Now What? Part 2

In my last post I discussed what the different types of eligibility is mean. When your child is found eligible there are 1 million different questions, and 100 things to try and learn about. So I’m going to try and break these post down into one chunk at a time. Today’s post is going to be about the different settings. When your child is found eligible there is a full spectrum of services available to help them.

Self-Contained/Separate class- this is the most restrictive environment, but don’t let that scare you because it’s also the most supportive. It’s not always appropriate though. Children who are acquiring enough of the curriculum have been found in research to grow more when spending the most possible time in the general education classroom. On the flipside, students with severe disabilities whether that is cognitive, meaning lower IQs and adaptive scores, or intense behavioral needs can benefit greatly from self contained because it allows more time with the teacher, lower student to teacher ratio’s, and the opportunity for that special education teacher to better control their environment and a way to benefit the students.

Resource/small group/ pull-out- This setting involves the student being in a general education classroom for part of the day, and getting called out to a small group for another part of the day. This can be customized for each student. For example if a student excels in math but struggles in reading, they would likely only be pulled for the segments where they needed it. Each school varies how long these segments are. This is a good fit for student whose needs are inconsistent, like many students with learning disabilities. Students with learning disabilities have an area of strength and areas of weakness. Their services can vary greatly as we customize what they need. Resources for all types of students however, not just students with learning disabilities.

Coteach/collab- in this model, a special education teacher will push into the general education classroom. They teach the class with the general education teacher, as a partner not an assistant. This model can benefit many types of students, but particularly those who are near a grade level standards. The teacher works with the entire room not just their students so that their students are not highly noticeable.

Consultation- this model is where the special education teacher will specifically check in with the student, and their teachers. The student is with a general education teacher all day and follows a normal schedule. The special education teacher works with the general education teacher to make appropriate accommodations and differentiation to help a student. Consultation is great for students who Need limited assistance. This is for the students who may be transitioning out of needing an individualized education plan, or those who are just performing very well or close to grade level. Behaviorally, the student may have forgotten learning his coping skills and may just need support from the sped teacher that way.

An IEP may contain just one of these, or a combination. Again, kindly, feel free to ask your child case manager, I’ll go over all the roles in my next post, if you are not sure of the setting. Unfortunately as teachers we are very often used to negative interactions, so as a parent the best way to build that relationship is to come at teachers like people, calmly, and openly. Once that relationship is there, real discussions about settings are very valuable for your child. As teachers we worry about your students on our off time, when were teaching, and all because we want them to be successful. That also means that sometimes you might push them early or hold onto them to Long in hopes of trying to help them be successful. As the parent, you have an insight that we don’t, and brought you bring something valuable to the table. Don’t be afraid to ask once that relationship is there, real discussions about settings are very valuable for your child. As teachers we worry about your students on our off time, when were teaching, and all because we want them to be successful. That also means that sometimes you might push them early or hold onto them to Long in hopes of trying to help them be successful. As the parent, you have an insight that we don’t, and brought you bring something valuable to the table. Don’t be afraid to ask, to talk

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