Unformatted text preview: Secrets of the General
Education Teacher: What
Every Special Educator
Needs to Know!!
Needs Why is this important?
Why Inclusion, RtI, litigation
National and state mandates
NCLB & AYP “Seek first to understand
and then to be
Steven Covey, Seven Habits of Highly Effective People) Top 10 Gen. Ed. Teacher
Secrets Not all general educators
teachers feel this way and
those that do, don’t always
feel this way!!
feel Secret #1: I am afraid
Secret I will be liable/sued There might be an emergency that I
can’t Parents might be upset with me. I might fail. I might succeed. I will be evaluated based on his/her
success or failure.
success Of the unknown. Secret #2: I don’t have what
it Classroom teachers perceive their
skills as inadequate. They have little
knowledge of special education law,
disabilities, the IEP process, etc….
disabilities, They worry they won’t have the
patience or the knowledge to be
effective with students with special
needs. Secret #3: I won’t have the
resources The general educator may think that
special educators have more money,
resources, and time to their disposal
than they have.
than They are concerned that they will not
have adequate resources to work with
special ed. students, let along typical
students. Secret #4: I want….
No I NEED to do
a good job!!
good Efficacy – ability to produce the
desired “I do believe all kids can learn,… but I
do not believe that all kids can learn
more in my classroom vs. a Sp. Ed.
room/school.” Secret #5: I resent this/you/
them You are trying to change me. You are saying that what I have been
doing all along is wrong.
doing Secret #6: Inclusion? Are
you Inclusion increases the complexities
of an already difficult job.
of “If I had wanted to teach sp. Ed, I
would have gone into it.”
would “I was not trained to do this and don’t
know Secret #7: It isn’t fair
Secret Fairness is a crucial component of a
teacher’s attitudes toward a student
with Two perspectives: In order to be fair we have to treat
people In order to be fair we have to treat
people Secret #8: It won’t work
Secret Show me the research. (And you
better be able to!!!)
better Secret #9: The cost is too
great. Costs of inclusion: Space, class
list/load, time, parents, resources, $$,
support, Budget cuts are on and Sp. Ed. does
not take their share.
not Secret #10: I want you to “Get
out of my kitchen!”
out Teachers are
creatures!! Negative coping strategies of
people with secrets:
people Silence/keeping it to self
Hoping it goes away
complaining to others
Passive-aggressive actions. Strategic Response:
Strategic Fit the response to the situation. Provide
specific real-time training.
Set aside time for meetings and problem
Be pro-active in team meetings. Consider all
the “What ifs.” Encourage all concerns to be
put on the table for discussion. Talk about
Develop a team that demonstrates, “They are
ALL our kids. We are in this together.”
ALL Strategic Response:
Strategic When you are planning for inclusion of a
child with an IEP, consider all of the students
and their needs and plan for them as well.
and Universal Design. Give the teacher an explanation for
“Fairness” that they can live with and adopt.
“Fairness” Operate with the expectation that data about
the success and progress is used to
determine future strategies and placements.
determine Strategic Response:
Strategic Put sufficient time into planning and
monitoring during the first opportunity to
advance inclusion efforts in order to pave
the way for the next opportunity.
Define what approach to co-teaching is
going to be used and make the goals of that
strategy clear to all. Put co-teaching into
place either after training or with a coaching
Follow the plan with integrity. Strategic Response:
Strategic Acknowledge limitations and unknowns. Listen to all concerns, help prioritize and
tackle them one at a time.
tackle Rehearse before parent meetings. Make
sure the teacher knows the district’s backup
and legal support and assurance.
and Recognize, acknowledge, than people. Advocate for the right
reasons!!!! Advocate for the student… not for the
movement, the trend or even the mandate…
have the integrity of conviction to be able
to say why it is best for the student!!!
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- Spring '11
- Gen. Ed, strategic response, special educator