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Do Approved ESSA Plans Meet the Multi-tiered Systems of Support Requirement?
Now that all 50 ESSA plans have been approved by U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos, we have a clearer window into each state's accountability roadmap and goals, including strategies to meet the requirement of providing struggling learners with evidence-based interventions.
How to Get Started with Your School District Cybersecurity Program
School district technology leaders: there’s a growing threat to the schools you serve, and it’s not low internet bandwidth or outdated hardware… it’s school cyber attacks.Continue Reading
How One School District Manages Drastic Growth in Special Populations Each Year
Not far from Houston, Texas, Alvin Independent School District is a rapidly growing organization with enrollment increasing by well over 1,000 students annually. New schools are planned and built every year to keep up with projected expansion.
Podcast: Special Education Software Companies as District Partners
Does the road to choosing successful ed-tech seem bumpier for special education programs than it does for other areas of K-12? If yes, is that only because of state compliance regulations? Or is it something else?Continue Reading
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Bring Clarity to Section 504
Since the great majority of states do not provide Section 504 regulations, and the federal law itself does not establish clear process rules, educators today are left grappling with the practical implementation of this near 50-year-old law without clarity.Continue Reading
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Teacher Absences & Subs
One State’s Journey to Fewer Teacher Absences
Rhode Island: a state known for its gorgeous coastline, diminutive size and… teacher absences? Since the Thomas B. Fordham Institute published its Teacher Absenteeism in Charter and Traditional Public Schools report in September, there has been plenty of talk about the state’s high teacher absenteeism rates. And there’s no debating that the numbers are high.Continue Reading
Are We Still Providing FAPE?
Following the March 2017 U.S. Supreme Court ruling on special education, what does FAPE actually mean for the over 6.6 million students currently receiving special education in U.S. public schools? How should a student’s needs be met and tracked? Is FAPE different for a student with behavioral difficulties that impact learning and participation?Continue Reading
10 Tips for Present Levels of Performance that Strengthen IEPs
A well-constructed Present Levels of Performance Statement sets the stage for determining goals, specially designed instruction and services for each student. It also provides next year’s teacher with the great instructionally relevant information they need to hit the ground running and maximize benefit to the student.Continue Reading
Your RTI and MTSS Academic Screening Process: Performing a Check-Up
School-wide academic screeners provide the equivalent of air traffic control for RTI/MTSS and lend considerable power to the RTI/MTSS model. Because so much of the impact of RTI/MTSS depends upon the quality and use of screening data, veteran RTI/MTSS districts should start the school year by reviewing their school-wide screening procedures.Continue Reading
Tell the Right Story: How Does the Student’s Disability Affect Involvement and Progress in the General Education Curriculum?
Present levels of academic achievement and functional performance (PLAAFP) must include a statement on “how the disability affects the child’s involvement and progress in the general education curriculum.” I think of this section as providing the rationale for all subsequent decisions on what special education, related services and supplemental aids and services the student requires. Pretty important!Continue Reading
How to Create Strengths-based IEPs
If asked, special educators can describe their students’ strengths, as well as their needs. But when asked to self-assess IEPs they’ve written, they often find far more information about students’ weaknesses than strengths.Continue Reading