Ratio in classroom?

Discussion in 'Special Education' started by acegirl, Jan 11, 2009.

  1. acegirl

    acegirl New Member

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    Jan 11, 2009

    I am curious to see what ratios do you all have? I had 7 students 2 that have behavior problems. One student moved away which leaves me total of 6. I had two paraprofessional and since that student moved., they took one paraprofessional away. They said because I do not have the numbers. I am wondering if that is right? I am having the issue that when that para takes their lunch or having to take students to nurse. I am left alone. I am just curious what are the situations in your rooms. I teach a self contain high school life skills unit. I am curious to what should be the ratio in a high school life skills unit setting?
     
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  3. futureiowateach

    futureiowateach Rookie

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    Jan 11, 2009

    One school where I did an observation had 45, yes 45! students in one classroom. They had two teachers, but whenever another teacher in the building was sick or out, one of the teachers would be pulled to sub! And this was a 4th grade classroom.
     
  4. WaterfallLady

    WaterfallLady Enthusiast

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    Jan 11, 2009

    Last year in public school, I had 18 children with moderate disabilities and no aide. Of course, I had an aide for my class with 5 kids who only had mild disabilities and perfect behavior...

    This year, there is me and usually 11 or 12 kids, with no aide, but the kids are well behaved and usually able to help each other.
     
  5. SpecSub

    SpecSub Comrade

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    Jan 11, 2009

    When I worked in a moderate/severe classroom as an aide, there were only the teacher and I for 7 kids, 2 of whom were in wheelchairs, 1 who was violent, and 2 who had seizures. None were potty-trained. The children were 6-8 years old.
     
  6. Teach96

    Teach96 Comrade

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    Jan 11, 2009

    our district's policy is that our moderate/severe classrooms have a 1:4 ratio.

    This year I have 13 students and 3 paras (1 is a 1:1) but our day is 7 hours long and each para is only 6 hrs. So with lunch breaks and mainstreaming, I actually only have approx. 4 hours of ratio in the classroom.
     
  7. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    Jan 11, 2009

    We typically have a 1:4 ratio (including paras) but sometimes it can be 1:6 or 1:8 if people are absent, etc. Last year I was doing 1:10 by myself as an aide for 3 months while the teacher was being pulled almost daily for paperwork, etc. I'm okay with that. It's fairly low ratios compared to some public school classrooms.
     
  8. teachersk

    teachersk Connoisseur

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    Jan 11, 2009

    I have a 6:6 ratio. I'm in an autism school (specialized). I feel pretty lucky compared to my ratios in TX (with one para).

    I have a child that is very aggressive and self-injurious and requires 1-2 people with him at all times.

    Honestly, it's great having the extra hands, but there are more "cooks in the kitchen" so to speak. It's difficult to keep everyone on the same page. I'm not complaining though. But I do know that my kids in TX were more independent because they had to be. Here, there is always an adult around to guide/prompt/help so the independence levels are lower.

    So, that's something to think about! But, I do understand that it could be very tough when you don't have the hands necessary to teach. My colleague in TX had 8 kids in a tiny SPED room, with 3 assistants, but one of the assistants was assigned to a boy in a wheelchair who was medically fragile. That left 2 assistants to help with the other 7 kids. I guess a 3:7 ratio isn't too bad, but it was chaos in there when it was lunch break time, or the paras had playground duty, were absent, etc.
     
  9. bethechange

    bethechange Comrade

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    Jan 14, 2009

    I have myself and 2 aides for:

    2 self-contained students with autism
    2 students with autism who are included for all or most of the day
    2 mostly self-contained EBD students
    1 mostly included EBD student

    3 students with SLD that I pull for both reading and math, and provide push in support from one para for.

    PLUS, per RTI, I teach reading and math intervention to low (but not special ed identified) students, so my groups that I pull my special ed kids in are huge.

    PLUS I do assessments. Right now I'm working on an SLD one and an EBD one. I have absolutely no idea where I will put those kids when they qualify.

    PLUS, I share my room with the ESL teacher, so there is usually a lot going on in there - my poor ASD kiddos get so distracted every time the door opens and different teachers, children, or groups parade in and out.

    Its not so much that I believe the ratio is inadequate, and like someone said, when I taught in Texas, it was actually much higher. Its just that I really don't believe I can meet all their needs because I am trying to do too many different things at once and I am forced to group kids who don't really group well together or even have the same needs part of the time. I also really don't think that grouping ASD and EBD kids together is a good idea - especially for social skills instruction!!!

    Did I mention they are all kindergarten? Therefore not so independent yet, and though I try my hardest to help them be independent, I HATE that there are sometimes 15-20 minute chunks of the day when they are not engaged in anything productive because they are so overstimulated and there is no adult available to help them. I also hate that I can't spend more time on direct teach and social skills with my ASD kiddos. I'm working on my ASD certificate right now and I learn so many awesome things in my classes that I try to implement - but I would like to do so much more. I am really really interested in Integrated Play Groups and did some last year - but this year I cannot figure out how to scrape together a time or a quiet space to try - I am just spread way too thin.

    I'm sure this is a common story.
     
  10. karebear76

    karebear76 Habitué

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    Jan 16, 2009

    bethechange ~ WOW! I feel for you. Right now I don't feel quite so bad or think that I have it as rough as once thought... I hope yours in not a common story.

    I teach 4th grade mild/moderate students. I have a caseload of 16 (was 18 before break). 3 are fully included, with accommodations provided in regular classroom by regular teachers. I pull the other 13 for reading, language arts, and math instruction. I have 1 student with a 1:1 aide (she's bipolar...displays many autism spectrum behaviors, but mother states she's been assessed and isn't). I have another student with bipolar, I have 2 students on alternate assessment (one of whom consistently knows 4 letter sounds), and many behaviors that just incite each other. I don't have an aide or assistant beyond the 1:1, who's responsibility is the one student (btw, she is a replacement, and hasn't yet had any formal parapro training or exam). I never have an aide, unless I have one for a specific student. Usually I have at least 18 students on caseload, sometimes as high as 21.

    State law says 12 at any one time, and 16 total during the day.
     
  11. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

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    Jan 17, 2009

    22 moderate to severe students, cognitive levels ranging from 2 year old to gifted 5th grade; one assistant who is pulled a total of 15 weeks during the school year for other assignments. She is also pulled for extra duty and to cover classrooms when a sub can't be found. Yes, this year I am pulling my hair out and may be looking for greener pastures in the district next year. I am completing my gifted certification this year so I may go that route. The district wants to have a gifted teacher in every school next year.
     
  12. Upsadaisy

    Upsadaisy Moderator

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    Jan 17, 2009

    I'm in a regular ed classroom in a private school. Which just means that we get more than our share of kids with disabilities and we have no services and no aides.

    I have 13 students. 1 has asperbergers/ADD, 3 have untreated ADD, 2 are ESL (1 doesn't speak much English), 2 have low IQs (one is borderline). None of those kids is on grade level. The other students are on or above grade level and 1 is probably gifted.
     
  13. Kate Change

    Kate Change Companion

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    Jan 17, 2009

    I teach inclusion (with another teacher and a para). The para and I are both pulled a fair amount. We have 6 special ed (D level) and 20 regular education. When we are all in the room, it's great! When we're not, it varies...
     
  14. teachersk

    teachersk Connoisseur

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    Jan 18, 2009

    What does "D level" mean?
     
  15. Kate Change

    Kate Change Companion

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    Jan 18, 2009

    D level, in my area anyway, is the highest support level next to intensive support. So an A level student might have a slight reading disorder and see a special education teacher an hour or so a week. A D level student generally needs support in all academic areas.

    We have an autism specific program at our school, it's an intensive support program and houses students that are too severely impacted to function in an inclusion setting. I have one kiddo with autism in my group, because while he needs support in all academic areas, he is able to function in our classroom. I hope that makes sense? It's just away of indicating how much help the students need.
     
  16. teachersk

    teachersk Connoisseur

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    Jan 18, 2009

    Wow, so the D level kiddos are in inclusion classes? Where I am - a child that was "one knotch away from the most severe" would probably be most successful in a self-contained classroom.

    Sounds challenging!
     
  17. Emily Bronte

    Emily Bronte Groupie

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    Jan 18, 2009

    I have 8 students and 3 aides. Abilitieis are all over the board. We run into the most difficulties when the assistants have breaks and lunch times (1 hour total time out of the school day).
     
  18. ITeachSATX

    ITeachSATX Rookie

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    Jan 19, 2009

    My room has 9 students total aged 13 to 20. 5 are in wheelchairs and 4 of them must be pushed even to navigate our classroom. I have 3 paras and would kill for another one. Anytime we leave the classroom I have to ask for help from a nearby classroom or push 2 chairs at once with the smallest students.
     

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