NBHS Environmental Scan

Amy White

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North Buncombe High School

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iPads for Students with Autism

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Why This Group?

*Numbers of children with Autism are rising.

*Helping these students succeed always classrooms to flow smoothly

*iPad integration could begin with students with Autism then transition to other or all students

*iPads can help students with communication, organization, schedules and behavior.

Timeline

This program would need to be implemented in several stages. The first stage would be training for teachers. Special education teachers would be provided with iPads so that they could become familiar with apps that would help individual students on their case load. Teachers would attend training that could be presented in house by teachers already familiar with iPads. After special education teachers were trained, regular education teachers would need to be notified of the program. This would include special education staff educating regular education teachers on the purpose of the program and goals. Regular education teachers would need to know how the individual students would be using the iPads. Teachers will work together to create rules for iPad use in specific classes.


The second stage would be implementation of the program to students. All students with autism would not receive an iPad at this time. Initially, only students with high-functioning forms of autism would receive an iPad. This would allow for a small test group of students to begin using the iPads so that teachers could begin to see how the program would work and what potential setbacks may happen.


The final stage would include all students with autism receiving an iPad to use in school. In the beginning stages of the program, students would not be allowed to take their iPads home. The iPads would only be for use in school. Students could earn the right to take iPads home based on the care that they give their iPads during the school day.

Professional Development

Professional Development could be delivered by teacher leaders or county office personnel in order to save money. Trial and error with apps and each individual student will be necessary.

Reflection

-This project was HARD!

-It allowed me to see beyond the walls of my own classroom.

-I looked at the big picture of the school.

-From a technology standpoint, we have a long way to go. Where to start? Special Education students could benefit from access to technology, but all students at North Buncombe would also benefit from more resources available.

-North Buncombe has a hard time qualifying for grants - we are not "diverse" enough, not totally "poor enough" and seem to fall through the cracks in terms of funding.