-Students with disabilities were discriminated against in two ways during the 1950s. In schools they almost always excluded students with disabilities. If students with disabilities were in school, educators were not giving them the proper education they needed and deserved. (Turnbull p. 8) -Brown v. Board of Education opened up the door for people to fight for the rights of students with disabilities. In this case the Supreme Court ruled that schools are not allowed to segregate based on race. This case made it clear that everyone was protected under equal protection clause found in the 14th amendment. -Advocates fighting for the rights of students with disabilities began to see real progress in 1972. There were two cases that would change education for students with disabilities forever. These two cases made congress begin to see the discrimination these students were receiving in schools. In 1975 IDEA was enacted and its purpose “is to ensure that all students with disabilities have a free and appropriate education in the least restrictive setting.
Part A of idea is just the intent Congress as well as the national policy of providing students with disabilities from birth to the age of 21, with a free and appropriate public education. Part B focuses on students ages 3-21 who have, autism, specific learning disabilities, intellectual disabilities, hearing impairments, Visual impairments, speech or language impairments, traumatic brain injury, emotional disorders, multiple disabilities, or other health impairments. Part C allows states to have discretion on whether they should serve infants and toddlers, but as of 2010 all of the states to serve them. This part supplies students under the age of 3 with early intervention services if the child or baby has issues with physical development or cognitive delays that may be manifested in their communication or social and emotional development. The first of IDEAS 6 principles is Zero reject, which means schools are not allowed to exclude any student. The second principle is Nondiscriminatory evaluation which makes it clear that schools are required to evaluate their students in a fair manner to detect the presence of a disability. If they do have a disability the school is responsible for determining what kind it is and how much it effects the student. The third principle is appropriate education which requires schools to provide students with disabilities and individualized plan in their education that works off of the school’s evaluation of the student. Under this principle schools should also identify supplementary aids and services the student needs. This is manifested through a students IEP which is a individualized education program. The IEP is reviewed by the IEP team which includes everyone speaking in this presentation as well as the parents and the students. My role on the IEP team is the special education teacher. The fourth principle is lease restrictive environment which requires schools to make sure a child with disabilities continues to be taught with students in a general education classroom, to the maximum extent that is appropriate. The fifth principle is procedural due process which states that families have the right to sue schools if their childs rights are not met. The last principle is parental and student participation which requires the school to work with the students and their parents to design and carry out a special education plan.
There has been an upward trend in the amount of students that spend the majority of their time in the general classroom in the last several years. But we would like to improve the inclusion rates even more in the future. It has been shown, for various reasons, that students with multiple disabilities are most likely to be places in special schooling as compared to other students with disabilities. Followed by multiple disabilities, deaf-blindness and students with emotional and behavioral disabilities are more likely to be educated in separate schools. According to the association of special education teachers website, “Studies have shown that Students with Disabilities benefit socially with fewer negative labels, reduced stigma, and increased interaction with Regular Ed peers. Some evidence [also] suggests that achievement and learning for Students with Disabilities may also be benefited by Inclusion.” So you may ask, “how can we help increase the amount of inclusion?” To do this we can start by increasing the amount of supplementary aids and services. The definition of supplementary aids and services according to IDEA is the “aids, services, and other supports that are provided in general education classes, other education-related settings, and in extracurricular and nonacademic settings, to enable children with disabilities to be educated with nondisabled children to the maximum extent appropriate.” We stress the idea that students are educated in the general education classroom to the maximum extent appropriate because we understand that students with disabilities may need some special instruction that cannot be given in the general education classroom. What is best for the student with disabilities is to be educated as much as we deem appropriate with their nondisabled peers. This could include their entire school day or if need be in a separate setting for part of the day.
There are many recommendations I can make to ensure the learning process is achievable for all students with disabilities. I will begin by listing my general recommendations and then go through the definitions and examples of each recommendation. My first recommendation is to increase universally designed products and environments. A universal design is the design of buildings, environments, and products that all people can access and use. This can mean providing universally designed scissors like the ones shown on the slides in front of you. This could also mean ensuring there is wheelchair access to every classroom and floor in the building. As discussed in the previous slides, supplementary aids and services are the “aids, services, and other supports that are provided in general education classes, other education-related settings, and in extracurricular and nonacademic settings, to enable children with disabilities to be educated with nondisabled children to the maximum extent appropriate.” This is important because it allows students to be included in the general classroom. This could include making sure a student who is hard of hearing has an appropriate seat in the classroom to ensure they are able to hear the teacher during instruction. Being able to take alternate assessments is also an important recommendation I will be making to help students with disabilities. Many different varieties of assessments are available including alternative assessments based on grade level achievement standards, alternate achievement standards, or modified achievement standards. These alternative assessments allow students who are unable, for any reason, to take the state assessment. The alternative assessments provide a way to monitor the students progress in the absence of the state assessment.
To continue my general recommendations I will start with stressing parental involvement. Parental involvement is a crucial. A report from the Southwest Educational Development Laboratory found, regardless of family income or background, the students with family involvement are more likely to earn higher test scores, have higher attendance rates, have improved social and behavior skills, and graduate and continue on to postsecondary school. All very important skills and opportunities a student can benefit from. Inclusion, as discussed in previous slides, is also a very important aspect of helping students with disabilities. I early mentioned that students who benefit from inclusion have increased social skill and achievement opportunities. Which are vital for ensuing our students have healthy, bright futures. Lastly, I want to recommend teaching students tolerance. Not only is this a significant life long lesson, it also helps the lives of people who may be the target of certain bullying and hateful views. There are many activities that can help teachers and parents teach tolerance to students. A helpful websites for educating students is Tolerance.org. There you can find various lesson plans, handouts, and other websites to help teach students of differing grade levels the importance of tolerance. I hope my recommendation can help the students with disabilities in your school. Not only do these recommendation help students with disabilities, they help all students and the entire community.
- The inclusionary standard means that there are other disabilities to include along with a SLD. The exclusionary standard states that other conditions are not included. -The student we are discussing has a specific learning disability that is manifested in reading. We then refer to this as a reading disorder and he specifically has trouble with reading fluency and comprehension. This means that when he reads aloud he tends to get stuck on words and this influences the way he comprehends the reading. The first time I noted that he had challenges with his comprehension was in my special education classroom. I had asked David to summarize a short story that was at his reading level. When he wrote his summary I noted he needed practice with sentence structure and identifying the main idea. In his summary he noted an insignificant part of the narrative and then decided to write an opinion piece. I then had to think of ways I could help David improve his comprehension and fluency.
There are a variety of causes of specific learning disabilities, these include neurological mechanisms, genetics, and environmental causes.
Neurological mechanisms include specific regions of the brain that are linked with specific types of disorders, for example, writing dictated numbers is related to the left temporal lobe, whereas computation is aligned with the prefrontal and inferior parietal lobe.
Recent evidence has shown that specific genes have been linked with specific learning disabilities.
Lastly, another important cause can be environmental factors such as the type of instruction that parents provide to their children and the quality and quantity of the home literacy environment.
There are also different ways to evaluate a student with specific learning disabilities. The discrepancy model is a nondiscriminatory evaluation that looks at the difference between a student’s intellectual ability and their achievement.
The Response to Intervention or RTI model is designed to identify students with learning disabilities, with an emphasis on discovering optimal instruction for the child to make academic progress.
The Psychological Processing Model is a cognitive and neuropsychological assessment that can identify students’ strengths and weaknesses in psychological processing. Examples studied include executive function, processing speed, short-term memory, and working memory)
The first modification needs to address David’s fluency. Class material should be read aloud to him so that he can comprehend the material a little more smoothly. If he is working with a group he may also benefit from having it read aloud to him more than once. In my special education classroom I make sure that David feels comfortable enough to ask for things to be read frequently if he needs it to be done. The next practice I would recommend all his general education teachers to use is exercising vocabulary in each lesson. Most teachers write down a word on the board and ask students to define it by looking in their textbook or grabbing a dictionary. Sometimes teachers just tell the students to identify vocabulary words on their own. This would not work for any student with a reading disorder, especially for someone like David who has challenges with comprehension. I have read an article By Chris O’Brien titled “Modifying Learning Strategies for Classroom Success”. In this article he discusses a vocabulary memorization strategy that is effective and research-based, called LINCS. This method helps students with learning disabilities because it promotes memorization and the practice of comprehending new words. This method requires students to create flash cards for each vocabulary word, but not in the method students usually practice, which is definition on one side with the word on the other. Students are to divide both sides of the note card into halves with a horizontal line. On the front side of the card in the top half students should write the vocabulary word, then on the back side in the top portion students write the definition of the word. When students return to the bottom half of the front side, under the horizontal line, students should use the word in a sentence or they can simply identify a word that reminds them of the vocabulary word. When they turn to the bottom half of the back of the card they should draw a vertical line that splits that bottom half into two parts. On the left hand side of this bottom portion students are supposed to create a short story that reminds them of the vocabulary word without using the actual word. In the right hand side students are to draw a picture of this story. Students will be helped in remembering the LINCS method by going through each letter in the word LINCS and following each step. L is stands for listing the parts, which is the word itself and the definition. I is for “Identifying a reminding word”, N is for noting a linking story, C is for creating a picture. The final step is S which means to Self-assess. For students with learning disabilities, remembering this pneumonic may not come easy, so all teachers can write the pneumonic on the board every time they go through vocabulary or make a chart that can be found permanently in the classroom so that they have a guide to follow. This strategy is not only helpful for students who have a reading disorder, like David but also for the rest of his classmates in the general education classroom. This is a great method of learning that can be found mentioned in the IEP which follows IDEA’s third principal of appropriate education. This also addresses the lease restrictive environment, why do you ask? If everyone is able to adapt this practice in their lessons, David will be able to be included more often in his general education class with the rest of his classmates, because he will be able to keep up with the work and not feel excluded. The LINCS method is easy to adapt to every subject and will most definitely help David with his comprehension and fluency and sentence structure. He will need to identify words which will help with fluency. The creation of a story will help him practice his sentence structure and the vocabulary practice will most definitely help his comprehension.
The second specific disability that we will be looking at today is autism. Autism is a disability that many people have heard of, but not many are able to describe accurate. I have shared two definitions of autism here. The first comes from the IDEA and the second comes from the 5th edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. Both definitions emphasize problems with social and communicative skills, and indeed, children with autism often display delays in social interaction, delayed language, and lack of reciprocity among other characteristics. Other behaviors include repetition of movement and aggression. As with any disability, it is problematic to generalize students with autism. For example, 75% of children with autism have intellectual disabilities but many do not. Some children are sensitive to noise, but others are not. Usually, autism is evident before a child turns three, so the students at our school with autism and their families have known about the disorder for the majority of the students’ lives.
All that being said, there are specific recommendations that will help students with autism both academically and socially. I’d like to start with academic strategies and tools we can implement as a school and as educators to make sure our students with autism are getting the support they need and deserve. First and foremost, using simple technologies can be especially helpful. Vibrating tools that are predictable can help to curb sensory overload and are not obvious to other students. As a school, some of the building modifications could be having round lunch tables rather than long lunch tables so that fewer students are at each table. We can modify our lunch schedule and allow fewer students in the cafeteria or in the highway at a time. A classroom modification may be changing classroom set up so that it limits how often students interact with one another or keeping a visual schedule up in the classroom at all times. In terms of actually teaching our young adolescents with autism, our team suggests using mnemonic devices to help students remember the order of operations, for example. Social stories and visual cues can let a student know what is expected of them throughout the day, and discrete trial training using reinforcement to promote the response you are looking for from the student. Finally, since we do administer standardized test every year, it is important the person administering the test to our students with autism is someone the students know and are comfortable with because doing so will reduce the students’ anxiety.
As mentioned previously, social and behavioral recommendations are especially important for students with autism because those elements are aspects that these students struggle with. Our team suggests a two-prong approach. First, on the individual level, we want to promote friendship between students. Since forming social relationships can be especially difficult for students with autism, our staff needs to make sure we are practicing the skills listed here with our students who have autism. Social circles are a great way for students with autism to build relationships with a group of students who can model behavior and act as social support for the student over many years. On the school-wide level, a school-wide positive behavior support system will allow room for universal, group, and individual attention. On the universal level, we are setting a positive learning environment and clear expectations for all students in the entire school. When a group of at least ten or fifteen students has still not learned the appropriate behavior, our school should provide group support by teaching specific skills. When necessary, individual support will take place. It requires a functional behavior assessment and targets problem behavior, maximizing positive outcomes for individual students.
IDEA defines a visual disability as an impairment in vision that, even with correction, adversely affects a child’s educational performance. The term includes both partial sight and blindness. Teachers use three classifications to describe students based on their tendency or need to use visual or tactile means for learning.
Low Vision students can read print but may depend on optical aids such as magnifying lenses to see better. Some in this category read both braille and print. But all of them rely primarily on vision for learning. Students in this category may or may not be considered legally blind.
Functionally Blind students typically use braille for efficient reading and writing. They may use vision for other tasks like moving through the environment or sorting items by color. They use their vision to supplement a combination of tactile and auditory learning methods.
Totally blind students are those who do not receive meaningful input through their visual sense. They generally read braille and use tactile and auditory methods to learn.
The causes of visual impairment can vary from trauma to the visual system of the body or it could be due to an event that happens from the time of development of the embryo all the way to birth.
The presence of a visual impairment is assessed by medical professionals, and even after being given a diagnosis it is important to do a functional vision assessment to determine how a student uses their vision.
There are several ways to assess a student with visual impairment. Most of the time the standardized exams will not accurately reflect the intelligence or the ability of the student with visual impairment.
An individualized intelligence test is important because standardization may need to be violated since its results may not be an accurate reflection of ability.
Individualized Achievement Tests exist because standardization of these tests, unless developed for students with visual impairments may not accurately reflect achievement.
Adaptive Behavioral Scales are crucial because the student might have difficulty with self-care, household, and community skills because of vision and related mobility problems.
Curriculum-based assessment includes a specialist checking the student’s competence in all areas of the expanded core curriculum including the use of technology, independent living, self-determination, career education, recreation and leisure, sensory efficiency, social functioning, use of compensatory skills, and orientation and mobility.
Direct observation-learning media assessment involves determining the most efficient methods that students with visual impairment will use to access general education materials.
Another important aspect that goes hand-in-hand with evaluation of a student with visual impairment is determining the appropriate learning medium. This involves conducting a learning media assessment (LMA) it begins with a functional vision assessment but includes evaluating the student’s use of touch and vision in new environments and situations, the stability of the eye condition, visual stamina, and motivation
When we design an IEP for a student with visual impairment, we need to have certain elements that involve services to support the student’s success in the general education curriculum.
Students might need specialized instruction to master writing braille with a slate and stylus, using an abacus for calculating, or developing skills for listening, studying, and organization.
Since these students might not learn efficiently through their visual sense, they may need instruction in braille, which is a tactile method for reading.
There are even nonacademic priorities which are skills needed to transition into a successful adult life.
A couple of factors that will affect the success of the IEP will be determining the location where these services will be given, and it is crucial that there is constant communication to meet the student’s needs. The way the lesson plan is conveyed to the student is important and it is important to teach the material in a consistent and unambiguous way.
There are many supports the general education teacher can provide including Adapted Materials, such as those found on the American Printing House for the Blind. In addition to adapted material, there are assistive technologies such as JAWS that can speak text to the student.
Our goal in the general education classroom is to provide for a universal design for learning, so it is important to reinforce daily living skills, evaluate the student’s orientation and mobility, and finally encourage the student’s sense of self-determination for the future.
Congress has stated 4 major results from IDEA. Equality of opportunity, full participation, independent living, and economic self-sufficiency.
When we talk about outcomes for students with disabilities we must consider the following facts:
Students with disabilities are three times less likely to complete high school than those students without disabilities. Approximately two thirds of students with disabilities scored below basic levels in reading and math Over the past 20 years, there has been improvement in increasing the chance of attending post-secondary school and gaining employment.
Only approximately 1/3 of students with disabilities express satisfaction with life in general as opposed to 2/3 for the individuals without disabilities.
Students with specific learning disabilities can be taught to self-direct their IEP and Transition Meetings
Curriculum Mapping is important because it involves determining the scope and sequence of the delivery of content in school. Advance organizers can be a powerful tool that can enable these students to perform more effectively
Promoting elf advocacy has been shown to make the transition from high school to college more successful.
For students with autism the key is positive behavior support, and it requires partnerships among families, educators, and professionals. It is important to have in place building and classroom supports that help promote positive behavior. Mnemonic strategies have been shown to be a powerful general classroom adaptation.
Students learn often need a hands on approach that involves all senses It is important to maintain a universally designed instruction in the classroom Functional and life-skill instruction is crucial for the student to transition to a successful life as an adult And instruction should be centered around the skills learned incidentally by the sighted peers, as well as those skills specific to those with visual impairment.
Multidisciplinary Team 7:
A n g e l i c a P e ñ a , S p e c i a l E d u c a ti o n Te a c h e r
A b h i l a s h N a i r , G e n e r a l E d u c a ti o n Te a c h e r
A n g e l i c a K r a j e ws k i , S c h o o l S o c i a l Wo r k e r / C o u n s e l o r
M a r y A g n e s B a i e r , S p e e c h / L a n g u a g e / P h y s i c a l Th e r a p i s t
A SPED 410 PRESENTATION
An Overview of Our School
6% African American
Average Class Size:
Overall ISAT Scores:
38% meet or exceed
Chronic Truancy Rate:
29% absent for 5% or
more of school days
Identifying the fight for rights of students with
disabilities as part of the civil rights movement.
1950s schools were discriminating against students with
1954 Brown v. Board of Education
1972 Mills v. Washington DC, Board of education and
Pennsylvania Association for Retarded Citizens v.
Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
IDEA enacted in 1975 by congress and students
with disabilities were finally acknowledges as
deserving the same opportunities in education as
Special Education Continued
In 1975 IDEA was only meant to cover students
from ages 6-18. The law has now expanded to
include infants and toddlers and older students up
to the age of 21. (Turnbull 9)
Part B ages 3-21
Part C ages 0-3
IDEA has 6 Principles:
Least Restrictive Environment
Procedural due process
Parental and student participation
Under the third principal IDEA requires that students with a
disability have an IEP.
What is the goal?
To increase the amount of students
that spend the majority of their time
in the general education classroom
Students with multiple disabilities are
more likely to be educated in
separate schools. Followed by deaf-
blindness and emotional and
Inclusion can help students socially
How can be help?
Increase supplementary aids and
Source: Exceptional Lives
Source: Exceptional Lives
• Universal Design for Learning –
products and building design
• Supplementary Aids and Services –
maximize inclusion in the general
• Alternate Assessments –
allow modifications to
assessments for students
who are unable to for any
reason to take state
Stress Parental Involvement –
ensure family involvement to
further students success
Recommend Inclusion – students
should spend more time in the
Teach Tolerance – educate
students about students
Specific Learning Disability
A learning disability is the most common disability
amongst students served under IDEA.
A specific learning disability is defined as ‘a
disorder in one or more basic psychological
processes involved in understanding or using
language, spoken or written’ (Turnbull p. 106)
Team must determine if it is an inclusionary or exclusionary
They affect a students reading, math, and/or
Specific Learning Disability:
Causes & Evaluation
Neurological Mechanisms – specific areas of brain
Genetics – specific genes
Environmental Causes – type, quantity, & quality of
Psychological Processing Model
Specific Learning Disability-Modifications
and Accommodations for IEP
The first modification I would emphasize in David’s
IEP is to have material read aloud to him.
Seeing as comprehension is a big challenge for
David I would recommend that all his teachers
gather vocabulary words for each lesson when in
the education classroom.
Use the LINCS method (O’ Brien p. 5)
Autism is a
disability that affects:
social interactions, and
There are 3 levels of
regardless of severity,
people with autism
have trouble with:
Autism: General Information
Autism: Academic Recommendations
Simple technologies for sensory overload
Use of mnemonic (memory) devices
Social stories (visual cues)
Discrete Trial Training
Recommendations for Visual Impairment
IDEA Definition of Visual Disability
3 Categories of Students
Low Vision – primarily rely on vision for learning
Functionally Blind – use vision to supplement learning
Totally Blind – no meaningful input through visual sense
Causes: Trauma or Congenital
Assessment & Functional Vision Assessment
Recommendations for Visual Impairment
Nondiscriminatory Evaluation Standards
Individualized Intelligence Test
Individualized Achievement Tests
Adaptive Behavioral Scales
Direct Observation-learning Media Assessment
Learning Media Assessment (LMA)
Touch & vision in new situations/environments
Stability of eye condition
Recommendations for Visual Impairment
Special Education & Related Services
Specialized Instruction – slate & stylus, abacus, etc.
Reading Instruction – braille
Nonacademic Priorities – success in adult life
Supplementary Aids & Services
Universal Design for Learning
Daily Living Skills
Orientation and Mobility
IDEA’s 4 Major Results
Equality of Opportunity
Outcomes for Students with Disabilities
3x less likely to complete high school
2/3 scored below basic levels in reading & math
In the past 20 years, improvement in chance to attend
post-secondary school or getting employment
Only 1/3 express satisfaction with life in general
Students with Specific Learning Disability
Self-direct their IEP & Transition Meetings
Students with Autism: Positive Behavior Support
Partnerships among families, educators, & professionals
Building and classroom supports for behavior
Mnemonic strategies as an adaptation
Students with Visual Impairment
Hands-on approach – involve all senses
Universally designed instruction
Functional & life-skill instruction for transition to adulthood
Instruction centered around incidental and specific skills
Autism Speaks. (2014). DSM-5 Diagnostic Criteria. Retrieved
O'Brien, Chris. "Modifying Learning Strategies for Classroom
Success."Teaching Exceptional Children Plus 1.3 (2005): n.
pag. Blackboard. Web. June 2014.
Turnbull, A., Turnbull, R., Wehmeyer, M. L., Shogren, K.A.
(2013). Exceptional Lives Special Education in Today's
Schools (7th ed.). Pearson Education, Inc.
“Visual Impairments, including Blindness.” National Disemination
Center for Children with Disabilities. November 2012.