Curriculum and Instruction Meeting Minutes April 17, 2013 WERE ANY CHILDREN PUT ON THE REGISTER LAST YEAR OR THIS YEAR? Yes. Children have been classified this year and last year. The previous presentation provided the exact numbers. ARE THE SCHOOL PSYCHOLOGISTS PRESSURED TO DECLASSIFY STUDENTS? NO. Declassifications are most frequently a result of updated triennials evaluations which is required by SED to ensure that districts are reviewing student eligibility for continued classifications. WHAT IS THE POINT OF RE-TESTING STUDENTS THAT HAVE ALREADY BEEN FULLY ASSESSED AND PUT ON DECLASSIFICATION SUPPORT? IS THERE AN IMPACT TO THE CHILD? . The re-testing impacts the child in terms of increasing their frustration as a result of the continued over-testing which typically takes a minimum of 3 to 4 hours (but in some cases exceeds 6 to 8 hours or more). It also can lead to practice effect on the tests and impacts the availability of district resources to assist with other student needs. WHAT SUPPORTS HAVE BEEN PUT IN PLACE IN REG. ED FOR DECLASSIFIED STUDENTS? Testing and program accommodations/modifications that can still be granted Declassification support services Participation in co-teaching classrooms, as any child has access to this opportunity Potential 504 plan Related services if appropriate (Speech, OT, counseling, etc.) IST support AIS services in Math or Reading which can and should include a variety of approaches Lindamood Bell reading program/curriculum that is provided to both regular and special education students Behavior plans if necessary WHY AND WHERE ARE WE USING THE LINDAMOOD-BELL LIPS, SEEING STARS, AND VISUALIZING/VERBALIZING PROGRAMS? WHAT ARE THE 5 PILLARS OF READING? We are using the programs at PBC, AWB, and the MS. We are using it to offer students an evidence based reading curriculum that addresses the foundational skills necessary for development of phonics, phonemic awareness, fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension (the 5 pillars of reading). At the MS we are using it to address the pervasive reading decoding problem that we face. WHAT HAS CHANGED SO DRASTICALLY IN OUR TEACHING THAT CHILDREN HAVE GROWN TO GRADE LEVEL AND BEEN DECLASSIFIED TO BRING OUR NUMBERS FROM 20% TO 15%. Compliance with testing practices and our consistent application of best practice and classification criteria that align with Part 200 . WHAT IS THE ROLE OF THE SPECIAL EDUCATION TEACHER REGARDING PROGRAMMING, IEP DEVELOPMENT AND COMMUNICATION WITH PARENTS? The special education teacher is the primary person in charge of the child’s program and thus should be included in any communication between staff and parents since they are the staff member ultimately responsible for the student’s educational program and IEP documentation. WHAT READING TRAINING HAVE THE PSYCHOLOGISTS HAD? Our school psychologists have all graduated from a NASP (National Association of School Psychologists) affiliated graduate program. Their programs typically require a minimum of 66 graduate credit hours across a variety of fields of study that did include assessment for reading difficulties associated with the 5 pillars and subsequent LD evaluation. They are also trained in how to evaluate for all 13 categories specified in Part 200 as well as academic areas of math and writing. They have all met the NYS certification requirements for NYS and possess their NYS certification. They are trained to use assessment information to guide educationally relevant instructional and programming directions. They can offer interventions and strategies. WHAT TRAINING DO READING TEACHERS HAVE TO ANALYZE OR INTERPRET TEST RESULTS (SPEECH OR PSYCH TESTING) The only people the district currently employs that are qualified to interpret standardized test results referenced above would be the school psychologist primarily or the speech therapist can interpret their own testing. OT and PT results would also follow suit. WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A READING TEACHER AND A READING SPECIALIST AND HOW DOES THEIR SCOPE OF PRACTICE DIFFER? PLEASE PROVIDE EXAMPLES. RtI increases the need for Reading Specialists and/or Literacy Coaches. Only a Reading Specialist endorsement allows you to provide technical assistance and professional development to colleagues in grades K-12. Specialists deal with reading difficulties and may work directly with struggling students and may serve as an advisor and incorporate reading skills into classrooms. Reading Teachers: This endorsement allows IS IT TRUE THAT STATE ED CAME OUT TO REVIEW THE ICM PROGRAM LAST YEAR? IF SO WHAT DID THEY SAY? Yes – following a parent call to SED expressing concern regarding the frequency of restraints and “seclusion” of her child in one classroom as punishment for a referral. The Regional Representative from SED came to PBC to investigate. The outcome was positive and she encouraged the continuation of our ICM program revision. She was particularly interested in our efforts to decrease restraints, to mainstream students with behavioral needs when possible, and to improve the fidelity of our implementation of our FBA’s and BIP’s. HOW MANY COMPLAINTS HAVE BEEN MADE TO STATE ED WITHIN THE LAST 5 YEARS REGARDING SPECIAL EDUCATION? Exact number is not known. SED always calls to notify us when a staff person or parent has called to complain. They also share the response that was given to the complainant and if needed make recommendations to the district regarding any compliance adjustments that are needed. State Education complaints have been declining over the past few years, and they are more specific over the last year as they typically deal with the issues of behavioral restraint or behavior concerns as they relate to staff and discipline decisions. In terms of formal complaints to the state ed department we have had 1 in the last four years. HAS STATE ED PROVIDED US ANY FEEDBACK ON OUR CURRENT PROGRAMS AND PRACTICES? Conducted a FOCUSED review last year regarding our compliance and recommendations for programming. Positive outcomes came out of the focused review and there was no areas in need of correction identified. The state education department has been overwhelmingly positive regarding our changes and as of late we have been referred to as “cutting edge” particularly in relation to our progress monitoring of IEP goals, our ICM program, and our co-teaching programs. I’M SURE THAT THE POSITIVE ROLE MODELS OF THE GENERAL EDUCATION STUDENTS ARE HELPING OUT THE ICM KIDS BUT ARE WE TRACKING HOW THE NEGATIVE BEHAVIORS OF THE ICM KIDS ARE AFFECTING OUR GENERAL EDUCATION STUDENTS? Our School Tools Referral system addresses the data tracking of general education students and the contents of those referrals may or may not establish behavior links with Sped Students based on the details of the incident as described by the teacher or staff person writing it. The PBIS initiative is keenly targeted to improve the school environment for ALL students and is primarily targeted to the general education students. WHAT IS THE FEEDBACK ON PSYCH EVALS FROM OTHER DISTRICTS? Extremely positive. Our evaluations are far more extensive than those of most other districts and we have received a minimum of 3 calls in the last year complimenting us on the quality and information contained in them. Schenectady Albany Fonda Fultonville We regularly receive positive feedback from outside programs and agencies. WHAT IS PREDETERMINATION AND PLEASE PROVIDE EXAMPLES? DO PSYCH EVALUATIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS COUNT? DOES GOING OVER PSYCHOLOGIST REPORTS AHEAD OF TIME COUNT? Predetermination is the final decision to classify or not prior to the meeting. Psych evaluations and recommendations would not count as these are required to be done and share with the parent prior to the meeting. The CSE takes into consideration the results of the evaluation and the recommendations as well as information from other staff prior to final decision making as does the school psychologist in their report via teacher rating forms, teacher interviews, parent interviews, parent forms, as well as the multiple assessment tools they use that present an overall picture. Determinations are not made on the basis of one person or one test. TEACHERS ARE ASKED FOR A LOT OF INFORMATION TO BE COMPLETED PRIOR TO THE PSYCHOLOGISTS REPORT BEING COMPLETED AND WE DO NOT HEAR ABOUT IT UNTIL AT THE MEETING. CAN A PROCEDURE BE ESTABLISHED TO FOLLOW BEFORE THE MEETINGS SO EVERYONE IS ON THE SAME PAGE? Building Staff can communicate with and set an appointment to meet with Psychologists and/or related service evaluators at any time to discuss testing. A specific procedure is not necessary as we are all professionals and communicating with colleagues and/or contacting colleague's to arrange a time to discuss either is or should be a regular practice. IS THERE A FORMAL PROCEDURE IN PLACE FOR THE REEVALUATION PROCESS FOR THE COMMITTEE THAT WILL BE AT THE MEETING? (THE PSYCHOLOGIST DOES ALL THE TESTING, SENDS HOME RATING SCALES TO FILL OUT, TEACHERS ARE ASKED TO FILL OUT SURVEYS AND SCALES AND GIVE NARRATIVES ON THEIR STUDENTS, AND MAYBE WE GET AN EMAIL BACK ABOUT THE RESULTS). Yes. Those in attendance at the meeting would comply with Part 200 requirements for a sub-committee meeting and would include the following required participants. Regular Education Teacher Special education Teacher School Psychologist CSE Chairperson *Please note that an AIS teacher is NOT required and only ONE regular education teacher is required. However, the AIS teacher can be the regular education teacher representative. In terms of communication, it works both ways so staff are welcome to ask the psychologist or the special education teacher about results. WHY ARE WE TELLING PARENTS THAT OUR NUMBERS ARE TOO HIGH; THEREFORE, THEIR CHILD WILL NOT GET SERVICES ON THE CSE REGISTER????????????? Not sure who is telling parents this as it is certainly not the Special Education Office, regardless of whom is discussing this they are using inaccurate information.