SPecial EDition

December 2014 (Volume 4 Number 2)

SPecial EDition is a quarterly newsletter produced by the Springtown ISD Special Education Department.
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The Grading Guidelines for Students with Disabilities are now posted on the SISD Special Education webpage under Staff Resources.


Performance Based Monitoring

As a result of the Performance Based Monitoring (PBM) Analysis System, Springtown ISD Had to write an improvement plan to address areas of low performance related to special education. Activities that will be taking place between now and January 31 include:

Ø Create a calendar for professional development (targeted assistance) on differentiated instructional strategies

Ø Campus special education teachers(s) will collaborate with general education teacher(s) on specific differentiation strategies based on needs of the individual students.

Ø Identify and schedule Curriculum-Based Assessments (CBAs) to be used at the campus level (Grades 3 – 8).

Ø Conduct vertical grade level meetings for grades 3 – 5 and 6 -8 for instructional planning.

Ø Campus principal will review currently available discipline data with campus administration team.

Ø Provide job embedded professional development (i.e. administrative coaching) for teachers and administrators in need of additional discipline management techniques.

Ø Create and implement and systemic process for gathering discipline data (discipline referral form) for all grade levels PK -12.

State Assessment News

The spring testing date for STAAR grades 5 and 8 mathematics will shift from March 30, 2015, to April 20, 2015. Earlier this year, Commissioner Williams announced that the Student Success Initiative (SSI) requirement that students in grades 5 and 8 must pass the STAAR mathematics assessment in order to move on to the next grade level is suspended for this school year. Suspension of the 5th and 8th grade mathematics requirement applies only for the 2014–2015 school year. The STAAR mathematics assessments in grades 5 and 8 will only be administered one time this school year. State law requiring students in grades 5 and 8 to pass the STAAR reading exam in order to proceed to the next grade level is still in effect.

The 2015 STAAR Alternate 2 administration window was originally planned for two weeks in an effort to minimize the amount of time taken from instruction. The length of the administration window reflected the data collected following the pilot test conducted in January 2014. While districts have not had experience with the new test design beyond the pilot test, some have expressed concern that it may be difficult to complete the administration in the time allowed. Therefore, the window for the administration of the 2015 STAAR Alternate 2 has been extended to three weeks for the 2014-2015 school year. Districts will be able to administer the test and enter student responses beginning February 9 through 27, 2015. March 2 and 3 will be reserved for data verification with the system closing at 5pm (CST) on March 3, 2015. Additionally, the policy regarding the 10-day preview period that allows test administrators to access the secure testing materials prior to the administration window for the purpose of applying accommodations required by the individual student has been changed. Test administrators may be allowed access to secure testing materials for purposes of applying accommodations upon the arrival of the secure test materials in the district. Note that secure materials are due to be shipped from Pearson on January 19, 2014.

ChalkTalk: Mistakes for Teachers to Avoid in ARD/IEP Meetings

ChalkTalk is a professional development series of 20 video interviews of experts on learning and behavioral challenges.

This video centers on the teacher's role in ARD meetings.

If prompted for a username and password:

Username: Stown

Password: Stown113

Ed21 Consulting Services

Springtown ISD will again be working with Ed21 Consulting Services (Kathy Clayton and David Carales) to continue to develop procedures and processes to benefit students in special education and to assist staff members.

Desired results from this process include:

  • Classroom assignments are completed by design, following a written procedure, in order to meet the unique needs of all students with disabilities.
  • Discipline for all students, in particular students with disabilities, is administered consistently across campuses.
  • General education participation in ARD meetings is by design, following a written procedure, to ensure meaningful teacher representation of the ARD Committee.
  • District staff have access to date and information related to the education of students with disabilities.

Progress Reporting Information

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