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Description: Each self-paced professional learning session is offered at no cost to Virginia public school educators and provides 3-5 hours of professional learning. These sessions guide educators in learning about specific HLPs through videos that model exemplar teacher behaviors. Educators may enroll in any of the following professional learning sessions described below: Enroll in School Leaders, Administrators, and Instructional Coaches: Strategies for Teacher Retention & Support...
Description: Based on the work of the CEEDAR Center and Council for Exceptional Children, the GMU TTAC Team has created High Leverage Practice Crosswalks in the areas of Math, Literacy and Transition to support stakeholders in developing personalized professional learning and targeted support, with the goal of bridging research into “practical” classroom practice to improve performance outcomes. The HLP Crosswalks are dynamic documents that will be periodically updated with the most current...
Description: The 2022 Virginia Assistive Technology, Tools, and Strategies (VATTS) Resources will guide the IEP team through the consideration and documentation process. These resources replace the previous versions of the AT Consideration and Resource Guide. VATTS: Consideration and Assessment Guidance Document (PDF) - Guidance for school divisions in the consideration and assessment of AT, including planning and implementing those services for students with disabilities. VATTS: Consideration...
Description: With the passage of the Virginia Literacy Act (VLA) in the 2022 General Assembly, Virginia is taking the lead nationwide to improve early literacy outcomes for Virginia’s young learners. Through the VLA, the Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) will support school divisions through a multi-year effort with tools, resources, technical assistance and funding.
Description: This guide designed to support professionals and families in understanding assistive technology (AT) and identifying possible AT tools for students from preschool through high school. (Updated 9/2023) “I have severe dyslexia and it's hard for me to read and write. In the eighth grade, I could not write down a single word. The first time I used a program with voice recognition, I wrote a whole short story. Using AT means I can do things myself and I don't have to depend on someone else to...
Description: It is never too early to consider assistive technology supports and services. The following resources will assist you in exploring AT and AAC for young children. Check out these Professional Learning Possibilities on TTAC Online: AT/AAC to support language, play, literacy, and early math skills **TechKnowledgy 2016-17 Archived Webinar: Technology Use in Early Childhood Special Education: Teaching the Swipe Generation Adapted Books  Resource: How do I use Adapted books to promote...
Description: Families play a crucial role in preparing their child for college and careers through valuable work-based learning (WBL) experiences. WBL facilitates supervised experiences for students with disabilities organized by schools and vocational rehabilitation agencies in real work settings. These experiences help students develop interests and skills for employment. Work-based learning experiences connect classroom learning and real-world work to improve students’ chances of securing...
Description: Elementary Instructional Playbook - This website comes from the Jordan School District in Utah and offers some excellent examples of constructing an instructional playbook. There are lots of great resources to help you to create your own school or division playbook.  Video Creating an Instructional Playbook - This instructional video shares the steps involved in creating an instructional playbook for your team, school, or division.
Description: This course, Intensifying Instruction: What Teachers Need to Know, focuses on reviewing and intensifying instruction. It is part of a series covering instructional practices. These practices were identified through an extensive, systematic meta-analysis* of the high-leverage practices for students with disabilities. Those who enroll in this interactive course will be able to do the following: Identify when to intensify instruction or intervention to support the development and implementation of...
Description: This section provides Parents & Families with practical ideas and strategies to help with reading and writing based on what works.
Description: 10 Key Policies and Practices for Social-Emotional Learning provides guidance for district and school administrators considering adopting a SEL program. Individual teachers in schools without schoolwide or districtwide programs will also find these basic principles helpful in promoting a positive classroom environment.
Description: Explicit instruction is an evidence-based practice that any teacher can use in his or her own math class to engage learners and ensure that they are mastering the material. A key component of explicit instruction is making sure to ask a variety of questions, both low level and high level. In How to Ask the Right Questions in Math, Erica Mason, from the University of Missouri, discusses the different types of questions and why both are so critical to ensuring that all students are learning. In...
Description: Fostering Student Engagement - Sense of belonging and a supportive classroom and school community are the foundation of student engagement. Building onto that foundation with strategies to support SEL, cognition, and content factors is a great next step. Engage students in digital learning environments, either in-school or virtual, by supporting their social and emotional development, fostering relationships with you and classmates, involving families, and building practices such as...
Description: Quick Guide For Reading Assessment  - When assessing emerging readers, this progression should be utilized from the bottom of the progression up, with new assessment measures added and analyzed as they become developmentally appropriate. When assessing older students in third grade or beyond, the analysis should start at the top of the progression with reading comprehension and fluency measures, then down through the foundational sub-skills as needed.
Description: Management and Routines includes: Managing Materials Be Kind Beginning of the Day Communication Independent Work Time Safety & Transitions
Description: Resilience for Kids With Dyslexia, Learning and Attention Issues - Hear from Fumiko Hoeft, M.D., Ph.D., a psychiatrist and a cognitive neuroscientist, about how resilience can help kids with dyslexia succeed in school and in life. Learn how you as a parent can build resilience by showing support, providing mentorship, focusing on strengths, and building social/emotional resilience. With these tips, you can create a resilience framework for your child with learning and attention issues....
Description: Using Children’s Literature to Teach Social Skills - Children with disabilities, particularly learning disabilities, do not always make friends as effortlessly and easily as do their nondisabled peers. Through the use of children’s literature, children with learning disabilities can be taught valuable skills that will enable them to make and maintain friendships. This article (a) describes a strategy incorporating children’s literature for teaching friendship skills and...
Description: Using Read-Alouds to Support Social and Emotional Learning - In elementary school, interactive read-alouds are commonly used to build various literacy skills, such as students’ listening comprehension, background knowledge, vocabulary, and understanding of language structures. Beyond their academic benefits, however, read-alouds can also serve as a support for developing social and emotional learning (SEL) skills.  In fact, teachers can integrate read-alouds related to SEL into...
Description: The Reading League Compass: Providing Direction in the Science of Reading  - The science of reading marketplace is difficult to navigate and digest. It is often full of misinformation that makes educators, educational leaders, and decision-makers vulnerable to implementing practices that are somehow labeled as “science of reading,” yet they are not aligned with the scientific evidence base. The Reading League Compass provides reliable and understandable guidance for a variety of...
Description: The Providing Immediate Specific Feedback and Maintaining a Brisk Pace module is the third in a set of four course modules focused on explicit instruction. This module focuses on providing immediate specific feedback and maintaining a brisk pace. The module begins with a review of the explicit instruction model and describes how the supporting practices can be used to maximize student engagement. In this module, educators will learn about: How the supporting practices maximize engagement How to...
Description: Dott, Alphabott, and the Alphabotteers are teaching Dusty the Dog to read. That’s what makes them Reading Buddies! Combining the science of reading with lots of laughs, Reading Buddies is the fun way to teach aspiring readers the foundational components of reading.
Description: The Digital Promise Instructional Coaching Playbook is designed to help schools and districts build and sustain effective coaching programs. A successful coaching program is the result of a strong leadership team composed of district and school administrators as well as instructional coaches. Why Teachers Need Coaches explains what instructional coaching is and explores five reasons teachers need coaches. This section will help you make the case for establishing coaching in your school or...
Description: An Instructional Playbook: How to Build Your Own includes all the materials you need to get started on curating, creating, and collaborating!  What is an instructional playbook? An instructional playbook is meant as a guiding document for coaching, training, and professional learning facilitated by ITRTs or instructional coaches.  An instructional playbook should be digital and shared with all teachers.  The Virginia Department of Education strongly recommends that the...
Description: As part of Child Find under special education, school divisions are required to have procedures, including timelines, to document the screening of children enrolled in the division, including transfers from out of state (8VAC20-81-50 C.1.). These screenings must occur in the areas of hearing, vision, scoliosis, speech, voice, language, and fine and gross motor functions.   The updated Required School Screenings Guidance Document for Special Educators provides users with regulatory...
Description: Self-determination, looked at through the lenses of competence, autonomy, and relatedness. Competence is feeling like you have the skills needed to complete a goal. Autonomy is the ability to control what happens to you in any given situation. Relatedness is feeling a sense of belonging.
Description: Supporting the Educational Goals of Young Adults with Mental Health Conditions - College education or training can be the passport to economic self-sufficiency for young adults with a mental health condition. Research has shown that young adults with mental health conditions struggle to complete high school and college more so than any other disability group. However, post-secondary education or training is possible for anyone, especially accompanied by the proper accommodations, assistive...
Description: This tip sheet provides tips for how students (ages of 3 to 21) who receive special education services in public schools can take a leadership role in their individualized education programs (IEP) and transition planning. Learn more about IEPs and transition services in our "Teens on IEPs: Making My `Transition' Services Work for Me" tip sheet. Learn about the Translating Evidence to Support Transitions (TEST) project at A Spanish version of this tip sheet is available...
Description: Student Rubric for IEP Participation - This rubric is simply a tool that can help you figure out what you already know and don’t know about the IEP process. The IEP process can get complicated, so this tool helps you know where you can focus your efforts so that you can be more involved in your education. It’s broken into 6 areas: IEP Awareness IEP Participation Knowledge of IEP Content Abilities and Disabilities Awareness Knowledge of Rights and Responsibilities Social and...
Description: ME! Lessons for Teaching Self-Awareness & Self-Advocacy - Self-determination skills, such as self-advocacy and self-awareness, have the potential to increase successful secondary and postsecondary outcomes for students with disabilities. The ME! Lessons for Teaching Self-Awareness and Self-Advocacy curriculum consists of ten units developed for the purpose of teaching critical transition knowledge and skills to high school students with disabilities. Each unit begins with an...
Description: Medicaid has a new program starting in January 2024. It's called Brain Injury Services Targeted Case Management (BIS TCM). This program can help you or your family member find and get medical and other services in your community.
Description: In response to feedback and collaboration with the field, as well as to legislation passed by the Virginia General Assembly, the Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) has released the Video Guide to the Special Education Evaluation Process for Families as additional guidance to support accurate and consistent eligibility determinations and access to special education services across school divisions. These video modules will provide parents, families, and other stakeholders with a brief but...
Description: The Career Planning Toolkit is a resource for educators and counselors supporting students with significant  disabilities through the career planning process. The toolkit uses hands-on activities to help students plan for their careers as they prepare for a successful transition to postsecondary education or employment. The toolkit is acompanion resource for the Center on Transition Innovations’ Get Ready for Your Career course.
Description: IDEA: Assistive Technology Devices and Services for Children With Disabilities Under the IDEA (Jan. 22, 2024) - The Office of Educational Technology and the Office of Special Education Programs are pleased to share the below guidance in support of children with disabilities who need assistive technology (AT) devices and services for meaningful access and engagement in education. A Dear Colleague Letter (Jan. 22, 2024) on the provision of assistive technology devices and services for children...
Description: The Family Resource Center provides information to support children who are struggling with mental health, behavior or learning challenges.
Description: In honor of Virginia Kindness Week, the VDOE is encouraging schools to promote and celebrate kindness during the week of February 11-17, 2024. The purpose of Virginia Kindness Week is to recognize that simple day-to-day acts of kindness enable our schools, communities, and state to be a kinder, safer, healthier, and more inclusive place to live, work, learn, and play. Schools can access resources to plan their Virginia Kindness Week initiatives on the VDOE’s Virginia Kindness Week webpage...
Description: Questions to Ask Your Child's Teacher About Math - Math skills are essential for life– including daily tasks, problem-solving, creativity, career options and more. This resource is intended for parents of students in Grades 3-8, and includes questions to ask your child’s teacher as well as tips and resources to support math at home.
Description: Ultimate Behavior Toolkit: What Works (CIEES at ODU) - The use of evidence-based practices in the classroom is more important than ever. Fortunately, there are many practices that are simple to use. This series will provide a toolkit of strategies to assist school personnel to implement evidence-based practices that promote positive student outcomes.  New - Elementary Videos - These modules will help elementary school teachers with evidence-based strategies for 11 common...
Description: The purpose of ORTIi is to provide technical assistance to Oregon school districts implementing Response to Intervention (RTI) systems that provide targeted, effective instruction to meet the needs of all students and provide the framework to identify students with Specific Learning Disabilities (SLD). The focus of the project is on literacy, early intervention, and the use of evidenced-based practices.
Description: Local school divisions provide special education services for young children, ages two to five, who have developmental delays or disabilities. Depending on the learning needs of the child, these services may be provided in early childhood care and education (ECCE) settings such as Virginia Preschool Initiative, Head Start, Mixed Delivery, child care, and community-based preschool programs. When special education services are provided in ECCE settings, Itinerant Early Childhood Special Education...
Description: Local school divisions provide special education services for young children, ages two to five, who have developmental delays or disabilities. Depending on the learning needs of the child, these services may be provided in high-quality early childhood care and education (ECCE) settings such as Virginia Preschool Initiative, Head Start, Mixed Delivery, child care, and community-based preschool programs. When special education services are provided in ECCE settings, Itinerant Early Childhood...
Description: Intervention Central provides teachers, schools and districts with free resources to help struggling learners and implement Response to Intervention and attain the Common Core State Standards. (A new, streamlined version of this site will be available soon.)
Description: A Guide to Cross-Cutting Concepts - Cross-cutting concepts are a set of overarching big ideas that look and behave similarly across all STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) domain areas. In this document, we define and describe cross-cutting concepts in STEM learning for all young children, including children with disabilities. We provide definitions and examples. Learning progression steps for each cross-cutting concept have been added as well.
Description: A transition guide to help you or someone you love transition to self-determination across all areas of their life. This includes a list of questions to consider from ages 10-22.
Description: Student Self-Evaluation Matrix - QIAT-PS has also developed a set of student quality indicators for assistive technology with an accompanying Student Self-Evaluation Matrix tool for students to rate themselves on their AT skills. The tool is useful to both students struggling to manage AT in higher education settings and for K-12 programs to assist students in enhancing self-awareness and problem solving with AT for better transition outcomes. (QIAT-PS = Quality Indicators for...
Description: Transition services is a term used to describe a set of services provided by schools and State vocational rehabilitation agencies. Both are designed improve post-school outcomes for students and youth with disabilities. The specific transition services VR and schools provide are a little different and designed to work together. The information below is about VR Transition Services, which focus on services related to employment. Transition services provided by State vocational rehabilitation (VR)...
Description: Do you support students as they transition to school or work environments? Check out these Professional Learning Possibilities: **Webshop Title:  [TechKnowledgy 2022-23] Assistive Technology Transition Summit **Webshop Title: [TechKnowledgy 2022-23] Assistive Technology Transition Summit 2  **Webshop Title: Considering Universal Design Across the Transition Assessment Process **Webshop Title: [TechKnowledgy 2017-18] Archived Webinar: Preparing for the Real World...
Description: The wellness wheel is a tool for self exploration that promotes the concept that balance is the key to wellbeing. When it was first conceived by Dr. Bill Hettler, he outlined six dimensions of wellness as markers to help individuals accomplish a well rounded, healthy lifestyle and live a life of value and meaning.  Over time, the wheel has grown to include seven categories. Today, the dimensions on the wellness wheel include: physical, emotional, intellectual, spiritual, environmental,...
Description: Boundaries: What are they and how to develop your own - Setting healthy limits, or boundaries, in our lives allows us to take care of our health and well-being. In this resource, we’ll cover different types of boundaries, how to set them and ways to communicate to others what you will and will not tolerate to protect yourself and take charge of your life. (NAMI = National Alliance on Mental Illness)
Description: The Administration for Community Living (ACL) Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) Technical Assistance and Resource Center’s (TARC) held a webinar (Sept. 28, 2023) on the need for a trauma informed approach and best practice principles for implementing trauma informed screening for brain injury. A trauma informed guide to screening was reviewed and an example of how to implement trauma informed screening was provided using a trauma informed approach with implementing a modified Ohio State...
Description: Information on potential Postsecondary Training Options for students with disabilities: Postsecondary Training Options: FastForward Career Training Program Postsecondary Training Options: United States Military Postsecondary Training Options: Registered Apprenticeships