Support for Students with Disabilities


SECC provides technical expertise and professional learning opportunities to the GraduateFIRST program in the Special Education Services and Support group of the Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment division, to plan and deliver targeted professional development for program coaches and participating teachers to help them meet the needs of students with disabilities (SWD) in developing literacy skills throughout the state.

This project is in the following state: Georgia.

This project relates to the following ED Priorities:

  • Implementing college- and career-ready standards and aligned, high-quality assessments for all students
  • Building rigorous instructional pathways that support the successful transition of all students from Secondary education to college without the need for remediation, and careers
  • Identifying, recruiting, developing, and retaining highly effective teachers and leaders
  • Identifying and scaling up innovative approaches to teaching and learning that significantly improve student outcomes
  • Using data-based decision-making to improve instructional practices, policies, and student outcomes

icon

icon

icon

Previous Work Updates

2016

October

On October 19, Beth Howard-Brown, SECC director, and Glenda Copeland, SECC Georgia state liaison, participated in a phone call with Deborah Gay, deputy superintendent for Federal Programs and Special Education, and Zelphine Smith-Dixon, director of Special Education, to discuss their interest in examining the work of the various Georgia Learning Resource System (GLRS) centers and determining a consistent role supporting the SSIP plan in Georgia. Smith-Dixon will determine participants from her group and contact Copeland to set a date to begin the process of surveying centers to collect useful data.

March

On March 22, Debbie Gay, GaDOE director, Division for Special Education Services and Supports; Zelphine Smith-Dixon, associate director; and Kachelle White, program manager, Compliance Reviews; met with their Arkansas counterparts to discuss the programs and processes of their work and ways to continue collaborating and learning from each other. Glenda Copeland, SECC Georgia state liaison, worked with staff from the Building State Capacity and Productivity Center, the South Central Comprehensive Center and the California Comprehensive Center to plan and facilitate the sharing sessions in this peer-to-peer visit.

February

There is no activity update for this month. However, there may be a chance of something developing from the peer-to-peer exchange between staff from the Arkansas and Georgia SEAs.

January

There was no activity for this project in January.

2015

July

Glenda Copeland, SECC/AIR senior TA consultant, facilitated an activity session for Debbie Gay, GaDOE director of Special Education, and her staff at the Combined Federal Programs meeting on Wednesday, July 29, in Washington DC. The group experienced use of two tools from the Leading By Convening toolkit that can be used by Georgia’s school districts in designing their equity plans.

March

SECC staff are responding to a request by Zelphine Dixon-Smith, assistant director, Division for Special Education Services and Supports, to identify appropriate technical assistance and professional learning resources to support implementation of the state’s SSIP plan.

February

SECC staff are identifying resources in support of “Multi-Tiered System Supports” in response to a request by Zelphine Dixon-Smith, assistant director, Division for Special Education Services and Supports at the GaDOE.

January

GraduateFIRST coaches are implementing use of the Indistar platform with their schools. A meeting is planned with Drs. Zelphine Smith-Dixon and Margo Habiger to discuss partnering with the REL Southeast's Georgia Charter School Research Alliance in February in the area of special education.

2014

December

GraduateFIRST coaches are implementing the use of the Indistar platform with their schools. SECC staff, in conjunction with the Building State Capacity and Productivity Center, will continue to support GaDOE as needed with implementation.

September

Stephanie Benedict, ADI, Indistar client relations director, presented a training for GraduateFIRST coaches and GaDOE special education staff on the use of the monitoring tool to document their work with districts.

August

The Special Education Services and Support group has determined that GraduateFIRST coaches will begin utilizing the Indistar tool to monitor and manage their work with schools and districts participating in that program. SECC Program Associate Glenda Copeland will participate in a training session for the coaches in September.

July

The Special Education Services and Support group has determined that GraduateFIRST coaches will begin utilizing the Indistar tool to monitor and manage their work with schools and districts participating in that program. Glenda Copeland, SECC Georgia state liaison, will participate in training of the coaches in September 2014.

June

Glenda Copeland, SECC Georgia state liaison, has discussed with Zelphine Smith-Dixon, GaDOE assistant director, providing additional support for the Special Education Services and Support group through training on evidence-based interventions for reading and mathematics. The two plan to meet with the Director Debbie Gay to identify specific strategies for the Year 3 work plan.

May

On May 1, Ramona Chauvin, SECC program associate, presented a secondary workshop for GraduateFIRST coaches and other GaDOE staff in Macon, Georgia. The workshop focused on developing a district and school literacy plan as the most effective strategy to improve literacy for all students, especially for students with disabilities. Glenda Copeland, SECC Georgia state liaison, will explore providing additional support for the program with GaDOE leadership.

April

Julia Causey and Cynde Snider, GaDOE; Laura Brown and Faith Huff, Pioneer RESA; and Glenda Copeland and Ramona Chauvin, SECC, participated in a conference call to review evaluations from the February workshop and to plan adjustments for the May 1 secondary workshop. The team decided that the secondary workshop would focus on developing a district and school literacy plan as the most effective strategy to improve literacy for all students, especially for students with disabilities.

March

Faith Huff shared the evaluations from the February workshop with Julia Causey, Zelphine Dixon Smith, Laura Brown, and SECC Program Associates Glenda Copeland, and Ramona Chauvin. The group scheduled a time to discuss the results and identify adjustments to the agenda for the secondary schools workshop to be held May 1 at Middle Georgia State College.

January

In a telephone conversation on January 28, SECC Program Associates, Glenda Copeland and Ramona Chauvin, discussed the specifics of the first Graduate FIRST literacy workshop with Debbie Gay, Julia Causey, and Cindy Snider, GaDOE Special Education staff, and Laura Brown and Faith Huff, Pioneer RESA. The first workshop will be held February 20 at Macon State College and will focus on elementary strategies.

2013

December

Glenda Copeland, SECC Georgia state liaison, had a follow-up telephone conversation with Georgia staff Zelphine Dixon-Smith, Julia Causey, Laura Brown, and Faith Huff regarding SECC providing three professional learning sessions for GraduateFIRST coaches and invited GaDOE staff. It was agreed that the sessions, focusing on elementary, middle, and high school strategies, would be implemented by GraduateFIRST coaches with follow-up support from SECC. The GraduateFIRST coaches will be supported by SECC staff in delivering the same sessions to participating GraduateFIRST school staff in Summer 2014. Information about the GraduateFirst program is available on the website: http://www.gaspdg.org/news/about-us.

February

Ramona Chauvin, SECC program associate, conducted a workshop focusing on research and strategies that have been demonstrated to be effective with struggling students, especially students with disabilities, on February 20 at the Macon State College campus. Approximately 25 participants from GraduateFirst, RESAs, and GaDOE attended. It was later determined that the middle and high school workshops would be combined and held on May 1.