Special Education and the Importance of Collaboration

Collaboration means working with an individual or a group of individuals to achieve a common goal. Its importance is most visible in education. Every day, teachers work together with their peers, school counselors, and other staff for the success of each student. And when it comes to special education, collaboration becomes the single most important thing for a teacher.

A teacher for special education has to collaborate with school administrators, general education teachers, school therapists, psychologists, and parents and guardians. Students with mild disability have now been included in regular classroom teaching, according to the provisions of the Individuals with Disabilities Education (IDEA) Act. This has led to general and special education teachers working together, often with the help of the best fun educational apps. The role of the educator in a general classroom, involves teaching the curriculum and assessing and evaluating special children. It’s important that a the educator brings in a set of personal skills to enhance student learning. Skills of both the general teacher and the special educator should come together to help a student.

A special educator has to work closely with the school management. It’s a vital part of the job. Working with the management will help the special teacher follow the necessary laws and procedure, work with individualized education plan (IEP), and make sure that special children are accommodated in the appropriate classroom. It’s always important to forge a strong relationship with these people for ensuring the success of a special student.

Working with parents is a major challenge for all special education teachers. It’s important to make strong and regular contact. It’s a nice idea to allow parents come and volunteer in the classroom, so that both the educator and the parent can help the children. A special child can obviously relate more to a parent. If parents explain the use of the best fun educational apps for kids, it’s likely to be more believable to the children.

Working with school therapists and psychologists is another key collaboration of a special educator. A therapist can inform the educator about the limitations of a special child. He/she may even recommend the best fun educational apps for kids so that special children pick up social skills faster. The educator, on his/her part, can update the therapist on how a child is progressing. The therapist is also responsible for diagnosis of a special child.

The work of the school psychologist is also largely similar. They too test children for disabilities and ensure that the IEP is being properly followed.

Learning in a Special Education Environment

Any child that has a need for guided education whether it is because of a mental or physical disability deserves to have the same chance in life and school as other children. Sometimes when a parent knows their child needs regulated special guidance on education, they don’t want their child to be singled out. They don’t want to have to have special arrangements. They want their child to be given attention without losing the same equality as other students.

Learning in a regulated special guidance on education is often required. It is design though not to restrict the children, but give them all the opportunity to succeed. Parents can rest assured that often it is the law that all children will have the best opportunities to succeed in education even if special education is needed. Sometimes students needing education need a complete special education curriculum while others just need various elements with education.

The student might have learning disabilities and needs extra attention to help them understand the lessons, to stay up with other students. Other students could be emotionally challenged and need special attention to help them accomplish goals. Then there are various physical disabilities that can cause the student to need more extensive assistance for their special education curriculum.

Often the definition of those being eligible for specialized education is provided by the state as well as the federal government. Depending on the disability there are various services available. Parents are asked to keep in mind that education environments are set up to benefit the child with a disability and provide them with more of an advantage than they would have otherwise got.

A specialized education environment is set up to benefit the classmates. It might be that is it more wheelchairs accessible to having equipment to help students with certain issues along with a teacher trained to help with these issues. Having specialized training will best benefit the child as an individual compared to a teacher in the traditional classroom with 19 other students that don’t have a disability or a class room with a few others that need special attention as well.

There is often an Individualized Education Plan put in place for the student. This allows the student to get assistance and education that is geared toward their needs in a way that will best benefit them. Talk with the school administrators, teachers and your child’s teacher to help design the best options for your child.

You may require talking to the child’s physician about the best specialized education program that would assist in improving the child’s development. Additionally, hiring the services of a special educator at home while the child goes to regular school is also a possibility to explore when you are looking for a cohesive environment for the child’s development.

You may explore for more information online as there are numerous websites dealing with special educators, pioneers in the friend of education that impart information about parenting and education.

What You Should Know About Teaching Special Education

Special Education for me is a challenging vocation for it caters to individuals with disabilities. Through this type of education, students with disabilities are educated effectively.

I read a line from an article years ago that states: “It is said that a society can be judged by the way it treats those who are different.”

In a democratic society it is believed that every individual is valuable in his own right and should be afforded equal opportunities to develop his potentials. The provision of special education will empower families to build future for their children, normal and special alike.

It was said that “teaching” is what special education is most about.

The role of the Special Education (SPED) teacher is very crucial. The SPED teacher has the responsibility not only to teach the regular classroom stuff like reading, writing, math etc, but also Activities of Daily Living and peer socialization.

An important part of a special education teacher’s job is the early identification of a child with special needs, intervention is vital in educating children with special needs because as time goes on children who are not coping or who struggle in the general curriculum can be negatively affected.

A SPED educator’s job is also challenging. Special education teachers work with children and youths who have a variety of disabilities. I also find this vocation fulfilling, for, it provides the opportunity to establish meaningful relationships with special kids.

Although helping these students can be highly rewarding, the work also can be emotionally and physically draining. SPED teachers work under the threat of litigation against the school or district by parents if correct procedures are not followed or if they feel that their child is not receiving an adequate education.

A SPED educator should be well-guarded by the laws. Understanding and practicing the laws will ensure a safe and legal environment for both the special child and SPED teacher.

A special educator’s battlecry should be “commitment”. Commitment spells equitable and excellent classroom. Without commitment to the chosen vocation, one won’t be able to do his/ her job well.

But, teachers cannot do it alone. Teaching is a collaborative effort between the educator, student, parents/ family and the community. SPED educators, should express desire to be the parents’ partner in the development of the special child.

As teachers, trying to reach out beyond the school to promote trust and understanding, and build partnerships with all segments of the school community is significant. Being active in associations/ causes supporting the special child/ special education can be a good start.

I would like to quote Robert Pasternack, Ph.D., Assistant Secretary Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services,U.S. Department of Education. He said:

“Some of the kids that are in special education are not, in fact, kids with disabilities. They are, in fact, instructional casualties. They are, in fact, kids who haven’t been taught successfully using scientifically validated instructional approaches and research validated curricula in the general education system and general education settings.”

With that, I have the following implications to education of children with special needs:

States will put a premium on Reading — to deliver scientifically validated and scientifically based reading research, validated curricula and instructional strategies in classrooms.
Continuous and more additional trainings for teachers. If professional development will be given to teachers, if it’s sustained, if it’s systematic, if it’s embedded in what teachers do, then, in fact, we can go ahead and improve the capacity of teachers to address the learning needs of the heterogeneous groups of kids that they have in front of them on a daily basis.
If you are looking for a school that: Is committed to enriching the lives of our diverse population; Works to meet learner and community needs in a mutually supportive partnership; Has competent teachers, therapists, staff & facilities; Is accessible and safe; and