of affirmative feedback per week to keep confidence-building experiences of welfare children equal to those of working class children (p. 201) 26 hours per week of substituted experience with affirmatives for the welfare child’s experience to equal that of the working-class child (p. 202)

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33 School Punitive disciplinary approach Lack of clarity about rules, expectations, and consequences Lack of staff support Failure to consider and accommodate individual differences Academic failure (Mayer, 1995)

34 What are our “common” responses? Clamp down on rule violators Review rules and sanctions Extend continuum of aversive consequences Improve consistency of use of punishments Establish “bottom line” Notify and confer with parents (Lombardi et al., 1990)

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38 School-wide Discipline Procedures Classroom? Minor Offenses IS THE INCIDENT MANAGED In the…… Office? Major Offenses Behavior ceases. No further action. 1st Offense -Verbal warning -Re-teach behavior expectation -Parent contact (optional) Behavior ceases. No further action. 3 rd Offense (Behavior violates the same NMS Behavioral Expectation) -Re-teach behavior expectation -Assign low-level consequence -Parent contact with phone or email and tracking form -Parent conference/RTI meeting 2 nd Offense (Behavior violates the same NMS Behavioral Expectation) -Re-teach behavior expectation -Assign low-level consequence -Begin tracking form -Parent contact with tracking form Behavior ceases. No further action. AP determines course of action or consequences (In addition, student may be referred to Counselor for Scheduling changes and/or involvement in other interventions. Intervention Specialist will be notified for documentation to occur.) Write referral to AP in Infinite Campus. -Send copy of tracking form to AP -Parent contact (phone/email) -Hard copy of referral to student (noted in IC) -Link to referral sent to teacher and Sgt. Edwards 4 th Offense (Same Behavior) -Referral to AP written in IC -Document in referral that “PBIS steps have been addressed.” -Email tracking form to AP Team Meeting -Discuss student with team (same behaviors in other classes?) -Document in team meeting minutes -Email tracking form to Inter. Specialist -All team members participate in conference if behaviors are common → ↓ → ↓ → →

39 Typical Reactive Responses Zero tolerance policies Security guards, student uniforms, metal detectors, video cameras Suspension/expulsion Exclusionary options (e.g., alternative programs)

40 Problems of Being REACTIVE… Fosters environments of control Reinforces antisocial behavior Shifts accountability away from school Devalues child-adult relationship Weakens relationship between academic and social behavior programming Research does not support effectiveness

41 What Doesn’t Work… Reviews of over 600 studies on how to reduce school discipline problems indicate that the LEAST effective responses to school violence are: Counseling (talking therapies) Psychotherapy Punishment Associated with INCREASED aggression, vandalism, truancy, tardiness, and dropouts (Elliott, Hamburg & Williams, 1998; Gottfredson, 1996; Lipsey, 1991, 1992; Mayer, 1995; Mayer & Sulzer- Azeroff, 1990; Tolan & Guerra, 1994)

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43 What DOES Work… Same research reviews indicate that the MOST effective response to school violence is a comprehensive approach that includes: social skills training academic restructuring behavioral interventions

44 Ideas for Effective PBIS 1.Invest in Prevention Teach, monitor, and reward before resorting to punishment and exclusion. Focus first on the social culture of the school 2. Efficient Organization Combine rather than add initiatives Work smarter – not harder

45 Ideas for Effective PBIS 3. Build “Systems of Support” Build different systems for different problems Build durable systems 4.Administrative leadership is essential 5. Adapt the systems and practices to “fit” each school Self-assessment Different paths – common outcomes 6. Gather and use information (data) for on-going decision-making

46 Key components Problem behaviors have clear consequences Discipline is implemented consistently by staff and administration Student behavior is monitored and staff receive regular feedback

47 1-5% 5-10% 80-90% Intensive, Individual Interventions Individual Students Assessment-based High Intensity Intensive, Individual Interventions Individual Students Assessment-based Intense, durable procedures Targeted Group Interventions Some students (at-risk) High efficiency Rapid response Targeted Group Interventions Some students (at-risk) High efficiency Rapid response Universal Interventions All students Preventive, proactive Universal Interventions All settings, all students Preventive, proactive Responsiveness to Intervention Academic Systems Behavioral Systems Source: PBIS.org

48 Key components Problem behaviors have clear consequences Discipline is implemented consistently by staff and administration Student behavior is monitored and staff receive regular feedback

49 School Wide Systems 1.Common purpose and approach to discipline 2.Clear set of positive expectations and behaviors 3.Procedures for teaching expected behavior 4.Continuum of procedures for encouraging expected behavior 5.Continuum of procedures for discouraging inappropriate behavior 6.Procedures for on-going monitoring and evaluation

50 Non Classroom Systems Hallway, cafeteria, bus, restroom Teaching expectations and routines Active supervision Scan, move, interact Pre-corrections and reminders Positive reinforcement

51 Classroom Management Behavior management Teaching routines and procedures – then MODELING and PRACTICING them! Ratio of 6-8 positive to 1 negative adult-student interaction Instructional management Curriculum and Instructional design Well-planned, engaging lessons = fewer opportunities for off-task behaviors Environmental management Set your classroom up to be successful!

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53 National PTA Urges 1.Require the inclusion of a classroom-based behavioral management plan that focuses on prevention during the development of every student’s IEP and 504 plan. 2.Require that both general and special education teachers know how to respond to behavioral problems with Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS).

54 HTTP://WWW.PBIS.ORG HTTP://WWW.PTA.ORG/ADVOCACY References


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