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Special Education: Principles and Legal Background

  • The principle of zero reject ensures the identification of children with disabilities. What are the two other issues addressed by this principle?
    • The principle of zero rejects addresses two issues. First, it is aimed at ensuring that no child is denied access to education because of his or her disability (Friend, 2011, p. 14). Secondly, this principle guarantees free special education services to children with disabilities.
  • Describe three parts of IDEA and who they benefit.
    • The first part of the IDEA Act describes the edibility criteria for receiving special education services. The second one focuses on the development of individualized education plans for students with special needs. The third one describes those services that families can receive from the state. Overall, these components of the IDEA Act are supposed to help several groups of people. First, they should parents who have children with disabilities. Secondly, they can benefit students and ensure that they have access to high-quality education.
  • List two examples of students with special needs that are not addressed using IDEA. What provisions allow these students to receive services?
    • The IDEA Act provides a specific list of disabilities that make a child eligible for special education services. However, some conditions are not mentioned, for instance, enuresis or asthma. The IDEA act contains provisions according to which every child with a disability can ask for special education services, provided the disability prevents him or her from receiving conventional education. This stipulation gives more people access to specialized educational services. Moreover, it minimizes the risk of exclusion and denial of access to free special education services.
  • What students did the 2004 reauthorization of IDEA specifically named for the first time?
    • The reauthorization of the IDEA Act that took place in 2004 named students who have emotional or behavioral disorders. Previously, the term disability included mostly physical or mental disorders. Thus, this reauthorization widened eligibility criteria for receiving special education services.
  • According to Friend, 2011, the field of special education is undergoing rapid changes related to professionals and procedures. Name two issues that have a tremendous impact on these changes?
    • According to Marilyn Friend, special education undergoes rapid transformation (Friend, 2011, p. 64). Two issues have a profound effect on this area, namely, increasing paperwork, and the shortage of special education teachers (Friend, 2011, p. 64). The current changes are aimed at addressing these problems.
  • Discuss the issues of labeling students with disabilities.
    • Labeling or identifying a student with his or her disability can have a stigmatizing effect on a person (Friend, 2011, p. 75). The thing is that in such a way, people can emphasize the single characteristic of a person, for instance, deafness, blindness, or a learning disability, and overlook the individuality of a student. Such labels as “mentally retarded”, or “handicapped” can lead to a child’s inferiority complex. Therefore, one should avoid using them to describe the identity of a child.
  • Define three types of special education teams and then compare and contrast their roles and responsibilities.
    • There are three types of the special education team. First, one can speak about multidisciplinary teams that are comprised of professionals who coordinate their efforts but have separate responsibilities. They don’t usually work together. Secondly, one can mention interdisciplinary teams in which members also have different responsibilities, but they more actively discuss their work with one another. Thirdly, there are transdisciplinary teams in which professionals share expertise, information, knowledge, and skills with one another (Friend, 2011, p.111). Thus, special education teams differ mostly in the degree of cooperation.
  • How do high-quality instruction, assistive technology, positive behavior supports, and collaboration support inclusion?
    • Assistive technologies, high-quality instructions, and a positive outlook can contribute to the inclusion of a child. First, technologies will provide a student with aids that can support his or her learning (Friend, 2011, p.26). For instance, it is possible to mention pens and pencils that be better handled by students with cerebral palsy. Additionally, high-quality instruction will enable a student to understand the requirements that have to be met. More importantly, proper instruction will outline the main steps that a child will have to do to cope with educational tasks. Finally, positive behavior and outlook are significant because a student has to see that other people are willing to help him or her and that there is some likelihood of success.
  • If the team determines that a student needs assistive technology, what provisions might it include regarding training, ownership of the device, and what happens if the student moves.
    • If the team decides that the student needs assistive technology, the school will be obliged to provide it to the family. The parents can become part-time owners of this technology during the time their child will receive special education services. If a child moves to a different school, his parents will have to give the device to the school. If they wish to use it further, they would have to compensate the school for this technology.
  • Name and briefly describe an instructional strategy that enables students with learning disabilities to participate more fully and meaningfully in educational planning and decision making.
    • Strategy instruction enables a student with a disability to have more meaningful educational experiences. A teacher, who takes such an approach, outlines the key steps that a student has to take to cope with various academic tasks (Friend, 2011, p.152). This approach provides more opportunities for independent learning.
  • Discuss the skills necessary for transitions from secondary to postsecondary education for students with learning disabilities.
    • To proceed to post-secondary education, a student with a learning disability should have various skills. First, one has to speak about the main academic skills such as reading, writing, or the knowledge of basic mathematical operations. Yet, it is also important to mention such skills as independent learning or metacognition or the knowledge of one’s learning style and thinking. Without them, it would be rather difficult for a student to transition to post-secondary education.
  • Briefly describe the five conditions that cause some children to be classified as having emotional or behavioral disorders.
    • Five symptoms are typical of emotional and behavioral disorders, namely, 1) learning difficulties that cannot be accounted for by physiological causes, 2) inability to maintain interpersonal relations with other people, especially peers and teachers; 3) feeling of unhappiness or depression; 4) inappropriate reaction to common situations; 5) and physical conditions that can be associated with emotional disorders such as insomnia (Friend, 2011, p. 199). A person may have one or more of these conditions. Yet, the diagnosis of a mental or emotional disorder cannot be valid, if these conditions are not demonstrated consistently in different settings.
  • Describe the wraparound philosophy, recommendations, and advantages to children and families.
    • Wraparound philosophy emphasizes the holistic approach to children with disabilities (Friend, 2011, p. 219). Educators have to take into account the social, emotional, educational needs of a child and his or her family. Moreover, according to this philosophy, disabled students and their families must have access to various agencies that are supposed to protect and uphold their rights. This philosophy stresses such aspects as interaction with peers, self-care skills, safety needs. Overall, this philosophy enables children and families to cope with various real-life problems, and this is its major advantage.
  • Explain the relationship between metacognition and executive functioning
    • Metacognition can be understood as the knowledge of how to use various learning strategies or how to approach problem-solving (Friend, 2011, p. 133). Metacognition is extremely important for executive functioning, such as planning, error correction, or sequencing various tasks. For instance, metacognition enables a person to understand what kind of steps should be taken to answer a question or solve a math problem. Moreover, the knowledge of one’s thought process helps a person identify an error or miscalculation. Thus, metacognition supports executive functioning because helps a person to monitor and assess his or her thinking and learning.
  • Discuss the discounted and possible causes of AD/HD.
    • There are several possible causes of ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder). Researchers believe that this disorder can be attributed to genes that affect the transportation of dopamine (Friend, 2011, p. 160). Additionally, one can mention possible environmental factors such as parent’s smoking. There are some discounted theories, such as the evolutionary interpretation of ADHD and the social explanation of this disorder.
  • Describe classroom arrangement features used to minimize distractions related to hyperactivity-impulsivity.
    • There are several classroom arrangements a teacher should make when dealing with ADHD students. First, their desk should be placed near the teacher so that he or she could monitor their activities. Secondly, they should not be seated near windows as in this way they will become more distracted. Thirdly, a teacher should ensure that classroom activities are frequently alternated; otherwise these children may not be able to keep attention.

Reference List

Friend, M. (2011) Special Education: Contemporary Perspectives for School Professionals. Boston: Allyn & Bacon, Inc.

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