Special education was once considered a place or location, but that misconception is no longer true. Special education is individualized, research-based services and instructional techniques. Below are the top 5 placement misconceptions.
What is Least Restrictive Environment?
Least Restrictive Environment (LRE) ensures that all students spend as much of the school day as possible with their peers. While this may be a great fit for a majority of students with disabilities, the general education classroom is not always a perfect choice. As an administrator, teachers often explained that a student was placed in their general education classroom just to justify moving him or her back to a pull-out resource program later. This was done because of the belief that the student needs to not be successful in order to be placed in a more restrictive environment. Placing a special education in a least restictive envornment involves a discussion about the student’s strengths and weaknesses, along with past successful experiances. Placing a student in a placement that is not appropriate just to check a placement off a list of options is NEVER appropriate.
Modifications Do NOT Limit Placement
Do not make placement choices based on the modifications a student receives. A student can receive any curriculum modifications in any placement. There is no “threshold of requirements for entrance” to be educated with non-disabled peers.
According to N.J.A.C.6A:14-4.2(a)(9) the law requires that student will not be removed from an age-appropriate, general education classroom solely because he/she requires modifications to the general education curriculum. N.J.A.C.6A:14-4.6(i) removes the previous requirement that a student must meet the regular education curriculum requirements to be in an in-class resource program.
All Learners with ___________ Classification Should be Together, Always!
Placing students that have a specific disability in the same class often leads to lumping students together rather than creating individual goals and objectives. There are even educators that will write the same goals and objectives for all students based on the need of their classmates. Please remember to have the IEP team focus on the individual student’s strengths and weaknesses, rather than a classification. The focus should always be on individual programs!
We Don’t Do THAT!
This belief removes the brainstorming process and freedom of special education planning. There is no support that should be ignored. If the service provides an opportunity for success and is researched based, it should be considered.
- Curricularorinstructionalmodificationsor specialized instruction strategies
- Individual instruction
- Teacher aides
- Related services
- Integrated therapies
- Consultation services
- In-class resource programs