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News stories tagged with "special-education"

Students cheering on their way to the launch.
Students cheering on their way to the launch.

Champlain Valley students turn a boat shop into a classroom

A group of Vermont high school students has been hard at work since January building a wooden long boat by hand. They collected the materials and built the boat piece by piece, gaining skills and confidence as they went.

The program is a collaboration between the Lake Champlain Maritime Museum and program called Diversified Occupations. The program offers kids who struggle in the classroom a different approach to learning.

Sarah Harris spent a couple of days with the students and their teachers and has our story.  Go to full article

Are Schools Making the Special Ed Grade?

This week, we've thought a lot about special education. About mainstreaming and inclusion. About how schools and families struggle to fulfill the mandate of federal law: that all students must receive the best education possible, in the least restrictive setting possible. The pathways vary from student to student, school district to school district. It's hard to say this is right, that is wrong. But this IS school, in an era of standardized measurement, and accountability. Parallel to all the tests kids take is another set of measurements tracking how schools are doing. It's based on outcomes. How the clients did... the kids. Martha Foley spoke with Robert Shepherd, who's leading research into outcomes in New York State.  Go to full article

Transition After School: Knowing Yourself

While children with disabilities are in special education, they're also preparing for what educators call "the transition" - what they'll do after they graduate from high school, or when they turn 21. By law, the transition process starts at age 12. School counselors ask the student what they want to do, what they like and don't like. The same questions are asked parents and teachers. By the time the student is 16, a written transition plan lays a roadmap for the child future schooling, job, and housing. David Sommerstein visited Alexandria Bay high school to see the transition process in action. At its best, transition does more than help students go to college or get a job. It's a carefully monitored path of self-discovery that teaches the student to know what kind of help they need and how to get it.  Go to full article

Taking Disabilities to College

To learn more about how that transition continues on campus, David Sommerstein spoke with two mortuary science students at SUNY Canton. Lacy Galusha is from Moriah. She has mild learning disabilities. Working with numbers and lots of information at once are especially difficult. Ashley Yaffie is from the Rochester area. She gets anxiety and freezes when she takes tests. David asked them first to describe what high school was like for them. Lacy started.  Go to full article

Alex's Story: Inclusion With Autism

Autism is a nureological disorder. It typically appears in the first 3 years of a child's life. People with autism typically have language difficulties and trouble relating to other people. They have an obsessive need for things to stay the same. Alex Smith is 15 years old. He's a sophmore at Canton high school. When he was in elementary school he had a one-on-one aide, an adult always by his side. But Canton is one school with a long history of inclusion, of involving students with disabilities as much as possible in regular ed classes. Alex's story is one of increasing independence.  Go to full article

Sorting Through Special Ed

This week, we've heard stories of students in special education in New York State--all different: inclusion, mainstreaming, self-contained. How does one student end up in general education classes, and another in a special classroom? Is there a right, or a wrong, way of special education? Andrew Pulrang is executive director of the Independent living Center in Plattsburgh. He is an advocate for people with disabilities. He has a physical disability himself. And he's got first hand experience of schools in New York, and Washington State. He spoke with Martha Foley.  Go to full article

BOCES Cuts May Not Hurt Special Ed. Students

BOCES of Franklin, Essex and Hamilton counties will lay off nearly 30 special education teachers and teachers aids next year. The BOCES teaching staff provides support to kids with special needs in nine districts. As part of our ongoing series Disability Matters, Brian Mann spoke with Jan Fitzgerald about the cuts. She heads a statewide program based in Tupper Lake called Parent to Parent. Her son, John, is a student at Saranac Lake High School who receives one on one support from BOCES. Fitzgerald says she thinks special ed classes will see few actual changes with more teachers working directly for local districts.  Go to full article

Parents Seek More Preschool Special Ed. Funding

Parents want more funding for preschool special education programs. Karen DeWitt reports.  Go to full article

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