1.  Accommodations and Modifications

“Specially Designed Instruction”

nSpecially-designed instruction means adapting, as appropriate to the needs of an eligible child under this part, the content, methodology, or delivery of instruction

n(i) To address the unique needs of the child that result from the child’s disability; and

n (ii) To ensure access of the child to the general curriculum, so that he or she can meet the educational standards within the jurisdiction of the public agency that apply to all children

n34 C.F.R. 300.26(b)(3)

2.  Challenge

nHow to figure out what it means to enable a student access to the general education curriculum

3.  The Beginning

nWe must begin with an expectation that each student will succeed in the general education curriculum and that every teacher has a role in providing instruction that meets the curricular goals.

4.  Three Domains

nContent Knowledge

nThe Process Involved in Learning

nStrategies for Designing Instruction

5.  Areas




6.  Special Education and the General Curriculum

7.  Accommodation

n“a service or support that is provided to help a student fully access the subject matter and instruction as well as to validly demonstrate what he or she knows”

nAccommodations should not interfere with or markedly change the standards specified for students

nThe student is expected to learn to a defined level of mastery all of the information that typical students will learn

8.  Examples

nPencil grips

nLarge-print books

nChanging a student’s setting to a more quiet place

nMore time

nAllowing calculators or spell checkers

nAllowing more practice, more opportunities, direct instruction

9.  General Accommodations Categories

nAlternative Acquisition Modes

nContent Enhancements

nAlternative Response Modes

10.  Modifications

nWhen a instructional or curriculum modification is made, either the specific subject matter is altered or the performance expected of the student is changed

nA student is taught something different or is taught the same information but at a different level of complexity

11.  Example

nThe rest of the class may be expected to tell the distinguishing characteristics of animal and plant cells, but a student for whom a modification has been made may simply be required to discriminate between animals and plants, given pictures and short descriptions

12.  Common Examples

nReduce assignments by giving fewer problems or asking them to write two to three paragraphs instead of two to three pages

nThese types of modifications can reduce a student’s opportunity to learn the critical knowledge, skills, and concepts in certain subject matter

13.  Common Examples

nTeaching less content

nTeaching different content

14.  Questions

nCan the student do the same activity as his/her peers?

nCan the student do the same activity with adapted expectations?

nCan the student do the same activity with adapted expectations and materials?

nCan the student do a different activity amidst his/her peers?

nCan the student do a different activity in another part of the room?

nCan the student do a functional activity in a different part of the school?

n      Are the required adaptations justified?

15.  Connection

nAccommodations, Modifications, and Assessments

nState and District Assessments


16.  Grades


nIdeally, grades provide feedback to students that will help them achieve their learning objectives

nIn practice….

17.  Traditional Grading

nSignificant Problems when working with students identified as LD

nA low grade reinforces failure

nGrades do not describe strengths and weaknesses

nGrades do not reflect each student’s level of functioning

18.  Fair and Objective

nEquity of using different standards to evaluate students in the same classroom

nEstablish if alternative grading procedures are necessary for that individual

19.  Alternative Approaches to Evaluation

nTraditional Grading:  letter grades or percentages are assigned

nPass/Fail System: broad based criteria are established for passing or failing

n     IEP grading:  competency levels on student’s IEP are translated into the school districts performance standards

n     Mastery or criterion-level grading:  content is divided subcomponents.  Students earn credit when their mastery of a certain skills reaches an acceptable level

20.  Alternative Approaches to Evaluation

n     Multiple Grading:  the student is assessed and graded in several areas, such as ability, effort, and achievement

n     Shared Grading: two or more teachers determine a student’s grade

n     Points System:  points are assigned to activities that add up to the term grade

n     Student Self-Comparison:  students evaluate themselves on an individualized basis

21.  Alternative Approaches to Evaluation

nContracting:  the student and teacher agree on specific activities required for a certain grade

nPortfolio evaluation:  a cumulative portfolio is maintained of each student’s work, demonstrating achievement in key skill areas from kindergarten to 12th grade.

22.  The Challenge of Creating Access

n    Today all teachers must be skilled at making accommodations.

n    This is no longer something that not only special educators do.