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Surviving and Thriving in School. Robert W. Trobliger, Ph.D. Clinical Neuropsychologist Co-Director Neuropsychology Northeast Regional Epilepsy Group.

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Presentation on theme: "Surviving and Thriving in School. Robert W. Trobliger, Ph.D. Clinical Neuropsychologist Co-Director Neuropsychology Northeast Regional Epilepsy Group."— Presentation transcript:

1 Surviving and Thriving in School

2 Robert W. Trobliger, Ph.D. Clinical Neuropsychologist Co-Director Neuropsychology Northeast Regional Epilepsy Group

3 Seizures and academic difficulties

4 Academic difficulties often caused by cognitive difficulties -Attention -Memory -Executive Issues -Language Issues

5 Academic issues can be also be caused by underlying learning disorders.

6 Academic difficulties can also be caused by other issues - Developmental Delays impacting speech or motor skills -Autism Spectrum Disorder -Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder -Behavioral Disorders (Oppositional Defiant Disorder)

7 In different cases - Special schools may be warranted -Special classes may be warranted -Special accomodations may be warranted

8 Determining if changes in placement or providing services or accomodations is done using a comprehensive evaluation of abilities and difficulties

9 Parents or school staff start the process to determine if services or accommodations are needed, after identifying areas of concern

10 Which can be done by a school psychologist. Or an outside professional.

11 Results are used to determine if the child has a disability, as determined by IDEA.

12 Autism Deaf-blindness Deafness Developmental delay Emotional disturbance Hearing impairment Intellectual disability Multiple disabilities Orthopedic impairment Other health impairment Specific learning disability Speech or language impairment Traumatic brain injury Visual impairment, including blindness

13 The results combined with school records can be used to determine if an IEP or 504 plan is appropriate.

14 If parents disagree with the results of the evaluation they can request an independent evaluation.

15 If determined eligible, an IEP/504 plan must be developed within 30 days.

16 Before services are provided, parents must consent.

17 The teachers and service providers have access to such and know what accomodations, modificaitons, and supports should be provided.

18 Annual goals are developed, and progress towards those goals is reported regularly.

19 The IEP/504 plan is reviewed at least once a year, and revised as needed.

20 IEP vs. 504 Plan

21 What is a 504 plan? A 504 Plan is a plan developed to ensure that a child who has a disability identified under the law and is attending an elementary or secondary educational institution receives accommodations that will ensure their academic success and access to the learning environment.

22 Section 504 is a part of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 which prohibits discrimination based upon disability. Section 504 requires that the needs of students with disabilities be met as adequately as the need of those non-disabled. Section 504 requires that school districts provide a free appropriate public education (FAPE) to qualified students in their jurisdictions who have a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities.

23 Section 504 covers qualified students with disabilities who attend schools receiving Federal financial assistance. To be protected under Section 504, a student must be determined to: (1) have a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities; or (2) have a record of such an impairment; or (3) be regarded as having such an impairment.

24 A medical diagnosis of an illness does not automatically mean a student can receive services under Section 504. The illness must cause a substantial limitation on the student's ability to learn or another major life activity.

25 Under Section 504, no formalized testing is required. The 504 Committee should look at grades over the past several years, teacher’s reports, information from parents or other agencies, state assessment scores or other school administered tests, observations, discipline reports, attendance records, health records and adaptive behavior information. Schools must consider a variety of sources. A single source of information (such as a doctor’s report) cannot be the only information considered. Schools must be able to assure that all information submitted is documented and considered. education/legal-rights/

26 For students with disabilities who do not require specialized instruction but need the assurance that they will receive equal access to public education and services, a document is created to outline their specific accessibility requirements. Students with 504 Plans do not require specialized instruction, but, like the IEP, a 504 Plan should be updated annually to ensure that the student is receiving the most effective accommodations for his/her specific circumstances.

27 Examples of Accomodations given under a 504 plan Extra time for tests/quizzes (including state mandated) Separate Location for tests/quizzes Redirection (as needed) Check for understanding Breaks Preferred seating assignment

28 For students with disabilities who do require specialized instruction, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) controls the procedural requirements, and an IEP (Individualized Education Program) is developed. The IDEA process is more involved than that of Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act and requires documentation of measurable growth.

29 IEP The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) is a law that ensures that children with disabilities are provided early intervention, special education, and related services.

30 The Individualized Educational Plan (IEP) is a plan or program developed to ensure that a child who has a disability identified under the law and is attending an elementary or secondary educational institution receives specialized instruction and related services.

31 The IEP team review evaluations, information provided by parents, classroom-based assessements and observations present levels of academic achievement and related developmental needs; to determine: -if the child has a disability, -whether the child needs special education and related services; -whether any additions or modifications to services are needed to meet goals and partipate in the general education curriculum.

32 If determined appropriate, a program should be developed within 30 days, with parents' agreement. Program is developed together to determine what is most needed.

33 An IEP involves actually providing particular special education services.

34 This may mean education in regular classrooms with special education teachers on site (inclusion settings); education in regular classes with supplementary services (pull out classes), and/or classes in a self-contained setting.

35 Inclusion class/mainstream placement: Placement in a regular class with peers, ideally with a special education teacher in the classroom. Resource room placement: Special education teacher works with a small group of students, for a particular subject. Self-contained class: Removal from general population for all academic subjects and placement in a small class for more individualized instruction at a different pace. Special education classes

36 Out of distract placement: Placement in a specialized school specifically designed to address special learning or behavioral needs, such as schools with work with children on the autism spectrum.

37 Modified assignments Highlighted textbooks Extended time on tests or assignments Separate location for tests/quizzes Peer assistance with note taking Teacher provision of notes Frequent feedback Extra set of textbooks for home use Enlarged print texts Accommodation Examples

38 Positive reinforcement Behavior intervention plans Rearranging class schedules Use of visual aids/manipulatives Opportunity to give answers to tests/quizzes orally Opportunity to have tests/quizzes read aloud (except where reading skills are being assessed directly) Accommodations

39 Annual Goals Review of Goals Re-Evaluation

40 Can you have both and IEP and a 504 Plan? If your child has a disability and an IEP, he or she is automatically covered by Section 504. If your child has an IEP and needs academic interventions, this should be included his IEP. The IEP is required to address ALL of a child’s needs that are related to the disability. In addition, an IEP also provides the child and the child’s family with more rights and protections than 504 plans. -

41 School versus College Public elementary and secondary recipients are required to provide a free appropriate public education to qualified students with disabilities. Such an education consists of regular or special education and related aids and services designed to meet the individual educational needs of students with disabilities as adequately as the needs of students without disabilities are met. html

42 At the college level, the recipient is required to provide students with appropriate academic adjustments and auxiliary aids and services that are necessary to afford an individual with a disability an equal opportunity to participate in a school's program. Recipients are not required to make adjustments or provide aids or services that would result in a fundamental alteration of a recipient's program or impose an undue burden. ml Accommodations at the college level

43 What can parents do besides participate in the development of IEP/504 plan?

44 Parents Reviewing Work Working with teacher/school staff, regular communication Helping organize/manage assignments Helping get started on tasks, moving back/helping as needed Checking work

45 Helping – Providing assistance as needed, moving back when not. Parents

46 What can students do for themselves?

47 Students Doing homework/studying/completing projects in the right environment Avoiding distractions -internet -phones -television -other people -noise

48 Learning to take breaks/switch between assignments

49 -Spreading out reading assignments -Spreading out projects

50 Studying versus Cramming

51 Studying together

52 Quizzing self when studying

53 Schedules Organizers and Phones

54 Folders and assignment notebooks

55 Time management: the 2x principle Making checklists of assignments and projects – place on calendar, plan ahead critical points

56 Meeting with college advisors regarding classload Meeting with college disability office staff regarding accommodations Learning to sit at the front of the class Going over material in advance of classes Asking questions as needed Meeting with teaching assistants as needed Surviving in college

57 Conclusions Surviving and thriving in school involves:

58 Services and/or accommodations provided by the school system

59 Assistance, guidance, and support provided by parents.

60 Different approaches to learning and studying by students.

61 Thank you.

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