December 2017 - Special Educator e-Journal


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Special Education Legal Alert

Perry A. Zirkel

© November 2017

This latest monthly legal alert summarizes two recent federal appeals court decisions that respectively illustrate the scope of (a) the Section 504/ADA non-interference protection for special education personnel, and (b) the “prevailing party” status of parents for IDEA attorneys’ fees. The layout follows the usual format of a two-column table, with key rulings on the left and practical implications on the right. For automatic e-mailing of future legal alerts, sign up at perryzirkel.com; this website also provides free downloads of various related articles, including those specific to FAPE-parental participation.

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Buzz from the Hub

Two articles can be accessed through the link (Login):

Parent Center Hub Octobember 2017

 

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Alternative Approaches to IEP Conflict: A Review of the Literature

Laura Sinkonis, M.Ed.
Liberty University

Abstract

The originators of special education law anticipated disputes and provided due process hearings as a means to settle the disputes.  However, due process proved to be unfair, costly (financially and emotionally), and destructive to school-family relationships.  Years later, lawmakers offered mandated mediation along with resolution meetings in attempts to lessen the usage of due process.  While the number of due process hearings has decreased, mediation and resolution meetings may occur too late in the resolution process to repair broken trust and communication in relationships between families and school districts.  Alternative dispute resolution strategies offer means to end conflicts sooner, less expensively, and with fewer damaged relationships.

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Current Assessment Practices in Five Kenyan Schools: A Case Study in Government and Private Schools in Kenya

By Erin Brennan Allan

Abstract

There are varying degrees of special needs awareness amongst both private and public sector schools in Kenya which affects how these schools assess and diagnose children with learning disabilities. At the most basic level where school funding is low, learning disabilities are not even acknowledged and students with special needs are not catered to. Within lower end private schools a similar trend exists although teachers do acknowledge the existence of learning disabilities. In the more expensive and international private schools, there are dedicated staff and sometimes departments for children with special needs although few have established protocols for assessment and diagnosis, in large part because there are few professionals trained to undertake this.

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Implementing Project-Based Learning for Middle School Students with Learning Disabilities

Janna Brendle, Ph.D.& Robin Lock, Ph.D.

Abstract

Project-based learning (PBL) is an instructional method used to teach problem solving skills while students learn the content.  PBL instruction allows students with diverse learning needs and disabilities to learn curriculum in inclusive classrooms and interact with peers (Filippatou & Kaldi, 2010; Guven & Dunman, 2007).  This qualitative study examined teacher implementation of PBL and students with specific learning disabilities (SLD) participation in PBL group learning in a middle school setting.  A university education department and a school district formed a collaborative partnership to implement PBL instruction in English/Language Arts (ELA) and reading classrooms.  Teacher and student observation and interview data analysis suggested students with SLD who participate in PBL instruction may experience improved collaboration and communication skills in addition to learning the content.  The findings indicate effective PBL implementation requires intensive and ongoing teacher training including strategies to support students with SLD in PBL instruction.

Keywords: problem-based learning, students with specific learning disabilities, Inclusion, teacher training, diverse learners

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Working with Children with Visual Impairments in Saudi Arabia

Neda  F Aldajani

Abstract

This research involves working with children who are visually impaired at home and in school.  The goal is to help parents and teachers to work with children who are visually impaired effectively. This research includes a lot of strategies that can help parents and teachers and anyone who will work with children with visual impairment. This research highlights the main point of working with children with visual impairment such as; supporting, education, and collaboration.

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Book Review: Schools that Learn: A Fifth Discipline Fieldbook for Educators, Parents, and Everyone Who Cares about Education

By Valerie A. Bustamante
Florida International University

Abstract

A review of Senge's Schools that learn: A fifth discipline fieldbook for educators, parents, and everyone who cares about education. The book explores the need for schools to constantly evolve to meet students needs. Senge focuses on collaboration between classrooms, schools and communities. The basis of his approach lies in the five disciplines of organizational learning: personal mastery, shared vision, mental models, team learning, systems thinking. These disciplines are applied to each of the components of schools to guide their evolution. The book is well suited to teachers, administrators, community members and families who wish to engage in change and growth of their education system. There are suggestions, practices, and exercises that can be adapted to meet the need of a variety of settings.

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Literature Review: The Academic and Social Effects of Inclusion on Students with ESE Services

By Felicha Saintine
Florida International University

Abstract

My topic of interest is the effects of inclusive practices on the academic and social outcomes of students with disabilities. According to McLeskey, Landers, Williamson, and Hoppey (2010) in 1990 34% of students with disabilities were in general education classrooms for most of their school day. Two years ago inclusion was implemented in all schools in Lee County. It was expressed that inclusion would positively affect students receiving ESE services socially, academically, and emotionally. From my experiences I have not witnessed this. This topic needs to be researched further to learn how to truly use inclusion to benefit the students’ with disabilities. This paper will be a literature review. The following articles will be reviewed and used to aid in my research School Participation of Students with Autism Spectrum Disorders, A Case Study of a Highly Effective Inclusive Elementary School, Inclusion or delusion: Can one size fit all?, and Meeting the Needs of Special Education Students in Inclusion Classrooms. The search engines I used to find these articles were ERIC and FIU Libraries.

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Book Review: The Difference "When Good Isn't Good Enough"

By Arleen A. Rodriguez

Chowdhury, Subir The Difference: When Good Enough Isn't Enough. New York: First Edition. 2017. 143pp. $23.00.
"Quality is everyone's business" in The Difference: When Good Enough isn't Enough, Chowdhury, Subir author of 15 books that have sold over a million copies, global leader in quality consulting and training, and recognized as the "50 most influential Management Thinkers in the world"

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Book Review: Managing To Change How Schools Can Survive (and Sometimes Thrive) in Turbulent Times

By Jaclyn Sachs

Purpose and thesis of book

The purpose of the book Managing To Change How Schools Can Survive (and Sometimes Thrive) in Turbulent Times is to share insight and information about what it takes for schools to make improvements. For instance, the author (Thomas Hatch) studied a small number of schools from a number of other districts that had cultivated relatively good reputations over long periods of time. He also sought to choose schools that were either high-performing or low-performing but had consistently worked on making some improvements and changes in their structures. He emphasized the relationships between the following components: the understandings, experiences, as well as attitudes of the teachers. Second, the understandings, experiences, as well as attitudes of the students. Last but certainly not least, another component includes the content (the type as well as quality of the instructional materials, technologies, and tasks) (Hatch, 2009). For instance, capacity reflects the relationships among all three. For instance, a teacher who is not effective with a particular group of students in one content area may achieve fantastic results with a different class or in another content area. Hatch also explains why even schools that have strong principals, hard-working teachers, and involved parents continue to struggle while other schools can survive without showing the usual features of effectiveness. Hatch explains a small set of key practices that schools can use to manage external demands, gain resources, as well as build their capacity to make and maintain improvements over time. Therefore, schools need to organize the conditions for their own success.

 

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Book Review: What Great Principals Do Differently

By Lindsey Sands
Florida International University

Introduction and Purpose

Leadership is a skill that many do not possess to the fullest extent. There are a plethora of key qualities that create a truly effective principal or leader in the world of education. This review discusses and dives into the book What Great Principals Do Differently written by Todd Whitaker. After years of teaching and administrative experience prior to writing his series of works, Whitaker's purpose for writing this book is to clearly define what makes a great principal different from others.

 

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Latest Employment Opportunities Posted on NASET

Licensed Special Education Teacher

Memphis, TN

Job Category: Teaching

Description:

**Now Offering $2,000 sign on payment** and **$2,000 relocation allowance (if applicable)**

Program Overview:

Youth Villages’ Residential Treatment programs serve children with emotional and behavioral problems.  Our residential campuses provide the setting for an intensive treatment program that combines the unique balance of structure and freedom. This enables children and their families to identify, understand and cope with their individual needs and develop the skills necessary to succeed in less restrictive settings.  We have three different types of facilities—Intensive Residential Centers, Open Campuses, and Group Homes.  Located in Tennessee, Georgia, and Oregon, all of these facilities utilize the Re-Education of Emotionally Disturbed Children therapy model (Re-Ed). The majority of these youth attend the fully accredited schools which are located on our residential treatment campuses.

Position Overview

  • Plan for individual and group activities to stimulate growth in language, social, and other skills.
  • Participate in training and in-service activities.
  • Administer and interprets testing to determine academic needs.
  • Develop and uses a variety of teaching techniques.
  • Produce lesson plans that reflect the individual educational needs of students.
  • Prepare reports in compliance with school guidelines.
  • Maintain progress notes, attendance records, and grade scores in a timely manner.
  • Other essential duties as needed.
  • Candidates may have the opportunity to teach in specialized subjects
  • Monday – Friday, 7:30am to 3:30pm.

 

Additional Information:

Small Class Sizes to allow more one on one attention to individual students and their educational needs. The standard Youth Villages class size ranges from 8-15 children.Tuition & Licensure reimbursement, and training for your career growth and advancement. Our schools operate year-round

Requirements:

  • A Bachelor's degree in education with appropriate certification is required (K-12)
  • Active Licensure in TN with an endorsement in Special Education is required
  • Experience in special education or teaching experience in a clinical environment is preferred
  • Experience working with at-risk youth a major plus
  • Experience working with youth is required
  • Excellent written, verbal, and oral skills
  • Ability to manage multiple priorities simultaneously
  • Basic computer knowledge
  • Ability to maintain a flexible schedule

Benefits:

  • Medical, Dental, Prescription Drug Coverage and Vision
  • Retirement Savings Pension Plan
  • 403 (b)
  • 2 weeks paid vacation
  • 12 paid sick days per year
  • 10 paid holidays
  • Mileage & Cell Phone Reimbursement (when applicable)
  • EOE

 

Contact:

Pamela Gordon

901-251-4895

Pamela.gordon@youthvillages.org

 

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Director of Student Services

Peterborough NH

Job Category: Director

QUALIFICATIONS:

  • Master's Degree from an accredited college/university.
  • Three years successful teaching experience or equivalent.
  • Three years successful administrative experience or equivalent
  • NH State Certification #0006.
  • Demonstrated evidence of excellent written and oral communication skills.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills, including group facilitation.
  • Such alternatives to the above qualifications as the School Board may find appropriate and acceptable.

SUMMARY:

The Director of Student Services is a Central Office 12-month position. The Director plans, directs, and reviews the activities and operations of student services. The position is responsible for Special Education staff, Guidance, 504, and District Nursing, as well as assessing needs, developing programs and implementing services. The Director coordinates assigned activities with outside agencies, psychologists, speech language pathologists/therapists and speech assistants, OT/PT, social workers, nurses, Transition Coordinator, Crisis Prevention Counselor, and Section 504 accommodations. The Director is responsible for homeless, home education, ELL and provides support to the Assistant Superintendent for instructional services.

APPLY:

For more information, and to apply, please go to www.convalsd.net, click Careers and begin the application process.

BENEFITS:

Full Benefits Package

 

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Teacher of the Visually Impaired

New Orleans

Job Category: Teacher of the visually impaired

Description:

Help Lighthouse Louisiana to build a better tomorrow for our students with vision impairment, while living in an exciting city with food, fun, and festivals galore.

Lighthouse Louisiana is seeking a Certified Teacher of the Visually Impaired who is eager to use his/her skills and creativity to provide itinerant vision services and to develop youth programs for children with vision loss in the Greater New Orleans area.

Lighthouse Louisiana is dedicated to ensuring that our youth are receiving well-rounded opportunities to learn through quality instruction and play.  Our programs expand beyond the classroom to include Goal Ball, recreation, transition skills training, and a summer camp.  If you want to make a difference in the lives of children who are blind in a holistic environment with an interdisciplinary team, contact Lighthouse Louisiana today.

Applicants who do not meet the following requirements listed need not apply.

  • Education:  BA in Education or M.Ed. with VI certification from an accredited university.
  • Special Knowledge or Skills:  Proficiency with Braille, Assistive technology for the blind, magnification, and adaptations for children with varying degrees of vision loss; Able to screen for referral to O&M services; excellent written and verbal communications; proficient in use of Internet, email, and standard software applications (i.e. Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint); proficiency with Nemeth code Braille and methods of teaching math to blind students.
  • Experience:  At least 1-year teaching as a TVI.  Itinerant experience preferred.

Requirements:

See the job description.

Benefits:

Signing Bonus - $2000/ Health, Dental, Vision, Flexible Spending Account, Basic Life, Voluntary Life, Short and Long-Term Disability, Retirement, Vacation, Sick and Holiday.

Contact:

Terri J. Brown

HR Manager

P. 504-899-4501, x229

F. 504-895-4162

tbrown@lighthouselouisiana.org

 

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Private Teacher

Chicago, IL

Job Category: Education

Description:

Flexible start date between now and Spring/Summer of 2018! Family based in Lincoln Park, IL seeks a Private Teacher to co-develop, manage, and implement the education plan/home school program for an elite student athlete who is entering high school next year. Must have a four-year degree, with a special education or learning disability certification; advanced degree in special education strongly preferred. Experience with individualized education plans (IEPs) and at least two years of classroom teaching experience is required. The family is looking for someone who is excited about this opportunity and has a passion for what they do! If you have experience teaching at a Jesuit school or other private school environment, working as a private tutor or specialized camp counselor, or teaching in another unique learning environment, please apply! Must be happy to travel to Florida and Arizona during the winter months. The family is willing to hire the right person immediately for a full-time role to perform tutoring until the 2018-19 school year. The family is also willing to wait and hire the private teacher to start this Spring/Summer. This is a full-time position with compensation of $90,000 to $110,000 offered, depending on experience, with benefits. Relocation assistance is available; must be willing to live within a reasonable commute to Lincoln Park. For consideration, please apply for position #410 at www.mahlermatch.com. Qualified applicants will be contacted.

 

Benefits:

This is a full-time position with compensation of $90,000 to $110,000 offered, depending on experience, with benefits. Relocation assistance is available; must be willing to live within a reasonable commute to Lincoln Park.

Contact:

For consideration, please apply for position #410 at www.mahlermatch.com.

 

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Special Education - Bard High School Early College

New York City

Job Category: Teaching Position - Special Education in mathematic

Description:

Bard High School Early College (BHSEC) Queens, a ten-minute subway ride from central Manhattan, is founded on a partnership between Bard College and the New York City Department of Education. We invite applications for a full-time special education faculty position in mathematics and/or science beginning immediately. BHSEC, a national model in the field of public school reform, enables talented and highly motivated students to move in four years from the ninth grade through the first two years of college, earning an associate of arts (A.A.) degree from Bard College as well as a New York State Regents high school diploma. The academic program emphasizes small class size and a commitment to teaching a diverse student body in a liberal arts environment.

We seek to hire an individual with experience working with special education students who has significant background in mathematics and/or science. The successful candidate may work in one of our ninth or tenth grade integrative co-teaching classrooms and as a one-on-one special education teacher for a student with severe physical disabilities. The position allows close work with colleagues to find avenues for students to enjoy learning and to prepare students to enter the college curriculum at the end of the 10th grade.

Requirements:

The successful candidate must have either a Ph.D. in special education or certification to teach special education in any state, and be available to start as soon as possible.

Contact:

All applications are submitted through Interfolio com at: http://apply.interfolio.com/41835. To apply, upload a letter of interest, a curriculum vitae including contacts for references, and a brief (c. 250 word) description of an experience you had as a student or as a teacher that has influenced your teaching. For relatively recent graduates, please also include a copy of your undergraduate and graduate school transcripts.

Inquiries may be directed via email to: Valeri Thomson, at thomson@bard.edu

 

 

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Lead ED Special Education Teacher

Washington, DC

Job Category: Special Education Teacher - Secondary

Description

The Lead Special Education Teacher for Cornerstone is an integral member of the academics team whose focus is to guide students in their social-emotional and academic development.  In this role, the Cornerstone Lead Teacher will serve as a case manager for all students enrolled in the program (6-10 students), they will ensure compliance with all special education regulations and timelines and ensure all  students are receiving services. The ED teacher is responsible for all students engaged in academic experiences guided by high expectations, research-based pedagogy and care for each child’s developmental needs.

The Lead Special Education teacher is responsible for ensuring the services are delivered with fidelity. This teacher will collaborate with the academic, wellbeing and student life teams, external partners and services providers as well as parents to provide an unparalleled personalized academic experience.

Monument Academy values the personal well-being and professional growth of our staff. The Lead Special Education Cornerstone teacher will create a personalized development plan collaboratively with the Principal and will receive weekly coaching to ensure progress toward personal and professional growth.

Key responsibilities include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Promote Monument Academy’s core values and model the highest behavior standards for staff and student at all times
  • Create and implement personalized learning plans for each student that are data-informed and Common Core State Standards aligned.
  • Deliver grade level curricula identified by Monument Academy with fidelity and consult on strengths and challenges of the curricula
  • Collaborate with the Academic Team to improve lesson plans and instructional materials
  • Assist in the development of IEP goals and objectives and ensure appropriate implementation of student interventions through collaboration with the Classroom Teachers
  • Utilize provided supplemental resources for intervention and enrichment and identify or create additional resources, as necessary
  • Demonstrate commitment to the implementation of Positive Behavioral Supports and Interventions and Positive Action to maintain a positive, safe, productive, and child-centered learning environment
  • Utilize data to assess student learning and the effectiveness of teaching practices
  • Collaborate with academic team members as well as other teams within the school to share student information
  • Implement student-specific interventions and track related progress for both academic and social-emotional needs
  • Communicate regularly with parents and caregivers regarding student progress and challenges
  • Conduct home visits with another staff member as needed
  • Fully participate in professional development opportunities on and off property throughout the year
  • Provide and seek feedback from other members of the Academic Team and Monument Academy staff and leadership
  • Three or more years of classroom teaching experience in an upper elementary or middle school in an urban setting, inclusive classroom and/or co-teaching experience preferred
  • Experience working with at-risk youth, foster youth, or youth with high social emotional needs highly desired;
  • Demonstrated ability to set ambitious goals with students and data-supported evidence that these goals were met;
  • Experience with the IEP process from assessment to identification and creation to monitoring and review;
  • Thorough knowledge of special education laws and regulations;
  • Cultural competency in working with students and families from different racial, ethnic, linguistic, and sexual orientation backgrounds;
  • Ability to connect with families/caregivers;
  • Highly qualified designation as recognized by District of Columbia Public Schools
  • Bachelor’s degree required. Special Education certification required
  • Relocation package available plus a signing bonus of $1000
  • Competitive compensation commensurate with experience. Monument Academy is committed to its policy of full inclusion and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation or national and ethnic origin in hiring and employment, nor in the administration of its educational policies, or admissions policies.

Requirements

  • Three or more years of classroom teaching experience in an upper elementary or middle school in an urban setting, inclusive classroom and/or co-teaching experience preferred
  • Experience working with at-risk youth, foster youth, or youth with high social emotional needs highly desired;
  • Demonstrated ability to set ambitious goals with students and data-supported evidence that these goals were met;
  • Experience with the IEP process from assessment to identification and creation to monitoring and review;
  • Thorough knowledge of special education laws and regulations;
  • Cultural competency in working with students and families from different racial, ethnic, linguistic, and sexual orientation backgrounds;
  • Ability to connect with families/caregivers;
  • Highly qualified designation as recognized by District of Columbia Public Schools
  • Bachelor’s degree required. Special Education certification required

 

Benefits

  • Relocation package available plus a signing bonus of $1000
  • Competitive compensation commensurate with experience. Monument Academy is committed to its policy of full inclusion and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation or national and ethnic origin in hiring and employment, nor in the administration of its educational policies, or admissions policies.

Contact

Marcia Sandifer, Recruiter

Marcia.Sandifer@monumentacademydc.org

www.monumentacademy.org

 

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Assistant Professor of Education

Bethlehem, PA

Job Category: Assistant Professor in Special Education

Description

The Moravian College Education Department invites applications for a tenure-track position in educational psychology with a focus on special education, inclusive education, and/or disability studies in education, beginning the Fall Term 2018. Members of the Moravian College Education Department view and carry out their work in the context of the College’s liberal arts ethos.


Preference will be given to candidates who demonstrate expertise in and a commitment to inclusionary practices and critical disability studies. The Department seeks candidates with experience and knowledge in multicultural education and culturally and linguistically diverse students. Candidates must be ready to share in the work of a thriving Education Department with a clear commitment to social justice, critical perspectives in education, and strong communities of practice.

Requirements

Qualified applicants must have a record of at least three years of successful child-centered, public school teaching experience and hold an appropriate doctorate degree. ABD considered. In addition, successful candidates must demonstrate a genuine desire to participate fully in a liberal arts environment and be committed first to teaching and next to scholarship and service.
All positions are subject to budget availability.

Benefits

Successful candidates will have opportunities to teach additional undergraduate courses in early childhood/elementary, middle level and secondary education Other instructional opportunities exist, including the teaching of foundations, Social Studies methods, and educational research. The undergraduate program offers certificates in early childhood education (PreK-Grade 4), middle level education (Grade s 4-8), most areas in secondary education (Grades 7-12), as well as certification in the PreK-12 areas of art, music, and world language.


Opportunities to teach in other undergraduate areas in support of the liberal arts curriculum,as well as within the graduate education program, are also available. In addition to awarding the Master of Education and Master of Arts in Teaching degrees, the graduate education program offers certification for principals, supervisors of curriculum and instruction, reading specialists, ESL teachers, and special educators.

Contact:

Dr. Joseph Shosh

search.education@moravian.edu

 

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Acknowledgements

Portions of this month’s NASET’s Special Educator e-Journal were excerpted from:

  • Center for Parent Information and Resources
  • Committee on Education and the Workforce
  • FirstGov.gov-The Official U.S. Government Web Portal
  • Journal of the American Academy of Special Education Professionals (JAASEP)
  • National Collaborative on Workforce and Disability for Youth
  • National Institute of Health
  • National Organization on Disability
  • Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
  • U.S. Department of Education
  • U.S. Department of Education-The Achiever
  • U.S. Department of Education-The Education Innovator
  • U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
  • U.S. Department of Labor
  • U.S. Food and Drug Administration
  • U.S. Office of Special Education

The National Association of Special Education Teachers (NASET) thanks all of the above for the information provided for this edition of the NASET Special Educator e-Journal.


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