Newsletter by gabyion


Volume 3, Issue 2                                                                                  Fall 2003

  Differentiating Instruction                         State Improvement Grant
  at the Lyme School                                  (SIG) Awards for 2003-
  Improves Instruction and                            2004
   Students’ Knowledge of                             Five grants for Local Professional
  their Learning Styles                               Development have been awarded for this
  By Barbara E. Stone, Ed.D                           school year (2003-2004). Local professional
                                                      development grants fund projects to improve
  Following a year of inservice provided by           educational outcomes for children and youth
  consultant, Susan Girardin, teachers at the         with disabilities by increasing school district
  Lyme School are utilizing strategies for            capacity to provide high quality professional
  differentiating instruction for their students.     development activities for general and special
  Through the use of State Improvement Grant          educators, other school personnel, parents and
  funds, Susan provided all day consultation          families, as well as other professional groups
  supports to help individual teachers as well as     and local community partners. Recipients for
  small groups of teachers, to provide classroom      this year include the Concord School District
                                                                                     Continued on Page 5
  demonstrations and staff meeting presentations
  throughout the school year. She also provided
  training on release days.                                   SIG BRIEF OVERVIEW
  Utilizing new strategies, teacher Bonnie            New Hampshire is in the final year of a 5 year
  Cornell has devised methods for determining         Special Education State Improvement Grant
  the learning styles of her fifth graders to gain    (SIG) from the U.S. Department of Education.
  insight in designing learning choices. She has      This grant supports activities that are part of a
  used a variety of materials to accomplish this.     comprehensive Special Education State
  Interest surveys were a beginning followed by a     Improvement Plan, which was developed
  4-Corners activity. Posted on each of the four      collaboratively with all of the major
  walls of her classroom are charts labeled north,    stakeholders involved with children and youth
  south, east and west. North learners are those      with disabilities.
  who learn by jumping right in with a “let’s do
  it” approach. South learners are the “care          SIG is addressing the following areas that have
  givers” interested in feelings. East students       been identified as fundamental for systems
  need to see the “whole picture” before learning     change: leadership and service coordination;
  the parts. West is for those who pay attention      standards for practice; pre-service education;
  to detail and need to know “who, what, when,        professional development; dissemination of
  where, and why.” Students were asked to be          exemplary practices; involvement of
  introspective and to stand where they felt their    individuals with disabilities and their families;
  learning strength lay. Sometimes Bonnie             and reduction of systemic barriers to effective
  discovered that a student had chosen an             service delivery.
                                Continued on Page 2

                                                                                        SIG NEWSLETTER 1
Differentiating Instruction                            Who would you recommend this story to
                                                        and why? (Evaluation)
at the Lyme School Cont’d                              Tell why you would or would not live
                                                        where this story takes place. (Evaluation)
inappropriate direction leading to a teacher-          What do you think happened next in the
student dialogue. A workbook was used                   story? (Synthesis)
entitled, The Mind That’s Mine, by Mel
Levine. It contains a program for students to       In addition to group activities, students were
discover how people think and learn.                required to hand in individual projects. Each
                                                    chose three activities from a TIC TAC TOE
Fortified with her knowledge gained about           MENU. In each block of the Menu were
each student, Ms. Cornell designed instruction      assignments, which matched a variety of
based on Bloom’s Taxonomy (application,             learning styles. The center block was a place
analysis, synthesis, evaluation, etc.). A current   where students could fill in an activity of
reading unit exemplifies her planning.              his/her own choosing. The 3 activities chosen
                                                    needed to complete a Tic Tac Toe
Bonnie chose several books her students would       configuration but the class decided that an “L”
be interested in reading. She gave a brief review   arrangement would be acceptable. Examples
of each book to the class. They chose four as       of how the blocks appealed to students who
being the most popular from which they would        liked to write – create a dialogue between two
make individual choices. Since there were 13        characters; to those who were creative-
days set aside to complete a book and related       compose a poem,; for those who were artistic –
activities each student divided the number of       construct a mobile, construct a collage; those
pages in his/her book by 13 to designate the        who looked at the big picture – explain the
study sections they would use for Literature        problem in the story and how it is solved; and
Circles. In readiness for these circles were        to those who were caring – choose a character
folders, each containing a role each student in a   in the story and write 5 questions that you
particular book circle would play. As the study     would ask in order to understand the way he or
section changed, the roles rotated. The roles       she acts.
were: Discussion Director, Word Wizard,
Passage Master, Connector, Investigator, and        Resources shared by Bonnie as being excellent
Artful Artist.                                      tools for teachers are: (1) Workbook: Mel
                                                    Levine. “The Mind That’s Mine.” (2)
Another activity for Literature Circles was the     Tomlinson, C.A. How to differentiate
use of paper cubes printed in 3 different colors    instruction in mixed-ability classrooms. 2nd
for students on different achievement levels.       Edition. ASCD. Alexandria, VA. and (3)
On the face of each cube was the instruction        Winebrenner, S. Teaching gifted kids in the
the roller needed to prepare for the group’s        regular classroom. Free spirit publishing.
next discussion time. Here are the high-level
cube activities:                                    The State Improvement Grant addressing
 Pick one character to be your friend and tell     differentiated instruction at the Lyme School is
    why. Pick one character you wouldn’t            a perfect example of the proper use of
    want to be your friend and tell why.            inservice. With a consultant on hand for
    (Application)                                   specific days throughout the school year,
 List 3 ways the setting of this story is          teachers like Bonnie Cornell were able to
    similar and 3 ways it is different from         design instruction and create environments that
    where you live. (Analysis)                      meet the varied learning needs of students.

                                                                                     SIG NEWSLETTER 2
                                    ONE COMMUNITY
            A Leadership Conference promoting Living, Learning, and Working Together

                2nd Annual Conference on Disability, Diversity, Employment and Education
                                          November 17, 2003
                     Grappone Conference Center, Courtyard Marriott, Concord, NH

“One Community” is a collaborative effort involving the Department of Health and Human Services, Granite
State Independent Living and the Department of Education to link together all those with differences in New
Hampshire so that we have stronger communities and organizations. It is our expectation that participants
will learn how to best educate, employ, and serve those in the diverse community. Our target audience is
leaders and policy makers from business, service providers, workforce, legislature, education, and
municipalities. Reaching our increasingly diverse community requires new thinking!

Keynote Address:       Claudia Gordon, Esq., National Leader on Cultural Diversity and Disability Policy;
                       First Black Deaf Female Attorney in U.S.

AM Workshops:
   "Schools and Diverse Populations"
   "Maximizing Typical Technology to Support Learning Diversity" for students and employees.
   “So, How User Friendly is your business?” Learn how to assess your facility through the eyes of
     customers-consumers with a disability or as members of a minority group.
   “I would love to have a more diverse work force, but I just can’t find anyone!” Strategies and
     resources for recruiting and retaining a diverse work force.
   “Get on the Bus:” Ensure maximum transportation rider-ship for people with diversity.
   "Sign Language Interpreter Standards in 2003."

Luncheon Guest Speakers:       JacquelyneWeatherspoon; former NH State representative, and
                               Russell Weatherspoon, Dean of Student Affairs, Phillips Exeter Academy

PM Workshops:
   "The Business of School:" Learn about collaborations & opportunities for apprenticeship-job
     shadowing etc.
   "Gizmos and Gadgets:" Workplace technology.
   "Livable Wage vs. Minimum Wage:” Learn what Vt. has done to lower its H&HS costs, increase
     the quality of life and what NH is doing collaboratively.
   "Ethical & Legal Responsibilities:" Rediscover the laws/resources to keep your environment
   "Think Self Advocacy:" Learn positive ways to listen and respond to self advocates for win-win
   “Staying Ahead of the Curve:” How to retain your workforce through keeping a welcoming

Closing Remarks:       Marie Trottier, Univeristy Disability Coordinator and Compliance Officer, Harvard

  For registration & information, call (603) 271-3459; TTY Access: 1-888-396-3459; Espańol 589-4546;
             Francais 271-8352; Portuguese 589-4546. This conference will be fully accessible.
                                 Many alternate formats will be available.

                                                                                             SIG NEWSLETTER 3
Reversing the Critical                               first year of teaching and to retain them for
                                                     future years. “First-year support is critical in an
Shortage of Certified                                environment where resources have become
Special Education                                    increasingly limited.” says Steve Bigaj, a
                                                     professor with the project. Professor Bigaj,
Teachers in the State                                along with faculty members Nancy Lory and
                                                     Katie Ahern, reported a successful first year
A news release out of Keene State College            and anticipate full enrollments to continue
announced an exciting new program to                 when classes start in the fall. Professor Lory
increase the pool of qualified special educators     stated that many school districts throughout the
in the state. The shortage has grown so severe       state will continue to struggle to find qualified
over the years that N.H. State Department of         special educators and, as a result, the education
Education set up an emergency certification          of many students with disabilities is still in
process called Alternate IV, which allows            jeopardy. “We need to find ways to support
school districts to hire uncertified teachers – so   these teachers financially as well,” she stated,
long as they are enrolled in a collegiate            “We are hoping that more scholarship support
certification program.                               will be available from the state and federal
                                                     government for these committed
This new program offering at Keene State has         professionals...”
proven to be so popular that applications are
already being accepted for the 2004-2005             For more information, about the program,
academic year. In summer of 2002, KSC                contact Dr. Nancy Lory at 603-358-2310 or
introduced this new post-baccalaureate               Dr. Steven Bigaj at 603-358-2872.
certification program, which trains teachers for
special education and will help address the
shortage of these professionals in the state.
With the support of the State Improvement
Grant from the N.H. State Department of
Education, KSC’s Special Education Teacher
Shortage Project is able to offer a program that
comprises summer coursework, a ten-month
school-based internship with a mentoring
teacher, and weekly seminars on the Keene
State campus. Alternative IV teachers and
graduate students enrolled last summer in the
first year of the new program. Teachers who
have regular education certification and/or
graduate students, who are seeking initial
certification in education, are welcome to
apply. Participants are expected to
demonstrate their competencies throughout the
year, through self-assessment and observations
by KSC faculty and mentors.

The program is designed to help prospective
special education teachers get through their

                                                                                        SIG NEWSLETTER 4
                                                     The College for Lifelong Learning (CLL) has
State Improvement Grant                              been awarded a SIG grant to fund 1.5 Faculty
(SIG) Awards for 2003-2004                           in Residence (FIR) positions for fiscal year
                                                     2004. These grants are awarded to institutions
Continued                                            of Higher Education in the State to reduce
                                                     teacher shortages in areas specific to special
for a project to further implement scientifically
                                                     educational supports and services. CLL’s grant
based and educational researched instructional
                                                     proposal demonstrated that their pool of
practices to improve academic and social
                                                     qualified student applicants exceeds program
development outcomes for children with autism
                                                     capacity due to limited numbers of available
at the district level. SAU #48, including
                                                     faculty. The planned outcome is to increase
districts of Campton, Ellsworth, Holderness,
                                                     the number of qualified special education
Pemi-Baker, Plymouth, Rumney, Thornton,
                                                     teachers in New Hampshire.
Waterville Valley, and Wentworth was
awarded a grant to provide an intensive case
method approach through a year long seminar
in advanced diagnostic procedures and
prescriptive teaching to special educators and       GOT RESOURCES?
psychologist to better serve students with
language-based learning disorders. The               The State Family-School-Community
Hanover School District proposal provides            Partnership Team would like to share some
intensive training and monthly support to            great resources regarding best practices in
teachers from various participating Upper            family/school/community partnerships. These
Valley School Districts (Hanover, Plainfield,        include:
Lebanon, Orford, Lyme) in the School Attuned          Parents Involved in Education (paper
Program which is a nationally recognized                 newsletter)
professional development and service delivery         Partnerships for Academic Success in
program that helps educators acquire the                 School (paper newsletter)
knowledge, skills, and a system of innovative         Family-School Partnerships List Serve
tools, to meet the diverse learning needs of K-          (on-line)
12 students. Campton School District started          Type 2 Newsletter (electronic national
their grant work this summer utilizing                   newsletter)
educationally researched promising practices          Parent Partnership “e-briefs” (electronic
and technology in the area of reading                    National mini-newsletter)
comprehension and fluency for students grades
1-8 through a summer school technology               Interested individuals and members of parent
program and an after school program actively         and/or community groups are encouraged to
involving parents to maximize students               contact Amy Jenks at 603-271-3842 or
learning opportunities and reading          regarding these items.
performance. Newmarket School District’s             Please provide email address for electronic
project this year will be to implement an            resources and/or mailing address for paper
efficient, cost-effective, statistically valid and   newsletters and indicate which resource(s) you
reliable method of student performance data          would like to receive. All of these resources
collection, management and reporting system          may be useful to parents, schools, and
to decide what actions to take to inform             community partnerships.
instruction, change practice, and maximize
learning for Newmarket’s Elementary School
students K-5.

                                                                                     SIG NEWSLETTER 5
                                                    positive direction displayed by the students
Lebanon School District                             who had pro-actively researched their own
Features Active Student                             career fields of interest.

and Parent Participation                            All sophomores are required to take Teen
                                                    Roles, a course that emphasizes personal
in Career Assessment,                               growth and development from a teen point of
Guidance and Counseling                             view. The students are then introduced to CX
                                                    Online and Choices which is incorporated into
Lebanon High School, Lebanon, New                   the sophomore interview unit. After learning
Hampshire is located in the Upper Connecticut       to use the program they are encouraged to use
River Valley. With a total enrollment of 740,       it at home with their parents in preparation for
including students from the Grantham and            other assignments in this unit.
Plainfield School Districts, the high school has
been an active and enthusiastic participant in      Parents of juniors and seniors can take
the Department of Education’s Career                advantage of a series of monthly informational
Assessment, Guidance and Counseling Project         meetings offered by the Guidance Department.
(CAG&C) since January of 2001.                      Both students and parents may also access
                                                    Choices and CX Online from their home
In May of 2002, Dr. Charles Robinson,               computers. In October of last year, sixty
CAG&C Consultant with the Department of             parents attended the informational meeting,
Education’s State Improvement Grant, met            were given a brief overview, and then hands-on
with the project staff and counselors from the      practice. David Faulkner, Guidance
high school’s guidance department to                Department Head, stated, “I was impressed
demonstrate two web-based software programs         with the response and involvement. Parents
being piloted this past school year - Choices       reported what a positive way it was to be
and CX Online. These programs have been             involved with their children. They are looking
used almost daily in the guidance office.           forward to the next step of visiting workplaces
When students are unsure about their career         and colleges.”
interests, the counselors introduce and explain
the Career Finder on CX Online, or the              The opportunities for hands-on applications of
Interest Profiler on Choices. When students         knowledge acquired and skills developed
have compiled a list of occupations matching        through the CAG&C Project is an exciting and
their interests and skills, counselors assist in    well received addition to Lebanon High
finding careers that are the most interesting and   School’s quality programs intended to support
appropriate for them. The information is then       all students, those with disabilities and those at
used by the students in determining high            risk as well as enhance the development of
school course selections, assisting with college    careers and other post-secondary options for
searches and/or exploring the job bank for          all.
employment opportunities. Each student
completes a comprehensive project where they
learn the application process for college or
employment, and write a personal resume. The
unit culminates with a one-on-one interview
with a college representative, business
employer, or possibly a military recruiter.
Interviewers were impressed with the sense of

                                                                                       SIG NEWSLETTER 6
                                                        reported problems obtaining knowledge
Self-Advocacy in the News                               about their rights under laws like IDEA and
from the Eaton Coull                                    the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)
                                                        of 1990.
Learning Group
                                                       Parents interviewed in site visits reported
GAO Reports to Congress that Students                   problems helping their child navigate the
Require Self-advocacy Training to Improve               transition process from high school into
Transition Outcomes                                     the adult world.
The importance of self-advocacy training for           Teachers reported that in the area of IDEA
students with disabilities has been highlighted         youth transition, more than half rarely, if
by a July 2003 report from the United States            ever, coordinate referrals to adult
General Accounting Office (GAO). The GAO                service providers.
gathered its data from a number of sources,
including surveys, interviews and visits with          Three factors that may limit IDEA youth
state officials, teachers, parents and students.        participation in federal transition services
                                                        include (1) limitations in program capacity
The report set out to determine the proportion          to serve the eligible population, (2) youth
of IDEA students completing high school,                and family fears that employment income
transition problems being reported, and the             may jeopardize access to other public
types of transition services provided. Chief            assistance and (3) a lack of awareness
among the report’s findings was that                    about the availability of the transition
“transition problems affecting IDEA youth               resources.
include those related to self-advocacy
training and insufficient information about            Dropout rates remained stable around
the transition process.”                                the 30 per cent mark for IDEA students
                                                        between 1997 to 2001 (the scope of the
Key points from the GAO report are:                     study).
   Research shows that many youth with             For education professionals, parents and
    disabilities have difficulties developing the   students seeking an effective self-advocacy
    necessary attitudes and skills to prepare for   program for those with learning disabilities
    their lives after graduation, but suggests      and/or ADHD, The Eaton Coull Learning
    that youth who obtain self-determination        Group’s Transitions series offers an innovative
    skills are more likely to achieve positive      and effective self-advocacy program, designed
    education and employment outcomes.              to inform, motivate and empower youth with
                                                    learning differences to reach their full
   State Directors of Special Education in 24
    states reported that less than half of IDEA
    students received self-advocacy training        To find out more about ECLG’s programs,
    while in high school.                           visit
   Youth in one survey reported a lack of
    self-advocacy training as a major
    concern. They cited problems identifying
    and learning how to ask for specific            To download the full GAO report in PDF
    accommodations needed to succeed in             format, go to:
    school and the workplace. They also   

                                                                                      SIG NEWSLETTER 7
           State Improvement Grant (SIG)
   Community Alliance Reform Effort-New Hampshire
                     (CARE NH)
     Local Systems of Care and Student Outcomes
As CARE-NH prepares to enter its fourth year, the Outcomes Study continues to track placement
and service information. The Outcomes Study is coordinated through the Psychiatric Research
Center (PRC) of Dartmouth Medical School. Among the data collected is information on
enrollment, student placements, referral sources, agencies involved at time of referral, and the
number of students returning from out-of-home/community placements.

The goal of the collaborative work being done by the SIG and CARE-NH is to design and provide a
System of Care to children with disabilities and their families through community and school based
services. The primary focus of grant activities is to provide necessary services and supports in the
home, school and community in order that students with Serious Emotional Disorder (SED), who
might otherwise need a residential placement, are able to live at home and attend community

CARE-NH Regional Collaboratives
The three pilot SIG/CARE-NH sites include the Greater Manchester area, Berlin/Gorham and
Littleton/Lancaster/Woodsville. CARE-NH Regional Collaboratives operate in each of these areas
providing focus, leadership and financial administration to regional activities and services. Members
of regional collaboratives include parents, students, community mental health providers, school
officials, state child protection officials, local police and juvenile justice authorities and community
and business partners. The staff of each collaborative includes a full-time Regional Collaborative
Coordinator, a part-time Cultural Competence Coordinator, and a part-time Administrative

Results for Students, Families and Communities
The development of local Systems of Care requires a high level of commitment from all partners:
students, families, schools, agencies and other community partners. Improved outcomes demand
consistent and persistent efforts. “We work until it works” is a guiding principle as wraparound
teams look to support individual students and their families in respectful, culturally competent
ways. As each wraparound team works to serve individuals, the System of Care gains ground at the
collaborative level and at the state level. Placement decisions are based on student needs, family
strengths and school and community resources. In cases where placement decisions involve the
courts and/or child protection services, the goal remains to create a plan in which the student will
live and go to school in his or her home community. Residential and out-of-district day program
placements are made with an eye toward returning the student to the home community as soon as
possible. When a residential or out-of-district day placement is made, the wraparound team
considers the strategies and services which will need to be in place upon the student’s return.
CARE-NH seeks to shorten the length-of-stay in residential placements and to return students to
their families, friends and communities. Building community capacity to support students with
intensive-level needs is the work of developing Systems of Care.

                                                                                          SIG NEWSLETTER 8

 CARE-NH Enrollment – Through 6/30/03

  Region             Total Eligible         Total            Total Returned     % Returned from
                                        Placements *        from Placements       Placements
  Berlin                   41                11                     7               63.64%
  Littleton                37                12                     5               41.67%
  Manchester               85                38                    11               28.95%
       Total              163                61                    23               37.70%

 *Total Student Placements (students in out-of-district programs, includes day and residential
 programs.) This number includes students in placement at time of referral to CARE-NH, those
 placed after eligibility for CARE-NH was determined and those eligible students who were placed
 and then returned.

 Outcomes Mean More Than Numbers
 CARE-NH Regional Collaborative activities include family events, teen leadership training and
 events, professional development and training for families, educators and service providers.
 Increasing the capacity of communities to serve their students and families results in improved
 student outcomes at home, in school and in the community; strengthens families and the family
 support systems, helps to develop stronger school cultures to support all students and assists with
 preparing students for post-school work and/or education.

                          Helpful Mental Health Web Sites
NH Center for Effective Behavioral Interventions and Supports (NH CEBIS).

NAMI – New Hampshire: National Alliance for the Mentally Ill:

Great list of mental health resource sites:

Related mental health links:

Reasonable accommodations for people with psychiatric disabilities: an online resource for employers
and educators:

Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law:

Center for Effective Collaboration and Practice:

Federation of Families for Children’s Mental Health:

                                                                                          SIG NEWSLETTER 9

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