Dr. Phyllis B. Harris, Executive Director Oakland Unified School District

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Dr. Phyllis B. Harris, Executive Director Oakland Unified School District Programs for Exceptional Children. Claremont Graduate University Teacher Education Seminars on Special Education 18 February 2006. - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

Text of Dr. Phyllis B. Harris, Executive Director Oakland Unified School District

  • Dr. Phyllis B. Harris, Executive DirectorOakland Unified School DistrictPrograms for Exceptional Children

    One out of ten special education students in the United States lives in California.

    What about teachers matters most? The quality and depth of their knowledge base, their own values, their attitude and their philosophy about teaching their students Claremont Graduate University Teacher Education Seminars on Special Education18 February 2006


  • How to Include, Integrate and Work with Learning Disabled Students inGeneral Education

  • 13 Eligibility CategoriesLSDLanguage/Speech Disordered Also referred to as CH Communicatively HandicappedAU Autism Has varying levels including Asperger or PDD-NOSOHIOther Health Impaired Includes medical diagnosis such as Sickle Cell Anemia, Cancer, and sometimes ADHDOI Orthopedically ImpairedTypically refers to Cerebral Palsy or other medical condition which impacts motor movementsED Emotionally DisturbedHOHHard of HearingStudents may have only itinerant services to check on hearing aid care, etc. DDeafDB Deaf BlindVI Visually ImpairedDoes not typically include students whose vision is corrected with glasses.

  • 13 Eligibility CategoriesTBI Traumatic Brain InjuryMR Mental Retardation MD Multiple DisabilitiesSLD Specific Learning Disability Includes a variety of processing disorders Newest category under this condition is Non-Verbal Learning Disabilities

    The catch is that having one of the listed disabling conditions does not automatically qualify a student for special education.

    The second element in determining eligibility is that it must adversely impact educational performance.

  • What is Autism?Spectrum Disorder: diagnosis of Asperger, PDD-NOS, Autism or autistic-like, depends on the number of features exhibited. The Diagnostic Manual lists 12 possible features.

    Education Code uses the term autistic-like and has 7 main areas of symptoms:

    Inability to use oral language for appropriate communicationHistory of extreme withdrawal or impaired social relationshipsObsession to maintain sameness (rule-bound)Extreme preoccupation with objects or inappropriate use of objectsExtreme resistance to external controlsPeculiar motor mannerisms or motility patternsSelf-stimulating, ritualistic behavior

  • What features are there in Emotional Disturbance?IDEA definition includes one or more of the following:

    Inability to learn that is not explained by intellectual, sensory, or health factorsInability to build or maintain satisfactory interpersonal relationships with peers and teachersInappropriate types of behaviors and feelings under normal circumstances exhibited in several situationsGeneral pervasive mood of unhappiness or depressionTendency to develop physical symptoms or fears associated with personal or school problemsThese features must be exhibited over a long period of time

  • What are Learning Disabilities?Learning disability is a general term that describes specific kinds of learning problems.

    The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, defines a specific learning disability as . . .

    ". . . a disorder in one or more of the basic psychological processes involved in understanding or in using language, spoken or written, that may manifest itself in an imperfect ability to listen, think, speak, read, write, spell, or do mathematical calculations, including conditions such as perceptual disabilities, brain injury, minimal brain dysfunction, dyslexia, and developmental aphasia.

    Learning disabilities do not include, "learning problems that are primarily the result of visual, hearing, or motor disabilities, of mental retardation, of emotional disturbance, or of environmental, cultural, or economic disadvantage. New regulations also include not due to lack of or poor educational opportunities

  • What is a Non-Verbal Learning Disorder?NVLD is an invisible disorder which causes a disruption of information processing in 3 areas, the first is

    Organizational Skills and Executive Function

    How the brain organizes and stores information; primarily impacting the links between bits of information;

    Executive Function which is the ability to disengage from current action, formulate plans, and take action on those plans or changes because this function utilizes the ability to integrate information.

  • NVLD also affects2. Visual-Spatial and Sensory Motor Integration Deficithas an effect onBody PostureProcessing Visual InformationTactile and Auditory SensitivityDysgraphia (writing problems)Directional ConfusionStaying Calm and Staying Involved (alert and engaged)Physical Exploration of the World3. Social Skills and Perspective Taking The inability to adopt the perspective of another person

  • NVLD detailsPrimary symptom is an inability to attend to, assess, or appropriately respond to non-verbal aspects of communication (facial cues, tone and volume of voice, interpersonal space, body language, etc.)

    Often demonstrates trouble with visual-spatial organization (writing, difficulty keeping math columns straight, walking into people, etc.)

    Sees the details, but not the big picture (processes information linearly and sequentially, not conceptually)

    Currently diagnosed as

  • What is ADHD?Careless mistakes in schoolwork, work or other activities. Has a hard time sustaining attention in tasks or play Often does not seem to listen to what others are saying Often does not follow through on instructions and often fails to finish homework Has difficulty organizing tasks and activities Often avoids or dislikes tasks that require sustained mental effort Often loses things Is often distracted by other things that go on in a room Forgetfulness

  • Hyperactive-Impulsive Symptoms

    Fidgets and squirms with hands or feet in seat Inability to stay seated Climbing on things when inappropriate Often acts as if "motor driven"- difficulty with leisure activities Often talks excessively Difficulty waiting in lines Often interrupts others

    DetailThere must be a history of this disorder before age 7 Symptoms are present across settings. Symptoms must significantly reduce an individual's ability to work or learn. Not diagnosed when a person is depressed, anxious or when the person has another disorder that can explain the ADHD-like behaviors. Symptoms must be present for at least 6 months before a diagnosis can be made.



  • FAT CITYFrustrationAnxietyTensionOR How hard can this be?VIDEO CLIP

  • AccommodationsAccommodations do not alter the concept being taught or measuredAccommodations must be used in the general education setting in order to be used during any district or state assessments

  • Assignment AccommodationChange the size of the assignmentif a student fatigues or quits after completing a few math problemsreduce the number required.

    It is better that the student do 10 problems correctly than to complete 50 problems incorrectly.

  • ModificationsModifications substantially change the standard being taught or measuredModifications may result in modified grades on report cards and progress reportsModifications must be clearly spelled out in the IEP in order to be used

  • Assignment ModificationChange the writing assignment from writing a paragraph to writing a sentence.

    Question: If a student dictates his paragraph into a tape recorder, then listens to it and writes it from the tape.is that an accommodation or a modification?

  • Accommodation!

  • Task Analysis

    Where is the student having difficulty?Goal: Read a simple sentence.

    Skills Needed:*Performs left to right eye movement.*Associates sounds with symbols.*Blends sounds into words.*Reads words in isolation.*Reads words in context.

  • Use your talents to provide solid Instructional Intervention to address the skill breakdown

  • RecommendedBreak tasks into smaller steps, check progress at each step and then give the next directionProvide directions both verbally and in writing; if possible, provide a sample or model problemLet student with reading struggles have text read to him by a peer or other staffDirectly teach student how to take notes and organize informationDirectly teach students about use of bold or italicized print in texts and the relationship to key conceptsDirectly teach students how to use chapter review questions to identify key concepts for chapter tests and how to scan for bold and italicized print to find answers. Establish a positive working relationship with the student's parents, perhaps through email or communication notebooks or weekly homework schedules sent home in backpack.

  • andAllow student who cannot far point copy to copy from sheet at desk OR change assignment so it does not require copying. Keep in mind, some students need to verbalize when copying as a memory strategy. Reduce the visual input by providing more space to work problems, reducing the number of items per page. It is often helpful to use graph paper for math problems as this assists students in keeping the work in the correct columns Reduce the number of paper and pencil tasks during the day for students with motor and visual-spatial concerns. Provide breaks and other typ