Presentation on theme: "1 Early Childhood Special Education Connecticut State Department of Education Early Childhood Special Education Maria Synodi."— Presentation transcript:
1 Early Childhood Special Education Connecticut State Department of Education Early Childhood Special Education Maria Synodi
2 What is the primary purpose of Connecticut’s outcome evaluation? To identify and guide continuous improvement efforts that demonstrate positive outcomes for children who receive programs and services through the state’s 619 program.
3 Primary purpose of Connecticut’s outcome evaluation resulted from ….? the state’s self-assessment, continuous improvement – intended to guide & target improvement efforts and measure results the need, as identified by stakeholders, to identify positive ‘results’ of 619 program for eligible children ages 3-5 the need to align with other state efforts for children without disabilities – important not to do something separate the need to utilize existing data systems and resources for measurement, maximize resources (time, money, resources) the need to coordinate with the Part C & B System
4 What is the impetus for the state’s outcome evaluation? Self-assessment, continuous improvement process GPRA PART Heightened focus and emphasis on standards, accountability, results Ensuring preschool-age children with disabilities (3-5) were included in SEA efforts for 6-21, integrated with Part C (0-3) Ensuring preschool-age children with disabilities were included in state outcome and accountability efforts for preschool-age children without disabilities – One integrated effort for ‘all’ children
5 What is the focus and scope of the state’s outcome evaluation? Specifically, children ages 3-, 4-, and 5-years of age receiving special education and related services -------------------------------------------------------- Provides data for children who received services in the state’s Part C Program - provides the ability to report outcome information for 619 and the 619 sub-group of children who received early intervention
6 What did the state want to be able to say about children? Identify ‘results’ of children receiving 619 services, program Children with disabilities were entering kindergarten with skills and competencies that provided the opportunity for participation in a regular education environment in the general education curriculum Children with disabilities exited special education by kindergarten Children needed less frequency, intensity of special education services and supports by kindergarten Children spent greater amounts of time in ‘regular education’ Children performed on statewide assessments at Grade 3
7 What did the state want to be able to say about children and why? Answer policy questions based upon data Should preschool-age children with disabilities be retained in kindergarten because they are ‘not ready’? Make policy and programmatic decisions based upon data Part C and 619 policy question – Do all children exiting Part C need special education at some point during the preschool years and/or are identified in kindergarten? 619 question – Is suspension, expulsion of a 3-, 4-, 5- year-old ever appropriate?
8 What did the state want to be able to say about children? Important to Note: State was not evaluating individual children, no intention on a statewide level to measure, collect data on child progress State was evaluating impact, effect of 619 services and/or programs on the children served (macro level) Outcomes were developed for a ‘class’ (e.g., 619) rather than for individual children and families Outcomes were evaluating and measuring the effects of the system of services rather than individual children & families Outcomes and evaluation reporting developed reflected (a) short-term measurements & (b) provision for long-term measurements
9 How and why were certain questions, statements chosen? Factors In Choosing Statements Included: GPRA, State self-assessment, continuous improvement efforts Answering the question – As a result of 619, what do we want the result to be for children? – Stakeholder feedback Results of data analysis for identification of priorities Research, literature Relied on available data collection systems, current or modified infrastructure for data collection and analysis Evaluation and integration of other state efforts on standards, benchmarks, accountability in early childhood, pragmatically and philosophically (do for ‘all’ children and don’t reinvent the wheel)
10 What ‘outcome’ areas were included in the state’s evaluation? One ‘kindergarten outcome’ Children with disabilities will enter kindergarten at age 5 prepared for success. ------------------------------------------------------------------- One ‘transition outcome’ Families and children are able to access appropriate educational and community supports and services when children leave the Birth to Three System
11 Kindergarten Outcome School Readiness Children with disabilities will enter kindergarten at age 5 prepared for success.
12 Children with disabilities will enter kindergarten at age 5 prepared for success All eligible 3- and 4-year-old children with disabilities will have access to: (1) a high-quality preschool experience reflecting the general education curriculum (2) A school readiness experience that will prepare them for school and (3) Will enter kindergarten at age 5, the same age as their typical peers.
13 Three K Indicators - Evidence of Change Increase the percent of eligible preschool children with disabilities, 3- and 4-years of age who participate in regular education kindergarten at age 5 Increase the percent of eligible preschool children with disabilities, 3- and 4-years of age, who receive their special education and related services in settings that are least restrictive Decrease the number of preschool and kindergarten children with disabilities who are suspended or expelled from school
14 Children with disabilities will enter kindergarten at age 5 prepared for success Evidence of Change Increase the percent of eligible children with disabilities 3- and 4- years of age, who participate in regular education kindergarten at age 5. Definition The total number of eligible 3- and 4-year-old children with disabilities who at age 5 are in and participate in a regular education kindergarten placement.
15 Increase the percent of eligible preschool children with disabilities, 3 and 4-years of age, who participate in regular education kindergarten at age 5 During the 2002-03 school year there were a total of 2,925 eligible students, 5 years of age, with disabilities. Of that, 2,262, or 77.3% were placed in a regular education kindergarten 575 children, or 19.7% of 5 year old children with disabilities were placed in preschool
16 Increase the percent of eligible preschool children with disabilities, 3 and 4-years of age, who participate in regular education kindergarten at age 5 Five years of data identifies a fluctuation in the utilization of kindergarten settings for eligible 5-year-old students with disabilities. In 2000-01, more eligible 5- year-olds were in kindergarten grade placements commensurate with their peers although 2002-03 shows and increase from the previous year.
17 Transition Outcome Transition From EI to 619 Families and children are able to access appropriate educational and community supports and services when children leave the Birth to Three System
18 Three Transition Indicators - Evidence of Change Increase the percent of eligible preschool children with disabilities who exited from B-3 and received a FAPE at 3 Increase the percent of eligible 3-year-old children with disabilities who receive their special education and related services in inclusive settings Increase the percent of eligible 3-year-old children with disabilities who receive their special education and related services in settings with non-disabled peers
19 FAPE at Age 3 Evidence of Change Increase the percent of eligible students with disabilities, who transitioned from Birth- 3 at age 3 and who received a FAPE by their 3rd birthday. Indicator Definition The total number of students in the Birth-3 System, who exited at age 3 and were found eligible for Special Education, who had their IEP implemented no later than their 3rd birthday.
20 FAPE at Age 3 - Status Of the 1,591 students, Birth to Three formally referred 646 (40.6%) to special education and convened a transition meeting for these children at least 90 days prior to the child’s third birthday. Nearly seventy-six percent (490) of the 646 children received FAPE at three, this includes 3 of the 9 students who had already exited by the December 2002 data collection.
21 What methods were used to conduct evaluation, measurement information? Statewide data collection system for special education, December 1 st reporting (primary) Part C data provided to the SEA Program review, monitoring information collected Parent interviews, survey results Information reported annually to the public and identification of next steps Follow-up at the statewide level and at the school district level Setting targets and re-evaluating strategies and activities
22 What were the major findings, results of the evaluation? Most significant findings came from data analysis conducted to identify status of 619, what is the state-of-the-state? Identified need to correct data, data definitions, validate data Identified that data not always reflective of what is occurring in the state, in school districts or with individual children Allowed the SEA to target policies and practices impacting eligible children ages 3-5 Provided a data profile that schools could learn from in changing their own practices Created opportunity for courageous conversations and change
23 Did the availability of resources pose challenges? Multiple resource challenges … data systems, resources for data analysis, report writing, follow-up Funding, personnel, federal & state fiscal crisis Data system capacity for new data elements Resources to capture and validate data through other than statewide data collection Dueling political footballs – do more with less Training, technical assistance, professional development
24 What important lessons were learned about the approach and methods used? Challenges in merging Part C data Challenges in 619 LRE data Challenges in reliability, validating data Differences between data and actual school district implementation of promising practices, meeting individual child needs Challenges in coordinating with other state early childhood activities, initiatives measuring results
25 What would you recommend to others who want to report outcome data? Create one ‘results’ system that has meaning and can help identify effects of positive change Utilize resources well Critical to work between C and B Programs Critical to work within early care and education activities
26 Using Data To Monitor Progress Compare data against statewide average Compare data to like districts Identify triggers – cut off point Follow-up with identified school districts
28 IDEA, Part B, Section 619 Preschool Special Education Contact Information Maria Synodi Program Manager Preschool Special Education State Department of Education 25 Industrial Park Road Middletown, Connecticut 06457 (860) 807-2054 email@example.com