We serve a wide variety of students with special needs. We provide an ICT setting with SETSS services as needed. The integrated co-teaching model is meant to help students with disabilities access the general education curriculum with accommodations and support. As such, student expectations in regards to tests and homework assignments are the same as general education students. We do provide the testing accommodations and support as listed on student IEP's. If a student demonstrates that the general education curriculum as presented is too difficult, we meet as a special education team to decide next steps.
There are 2 sections of ICT classes in 9th grade depending on the grade. Students with disabilities make up 40% of each ICT class. This equates to approximately 13-14 students. There is a special education teacher in math, science, social studies, and english in all 4 core classes throughout the 4 grade levels. Special Education teachers each support a content area and case manage the IEP's for a grade level. For example, I co-teach in the science classes and case manage 9th grade IEP students. Another colleague of mine supports the math classes, and case manages 11th grade IEP students. This allows for students to have a wrap-around approach to support services. This approach has proven to be successful because then students with disabilities can be exposed to a variety of strategies appropriate to the content. The team meets weekly and is able to cohesively provide support to all students across content areas.
Our philosophy is that all students should have access to the general education curriculum and be able to learn in their own way. We believe all students should learn about themselves as learners so they are prepared for life after high school- college or careers. In preparation for that, we believe that students should understand the nature of their specific disability and the accompanying services, especially why they are receiving them. Our services are very intensive in grades 9 and 10 and we taper services off as much as possible in grades 11 and 12 to prepare students for the college experience and to encourage self-advocacy for their needs. We have had much success in this area with a 100% graduation rate for students with disabilities and a 100% college acceptance rate for students with disabilities. In fact, our students have felt so supported by our team that we still receive emails/google documents of their college assignments asking for future support.
Our team truly loves what they do and we strive to provide a community where students feel accepted and free to learn in a way that is best for them in high school as well as afterwards.