Special Services Parent Newsletter

October 2020

A Day in the Life of your Child as they Return to School

Safe Return: A Day in the Life (English)

regreso seguro: un dia en la vida

Regreso Seguro: Un Día en la Vida (Español)

FREE Studio Movie Grill Tickets!

We have free tickets for you compliments of the newly opened Studio Movie Grill! Good thru' November 4th, no purchase necessary. How many would you like?

Email donna.heim@crowley.k12.tx.us to get your tickets. In the email, write one item in this newsletter that you found interesting.

Virtual Academy

On October 5, 2020, students in Crowley ISD will have the option to begin learning in person. Online learning will also continue under the Virtual Academy learning option. Students in the Virtual Academy will follow the same provisions for instructional services for virtual learning during the district’s remote start. However, schedules, instructional formats, and assigned teachers may change.

Virtual students whose primary placement is in the general education setting may be assigned to a teacher that is not assigned to their home campus. However, the student will receive their instructional and behavioral special education services through their home campus. Related services will be provided by their regularly assigned provider. Self-contained special education programs will either serve students using a co-seated instruction model or in a fully virtual instructional format. The co-seated model is one where the teacher provides instruction to both in-person and virtual learning students.


The Crowley RDSPD serves Deaf and Hard of Hearing students from birth to 21 years of age for the school districts of Crowley, Alvarado, Burleson, Cleburne, Everman, Joshua, and the Johnson County SSA (Godley, Grandview, Rio Vista, and Keene). The RDSPD is governed by a management board comprised of the special education directors of the member districts that we serve.

Crowley RDSPD is a Total Communication program focusing on meeting the language and academic needs of the individual student. Total Communication (TC) is a philosophy that aims to make use of a number of modes of communication such as sign language, oral, auditory, written and visual aids, depending on the particular needs and abilities of the child.

The Crowley RDSPD currently has students on the following campuses: Deer Creek Elementary, Richard J. Allie Middle School, Crowley 9th Grade, Crowley High School, and Crowley Collegiate Academy. The RDSPD employs 6 teachers of the deaf, 9 interpreters, 1 itinerant AI teacher, and 1 instructional specialist. The program also contracts with a part-time audiologist.

Parents are a vital part of our program and we depend on our parents to work with us on how to provide the best education for our DHH children. Many resources are available to parents to assist you in navigating your DHH child’s education and life.

This organization offers support, information, and resources in an unbiased manner to families with children who are deaf and/or hard of hearing.

A family support program which pairs new parents with experienced parents, offering someone to help walk through new experiences.

An organization that provides support, information, and resources to DHH students, families, and the professionals that serve them.

The staff of the Crowley RDSPD want the best education possible for your DHH student. If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact your student’s deaf education teacher. You may also contact Janna Riley, Crowley RDSPD Instructional Specialist.

RDSPD Teachers

A Quarantine Tool Box for Parents and Guardians of Children who are Deaf/Hard of Hearing

This 7-part series of short videos provides “tips and tricks” during this difficult time for addressing moments of conflict or behavior management challenges. Videos are done by Trish Grooms, a seasoned counselor who has worked with families and students who are Deaf/Hard of Hearing for decades.

Virtual SIBSHOP - November 10 at 6:30 pm

Do you have a typically developing child who would like to get to know other kids who have a brother or sister with a disability? SIBSHOP is just for them! Playing games, talking, and having fun with others who 'get it' - who understand the good...and not so good...things about having a sibling with special needs.

Parent Support Group - October 20 - 8:00 pm

A virtual Meet Up for CISD parents to get together and decompress. It's been a challenging time! Join the Meet-Up at 8:00 pm to discuss what's going well, what's not, and share how we can help one another navigate the special needs life in the time of COVID.

8:00 is late for a school meeting, but we hope this'll give you time to get little ones in bed. And you don't have to drive home afterwards!

We All Have Different Shades of Skin - Todos Tenemos Diferentes Tonos de Piel

Social Stories that talk about the topic of skin color with young children. These are written and illustrated by a speech/language pathologist. Free download.

What is Task Analysis?

Task analysis (TA) is the process of breaking a skill into smaller, more manageable steps in order to teach the skill. The learner can be taught to perform individual steps of the chain until the entire skill is mastered (also called “chaining”). Other practices, such as reinforcement, video modeling, or time delay, should also be used to facilitate learning the smaller steps. As the smaller steps are mastered, the learner becomes more and more independent in his or her ability to perform the larger skill.

TA meets evidence-based criteria with 8 single-case design studies. According to the evidence-based studies, this intervention has been effective for preschoolers (age 3–5 years) to middle school-age learners (12–14 years) with ASD. TA can be used effectively to address social, communication, joint attention, academic, motor, and adaptive skills.

When would I use Task Analysis?

Task Analysis is an effective strategy when a skill is too complicated to teach all at once. Common skills that are taught using task analysis include tying shoes, washing dishes, logging on to the computer and starting a familiar program, showering, and brushing teeth.

Tips for Creating a Task Analysis

1. Choose a task with a definitive start and end (e.g. set the table, get dressed, make bed)

2. Write down the steps as you do the task or as you watch another adult do the task

3. Give the steps to someone else to try to follow and make sure they are clear.

4. Write the final steps on a piece of paper to guide instruction for teaching the task to your son/daughter.

5. If needed, draw, or take picture cues for each step to post as a visual schedule for your child to reference.

6. Teach the task using the prompting strategy that fits your child best. Some learners who get easily frustrated may do best with most-to-least prompting in which you assist more, while other learners may reach independence with the task more quickly using a least-to-most prompting strategy.

Prompting Hierarchy

Fleury,V. P. (2013). Task analysis (TA) fact sheet. Chapel Hill, NC: The University of North Carolina, Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute, The National Professional Development Center on Autism Spectrum Disorders.

Franzone, E. (2009). Overview of task analysis. Madison, WI: National Professional Development Center on Autism Spectrum Disorders, Waisman Center, University of Wisconsin.

Sam, A., & AFIRM Team. (2015). Task analysis. Chapel Hill, NC: National Professional Development Center on Autism Spectrum Disorder, FPG Child Development Center, University of North Carolina. Retrieved from http://afirm.fpg.unc.edu/task-analysis

Are You Following Us on Facebook?

Our CISD Special Education Facebook page is a great place to stay informed and enjoy pictures of students and staff.
CISD Special Education Website

Packed with useful information!



Path Project Newsletter

Partners Resource Network PATH Project is a Parent Training and Information Center serving Texas parents of children with disabilities. Click to find free virtual workshops and events.

IDD Council - The Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Council of Tarrant County

The IDD Council seeks to bring inclusion and awareness of intellectual and developmental disabilities through community events and education. Their October Caregiver Education & Networking topic is


Individuals with IDD are often defined by their labels – diagnoses, traumatic events, behavior characteristics. Join Dr. Ashley Wellman, professor of Criminal Justice at TCU to learn how to help your son or daughter celebrate their differences and uniqueness. Learn how to teach your child to rewrite their story to be defined by what makes them special and unique rather than by a label.