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Themes from the President

Title: Getting Reauthorization Right This Time: Author: W. Alan Coulter Last modified by: casp casp Created Date: 7/25/2002 1:24:04 AM Document presentation format
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Title: Themes from the President 1 Themes from the Presidents Commission on Excellence in Special Education www.hdc.lsuhsc.edu 2 A New Era for Special Education
  • President's Commission on Excellence in Special Education
  • 19 members across the U.S. (5 Ex-Of)
  • Representing parents, schools, business, communities
  • Investigate and report on 9 areas
  • 3 Commissions job (1)
  • Examine the effectiveness cost of special education and the federal governments role
  • Recommend
  • How to improve special education
  • Research agenda
  • 4 Commissions job (2)
  • Analyze
  • Effect of funding, differences in size, location, demographics, wealth on decisions to refer place students and cost of special education
  • How federal government can help states LEAs provide high quality instruction
  • Impact of early intervention
  • Impact of federal/state requirements on cost effectiveness of special education
  • If changes needed in supplement not supplant maintenance of effort
  • 5 The Commissions strategies
  • Examined special education broadly (not just I.D.E.A.)
  • Held 13 public hearings
  • Obtained expert testimony and public input (100 witnesses)
  • Received and analyzed white papers and external documents
  • Drafted and approved a report to the President by 7/1/02
  • 6 Complementary context
  • No Child Left Behind Act (accountability with consequences)
  • Emerging consensus on shift from processes to results ( focused monitoring)
  • Promising research on early intervention (WH Conference)
  • Shift in assessment and instruction practices (NRC Report, LD Summit, etc.)
  • 7 Context 2Premise of I.D.E.A.
  • Congress finds
  • Disability is a natural part of the human experience and in no way diminishes the right of individuals to participate in or contribute to society.
  • 8 The promise of I.D.E.A.
  • Improving educational results for children with disabilities is an essential element of our national policy of ensuring equality of opportunity, full participation, independent living, and economic self-sufficiency for individuals with disabilities (sec. 1400 (c) (1)
  • 9 Myths about the Commission
  • The Report was written before the Commission began.
  • Commissioners have their minds made up.
  • This is a hatchet job on special education.
  • Everything in Florida is going national.
  • 10 A new era Revitalizing special education for children and their families
  • Summary lists
  • 9 major findings
  • 3 major recommendations
  • Report contains
  • 7 sections
  • 32 additional findings
  • 33 general recommendations
  • Numerous additional (specific) recommendations (47)
  • 11 Commission themes
  • Increase accountability
  • Emphasize results
  • Provide flexibility
  • Empower parents and their choices
  • 12 Major recommendations
  • Major recommendation 1 Focus on results not on process.
  • Major recommendation 2 Embrace a model of prevention, not a model of failure.
  • Major recommendation 3 Consider children with disabilities as general education children first. 
  • 13 Too much process
  • Finding 1 IDEA is generally providing basic legal safeguards and access for children with disabilities. However, the current system often places process above results, and bureaucratic compliance above student achievement, excellence, and outcomes.
  • 14 Major recommendations
  • Major recommendation 1 Focus on results not on process.
  • Adequate yearly progress (set by states)
  • Sensitive measures of continuous progress
  • Student-level data system (disaggregate)
  • Variety of results measures (gap, etc.)
  • 15 Hold states accountable (1)
  • Recommendation set high expectations for special education NCLB requires states to establish high expectations.
  • The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act should require each state to establish additional ambitious and conforming goals for students with disabilities by using measures such as graduation rates, post-graduation outcomes and parent satisfaction surveys. States should also be required to define "adequate yearly progress" under IDEA for students with disabilities in local education agencies (LEAs) toward these goals.
  • 16 LEA must be accountable (1)
  • Recommendation Hold LEAs accountable for results State and local accountability systems should include all children, and each system must be consistent with the No Child Left Behind Act.
  • IDEA should require states to report annually on the success of each school and LEA in achieving IDEA goals for students with disabilities.
  • 17 LEA must be accountable (2)
  • Recommendation IDEA should provide for technical assistance for LEAs that fail to make adequate yearly progress under IDEA, and it should require states take more intensive corrective actions including state direction of IDEA funds for LEAs that do not demonstrate adequate yearly progress under IDEA for three consecutive years.
  • 18 Hold feds accountable
  • Recommendation Replace federal monitoring practices with a focused approach. Radically change how it conducts technical assistance and monitoring activities to focus on results instead of process.
  • Recommendation Utilize federal special education staff more effectively. Within three months of the issuance of this report, the Secretary of Education should provide recommendations to Congress on how OSERS can better utilize its staff and resources to implement federal special education law.
  • 19 Participation and performance
  • Students with disabilities must participate in state-wide assessments whenever appropriate (80 or NCLB 95?)
  • For those who participate, compare their average performance to students without disabilities (gap for now, trends later)
  • 20 Increase participation
  • Recommendation Incorporate universal design in accountability tools Ensure all tools used to assess students for accountability and the assessment of progress are designed to include any accommodations and modifications for students with disabilities.
  • 21 Reduce burdens
  • Recommendation Reduce regulatory burden and increase flexibility emphasize flexibility to achieve results for children with disabilities,
  • Including a unified system of services from birth through 21, and
  • Simplify the Individualized Education Program to focus on substantive outcomes.
  • Dramatically simplify IDEA federal regulatory and administrative requirements to be more understandable for parents, educators and administrators
  • 22 Must be one system
  • Finding 3 Children placed in special education are general education children first. Despite this basic fact, educators and policy-makers think about the two systems as separate and tally the cost of special education as a separate program, not as additional services with resultant add-on expense.
  • 23 A specific recommendation
  • The Commission recommends that the U.S. Secretary of Education ensure all federal requirements for accountability be integrated into a unified system of accountability throughout the Department. (p. 16)
  • 24 Poor outcomes (1)
  • Finding 9 The focus on compliance and bureaucratic imperatives in the current system, instead of academic achievement and social outcomes, fails too many children with disabilities. Too few successfully graduate from high school or transition to full employment and post-secondary opportunities, despite provisions in IDEA providing for transition services.
  • 25 Poor outcomes (2)
  • Finding 9... Parents want an education system that is results oriented and focused on the childs needs in school and beyond.
  • 26 Exiting with a regular diploma
  • Ages 14 - 21
  • Note There are no currently uniform standards guiding standards for diplomas for students with disabilities. Considerable differences exist across states. 27 All students with disabilities exiting with a regular diploma 80.9 78.4 78.4 77.3 24.9 28.4
  • Highest 5
  • Lowest 5
  • 27.3 13.7 90.3 24.6 Nat. Avg. 61.6 - Ages 17-21, 97-98 school year 28 All students with specific learning disabilities exiting with a regular diploma 83.4 84.8 79.9 83.9 36.5 44.5 16.6
  • Highest 5
  • Lowest 5
  • 90.2 29.3 38.6 Nat. Avg. 67.5 - Ages 17-21, 97-98 school year 29 Dropping out All students with disabilities 45.3 50.1 23.5 45.9 23.9 13.2 17.8 45.8 49.2 32.9
  • Highest 5
  • Lowest 5
  • 16.4 Nat. Avg. 31.2 - Ages 14-21, Table AD5 30 Dropping out Students with specific learning disabilities 45.5 45.1 46 19.4 19.7 13.7 18.9 52.8 37.2
  • Highest 5
  • Lowest 5
  • 16 47.7 Nat. Avg. 29.3 - Ages 14-21, Table AD5 31 Dropping out Students with emotional disturbance 77.5 72 27.6 73.5 25.3 29.3 76.3 34.7 77.9 61.5
  • Highest 5
  • Lowest 5
  • 27.5 Nat. Avg. 53.5 - Ages 14-21, Table AD5 32 Improve outcomes
  • Recommendation Simplify federal transition requirements in the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act
  • Recommendation mandate federal interagency coordination of resources.
  • Recommendation Create a Rehabilitation Act Reauthorization Advisory Committee.
  • Recommendation Support higher education faculty, administrators and auxiliary service providers to more effectively provide and help students with disabilities to complete a high quality post-secondary education.
  • 33 Added measure of accountability
  • Note While measurements of least restrictive environment are not necessarily outcomes per se, they are important and should be measured and reported at state, local and school levels.
  • 34 What are Class Settings?
  • Regular 20 or less of school day outside of the regular class. At least 80 of day in the regular class.
  • Separate 61 or more of the school day outside of the regular class.
  • Resource 21 to 60 of school day outside of the regular class.
  • Now, just use the numbers.80 v. - 40 35 Comparing percent of children ages 6-21 served in different educational environmentsUnder IDEA, Part B, During the 1996-97 School Year (21st Report)all disabilities, Sorted by in Regular Class (lowest to highest) Other PUBLIC SEPAR FACIL PRIVATE SEPAR FACIL PUBLIC RESID FACIL PRIVATE RESID FACIL HOME HOSP ENVIR Table AB2-7 Data prepared by GLARRC 36 Really big myth
  • The Commission did NOT endorse full funding of the federal share of special education costs.
  • 37 Reward results
  • Recommendation Increase discretionary Part B federal funding and establish a definable threshold percent of excess costs
  • Recommendation Link future funding increases above the threshold percent to state plans to improve accountability for results. Funding in future years should be contingent on achievement of results in that plan.
  • 38 Fear of litigation
  • Finding 5 The culture of compliance has often developed from the pressures of litigation, diverting much energy of the public schools first mission educating every child.
  • 39 Reduce litigation
  • Recommendation prevent disputes and improve dispute resolution IDEA should empower parents as key players and decision-makers in their childrens education. IDEA should require states to develop early processes that avoid conflict and promote individualized education program (IEP) agreements, such as IEP facilitators.
  • 40 Reduce litigation
  • Recommendation prevent disputes and improve dispute resolution Require states to make mediation available anytime it is requested and not only when a request for a hearing has been made. Permit parents and schools to enter binding arbitration and ensure that mediators, arbitrators and hearing officers are trained in conflict resolution and negotiation.
  • 41 Parents need power
  • Finding 4 When a child fails to make progress in special education, parents dont have adequate options and little recourse. Parents have their childs best interests in mind, but they often do not feel they are empowered when the system fails them.
  • 42 Empower parents (1)
  • Recommendation increase parental empowerment and school choice
  • Parents should be provided with meaningful information about their childrens progress, based on objective assessment results, and with educational options.
  • The majority of special education students will continue to be in the regular public school system. Students with disabilities attend schools or access services of their familys choosing, provided states measure and report outcomes for all students benefiting from IDEA funds.
  • 43 Empower parents (2)
  • Recommendationincrease parental empowerment and school choice
  • IDEA should increase informed opportunities for parents to make choices about their childrens education. Consistent with the No Child Left Behind Act, IDEA funds should be available for parents to choose services or schools, particularly for parents whose children are in schools that have not made adequate yearly progress under IDEA for three consecutive years.
  • 44 Wait to fail model
  • Finding 2 The current system uses an antiquated model that waits for a child to fail, instead of a model based on prevention and intervention. Too little emphasis is put on prevention, early and accurate identification of learning and behavior problems, and aggressive intervention using research-based approaches.
  • 45 Identify differently (1)
  • Recommendation Identify and intervene early Implement research-based, early identification and intervention programs to better serve children with learning and behavioral difficulties at an earlier age. Include early screening, prevention and intervention practices to identify academic and behavioral problems in young children.
  • 46 Identify differently (2)
  • Recommendation simplify the identification process Simplify the IDEA identification and eligibility determination process, and clarify the criteria used to determine the existence of a disability, particularly high-incidence disorders.
  • 47 Identify differently (3)
  • Recommendation Incorporate response to intervention Implement models during the identification and assessment process that are based on response to intervention and progress monitoring. Use data from these processes to assess progress in children who receive special education services.
  • 48 What does L.D.A. say?
  • The preliminary exploration and discussion of alternative approaches to identification and eligibility processes have not yet addressed many specifics that must be determined prior to widespread adoption. Research and pilot projects must clearly describe students, professional competencies, settings, services, and interventions so the most effective of the alternatives can be replicated and moved into large scale settings. In implementing such an approach, the required and optimal components, their sequence, and timelines will need to be specified, as well as who has the ultimate responsibility for each component.
  • 49 Better personnel
  • Finding 7 Children with disabilities require highly qualified teachers. Teachers, parents, and education officials desire better preparation, support, and professional development related to the needs of serving these children. Many educators wish they had better preparation before entering the classroom as well as better tools for identifying needs early and accurately.
  • 50 Improve personnel
  • Recommendation recruit and train highly qualified general and special education teachers.
  • Recommendation create research and data-driven systems for training teachers of special education.
  • Recommendation institute ongoing field experiences.
  • Recommendation require rigorous training in reading.
  • Recommendation require public reporting.
  • Recommendation increase special education and related services faculty.
  • Recommendation conduct research.
  • 51 Upgrade research
  • Finding 8 Research on special education needs enhanced rigor and the long-term coordination necessary to support the needs of children, educators and parents. In addition, the current system does not always embrace or implement evidence-based practices once established.
  • 52 Improve research
  • Recommendation Change the current grant review process to create scientific rigor.
  • Recommendation Improve the coordination of special education research.
  • Recommendation Support long-term research priorities.
  • Recommendation Improve the impact of research findings.
  • 53 In summaryCommis
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