As a special education teacher, you will be expected to provide support and guidance to administration, teachers, and staff regarding issues that may arise concerning how to meet the needs of individuals with disabilities outlined in IEPs. Serving as a collaborative resource to colleagues promotes the well-being of individuals with disabilities, the main goal of a special education teacher. Additionally, it is vital to provide support and guidance for students in the inclusion setting who will be working and collaborating with non-exceptional peers and general education teachers.
Read the case study to inform the assignment that follows.
John is currently a ninth-grade student who has been identified as having an emotional/behavioral disorder, specifically in the area of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). During his annual IEP meeting, John’s IEP team reviewed recent test scores and determined he qualified for the gifted program in the area of English language arts (ELA). John will continue to participate in the inclusion classroom for the remainder of his courses, and be placed in the gifted classroom for ELA in the second semester of the school year.
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As John continues to be successful in all of his inclusion classes, he is having difficulty in his new ELA class. The gifted teacher, Ms. Griedl, was not able to be present during the IEP meeting, and John is the first student with an IEP she has had in her class. John has stated that being the only Hispanic student in Ms. Griedl’s gifted class has made him feel uncomfortable at times. He says Ms. Griedl does not include him in the classroom conversations and when she speaks to him, it is abruptly. John says she does not treat the other students in the same manner.
After one month of John being in the gifted class, Ms. Griedl has requested that a paraprofessional be present to support John. The IEP team determined that this was not necessary and that John should be able to be successful in the gifted classroom without a paraprofessional. The principal, Mr. Fleming, did a walk through observation of Ms. Griedl’s gifted classroom and he did notice that John was isolated in a corner, and the teacher and other students in the class did not interact with him. In addition, Mr. Fleming received a phone call from John’s parents who reported that Ms. Griedl had told John she felt he did not belong in the gifted class. John no longer wants to be in the class because he does not feel welcome.
Use the “Collaboration and Communication Action Plan Template” to complete this assignment.
Part 1: Action Plan
Mr. Fleming has come to you, the special education teacher, for assistance with the situation. To assist the principal, create a 750-1,000 word action plan. The action plan should include one long-term goal and a minimum of four short-term goals to help reach the long-term goal.
For each short-term goal, identify the following information related to implementation:
- At least 1-2 implementation activities/strategies
- Resources needed
- Timeline: To include measuring progress and implementing strategies
- Persons Responsible: To include measuring progress and implementing strategies
- Evidence of Success: How is this measured, or the desired outcomes to demonstrate success
Keep in mind the following when you outline your goals and implementation steps:
- John’s abilities and interests, the learning environments, and cultural and linguistic factors.
- How you will incorporate collaboration to help the action plan be successful.
- Your role as a coach and resource for John and Ms. Griedl.
Part 2: Rationale
Support your action plan with a 500-750 word rationale that incorporates researched best practices on collaboration and communication when working with colleagues, administration, and families.
Your rationale should address the following considerations:
- Theories or elements of effective collaboration you utilized in your action plan.
- How diversity is a part of families, cultures, and schools, and how complex human issues can interact with the delivery of special education services.
- The importance of supporting individuals with disabilities in all settings to help them reach their optimal potential and allow them to flourish academically and behaviorally.
Support your findings with 2-3 scholarly resources.