The Special Education Identification Process Katie Corbett Tanya Nicols & Kayla Brown
1. How do I identify students in my classroom who may be in need of services? • Through daily observation a teacher is able to learn about his/her students and identify if they may need help. • By having a strong knowledge of different learning disabilities a teacher is able to identify when a student is exhibiting signs of a learning disability
2. What do the IDEA and Section 504 laws mean? • IDEA-”An education act to provide federal financial assistance to State and local education agencies to guarantee special education and related services to eligible children with disabilities.” • Section 504-”A civil rights law to prohibit discrimination on the basis of disability in programs and activities, public and private, that receive federal financial assistance.”
Similarities • Both must provide impartial hearings for parents who disagree with the identification, evaluation, or placement of the student. • Must provide notice before due process • Non discriminatory assessment • Least Restrictive Environment • Needs to provide services, if needed. For example occupational therapy, physical therapy, counseling services, social services, and transportation. • Must provide impartial hearings for parents who disagree with the identification, evaluation, or placement of the student.
IDEA -Requires an IEP -Schools receive federal funding for students who are qualifies under IDEA -Placement may be any combination of special education and general education classrooms.
IDEA Cont. • -Parents must receive ten days notice prior to any change in placement. • IDEA covers children ages 3-21 who are determined by a multidisciplinary team to be eligible within one or more of 13 specific categories of disability.
Section 504 • - Does not require an IEP, but does require a plan. • - Placement is usually in a general education classroom. Children can receive specialized instruction, related services, or accommodations within the general education classroom. • -Does not require parental consent.
Section 504 Continued • -Schools do not receive any funding for students who qualify for section 504. -Section 504 protects any person who (1) has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities, (2) has a record of such an impairment, or (3) is regarded as having such an impairment.
3. What are the steps of the special education identification process? • Parents, school district, staff, or others request an evaluation that the parents have to agree to in writing. • The evaluation is completed and it is decided upon whether or not the student is eligible for services. • If the student is eligible for services, an IEP is developed and the placement of the student is determined • Parents have to agree with the IEP and placement of their child. If not, there are other meetings to work out an appropriate plan • There is an annual IEP meeting.
Types of Assessment • Observation • Record or Portfolio Review • Testing • Recollection • Interview or rating scales
Types of Testing • Formal vs. Informal • Ecological Assessment • Alternative Assessment • Authentic and Portfolio Assessment • Criterion Reference Testing (CRT) • Curriculum-Based Assessment
The role of the Classroom Teacher • Ask questions • Encourage family participation • Provide input • Observe assessment procedures • Be aware of possible biases
References • http://www.campton.sau48.k12.nh.us/02_spedjp02_webquest.htm#Introduction • http://www.ldonline.org/article/6086 • http://specialed.about.com/od/idea/a/IdeaDefined.htm • Teaching Students with Special Needs in Inclusive Settings. 5th Edition. Pearson Education Inc. (2008).