Posts tagged ‘Special Education’

LDAO podcast on executive functioning

LD@school has posted a free podcast titled Executive Functioning Explained: Recognizing, Understanding, Supporting by Dr. Marie-Josée Gendron, Ph.D., C.Psych. Links to additional and related resources are also provided.

Check it out! Rowan

February 3, 2017 at 8:00 am Leave a comment

Ministry: French students with special needs

The Ministry has released a new resource supporting the French language curriculum, titled Including students with special education needs in French as a second language programs: A guide for Ontario Schools.

It is hard enough to find resources on teaching French, let alone French students with special needs.

I took a quick look and the Ebsco journal databases included 3 fairly recent articles:

  1. Joy, R., & Murphy, E. (2012). The inclusion of children with special educational needs in an intensive French as a second language program: From theory to practice. Canadian Journal of Education, 35(1), 102-119.
  2. Arnett, K. (2010). Scaffolding instruction in a grade 8 core French classroom: An exploratory case study. Canadian Modern Language Review, 66(4), 557-582.  Request email copy from Professional Library.
  3. Mady, C., & Arnett, K. (2009). Inclusion in French Immersion in Canada: One parent’s perspective. Exceptionality Education International, 19(2), p37-49.

For other Canadian resources supporting French Immersion (not necessarily spec ed and French), check out EduGains and Curriculum Services Canada .


December 17, 2015 at 8:00 am Leave a comment

Canadian article on improving teacher education for Spec Ed

The March 2105 (vol. 50 (4)) issue of Intervention in School and Clinic  includes an article by Adam W. McCrimmon (University of Calgary) titled Inclusive Education in Canada: Issues in Teacher Preparation, pages 234-237.

In the article, McCrimmon reports that many teachers, working in inclusive/integrated/mainstreamed classrooms, feel unprepared, that they “do not feel that they possess the required expertise to effectively instruct students” (p 235). Research also indicates that teacher attitudes towards exceptional students improves positively with more years of experience and “that teacher knowledge and experience with childhood disabilities has been shown to dramatically enhance teacher self-efficacy and effectiveness” ( p. 235).

McCrimmon looked at course descriptions posted on the websites of faculties of education of the four largest Canadian universities and concluded that “none of the these programs appears to require teachers in training to be systematically exposed to definitions and/or descriptions of childhood disabilities in conjunction with mentored experience with research-informed effective classroom-based intervention practices” (p. 235).

Acknowledging the problem of the BEd curriculum already being at its maximum, McCrimmon suggests that “the provision of focused certificate programs that provide highly specialized training and experience with specific childhood disabilities to enhance teachers’ knowledge and capacity in the classroom” (p. 236) is one solution, and he describes the program offered by one Canadian university as a postgraduate certificate.

TDSB teachers what want to read the article in full from within the network may do so here. TDSB teachers may obtain password information by contacting the library at (416) 395-8289 or via this document Remember to use your TDSB Google password to open the document.

Check it out!


March 13, 2015 at 8:00 am Leave a comment

EduGains announces new Special Education website

Check out the Special Education website launched via EduGains.  Note that it includes a section dedicated to ASD: Autism Spectrum Disorders, sample IEPs, and learning disabilities.  Use the site to find ministry documents/ resources, policies, as well as links to non-Ministry resources/sites.



January 9, 2015 at 2:37 pm Leave a comment

People for Education video about Special Education

People for Education has released a new 4-minute video for parents on special education. It provides an overview on what to do if you think your child has a learning difference and needs additional school support. Key points include the importance of advocating for your child and being aware of the range of special education supports available for the student. For schools, this would be a great video to share with parents, and include in newsletters.

Check it out!



November 13, 2014 at 4:56 pm Leave a comment

Inclusive schooling

The Spring 2014 issue of Theory into Practice (53:2) is a theme issue titled Inclusive Schooling and Leadership for Social Justice and it includes a variety of articles on ESL, Race, LGBTQ, Poverty, Leadership.

The one article I am going to  highlight  is titled Leading Inclusive Reform for Students with Disabilities: A School- and Systemwide Approach by Theoharris and Causton. I like it because although it focuses on spec ed students, it’s scope is broader:  ” it is important to note that students with disabilities are not the only subset of students who have been systematically denied access to the general education classroom … ]me> other groups, eg   race, ESL, poverty] … who are like to to be excluded from the curriculum, instruction and peers of the general education classroom. ….When students are removed from the general education classroom  there is a trade-off and cost to that.” (p 97).

The article outlines a 7-part process to create authentically inclusive schools.  The 7 parts are:

  1. Vision
  2. Creating service delivery maps
  3. Align school structures
  4. Rethink staffing: Creating instructional teams
  5. Impacting classroom practices
  6. Ongoing monitoring, adjusting and celebrating
  7. Ongoing: Create a climate of belonging

If you are interested in reading this article, its details, and templates/checklists (or any of the other articles), contact the Professional Library at (416) 395-8289.

Check it out!



May 27, 2014 at 3:47 pm Leave a comment

Spec Ed in Ontario (People for Education rpt)

Today’s Globe and Star include articles headlining that spec ed students may occasionally be asked to stay home!

People for Education (P4E) have released a 2014, 15-page report titled Special Education A People of Education Report based on an annual survey.

The purpose of the report is to  review the current state of spec ed in  Ontario’s public schools (p.2), including funding models (changes coming soon,  (p9).

It examines the levels of  “supports” that are key to student success:

  • accommodations (eg additional time for tests)
  • spec ed teachers and EAs
  • assistive technology
  • access to other professional services, eg speech language therapists
  • access to psychologists who diagnose and assess (delay is huge; families with higher incomes use private assessments)
  • stigma of labeling
  • levels of support vary across province – often the worst in Northern Ontario

49% of elementary students and 40% of secondary students with spec ed needs have been asked to stay home mainly for these reasons. Principals have a  “duty to …where in the principal’s judgement be detrimental to the physical or mental-well being of the pupils” (5)

  • safety
  • student health (eg student anxiety levels may impact ability to manage a full day of school)
  • necessary supports unavailable

P4E make the following recommendations:

Among the recommendations for change:

  • the creation of a special education ombudsman office;
  • increased funding to ensure that no child is unable to attend school for the full day due to a shortage of resources;
  • a plan to monitor the impact of changes to the special education funding model;
  • a framework to support ongoing evaluation of special education services; and
  • a standardized processes for assessment, identification and placement to provide adequate, timely and equitable services and access to education for every Ontario child.

Check it out!


April 28, 2014 at 2:53 pm Leave a comment

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