Monday, November 15, 2010

Behavior Problems & LD

VISITOR: My son has been in some trouble at school and we haven't even had his first IEP yet.

You want to insist on a BIP (Behavior Intervention Plan) or a FBP (Functional Behavior Plan) to address his behavior and help him to self-correct by responding to reward opportunities.

Here is more information: 2010 Implementation Guidance on Behavior Support for Schools from the Michigan Department of Education. See pages 35, 36+ for information on a Functional  Behavioral Assessment (FBA) and a BSP Behavior Support Plan for him. You will want to scan the whole document, which is written as an instruction manual for schools on responses to student behavior issues. Make sure they do an assessment and make a good plan, based on the recommendations in this document. You may want to print and bring it to the meeting and have the pages marked for easy access to show them. Don't assume that schools know their own business. There is much to learn, even for school administrators. Everybody's flying by the seat of their pants, as things change faster than information can be disseminated and implemented. 

Math LD: 504 Plan or IEP?

VISITOR: My daughter has dyscalculia and the school told me that that is not one of the 13 disabilities that they recognize. They are willing to give her a 504 plan. She is great in all subjects except math. They are being really nice, what should I do?

DYSCALCULIA.ORGShe will need a Math Handbook like (Math on Call) and Math Manipulatives (especially for fractions!)

It may also help to work on a multi-media math learning tutorial program like Check this out: Math demo

About the IDEA Law and 504 Plans: [excerpt below from]
If your child has a Section 504 plan and does not receive special education services
under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, you should read about Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act. Next, learn about your child’s test scores. In many cases, Section 504 children are eligible for services under IDEA. Gatekeepers who limit access to special education services often
make decisions about eligibility. If you understand your child’s test data, you will be in
a position to open the door to better services for your child.

Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act is a federal civil rights law that prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities. Compliance is not optional. Under Section 504, the child with a disability has equal access to an education. A 504 Plan may include accommodations and modifications. A 504 Plan is not the same as a Child Study Plan.
You need to …
write a short, factual letter to the director of special ed or school supervisor. Explain that you were told that your district “doesn’t do 504’s” and that [someone] advised you that a Child Study Plan is like a 504 Plan. You are confused - this is not consistent with what you’ve read elsewhere. Ask if your understanding is correct.
You live in Virginia where the Child Study Team is part of the Identification and Referral process. These teams have different names in other states and may operate differently. The Team recommends strategies to address a child’s learning, behavior, communication, or development problems. The Child Study Team may also refer the child for a special education evaluation.
Get Your State Special Ed Regulations: You need to learn how to find and use your state special education regulations. Go to the Wrightslaw Yellow Pages for Kids site and click the link to the Directory of State Departments of Education. You should be able to download your state special ed regulations from your State Dept of Education’s web site. Save the regulation on your computer.
To find information about a topic like “child study,” search the your state regulations. Type Control-F (Find) then type “child study.” The information you locate will get you up and running.
Remember: Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act is a federal statute that prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities. The person who said your district “doesn’t do 504 Plans” is misinformed. If you bring this issue to the attention of an administrator, this is often sufficient to set the record straight.