Discussion in 'Special Education' started by vaticxs, May 6, 2020.
May 6, 2020
Any thoughts or ideas on how school should open for severe and profound kids?
When it is safe and not before.
Apparently some districts in my state have been having those students to go into buildings for direct services even though everyone else is doing remote learning. Someone asked the governor about this in a press briefing when we were still on total shutdown, and he said yes this follows the rules and he supports it. He's since mentioned it/praised it several times.
I was really shocked by that. I do think we need to find ways to move forward from this and am not in favor of keeping kids out of school next year, but this is something that was happening like a month ago in my state when we were really in the thick of it. Thankfully my district has not adopted that policy and no teachers are expected to go in. Although children are generally not susceptible you're far more likely to have immunocompromised kids within that population, and you'd still be putting the teachers at risk. Kids with severe/profound disabilities aren't going to be able to socially distance or wear a mask in most cases. That's not the sped population I work with, but if I were expected to put myself at risk (with no extra pay, I'm sure) while 99% of other teachers in the district were doing remote learning I'd be going to my union complaining about equity, and I'd expect to win.
May 7, 2020
Waterfall, your feedback is very well appreciated. Thank you. One colleague of mine came up with a suggestion of kids going to school 2x a week and have their temperature taken before getting on the bus or before leaving for school. Does this make sense?
I wonder how useful taking a temperature is. If you turn out to have a temperature, then it's time to act. But you could have been spreading the virus for some time before you got the temperature.
As useful as keeping people who have tested positive for strep or vomiting home for 24 hours after they are symptom free (or on antibiotics for a per-determined period for strep).
It's good to have precautions, but my understanding is that the vast majority of children are asymptomatic, so a temperature check wouldn't do much. I'd have students wash their hands immediately upon entering the building as a better precaution. That's if the teacher is wanting to have kids come in/is willing to accept the risk. The teacher shouldn't be guilted in to taking risks that other teachers are not being asked to take.
May 10, 2020
Do you think covid testing will work wilth these kids? They are adults anyway with ages 17-19. That way, it will determine whether they are asymptomatic or not. Does this make sense?
Because tests take so long to come back with results, because people can be asymptomatic yet infectious for so long, because classrooms are so crowded, and because there is no control over contacts outside school, it's a pretty tough decision to start school without a vaccine.
Hand washing, face masks can help. But even those would have limited effect over a long day in school.
What will be the decision process to close schools down again in the case of a second wave? And if that actually happens, what will be lessons learned for reopening after that?
May 11, 2020
Our state released some guidance for reopening, as well as some extra funds earmarked specifically for improving remote or blended learning processes. They are all very vague about specifics, but at least that makes me hopeful that someone somewhere is thinking about this.
This thing is now attacking children leaving marks on their bodies. Also, scientists are saying it attacks the heart, lungs, kidneys, it can even latch on to other parts of your body. School in August? I doubt it.
We just got word that we are officially finishing the year with eLearning. I am on a committee that will be working on what school will look like when we return, but, as of now, who knows when that will be.
If it keeps attacking kids at a higher rate than what it's doing now, you cancel school opening at least in the early fall. Best to get those distance learning platforms in place now.
Right, and there's no way we can go back to class sizes of the same numbers we are used to seeing. Whenever we do go back, there will have to be some serious changes.
May 12, 2020
Nobody knows what school will really look like next year and this is the saddest part for everybody in the education sector. I know that during the Spanish flu in 1918, some schools remained open at the same time doing online learning. But we have to weigh things before we decide on something. Thanks for all your thoughts and insights.
I wonder what online learning looked like in 1918??
Online learning in 1918? The first home computer wasn't introduced until 1975, so how on earth did they do online learning? The internet itself didn't start until 1973, and the world wide web didn't come into being until 1991.
I think the key will be having the leader and a group of teachers to decide that we are going to do to make this the safest school ever. District mandates won't be enough...each school is unique and will need to brainstorm how to keep it safe. If there is a committee of teachers really dedicated to getting an incredible safety plan done, teachers are incredible in finding ways to prevent problems before they occur. That is what we do. They also need to have those discussions with admin. of changes that might need to be done to keep students safe...lunch in the classroom, possibly changing classes at different times so students don't have to pass each other. My fear is that too much of it will be dumped on the principal. As overwhelmed as they are and since they are human, they will overlook some problem areas. Then things will not open well, and those schools will be putting students and teachers at an increased risk.
We are already having meetings to talk about $$$ cuts. Budgets are looking incredibly lean for 2020-2021. We are going to have to be creative this year--that's for sure! Additionally, district office officials are talking quite a bit about distance learning in the fall and what it'll look like.
I've heard the word recession mentioned 3 times this week and it's only Tuesday!
May 13, 2020
From what you see, does distance learning, or whatever you are doing now, cost more or less than your regular routine?
I currently teach students in adult transition who are severe to profound (multiple disabilities/medically fragile) and I am still wanting to go back to my class to teach. My students are at a level where they are not capable of understanding a video. They need to be motored through activities. I can't do that on a Zoom lesson. How do they actually get experiences in the community when they are still at home. CBI is a part of adult transition. How do I show them how to use the work task boxes on a video? How do I teach my students from home when many of the parents do not speak English either?
May 14, 2020
This is the main reason they can't make distance learning permanent for ALL students. I have some similar students although they are younger. Half my class I'm sending packets of work to (the parents can't get them to do any worth though) and half my students I'm working hands on with (since my facility can't close). It's ridiculous to think that people want ALL students to be instructed the same way when teachers like US know better!!
May 17, 2020
I have the same concern too. I don't have any idea how we are going to do these things if schools won't open and everybody will do remote learning.
Our District already have us signed our contract for next school year. Hopefully, everything will be okay for school year 2021-22.
I hope everything works out for you and your fellow staff. Please keep us posted.
Mar 9, 2021
I have a concern as well. It's very difficult to teach adult transition students in distance learning especially my students multiple disabilities/medically fragile/ and profound intellectual and developmental abilities (under 24 months adaptive functioning). I am ready to go back to my classroom. My students need in person stimulation as well as switches to facilitate with communication an participation. I miss my Smartboard. Thanks for allowing me to vent.
Mar 31, 2021
Updated news: Our classroom facilities haven't even been checked by the district. Our lead transition teacher (adult transition) teacher is bringing this issue up to the district school board. He teaches the higher functioning autistic spectrum disorders and higher functioning ID students (still moderate/severe range). At our afternoon meeting online meeting with our district AT (assistive technology) specialist informed us that she was able to adapt the students' Chromebook into switches on Boardmaker (WHOO HOO!) We are blessed that our district provides no charge for Boardmaker Online for our students (Autism/Multiple Disabilites). I hope that my instructional assistant will translate in Spanish on how to access Boardmaker for the parents' use. All my students require total hand over hand and direct adult assistance with everything. Currently, I am using the Adult Transition Attainment Company Curriculum online for lessons. I like this program because it's more age appropriate and life-skilled totally centered.
Apr 28, 2021
I guess they figure it's better than nothing. A few students/staff at my school who had it didn't even have a temp and they were checked twice a day.