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Thursday, June 24, 2010

Strategic Plan update

The superintendent gave the Board their quarterly update on the Strategic Plan at the June 16 meeting. Supporting documentation for it can be found here.

I started to read it and was upset almost immediately.

The first item, implementation of the Integratec Comprehensive Services is marked as Complete. The Comments section reads: "Students with IEPs learning alongside peers with additional adult supports; students receiving high-level curriculum; students genuinely part of the natural classroom environment." There's no mention of any concerns or failures. You would think, from this, that everything with ICS was going great.

The second item, a report on the impact and outcomes of the model, is marked as Complete despite the fact that it is not complete. The comments read "Report is in progress and on track for completion by the end of the school year." From the comments it is clear that the report is NOT complete, so why is it marked as complete? I hate that.

The third item claims that five high schools and five middle schools are using a common and approved curriculum to successfully support literacy for ELL students. The Comment section claims that there is a "Common and approved curriculum in place in all 11 locations." I am just curious as hell about what definition they are using for the word "curriculum" here.

The fourth item claims that progress has been made by the Bilingual Superintendent's Task Force, but the Comments acknowledge that they have not met since January and have not created Action Plans. How can they claim progress if they not only haven't taken action but haven't even developed Action Plans?

This is exactly the kind of thing that drives me mad.

6 comments:

Melissa Westbrook said...

And rightly so but the question is, does it bother the Board? Do they accept this at face value? Also the third item, 5 middle and 5 high schools, that would make 10 so what's the 11th one?

The fourth item, well, that's pretty nervy to say they've made progress but not met since January with no action plan.

dan dempsey said...

"The third item claims that five high schools and five middle schools are using a common and approved curriculum to successfully support literacy for ELL students."

It there any relevant data to offer in support of this statement:"to successfully support literacy"?

How does anyone know successful support is occurring?

spedParent said...

The first item, implementation of the Integratec Comprehensive Services is marked as Complete.

So a few kindergarteners are working alongside typical peers, (as they always have) without the support they would have had in an inclusion program? Wow. Since it is marked complete by the district, doesn't that mean Kindergarten is all that is expected of these types of students? If ICS is done, doesn't that mean these students are done too? How can something that covers 1 year of education, and the easiest year, be marked as "implemented"?

spedParent said...

I mean, wouldn't it really be more accurate to say "1/13th complete".

reader said...

Here's an excerpt from the Seattle Special Ed PTSA Position Paper (February 2010) on the ICS roll out:

"Our PTSA endorses the inclusive concepts and vision of Integrated Comprehensive Services (ICS), the new model of special education service delivery that Seattle Public Schools is attempting to implement.

- The ICS model is intended to provide children the services indicated on their Individualized Education Plan (IEP) in general education classrooms in schools closer to home to the maximum extent possible.
- However, the components needed to implement ICS well are too weak or missing, resulting in some children not getting the services they need and not meeting with success.
- The net result has been to make the district move away – rather than toward – more inclusive educational practices.

After observing and participating in the new model for the past five months, we judge that the district has no shared vision, no authoritative leadership, and a lack of adequate resources to provide truly inclusive educational services.

- Although Executive Director of Special Education Services Marni Campbell has embraced the vision of inclusive education and represents that vision on the Superintendent’s leadership team, she is not sufficiently empowered to hold personnel accountable at the school level.
-- Members of the central office special education staff show little commitment to inclusive services; some are not knowledgeable regarding ICS or lack the skills to promote its effective implementation, some are incompetent, and some are just waiting for ICS to go away.

- Moreover, Instructional Directors, Principals, teachers, and instructional assistants do not understand or share the vision of inclusive services, and general educators in particular have not taken ownership of the notion that it is their responsibility to teach to all learners.

The move to more inclusive education calls for a fundamental transformation of general education in Seattle. Overlaying a new model on an old system is inadequate."

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