|About the Book|
I wrote this case study for my university graduate special education classes. I found through a class assessment that my students needed more exposer beyond the identification of areas of learning disabilities usually covered in a special educationMoreI wrote this case study for my university graduate special education classes. I found through a class assessment that my students needed more exposer beyond the identification of areas of learning disabilities usually covered in a special education class. As a result, I wrote the following fictional case study.The activity is intended for the class to divide into groups of students of 2 or 3 so students can discuss get a window on the problems that parents and educators encounter each day in regard to special education issues. Then all students in the class can formulate ideas, strategies and solutions to resolve the problem in the case study. I also found that students enjoyed discussing solutions as each group presented their findings.The Individualized Education Plan (IEP) for students with learning disabilities is a well-known document within the education realm in American education. Years ago, children with difficulties in school were just labeled as children who were “stubborn” or “lazy” or “did not want to learn.” Now we know that some children have learning disabilities in certain areas, and the law clearly states that accommodations must be made in the school setting so these children will have an optimal chance at learning. The accommodations are outlined in in the child’s IEP.The implementation of the IEP for an identified child is vital and an essential document for the special needs child. The IEP must be followed by the school professionals at every level. Yet, it is not usual to find educators, although few we hope these days, who still refuse to implement fully or even recognize accommodations that special needs individuals need and deserve.This lack of cooperation on the teacher’s part and sometimes even the principal’s part just frustrates both the child and parents. The child’s learning experience suffers the most. The classroom teacher’s charge is to follow the IEP to the letter. On the other hand, it is critical that principals and special education directors be vigilant in making sure that all aspects of the IEP’s are being followed and implemented.The following case study deals just with that issue: a stubborn teacher and the consequences of his unwillingness to implement the IEP accommodations for a special needs child in his class.At the end of the case study, there are discussion questions to start the dialogue going in your class. Students can read the case study and then use the questions at the end to analyze the case study. I asked my students to identify all problems and then to develop strategies to make sure that all school professionals were in accordance with what the law mandates for the special needs children.In this case study, numerous problems on several levels exist. I wanted my students to realize that if there is a problem, it is up to the supervisors to untangle those problems and identify which actions are detrimental in implementing the child’s IEP.One last thought. All blame cannot be directed entirely toward the classroom teacher. The special education director and principal must take ownership in the task of implementing all aspects of the IEP. If the culture of the school implies in one way or another that there is room to pick and choose what is to be implemented in the IEP, then accountability for the source of that attitude should be placed at the feet of the administration.The discussion questions are geared for thoughtful deliberation among students so they will recognize the problems and devise ways to solve those problems.