The truth is the truth, right?

Discussion in 'General Education' started by ecteach, Sep 28, 2013.

  1. ecteach

    ecteach Groupie

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    (Keeping it vague)
    I am a self-contained special ed teacher. There is a kid who they (regular ed and administrators) think needs to come to me. I told administration that I have no problem with this as long as we make it VERY clear to mom in the meeting that this path is not a diploma path, but a certificate of achievement path. It even says so on the IEP. I guess they just want me to skim over that and hope the mom doesn't catch it. Most of my parents realize this is the path their child is on, but then again, most of these parents have had a child in a class like this since kindergarten.

    I think admin is afraid that parent will back out if told that. Their reasoning was, "Well, (child) could always improve with you and then be able to graduate with a diploma." Well, if that's true, why isn't the opposite true? Why couldn't he improve with the other teachers too, and not need to come to my class? I would rather the parent be prepared for the worst and not shocked or saddened when they realize the truth.

    Let me know your feelings on this.

    **There is so much more I could share, but like I said, I want to keep it vague.**
     
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  3. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    It is wrong and dishonest to not be clear about it. Wow. :(
     
  4. ecteach

    ecteach Groupie

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    Whew...thought I was the crazy one. Thanks. Even if this is the only reply I get, at least I know I'm not insane, and there is someone, somewhere out there who thinks like me. :p I had 2 admins and 3 other teachers looking at me like I was CRAZY. Like I said, I think they are afraid mom will back out, and they just want him out of regular ed. It's not even that I don't think he belongs with me. I don't really have an opinion either way, because I don't know the child. But, :help::help::help::help:
     
  5. AdamnJakesMommy

    AdamnJakesMommy Habitué

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    As a mom, I could never just gloss over that with a parent. They need to know and understand all of the implications of switching her son out. She absolutely needs to be fully informed and if she wants him to stay in regular ed to get a diploma then he should stay. I would encourage her that if that is her choice, then she should expect to be working a lot more with him at home to help him master the material.
     
  6. Go Blue!

    Go Blue! Connoisseur

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    What is a certificate of achievement? Is this Life Skills?

    Even our self-contained SPED kids (that are not Life Skills) get a diploma if they meet graduation requirements. Basically, as long as you don't drop out, we have many alternatives to get kids to meet these requirements regardless if they are SPED or non-SPED.
     
  7. gr3teacher

    gr3teacher Phenom

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    In New York they call it (or at least called it seven years ago) an IEP diploma. Basically, it was a high school diploma based on IEP goals, not state requirements. It was for kids who would have never stood a chance of passing the Regents exams, even with accommodations. I imagine most states have similar options.

    I can't even imagine the idea of trying to sneak a kid onto a path like that without the parents (and the student, for that matter) being fully aware of the implications of what they were agreeing to.
     
  8. bella84

    bella84 Aficionado

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    You're not crazy. That's deceitful and very wrong of your admin.
     
  9. RadiantBerg

    RadiantBerg Cohort

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    The concept of a certificate of achievement seems strange to me too. I was always under the impression, though I could be wrong, that they would still get a diploma just that the coursework indicated would show that they were not gen ed classes.
     
  10. Go Blue!

    Go Blue! Connoisseur

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    Thanks.

    In my district, if a SPED child fails the HSAs twice, they take a Mod-HSA. For non-SPED kids, if they fail the HSAs twice, they must complete a Bridge project their Senior year (which you can't really fail) to make up for this. SPED kids can also do a Bridge project.
     
  11. gr3teacher

    gr3teacher Phenom

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    In New York, you can't get a Regents Diploma (the lowest possible "gen ed" diploma) without passing... five? Regents tests, so if a kid doesn't have a possibility of passing those Regents test, they need a different plan in place. New York separates SPED certificates for 1-6 and 7-12, and as a 1-6 teacher, I didn't learn much about graduation requirements, but a couple speakers that we had talked about the IEP diploma.

    http://www.p12.nysed.gov/ciai/gradreq/diploma-credential-summary.pdf

    Apparently they changed the options and names of things, but either way, there are general ed degrees, and Special Ed degrees with reduced standards. I imaginethe certificate of achievement for a student moving off the typical diploma path for the first time would probably be roughly equivalent to the Local Diploma option at the bottom of page 2.
     
  12. FourSquare

    FourSquare Fanatic

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    Mom absolutely needs to know. This should be emphasized.
     
  13. ecteach

    ecteach Groupie

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    No, the child will not get a diploma. Child will get a certificate saying that child went to school in our state/county. Child will not get a regular diploma. They have to be on the regular path, or The Occupational Course of Study to get a diploma in my state. My kids do not fall into either of those categories, because even in the OCS, they have to take Biology and Algebra. (I think it's biology and algebra. I know it's one higher level math and one higher level science, which my students are obviously unable to comprehend.)
     
  14. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    I can't imagine asking parents to make this change without ensuring that they have a complete understanding of the implications.
     
  15. chebrutta

    chebrutta Enthusiast

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    I would a absolutely tell the parents. 100%. They need to know the options to decide if this is the best course for their child. They can't do that with partial information.
     
  16. Pisces_Fish

    Pisces_Fish Fanatic

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    I would let the parent know but I would also make sure you know what rights you have (if admin retaliates) so you're protected. Is this a HS class?
     
  17. a2z

    a2z Virtuoso

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    It is illegal to not tell the parents since they are an equal part of the team. If your class is modified so much that the standards are not taught, the student can never get a regular diploma.

    Seems like your administration doesn't want to fight with the parents to get their child more intensive academic services. Do they even have that option at your school? Our school doesn't by the time HS rolls around.
     
  18. dave1mo

    dave1mo Comrade

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    As a gen ed teacher, the parent absolutely should be informed. However, a frank discussion about the student's abilities NEEDS to be had. We've had parents insist that their child stay in a general education despite the fact that they have a 30% or lower in every core class with all of their accommodations and a SPED teacher co-teaching. The parent then gets upset when the grade stays where it is, as if I'm suppose to not teach to the standards and "let" students pass who haven't mastered the content.
     
  19. a2z

    a2z Virtuoso

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    A big problem is that co-taught classes rarely have true specially designed instruction to meet the needs of the student. Students are more apt to have their accommodations in co-taught classes. The class is structured such that it is often easier to pass the class, which then is often views as progress on IEP goals. However, co-taught classes, IMHO, do little to nothing in the way of providing specially designed instruction to produce progress.

    Few schools have small pull-out classes that teach the curriculum and really work on IEP goals from MS on.
     
  20. Loveslabs

    Loveslabs Companion

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    I had a teacher gloss over a child's placement one year. The parents were furious with me! I didn't even know the child or situation prior to the school year starting, but I was the one to receive the brunt of the anger. No, you are not crazy!!
     
  21. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    Parents should never be asked to make decisions about their children without having all of the facts and without understanding all of the implications of their decisions. In this case, we are talking about asking parents to agree to their child not receiving a high school diploma--it is imperative that they understand that.
     
  22. Tasha

    Tasha Phenom

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    It is in no way acceptable to gloss over it and really sounds illegal as far as informing parents in an IEP meeting.
     
  23. RadiantBerg

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    I agree with this. I have one girl in my class this year whose parents just pulled her out of replacement classes for the first time. She got a 15% on the first test when the class average was a 90%, yet the mom claims it to be our fault her daughter is not passing. The reality is that replacement math classes for the past 3 years do not prepare a student to just be put in the gen math class because they want it. They are unwilling to move her back into replacement, and she will likely have to retake the class over the summer or next year at the correct level because of this. Very foolish.
     
  24. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    It sounds like all sides of the issue need to be raised. Your classes equal no diploma, but staying in more mainstreamed classes might result in the same thing due to the student failing the state exams. The parents need to be fully informed about all ramifications for their child.
     
  25. kpa1b2

    kpa1b2 Aficionado

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    Similar situation at my school one year. The child came to kinder with a "speech" IEP. The parent brought the IEP to the teacher told her it was for speech. Teacher told parent that he didn't need it, that she could understand him just fine, so she didn't turn the IEP in. In all fairness, this teacher had never really dealt with IEP's before and thought that a speech IEP was for articulation. Well, this child's IEP was for language. He lost a whole year of speech services!

    Back on topic. The parent needs to be informed of what will happen if the child is placed in your class, just as the parent needs to know what will happen if the placement continues as is. I think too that parents sometimes need time to think about the decision and the ramifications of the decision.

    When my daughter was a freshman or sophomore in high school they wanted to do complete testing as every child need to have the full set of tests done within 3 years of taking the ACT test their Junior year in order to use their accommodations. Hers were extended time & small group. She was SLI, I think, maybe SLD. I knew that if she was fully tested they would take her out of the support class that she had. She was one of those kids that just needed extra support & time. One that could easily fall through the cracks. They wanted me to sign immediately because they had all of these students to test. They wanted a full year to get it done. I refused & researched things. If I allowed her to do that & she lost her support class she would struggle more in school. I then looked at various schools and found out that most schools would not take the ACT score if it was given with accommodations. I refused to allow the testing.

    The state eventually told the district that the speech & language kids couldn't use their accommodations. I'm sure there was more to it then that but as this was several years ago I don't remember.

    She still struggles academically & college has been a challenge.
     
  26. a2z

    a2z Virtuoso

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    Your comment just really p***** me off, and I don't get really angry often. Don't defend someone for not doing their job properly and significantly impacting a student. You just basically said, in all fairness this teacher just doesn't know how to do her job properly. There is no fairness in that.


    The education system for all students and especially students with disabilities will never improve if we make excuses for those that don't do their job properly.

    I'm sick of illegal actions of teachers given a pass. Then we sit around and wonder why the profession is being seen in such a negative light.
     
  27. ecteach

    ecteach Groupie

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    Yes. I teach the "extensions of the common core," not the regular common core.
     
  28. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    In TX, admin and/or teachers cannot make that determination prior to the IEP meeting. It is a committee decision and very important component of that committee is the parent. I would make sure that the parent knew 100% of what moving the child to your class means for him.

    We have a modified high school plan, though I don't think it explicitly indicates on the diploma that the kid was modified. These kiddos can get off the modified plan, but they have to go back and retake the regular classes of all modified classes.
     
  29. kpa1b2

    kpa1b2 Aficionado

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    a2z, in all fairness the school had previously been a private school. You had to be tested & accepted, not everyone got in. There simply were no IEPs. It was a very sheltered environment. It had been that way for 20 years.

    This teacher had no experience with IEPs and had started teaching before 1975. Should she have known better? You would say yes. I say, she should have asked more questions. Of both the parent and others who could have helped her. But teachers are humans and we are going to make mistakes. Should the parent had advocated for her child? yes.

    She didn't do this on purpose. She thought that speech was for articulation only. A common misconception. One that the parent obviously thought too.
     
  30. a2z

    a2z Virtuoso

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    Your further explanation still doesn't change my mind. You supported my view when you said that she should have asked more questions. The law is rather clear also that it is the school's duty to train the parents regarding their rights and the rights of a student in terms of special education. Unfortunately, most parents that know the law learned on their own because the school doesn't do what it is supposed to do.

    Nice trying to blame the parent for not learning INDEPENDENTLY about the law and possible legal actions the she could have taken. The deflection from the real source of blame is the typical reaction when it comes to schools not doing what is supposed to be done.
     
  31. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    Gosh, the energy around here has been really different lately.

    It was a mistake. The teacher didn't understand the speech IEP as she was never taught about it. It wasn't malicious on her part. No one can know it all.
     
  32. a2z

    a2z Virtuoso

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    There is a difference between a mistake and incompetence. This was incompetence.

    A mistake is when someone takes something to someone else's mailbox so they get a copy and accidently puts it in the wrong person's mailbox. It then takes a while for it to find its way to the right person. Incompetence is incompetence and some like to label incompetence as a mistake because it makes everyone feel better.

    When it came to IEPs, this teacher was incompetent. It may not have been on purpose, but let's call it what it is.

    I'm sorry, your lawyer used to be a bankruptcy lawyer. I know he didn't know all the laws regarding divorce and it cost you almost everything you were owed, but it really was just a mistake. The last place he worked just didn't do divorce stuff so when you gave him the paperwork, he just thought it must be similar to other things that weren't such a big deal in his past job. I know he told you it didn't matter and you took his expertise as credible. Too bad, so sad. In all fairness it really was just a mistake.
     
  33. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    Okay...
     
  34. bella84

    bella84 Aficionado

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    Actually a speech IEP is for articulation... and fluency (stuttering).

    A language IEP is for language.

    They're two entirely different deficits and two entirely different services. However, one individual, a speech-language pathologist, is trained to provide both services.

    A student with a speech deficit will not receive language services unless there is also a language deficit and vice versa. It's easily understandable why the teacher would not expect language services to be a need for the student if the parent stated that it was a speech IEP. Regardless, the teacher would have still been wise to ask to see the IEP. It's not her call to determine whether or not services are still needed.
     

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