2PrevalenceGovernment figures show that about 1:10 students in U.S. schools were receiving special education services in the early 21st century.More than half of the students served by special education are males.
3Prevalence cont.The number of students identified as having LD has more than doubled since the 70’s. These students make up about half of the special education population.Why do you think there has been an increase?Why is it important to determine the number of students with disabilities?
4Importance of Abilities We must not let people’s disabilities keep us from recognizing their abilities.Many people with disabilities have abilities that go unrecognized because their disabilities become the focus of concern.
5Disability vs. Handicap A disability is an inability to do something, a diminished capacity to perform in a specific way.A handicap is a disadvantage imposed on an individual.Example – Blindness is a disability that can be anything but a handicap in the dark. In fact, in the dark, the person who has sight is the one who is handicapped.
6Exceptional Learners Defined Those who are markedly different and require special education services to meet their full potential.The typical student who receives services has no immediately obvious disability.By federal law, an exceptional student is not to be identified as eligible for services until careful assessment indicates he/she is unable to make satisfactory progress in regular school programs w/o services to meet needs.
7High and Low Incidence Categories High incidence- more frequently occurring. Ex. LD, speech & lang., ED and MMRLow incidence – less frequently occurring. Ex. Low vision and blindness, deafness, deaf-blindness, severe MR and autismOn the rise- Autism spectrum disorder, and TBI ( traumatic brain injury)Why?
8Special Education Defined Special education means specially designed instruction that meets the unusual needs of an exceptional student.Related services – special transportation, psychological services, PT and OT, and counseling.
9Continuum of Placement Options (LRE – top to bottom) ConsultationItinerant servicesResourceSelf-contained classSpecial day schoolHospital or homebound instructionResidential schoolSee graphs on pages 16 & 17
10At-risk Students & Special Ed At-risk – not clearly defined, but generally refers to students who perform or behave poorly and appear likely to fail or fall short of their potential.Some advocates believe at-risk students can’t and shouldn’t be distinguished from those with mild disabilities.Others argue that the problems of at-risk students are often ignored b/c special ed siphons resources from general ed.
11At-risk cont. The line is arbitrary! There is no clear distinction b/w at risk and disability b/c educational achievement and social competence can vary from a little to a lot and there is no sudden, dramatic break in people’s level of attainment.
12“Should I Take Juanita Pope?” Think – pair –shareIn what ways does Juanita fit the definition of children “at risk?”Do you think she had a disability (or disabilities)?Whose attitudes and behavior do you find most troubling in this case- Juanita’s, the regular classroom teachers’, or Isabelle’s? Why?
13DiscussionHow should or how are our school systems accommodating at-risk students?
14Teachers’ RolesAll teachers must be prepared to work with exceptional students.Improving relationships between general and special educators.Inclusion – teaching students with disabilities in the same environment as their same age peers.
15Expectations for ALL educators The relationship between general and special educators must be one of cooperation and collaboration.Make maximum effort to accommodate individual students’ needs.Evaluate academic abilities and disabilities.Refer for evaluation.
16Expectations cont. Participate in eligibility conferences. Participate in writing IEPs.Communicate with parents or guardiansParticipate in due process hearings and negotiations.Collaborate with other professionals in identifying and making maximum use of exceptional students’ abilities.
17Expectations for Special Educators Meet expectations for ALL teachers, then attain special expertise in the following areas:Academic instruction of students with learning problems.Management of serious behavior problems.Use of technological advances.Knowledge of special education law.CEC – the Council for Exceptional Children (published guidelines and expectations)
18Discussion… Think – pair – share If special and general education were – as some suggest they should be – a single, unitary system, how would they be the same and how would they be different from the way they are now?
19Before making a referral… Contact parents. Hold AT LEAST one conference to discuss concerns.SST (Student Support Team)Check all available school records and talk to other professionals involved with child.DOCUMENT academic and behavioral management strategies you have tried.
20Origins, history, legislation and litigation to follow……..