Norwood Public Schools Special Education Department
Inclusion/Least Restrictive Environment
I.D.E.A. (Individuals with Disabilities Education Act) states that "each public agency shall ensure - (1) That to the maximum extent appropriate children with disabilities ... are educated with children who are nondisabled; and (2) That special classes, separate schooling or other removal of children with disabilities from the regular educational environment occurs only if the nature or severity of the disability is such that education in regular classes with the use of supplementary aids and services cannot be achieved satisfactorily." The purpose of inclusion is to prepare all students to interact with and respect others in a world where everyone is different and has their own unique talents.
All of the options are driven by the least restrictive mandate and operate on inclusion and behavior analysis principles. Student behavior and academic progress is analyzed through data collection. Students are included in General Education at every opportunity as opposed to a pull-out service delivery model.
Language Based Learning Disability (LBLD)
- Students who have substantial difficulty with language based concepts, including but not limited to decoding, fluency, reading comprehension, writing, and sound-symbol relationships.
- Direct systematic multi-sensory, instructional approach.
- Executive functioning skills: planning, flexibility, tolerance, methods, social and problem solving skills. This is a highly-structured language based program, that implements specially designed instruction which is individualized based on student needs.
- A Speech and Language Pathologist will be assigned to the classroom to collaborate with teachers and service providers to develop the best strategies for a successful program.
- All academic instruction is aligned with the Massachusetts Curriculum Frameworks and highly individualized according to specific goals and benchmarks on the student's IEP.
- Students participate in general education classes as deemed appropriate by the TEAM.
Therapeutic, Academic, Supportive Classroom (TASC)
- Students with challenges around regulating behavior, dealing with peers and adults, and reading situations for appropriateness will be well suited for this classroom.
- Academics and the ability to complete work is more successful with coping strategies to deal with emotional and behavioral concerns.
- A School Adjustment Counselor will be assigned to this classroom to collaborate with teachers and other service providers to develop and implement positive behavior supports, behavior plans, and Functional Behavior Assessments.
Pragmatic Learning Classroom (PLC)Program
- Students with communication challenge (listening, speaking, reading, writing, and social pragmatics skills).
- The services include a combination of supported inclusion, discrete trial sessions, small group activities and incidental teaching strategies to students on the spectrum. The program is based on the principles of Applied Behavior Analysis with a focus on reinforcement system and consistent behavior management programs.
- Compensatory strategies are worked on first in a small group and then generalized to other settings (larger classroom, home, natural environment).
- A Speech and Language Pathologist extensively collaborates with this program around social pragmatics skills.
Practical Application of Curriculum and Skills (PACS) (L.E.A.D.)
- Students with Multiple Disabilities and Cognitive Impairment are the population of this classroom.
- Basic Academic Skills, Functional Living Skills and pre-vocational to vocational training is offered through the course of this strand (1-12, Post -Secondary).
- The Special Education Teacher, Speech and Language Pathologist, Occupational Therapist and Physical Therapist collaborate to create programming that embeds all components throughout the course of the day.
*Special Education Teachers determine appropriate methodologies for carrying out IEPs that provide appropriate benefits.
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