Specially Designed Instruction Within and Outside of Classrooms
School(s): All Schools Grade(s): K - 8
Lincoln special education teachers provide instruction in language arts, mathematics, academic support in curriculum areas, study and organizational skills and behavior intervention to students with disabilities in the classroom setting. To maximize the services, special education teachers collaborate closely with classroom teachers, therapists, and specialists to develop comprehensive, integrated services. The time spent in each classroom depends on the student's defined needs as well as daily schedule.
Special education teachers provide direct, indirect, and/or technical support. Direct support involves assistance given to the student within the general education classroom including co-teaching, teaming, modeling, 1:1 instruction, or small group instruction. Indirect support occurs outside the classroom and is provided in order to coordinate the instructional program; it may include creating curricular modifications, co-planning with the general education teacher, collaborative team meetings, consultations, IEP preparation, or observations.
The district employs teachers who are special education certified by the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education and have expertise in the difficulties affecting children with disabilities. The teachers are experienced and skilled in researched-based reading, writing and mathematic instructional approaches as well as approaches to support students with social, emotional, attention, and behavioral difficulties. Additionally, teachers are supervised by an on-site special education administrator who works closely with the faculty to ensure student achievement. Professional development and training are provided for all staff on an ongoing basis.
Special education teachers work cooperatively with general education teachers to individualize, supplement or develop curriculum to meet the needs of the students. Classroom materials are used as the content to develop skills of reading comprehension, written and oral expression, and mathematics, as well as study skills such as organizational skills, note taking, outlining, report writing and test preparation. Students with social, emotional, attention, and behavioral difficulties are supported in the classroom through specific accommodations such as contracts, checklists, modeling, and individualized prompting. Modifications of methodology, delivery of instruction, and performance criteria are provided on an individual basis.
Extensive intervention to meet the academic and social needs of all students within the general classroom environment is a goal supported by all teachers and related service providers. To this end, specialists, such as Occupational Therapists, Physical Therapists, and Speech and Language Therapists, work with students in the classroom whenever possible. Both the general and special education staff provide services to meet the IEP goals through both the general curriculum as well as specially designed and individualized curriculum.
The range of services varies widely depending on a student's individualized needs. The type and frequency of service are decided at the Team meeting.
Assistance given to the student within the general education classroom including co-teaching, teaming, modeling, 1:1 instruction, or small group instruction.
Small group instruction outside of the classroom
Monitoring and consultation to parents and general education teachers by a special educator, speech and language pathologist, occupational or physical therapist, social worker or psychologist.
Coordination of instructional services
Development of curricular modifications and accommodations
Co-planning with the general education teacher
Participation in collaborative team meetings
Related services assist a child with a disability in benefiting from special education and to reach their IEP goals and objectives. The related services that students may receive include:
Adaptive Physical Education
Social Skills/Pragmatics Instruction
Speech and Language Therapy
Vision/Orientation and Mobility Services
The special education faculty is extensively involved in the transition process between receiving and sending teachers. There is particular attention paid to the transition from preschool to kindergarten, elementary to middle, and middle to high school. The IEP team works with the family and the student to address common concerns about going to the next level. These often include: "getting lost in the system," formulating a new team, feeling part of the school, communicating effectively with teachers, choosing classes in the upper grades, accessing supports and social concerns, and making new friends. Members of the receiving team play a critical role in the process and accordingly, attend transition meetings.