/r/specialed

Photograph via snooOG

This is a professional subreddit for people interested in special education, particularly: special education teachers, general education teachers, therapists, advocates, parents, and students.

We are here to share professional advice, bounce ideas off each other, share concerns, and advocate for our students.

Our goal is to create a subreddit that supports special education and those who give/receive it: professionals (and those studying the profession), parents/caregivers, and students. We encourage discussion, questions, support, and advice from everyone.

We want to limit faulty and poor advice, clogging the page with articles that don't invite discussion, and promotional posts. In order to do so please be mindful of the following rules:

Rules:

  • Your words will mean more if you can support your statements with research. Unfounded claims will be removed. Anecdotal claims are appropriate as long as they are stated as such. (e.g. "I have found that X works well with my kids," versus, "All students need X.")

  • Know your federal, state, and local laws. They will vary greatly and your laws may not apply to another poster.

  • Links to peer-reviewed research articles from published journals are welcomed. Articles claiming to be research that have questionable authors, limited research, and poor sources will be removed.

  • Requests for research are to be posted in the stickied "Research Participant Requests" thread. Standalone posts will be removed and redirected to post there.


The Reddit Education Network:

  • /r/Education: A place to discuss the news and politics of education.

  • /r/AdultEducation: A place for adult educators to discuss tips and tricks to engaging an adult audience.

  • /r/ArtEd: A place for art educators to discuss the importance of art education and to share and collaborate on resources.

  • /r/CSEducation: A place for computer science educators and education researchers.

  • /r/ECEProfessionals: A place for early childhood educators to learn, grow, and contribute as professionals.

  • /r/HigherEducation: A place to discuss and share articles related to higher education.

  • /r/ScienceTeachers: A place for science educators to collaborate on and contribute tips, ideas, labs, and curricula.

  • /r/SpecialEd: to help special education teachers and related staff collaborate

  • /r/Teachers: A place to discuss the practice of teaching, receive support from fellow teachers, and gain insight into the teaching profession.


Recommended subreddits and websites:


Welcome to /r/SpecialEd!

/r/specialed

26,400 Subscribers

6

Emotional & Social Development

Hello all, my daughter is 8, and she has been diagnosed with ADHD- combined. She is currently 2-3 behind her peers in her social and emotional development. For example, whereas girls her age start to have a "bestie" in school that they hang out with during recess, she sticks to playing soccer and tag with the boys because there is no '1 on 1' which most likely is uncomfortable for her. I've seen her around girls her age- her way of relating to them is making funny faces to get them to laugh. The ANA'S recommendation is parent-training. Does anyone know of a good program that I can purchase and learn from so I can help her? She can tell when people are happy or sad or angry and she will give you all the right answers, which I think she memorized at school. I'm open to all suggestions. Thank you so much everyone.

19 Comments
2024/04/14
22:34 UTC

14

Hello, father of special needs child looking for thoughts and suggestions.

This is a long one, so bear with me. The following occurred after an incident in late September ’23, where the district pulled our child from the classroom and set up a list of increasingly complex demands (we’d meet a goal and a new roadblock would arise) which culminated in Calvin being allowed back to school immediately after I asked about his IEP and various therapies. If you have time, please let me know.

I have a general question regarding the health, safety, and security of a specific special needs student. The scenario involves health incidents at school, district meetings related to these incidents, and the responses, decisions, and directives made during and after these meetings.

The special needs student has a condition called Pontocerebellar Hypoplasia. A genetic condition that causes poor muscle tone, poor coordinated movement, and severe developmental deficits. The student is tube fed through a “g-tube”. The student cannot walk without assistance and cannot communicate in a traditional manner. Student has had one febrile seizure approximately five years ago with no reoccurrence. Despite the student’s condition they are in a traditional classroom with a one-on-one aid and is given therapies throughout their school week. The student has an ongoing IEP.

First: The student had an alleged seizure and aspiration incident at school, the student’s parents are contacted after 911 services are called. Seizure was described by the school nurse as complete stiffening and aspiration that required suction of the airway. The student’s parents arrive, assess the situation (student is at baseline), and the parent transports student to hospital that is familiar with the student’s condition. Upon arrival at the pediatric ER the student receives tests that neither confirm nor deny a seizure occurred, but recommends follow-up with Neurological services.  Second: Student’s family follows-up with Neurological Geneticist (NG), with whom the student has not met or required in more than five years. Parents are informed that the student will require a referral to resume treatment by the NG. Parents schedule appointment with primary Pediatrician.

Third: Student has second incident at school. Two aspiration incidents (regurgitated tube fed formula) where student stopped breathing and was suctioned). Student’s parents are called to pick-up, but told not to rush as the student “needed to be cleaned up”. While parent is traveling to pick up student the second aspiration event occurs and emergency services are called. Upon parent arrival student is back to baseline. Staff states “student was fine at drop-off that morning”. Parent brings student home to receive treatment for aspiration (cough assist vest and nebulizer). Student has fever and parents monitor student throughout evening and into the next day. School contacts parent regarding condition of student, parent communicates that student has a Pediatric appointment the next day (follow-up from alleged seizure incident).

Fourth: At pediatric visit, student presents with aspiration pneumonia and is prescribed antibiotics with home therapies and follow-up this coming Thursday. While discussing the “seizure incident” and describing the complete stiffening pediatrician states that with temperature changes in the student’s brain reactions will present different, such as full stiffening. Additionally, doctor states that children will stiffen with oncoming aspiration (called Sandifer’s Syndrome, which student has been initially diagnosed with at birth) to close airways from potential aspiration. The pediatrician schedules the child for a Non-Urgent EEG, but no MRI stating that would not be necessary.

During the doctor visit, the school District Director of Instruction, Equity, and Instructional Personnel attempts to contact the parent. When parent contacts the District Director, the director states that the district held a meeting outside of the parent’s knowledge and concluded that the student could not return to school until the school physician examines the child. When questioned on whom the physician is, the director gives the name of the District Nurse Practitioner. When asked again who the physician is, the director claimed that the appointment hasn’t been scheduled. The parent states that the child has just finished an examination by his pediatrician and asks if this would be sufficient. The District Director states that “No, but you could supply it anyways”. When the Director was asked about the student’s IEP and various therapies, the Director gave no answer. This was the last contact with the district other than an email memorializing the conversation.  I am looking for insight into the above, specifically regarding meetings about a student without invitation of parents or advocates. Decisions about school attendance made with an effort to include parents/guardians. Removal from educational environment without a clear plan to meet student’s IEP goals and therapy needs.

26 Comments
2024/04/14
21:43 UTC

2

Resources for understanding psych testing?

I work as a special education teacher in a large district where it’s common for school psychs to be split among schools and reassigned annually. As a result, I haven’t been able to develop relationships with my school psychs where I feel that I could go to them and ask for a deeper dive into what the results of their testing means (beyond what is provided in triennial reports, which I do read). Can anyone recommend resources that I can engage with to learn more? I am most interested in learning more about the WISC and BASC (the two tools I encounter most frequently), but anything that addresses cognitive testing and behavioral rating scales broadly would be helpful.

2 Comments
2024/04/14
21:06 UTC

36

Father of a teen

Hello, I am not a special educator. I am the father of a 13 year old boy on the spectrum. He is non verbal. First, I want to say every person that devotes their lives to help these special kids is a total Bad A$$ in my book, and I hope you all get the thanks and praises you deserve. We have loved every teacher he has come up with. But I have a question in your experiences with parents. I noticed the other kids in my son’s class do not seem to have the parent involvement like my wife and I try to give. Little class parties where the teacher sends out list of needs ends up being, lots of times, a list for my wife and I. Which we really don’t mind as I know the teacher has enough on her plate and we love helping when we can. But other parents just ignore the list of little party needs such as drinks, plates, napkins, little snacks, etc.. I also notice many don’t try to chaperone field trips either. End of year is busy at our son’s school. And 4 field trips are planned. My wife on 2, I will go on 1 since a scheduled day off for me, and my mother(mimi), will go with them in the last one. I just don’t understand why these parents don’t seem to want to be involved. My wife and I said, after diagnosis at 3, we would make sure he has the same school experience as the neurotypical kids. Heck all the kids know us by name lol. It’s a small district so he has grown up with majority in his class. But I’m curious, do yall see a lot of this from parents, the lack of involvement?

27 Comments
2024/04/14
20:11 UTC

1

Bus/Transportation Question

In particular I'm reaching out to Georgia professionals, but I would appreciate anyone who wants to chime in. Could a student who struggles with anger/behavior issues take a special needs bus to and from school? Could someone point me to a source which explains why or why not?

9 Comments
2024/04/14
18:13 UTC

12

Classroom falls apart if I’m absent

I teach in an elementary functional skills classroom. I’m the third teacher in the classroom this year. It’s a tough group of students to work with, but I think part of the problem is no consistency most of this school year. I have 6 aides who are in and out of the classroom throughout the day. They are very capable of running things without me there, but they’re always upset when I come back from a day off.

My own kids have had a really rough month as far as illnesses go. I’ve missed 5 days in the last 6 weeks or so due to my kids being sick, and my daughter appears to be coming down with the same thing my son had last week.

When I come back from being out, all of my aides tell me how terrible everything was, and that they felt like quitting. Everything they need is in the classroom. The schedule is very easy to follow, and they have extra support brought in when I’m out. It stresses me out because I feel so much guilt for having to take care of my own children. I also feel like I can never take a personal day because my aides are being unnecessarily dramatic over the differences they have. When I ask them to explain what went wrong, they can’t really come up with anything out of the ordinary. Other teachers and therapists that go in to support while I’m gone tell me that things seem to be fine when I’m not there.

I am not a new teacher. I’ve been doing this for 12 years. I now understand why I’m the third teacher in this classroom this school year. I feel like I can’t apply for a transfer for next year because they hired me mid year for this position with the idea that I’m going to be able to fix things. This is my dream district, so I couldn’t turn down the position. I’m happy to be here, and I’m making myself commit to at least one more year in my current position. I just don’t know how to make things work better. I’m honestly just trying to get through the rest of this school year so we can have a fresh start in the fall. I feel bad that it’s come down to that, but I don’t know what to do with only 8 weeks of school left.

5 Comments
2024/04/14
17:28 UTC

2

📢 Seeking Advice: what can I do 📢

📢 Seeking Advice: Transitioning from Paraprofessional to Behavioral Specialist 📢

Hello everyone,

I'm reaching out for some guidance and advice on a situation I've been facing recently. I've been working in special education for 24 years, across various departments including SCI, SXI, and DD. Most of my time has been dedicated to serving as a behavioral para, where I've been deeply involved in developing FBA, BIP, EIP, and IEP goals, as well as implementing behavior strategies.

I hold a Bachelor's degree in Psychology and am currently in school to become a Special Education teacher. However, our school has been facing a shortage of behavioral specialists for quite some time now, with no applicants in sight.

Recently, our Vice-Principal managed to get our county's RESA program to approve me for a transition into the behavioral specialist position. However, it seems like there may be some hurdles in the HR department, and I suspect that my principal might be preventing this transition.

I'm really passionate about making a difference in the lives of students with special needs, and I believe I have the experience, qualifications, and dedication required for this role.

I'm seeking advice on how to navigate this situation. How can I effectively communicate my readiness and suitability for the behavioral specialist position to HR and the principal? Any insights or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you all in advance for your support and guidance.

0 Comments
2024/04/14
14:56 UTC

44

Seeking help from educators with my teenage son who has suddenly become extremely aggressive

I don’t voice my opinion much on this, and a lot has been omitted. This is not pertaining to school, but who else can I ask? Everyone hates my family. I am autistic myself and really struggle to deal with my son’s autism on top of understanding my own which was undiagnosed for a long time.

My son (S for reference) was sweet and kind for the longest time and would only act out if he was overwhelmed, which he was very frequently but he showed remorse and was being supported with classes and therapy to cope. He has diagnoses of autism (high-functioning, though I use him as an example of why this term is flawed), ADHD, anxiety, depression, Tourette’s and early-onset schizophrenia. He has always struggled with school, and ended up the most-accommodated person there but still severely struggled with the school environment. He now receives online services from his school and stays at home though he still has an aide (the aide is male BTW) and takes a few special classes. The truth is, which I didn’t tell him, his school refused to keep spending their funds on accommodating someone who has 50% attendance.

He has never had any friends and is petrified of socialization, though he wants to, as he talks to people on the Internet. He is 17 and had delayed puberty (genetic, not a health issue), and he has now become extremely mean, violent and aggressive, particularly towards me. The behavior started in the past few months after his mother committed suicide and his brother raped him within weeks of each other.

His brother is a violent Neo-Nazi (who is also autistic with ADHD) who I had to send to a mental institution and his sister (with BPD) used to bully him until she received therapy. I myself am autistic, and his mother was an unstable alcoholic with narcissistic traits. While she loved him, she showed it in all the wrong ways and used his disability to get attention for herself. Because of her behavior, everyone now hates my family which makes it hard to get support.

Throughout his life, I had accidentally taught him to cry to get what he wants and to hit me when he was upset. Back then, he was a tiny boy, he wasn’t on my level. He had outbursts which gravely worried me but I never knew they would become this severe. I noticed in the past few months that he was continuously disruptive, yelling slurs and threats of harm to anyone that he was upset with, and getting more and more overwhelmed and incoherent more frequently. Eventually, after getting more and more violent and prone to outbursts, I put him in a mental hospital for a short time for examinations.

This week, he attempted to beat me quite brutally due to issues he had on Discord, trying to throw me down the stairs to break my bones, smashing a mirror in my room, locking me in a closet, breaking everything in the house, etc…he busted my lip, destroyed all of my glasses, and a lot more. I grounded him indefinitely and no discipline stops. S WILL NOT follow commands or authority at all, which has always been an issue with him but not to dangerous levels like now. I cannot control him as he is violent and hyperactive and he hates me even though I’m his father, carer and the only one he has. He wants our online friend D to adopt him, though D calls this situation nightmare fuel. S has been constantly attacking and beating me up.

I film him for evidence and support but I wouldn’t send it to people online, though I don’t have resources or anywhere to go. I can’t put him into a residential home as we need each other and I probably have to pay about 50-100k a year. I’m desperate financially as a lot of money may be coming in but I barely see it as I have to cover so much. His My Little Pony interest (I do not spoil him anymore though) caused me to spend over 6k on him, and having to pay for his actual needs, maintenance, cell phone plans, etc makes me turn to shoplifting even though I have a great job and am paid well.

He’s getting bigger and bigger. He was 5’3, but his growth spurt finally came in and he shot up to 5’9 and men on both sides of the family are tall. I am 6’6 myself. I’m scared of him. He’s quite weak, but after enough time, he‘ll probably be able to knock me out. His sister is scared of him, and I don’t know how to care for him. Whether I let him run around feral or strictly supervise and discipline him, he’s a hateful violent boy. I have the urge to do horrible things to him, which I would never act out on, and I can’t get any support. Yet again, everyone hates my family and I have to live with him likely for the rest of our lives. I’m just lost and depressed.

31 Comments
2024/04/14
14:47 UTC

211

I ended up with a problem child from my previous school, urgently need help.

I was fired from my previous school because of this boy’s parents, but he gets expelled/transferred so much that we ended up at the same school again. I teach a sped class for autistic teenagers. This boy is diagnosed with ONLY autism but he certainly has other issues.

He rarely attends but he is EXTREMELY violent and impossible to calm down. The entire day, he tears the classroom apart and attacks everyone who goes near him. He has now lost all of his teeth from a mix of biting people and rot, as he lacks the capacity to brush them and would batter anyone who touches him. He will still pound people to the point of black eyes and collapsing, as he is 6’4 tall, basically a man, and very large and strong. He even pulls his pants off and urinates and defecates everywhere and his screeching is over 70 decibels on his own, and ends up over 100 when you consider him sending other students into meltdown with his own behavior.

His own house (report from several staff members) is completely destroyed as he rips up curtains, smashes windows and flips tables and couches, just like he does in school. He CANNOT be calmed without the use of incredibly strong drugs that are about halfway from sleeping pills, and he will fight anyone who tries to give him them. His parents constantly relocate due to eviction/house becoming unlivable/having to be closer to whatever school he gets switched to. He has never spent more than a year (though it was only about 25% of a year due to his extremely poor attendance) in the same school.

He is technically verbal but he is impossible to communicate with. All solutions, both this time and the previous time, do not work. Reward charts, playtime, devices, therapy, etc do not work and he will spend the entire time throwing an extreme tantrum. His parents do not allow restraint so he flails around hurting himself and everyone; he has some kind of head trauma from being extremely aggressive and violent.

He comes off his taxi already melting down and being extremely violent and aggressive. He has absolutely no chill, and I believe the reason he barely attends is because having to wrestle him to wash him and get him in the taxi is nearly impassible. I have never seen him not either having a fit or drugged, in my life at either school. He does not do work and seemingly has never learned anything nor can he when all he does is destroy everything.

I cannot stand the idea of confronting his parents again but I cannot cope with this child. He’s a few months away from 16 and has been like this since he was 2-3.

Edit: His parents are abusive to anyone who tries to help him and the admin, who was placed by nepotism, insists he only needs “love and acceptance” and threatens to terminate me if I dare contact any sort of hotline. Also, he does not have sexual trauma re the touching part. Male staff will wipe, change him etc but only in an appropriate way.

169 Comments
2024/04/14
04:22 UTC

13

Advice needed with a student who’s developed an emotional dependence on his aide.

So I’m a general education teacher, still relatively new, and I used to be a 1:1 aide.

Context and feel-good success story: I have a student with an IEP for ASD, and he finally has a 1:1 this year. He was my student last year and got almost no actual education because he needed a 1:1 to refocus him and help him with his emotional needs, and after a lawsuit to get him assessed and a lawsuit threat for lack of appropriate support (a 1:1), they finally provided him one, starting this school year. (That is still not written in his IEP though; it’s under the table. Please help me understand why, if you have some more insight.)

So with the help of his 1:1 his academic growth has skyrocketed. He is nearly at grade level in both ELA and Math, and if he hadn’t missed out on appropriate education from Preschool through 1st, he would definitely be at grade level. He speaks English now too (before, he understood English but wouldn’t speak it) and his fluency is vastly improving. We now only speak to each other in English. And he rarely has meltdowns now over being told “no, you can’t have that,” and he doesn’t elope to escape the classroom anymore, because he has the help he needs to focus him on the task at hand and hold him responsible. Overall, his mental health is so much better, which is my favorite part. Everybody is so proud of him and happy for him! All last year, I knew that if he had the support he needed, which is outside of a GenEd teacher’s capabilities (I had a TOUGH class, y’all…), he would excel and exceed expectations. And now it’s happening.

The problem is this. He recently got COVID. It was brief. While he was sick, his mom took care of him and he got very attached to her. [REDACTED because this information is not what the post is about.] His aide is amazing and he trusts her and feels comfortable with her. She can’t go on break or take our other kiddo out for his token-board reward breaks (that kid has his own 1:1 but not all day) without him crying and often even melting down. He freaks out when she leaves. And next month she’s having a baby! What is he gonna do when she goes on maternity leave? Any sub they send is not going to be adequate in his eyes. He likes our other aide now—at first he didn’t, but he now trusts her and occasionally hugs on her—but she isn’t his person like the other aide is and nearly all her attention is taken up by her kid, and even with her there he freaks out when his aide leaves.

I don’t know. Does anyone have any advice here? Our SPED teacher had to learn on the fly and isn’t supported by admin and is pulled between two schools (elementary in the morning and middle after lunch), so needless to say we don’t really have a SPED support network here. We barely even have a SPED program.

25 Comments
2024/04/13
20:59 UTC

38

4-year-old who struggles with all new situations

Posting as a parent. My child is diagnosed with ADHD and ODD. Autism isn't off the table, but we're on a waitlist for an evaluation.

We're really struggling with how to help our kid be more comfortable in new settings. It seems that almost anything that's new he refuses to participate. A few examples:

  • We're going to a new restaurant tonight and he insists he doesn't want to go.

  • Field trip to the planetarium. He got all the way there then refused to enter. He LOVES space.

  • He asked to do gymnastics class but once there refused to participate and begged to go home.

  • Took him to see a live musical version of his favorite movie (Matilda). Once again he was so excited but once there refused to enter the theater.

  • Playgrounds are hit and miss. Sometimes he loves new ones other times he cries and begs to go home.

What we're currently trying:

  • Lots of previewing, looking at pictures and videos, talking about the place, answering any questions.

  • Practicing and playing pretend. We pretended to be in gymnastics class at home and work on following the obstacle course and teacher instructions.

  • Support materials (fidgets, favorite transition toys)

  • Rewards--tried but haven't found one that's motivating enough yet.

  • Social stories-- honestly they work pretty well with him but I'm exhausted making one for every single new thing we ever do. Next step is to make one social story about just trying new things, but not sure how it will go.

  • Sensory tools: he often says it's too bright/loud. We have a million hats, sunglasses, and noise canceling headphones, but he generally refuses to wear them. We're working with his OT on this but the main suggestion seems to be "Well you can model wearing them and try to get him to do it for short periods."

  • He is on medication and while it's helped enormously in so many ways, this seems to be our newest hurdle to tackle.

I feel like we have a lot of accommodations in place but that there is some sort of behavioral component that we're missing. I do think there's anxiety and sensory needs, but I want to figure out how to prop up his own self-monitoring skills and build his ability/confidence to try new things, even briefly. I don't want every single new thing to feel so hard for him all the time.

Any thoughts?

63 Comments
2024/04/13
16:49 UTC

1

Special Ed. Cert 7-12(PECT)

Hi!! I am taking my certification soon in PA and I’m nervous. Does anyone have any insight on taking the exam and can share their experience? I would really appreciate it :)

5 Comments
2024/04/13
16:38 UTC

28

What type of first year teacher support is typical for special education?

I was nonrenewed recently after my first year. Feedback was the I didn’t know how to make progress with students, despite averaging 1.5 years of growth as well as lack of confidence during IEP meetings. I didn’t have any training related to how a student qualifies for special education and how to use our software (Enrich).

I asked questions but then it just reinforced the narrative that I was not confident. I was told that I should have “self advocated”, but I did. It was assumed that I would have learned it during school but school told me that I would learn it on the job because every district has a different software. I would like to give it another try at another school but I wonder if it would be the same everywhere.

24 Comments
2024/04/13
14:19 UTC

9

Italian special education teacher here. : how does this job work in your countries?

In my country, since 1977, there has been the figure of the support/special education teacher. It is properly regulated with ad hoc laws on disability, and legally and economically it is equated with any other teacher. We are not assigned to the student with disabilities but to the entire class, and we have the opportunity to assess all students, at least on paper. To practice the profession, you need a title obtainable from a very selective and difficult post-university course. Obviously, on a practical level, we are perceived as teachers of a lower rank by everyone in the environment. During lessons, it is fundamental for Italian school culture that everyone is in the classroom. The idea that the student is outside the classroom is seen by the State and by many families as a bad practice of exclusion. Therefore, I spend my days in the classroom listening to my colleagues' lessons and helping the student I follow. And you? How does this profession work in your country? I am genuinely curious; I would like to understand how the profession is perceived and experienced in other countries.

7 Comments
2024/04/13
13:10 UTC

1

List of all SEN schools in the UK?

Hello, I have twin boys who are both neurodivergent (ASD / AuADHD with PDA + ARFID) but with very different learning needs. Currently awaiting on EHCP applications, but need to firm up a short list of suitable schools (esp independent) if successful. Aware of the closest SEN schools, but really need to review a wider list and see if there are any with a PDA focus.

I can see this subreddit appears quite US-centric, but perhaps someone might be able to help. Thanks!

3 Comments
2024/04/13
11:33 UTC

2

Compensatory fund

My daughter was granted compensatory education fund in the amount of $11000 that she would need to spend in two years. We need ideas on how she could spend this amount of money for educational related purposes. She is currently in a free tuition cyber school and is happy so we are not planning for her to move school. TIA

4 Comments
2024/04/13
06:47 UTC

2

Headphones/ear protection with “levels”

Does this exist??

I’m a music teacher and I’m aware that some of my students have various levels of trigger/overstimulation to noise. While the “standard” is providing students with muffling headphones, I wonder if there’s any kind of headphone/device that allows the student to set the “level” of sound that is dampened/muffled?

I ask this because I have students with different manifestations of sound sensitivity, and I wonder if there’s something that can better tailor to their needs (some students have triggers to pitch level [high] some to volume, etc.) as well as give them access to as much of the aural input as they can comfortably handle (since our work is based in sound.)

5 Comments
2024/04/13
04:07 UTC

1

Lesson plans mild/moderate

The school I am going to work for submits lesson plans every week. Im a new teacher and I’m worried about it! Ive never submitted lesson plans before, only in credential school.

Do any other sped teachers out there have to do this weekly?

3 Comments
2024/04/13
03:37 UTC

9

class size

I am a self-contained teacher and I currently have 7 students over my class size limit with no paraprofessional to support the classroom (although there is supposed to be one with my class size) How should I advocate for myself in this situation if there is no support from the district?

16 Comments
2024/04/13
03:27 UTC

1

Have you done your taxes

Hi, I work as an special ed Instructional aide. I dont make enough wages as I work only part time. This year around I filed taxes and noticed that my social security tax withholding was $974 for the year while the federal income tax withholding was $234. Because of this i literally got $200 dollars tax refund back. that has never happened to me. Previous year before working for the school i made around the same gross income but federal withholding was more than social security so when i did my taxes i got a reasonable tax refund. Not a lot maybe $1,300 including federal and state refund.

Do schools do that? Do they take more on social security withholding than federal withholdings? And if so why? Yes Im thinking of emailing payroll and seeing whats up with this. But before i just want to make sure its true they do that

6 Comments
2024/04/13
02:28 UTC

2

Social Emotional Lessons/Project

I teach a social personal class with of 8 students ranging from grades 6-8. They all have different needs. Most don't know how to interact with others socially, a couple are in there because of behaviors, and one will not speak to anyone. We have no curriculum and I have an extremely hard time coming up with something for them to do. I don't have money to spend. I only have about 20 days left with them so I'm looking for something that will take several days, even better if it takes a couple weeks.

0 Comments
2024/04/13
02:05 UTC

4

School

My son is 3 (diagnosed as severe to moderate, most specialists say moderate to mild once his communication/understanding is better)and just started an intergrated preK through the school district. His class is currently 6 neurodivergent kids of all levels. There is 2 paras and his teacher in his class.

Normal class for this school is 16-20 students; half class is neuro typical and the other is neurodivergent. My son just started this last week, so his class will be different for this year only.

He is non-verbal and is learning how to use an AAC device. Currently half of the time in school is used towards special education with his teacher or school specialist. We suspect he has adhd and ocd as well. His attention span is tough; while he can give attention to a lot of things, you can’t force it. He will stop and tantrum with you forcing him. You can get him to do stuff with enough time and patience. I won’t be surprised if he needs a private para in the future to keep him on task and help him with body breaks.

I worry about him when he gets into grade school. While the preK is the best in the area the school district sucks major for elementary schools and gets better for middle school.

I don’t have patience’s to homeschool otherwise I would. My husband was and it was great for him and his family. I don’t know about charter schools or private schools would be a better fit. Or trying to stick out public education

What has been experiences for your families? I am preparing what the future can hold

14 Comments
2024/04/13
00:43 UTC

0

Math Curriculum for ADHD

Hello everyone, my daughter, 8, was recently diagnosed with ADHD combined. Common core math in her school exhausts her and makes her anxious as well as lowers her self-esteem. She is defeated. I am looking for a different main math curriculum especially for ADHD. Is like for her to stop the common core math in school. Can anyone please suggest the best one they know of? Cost is not an issue. Thank you all so much.

35 Comments
2024/04/13
00:40 UTC

5

Trying to advocate for special education teachers in my district

I would like some feedback, please.

I am the Supervisor of Special Education for a local district. I was a special education teacher for 15 years before moving into this position at a district where I did not teach. The teachers at my new district are not happy with the way things are currently being run. I would like to ask some questions to see how other schools may operate. I appreciate your responses.

About how large is your district?

How many students are on your caseload?

Does your district have teachers divided by itinerant, supplemental, and resource? Or how does your district arrange caseloads?

Do you teach any special education classes? If yes, please specify how many you teach per day.

Do you co-teach any classes? If you co-teach, do also teach any special education only classes?

Do you have students not on your caseload in your class(es)?

Do you have any students on your caseload that you do not see daily?

Do you have specific times built into your schedule to conduct progress monitoring with your students?

I appreciate any feed back I recieve.

Miss P

13 Comments
2024/04/13
00:39 UTC

6

What do you provide for gen Ed teachers that you share kids with?

My title is kind of weird so sorry about that.

If you service kids for resource or other things like OT or behavior, and kids on your caseload spend time in gen Ed, what is typical for you to assist in providing gen Ed teachers with?

I posted last week about 2 kids who get reading and math pull outs and how I’m struggling to engage them in productive work intermittently throughout the day because the core content is now so so so far beyond their ability to even participate in.

I asked the case manager to provide some materials like task boxes, worksheets, workbooks, ANYTHING that I can grab and provide them as-needed when I can’t adequately differentiate.

She made it seem like a very complicated request and process. She wants to have a whole planning meeting and was even talking about all these activities I need to start doing that can facilitate differentiation.

The thing is, I know how to differentiate. There are just times in the day where I really need to engage my core group on essential skills and activities to prepare them for 2nd grade. “Write the room” and partner activities and games are things I do all the time, and those are not the times I struggle to include these kids.

The reality is, my core group is engaging in rigorous work and I need to spend adequate time on that for my group. Until recently I’ve usually been able to pull these two and walk them thru the activity but it’s just so so far beyond them now.

Anyways, I replied to her long response and just said “can I just have some worksheets?”

She made me feel like I was asking a really complicated question.

89 Comments
2024/04/13
00:13 UTC

0

extra resources floating around?

Hi all! I’m running the accommodation program at my local summer camp. I was wondering if there are professionals who happen to have extra resources that may be helpful. For context, the unit handles mostly behavior and crisis management, we also do some accommodation work but resources can be limited. It is a 300 child average per session with around 200 “supported campers” who may require one to one care. It is an outdoor camp so it is not very ADA accessible. I will also be building trainings from scratch. Any tips, learned experiences, or resources are welcome!

Seeking advice specifically on working with 12-15 year old age range as well!

Thanks yall :D

0 Comments
2024/04/12
22:36 UTC

1

Question regarding getting held back

Hello, i have created an account specifically to ask this question, i'm really stumped and worried about it.

ive been diagnosed with autism a few months ago, and we are currently working on getting an IEP. i have been in online school for this year, because of excessive bullying i faced in public. from my friends, we've heard that it died down, so i will be going back next year, because of how horrible i am doing here. but the problem is, i'm failing and i don't think i have nearly enough time to get my grades up. i'm really worried i'm going to be held back, it has never happened to me before. my therapist said that they aren't allowed to hold me back if they did not cater to my needs in learning, and i shouldn't be held back when i do get the IEP. but i do not know if this is true, and i'm looking for advice on how i can avoid being held back, or if that is even possible? i will be visiting my therapist soon to speak on this, but i can't get it off my mind and it's really overwhelming. help would be great.

5 Comments
2024/04/12
19:58 UTC

0

Starting as a SEIT

I've just finished working my first two weeks as a SEIT at a preschool in NYC. Although I have observed SEITs doing their jobs and am certified to teach Special Ed, are there any other resources other than what I'm using (websites including ChallengingBehavior.org and similar ones) to find strategies?

My student has challenges with regulating behavior (sometimes pushes other students), having the stamina to make it through half a school day, and is physically very "floppy" (his walking is pretty all over the place). He sees an OT and Speech therapist and will be getting PT soon too. I bought a book online and that's been sort of helpful but forum replies are better. I do enjoy the work so far, as challenging as it can be.

2 Comments
2024/04/12
19:41 UTC

60

An incident that seems to have irrevocably changed my relationship with my school.

This is a question maybe better suited for a broader teacher platform - but r/teacher is rude and destructive (my opinion), and I thought you all may be better wired to understand and respond helpfully. Also - we have a high percentage of kids with special needs, IEPs and neurodivergent processing - - frequently kids are sent to our school on their public school's dime (because of the originating school having been taken to court and being found negligent).

I was co-teaching with two other teachers last summer, at my private school's "summer camp" program - which is like "teaching lite", and we focus more on educational fun and activity. We went on a little recreational field trip. There was some technology there that one of the kids fiddled with - there was no harm, no potential harm, and I spoke with him quickly and he corrected the issue with the understanding that if everyone had done what he did, it could create confusion and a disruption.

He had been with "my section" of the kids on the field trip - the 1/3rd of the kids under my supervision.

One of my co-teachers saw what the kid (about 8 years old) had done - and she was really irrationally angry about it. She stomped/stalked to where he was, yelled at him to come to her (when he was already only 2 feet in front of her) - then she grabbed his shirt and wrapped her fingers in it and yanked him to her face to yell at him. His feet likely left the ground - and it was a jerking motion. When she was satisfied that he'd been frightened an upset by her behavior, she released him in a huff and stalked back to her section of kids.

I was shocked. If this had happened back at the school (and not a 30 minute bus ride away, on a field trip), I would have spoken to her - saying something along the lines of "that was a serious overreaction, you just grabbed that kid by his clothes and yelled in his face". As it stood - I felt the whole group was vulnerable, and I quietly spoke to the third co-teacher and said I would talk with admin when we got back to the school. I assumed she appreciated the gesture - because to me it was obvious that we HAD to react to this violent behavior and see that it does not happen again. If that student's family had walked in, that teacher would have been fired and the school would potentially have been sued. Not to mention the lasting harm she'd inflicted.

It absolutely met the definition of assault - in fact, the physical elements bordered on battery.

When we got back to the school, the director was thankful for my bringing it to her attention. I rightly assumed this teacher has some incidents like this on file (this kind of behavior rarely happens in a vacuum). She (the director) spoke with her the next day and I felt slightly traumatized but knew I'd done what had to be done.

The unintended consequences: The third co-teacher resented that I did not report it to childline instead of speaking with the director, resented that I had been unnerved by the event, and said that I had been the one behaving improperly because I spoke to the director. She did not dispute the behavior of the nasty-behaving teacher - but she somehow felt I had done something that was WORSE by reporting it. The teacher with the behavior problem treated me in an unfriendly way for the rest of the summer, and turned her regular school year teaching partner against me once summer camp ended. The third teacher likewise not been on friendly terms since the incident.

What the actual EFF?

Can you all lend me some perspective?

I watched a teacher lose control and assault a child under my care, and somehow I seem to have gotten the raw end of the deal in the long run - as I still have to work with these people. The director said I'd done the right thing, said it would probably blow over or something (while empathizing that working with unfriendly teachers sucked). I cultivate good relationships and do my best to be a positive contributor in every way. The offending party is close to retirement - and maybe it was seen as endangering her livelihood when she could not afford to retire yet (but... you know... she assaults kids).

Thoughts?

43 Comments
2024/04/12
19:34 UTC

3

Did anyone work during the 90's, why wasn't I evaluated?

I have no idea what the zeitgeist or framework was like when I was growing up, but it really surprises me that none of my teachers ever submitted a referral. I fell way behind in writing and math in 2nd grade, by fifth grade there were significant mental health concerns, and by sixth grade I was failing everything. Behavior was a constant concern. RTI was non-existent at that point, but it's crazy to me that I didn't even receive additional general education support. Was this how it was for everyone, or did my district drop the ball?

21 Comments
2024/04/12
19:30 UTC

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