Three Strategies for Strengthening Inclusion in Schools

When general education teachers feel overwhelmed and unprepared to support students with Individualized Education Programs (IEPs), the benefits of inclusion can be significantly undermined. To truly embrace inclusion, we must think beyond the logistics of classroom placement and actively cultivate a learning environment where the diverse needs of all learners are acknowledged, affirmed, and celebrated as essential to the vitality and health of our schools.

FASD-informed IEPs: Are they Necessary?

FASD-informed IEPs utilize brain-based approaches to understanding, supporting, and deciding upon appropriate interventions that address the unique needs of the individual. By first understanding how FASD impacts the brain’s – and the rest of the body’s – development, we can tailor the various sections of the IEP to address the student’s unique needs.

Understanding California Education Code §56332: A Guide for Schools and Families

On January 1st, 2023, California’s Senate Bill 1016 became CA Education Code §56332. This law includes Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) as a named condition under the special education eligibility category of Other Health Impairment (OHI). Why is this important? And what does it mean for students, families and educators now that the law is in place?

Baselines vs Present Levels: Is there a Difference?

Individualized Education Programs (IEP) are both the foundation and culmination of team effort to address the needs of a student with a disability. There are many components to an IEP and seemingly as many acronyms. Many terms are used frequently but not necessarily defined meticulously and therefore some inadvertently become misused. Baseline and Present Level of Performance, for example, are often referred to interchangeably. This is understandable, as they are often closely related. There are, however, important distinctions between the two terms; they are not actually synonymous.