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Special Education Programs

Please view all of our Special Education Program Descriptions for Special Education below, or click here for a printable PDF version.

Special Education Programs and Descriptions

  • Program Location Brookside Elementary, Rowayton Elementary, and Wolfpit Elementary
    Class Size Not to exceed district class size limits
    Age Range Elementary K-5
    Curriculum General Education Core Curriculum Classes
    Program Services Special Education Teacher, General Education Teacher. Additional related services including Speech and Language, BCBA, OT, PT are provided as mandated by individual IEP’s.
    Program Description Integrated co-teaching services means the provision of specially designed instruction and academic instruction provided to a group of students with disabilities and non-disabled students. The maximum number of students with disabilities receiving integrated coteaching services in a class shall be determined in accordance with the students’ individual needs as recommended on their IEP’s. School personnel assigned to each class shall minimally include a special education teacher and a general education teacher. Additional personnel, including supplementary school personnel, such as teaching assistants, assigned to such classes by the district, may not serve as the special education teacher.
    Entry Criteria Using standardized and diagnostic test data, curriculum-based measures, state assessments, and other classroom measures, the student displays mild to moderate disabilities in reading, writing, math, self-management, or study skills which interfere with the ability to benefit from general education with differentiation, accommodations, and other general education interventions.
    Exit Criteria Using standardized and diagnostic test data, curriculum-based measures, state assessments, and other classroom measures, gaps in academic and/or study skills have decreased and the student can benefit from general education with differentiation, accommodations, and other general education interventions.

     

  • Program Location Reading Intervention Clinic
    Class Size Ratio Maximum 4:1
    Grade K-12
    Curriculum Multi-sensory approaches to reading
    Program Services Reading trained Special Education Teacher, General Education Teacher, or Speech and Language Pathologist
    Program Description The Reading Intervention Clinic offers direct explicit special education reading instruction using research-based methodology using OrtonGillingham-based strategies. This highly-structured program directly teaches the structure of language to students who have been unable to learn with other teaching strategies, or who may require multisensory instruction in reading and written expression.
    Entry Criteria Students display average cognitive potential and vocabulary, and exhibit specific learning disabilities in reading decoding and fluency which significantly impact reading comprehension and display characteristics including: Significant decoding disability Significant reading fluency delays Significant difficulty applying previously learned rules of phonics Eligibility may be determined by an individual diagnostic screening tool, such as the Wilson Assessment of Decoding and Encoding (WADE).
    Exit Criteria Students will exit the program when they demonstrate increased ability to decode, read fluently, and have mastered specific reading strategies using Curriculum-Based Measures and/or the WADE.

     

  • Program Location Tracey Magnet School; Roton Middle School, Brien McMahon High School and Norwalk High School
    Class Size Ratio Maximum number of students 12
    Grade K-12
    Curriculum Common Core Curriculum
    Program Services Special Education Teacher, 2 Teaching Assistant per class, full time Psychologist at secondary, or part time psychologist or Social Worker at elementary, District-wide BCBA and consulting DBT coach. Additional related services including Speech and Language, OT, PT are provided as mandated by individual IEP’s.
    Program Description Project SUCCESS Classes are staffed with highly trained special education teachers. Special education is offered in special classes for core academic areas and skills support using the principles of Applied Behavior Analysis. Supervision during electives and lunch is programmatically provided. Students may participate in general education classes or co-curricular activities with programmatic support as needed. The program provides weekly individual and group counseling and daily in-class skills training using research-based techniques, including Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT). Development of pragmatic social/language skills via language intervention strategies embedded in the curriculum. Direct instruction leading to the development of skills in all academic areas consistent with the common core curriculum and Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS). Development of positive social skills focusing on responsible decision-making and positive social interactions. Data-driven program-wide behavior intervention programmatic approach using a token economy which may include a ‘level system’ that leads towards increased student responsibility and decreased need for supervision. Individual Functional Behavior Assessments (FBA) and Behavior Intervention Plans (BIP). Twice monthly on-site consultation with the DBT coach and monthly consultation with psychiatrist. Dedicated weekly team meetings. Monthly parent counseling and training. With family consent, consultation with outside therapists and/or agencies that is individualized to specific student needs.
    Entry Criteria Student exhibits disabilities which impact behavioral, social, and/or selfmanagement skills that significantly interfere with the ability to benefit from the general education setting despite accommodations, aids, and supports. Average to above average cognitive potential. Mild to moderate academic deficits may exist as demonstrated by math and reading assessments, standardized test scores, individual achievement assessments, and/or dayto-day functioning. Students may be classified as ED, OHI, or Autism; and students may have psychiatric disorders, such as but not limited to: depression, OCD, phobias, ADHD, anxiety disorders, Autism Spectrum Disorder. Students are typically emotionally fragile, and do not typically display physically aggressive or physically assaultive behaviors that cannot be brought under instructional control using programmatic resources. Student requires intensive supervision, individually developed, data-driven behavior management programs, therapeutic, cognitive-behavioral, and/or social skill interventions.
    Exit Criteria Data demonstrate that the student has developed improved self-management and independence skills requiring less supervision and/or explicit special education instruction. Data support that the student can benefit from a less intensive special education program, including increased participation in general education classes. The student has met the criteria for a regular high school diploma or reached the age of 21, whichever comes first.

     

  • Program Location ½ day Pre-k NECC; Wolfpit full day
    Class Size Ratio  Maximum of 8 students
    Age Range Grades Pre-k – 5
    Curriculum Modified and Adapted Curriculum
    Program Services Special Education Teacher, Teaching Assistants trained in ABA; additional teaching assistants per IEP, Consultation from Psychologist or Social Worker, and BCBA. Additional related services including Speech and Language, OT, PT and Assistive Technology are provided as mandated by individual IEP’s.
    Program Description The program uses the principles of Applied Behavior Analysis including Discrete Trial Analysis across all domains, including academic, communication, social, and behavioral to make data-driven decisions and recommendations for instruction and services. The program is designed to help students acquire academic foundation and communication skills. The program provides intensive, direct, explicit special education instruction across all domains including language, academic, independence, social, adaptive, and self-management skills, using individual and small group datadriven instruction and discrete trial teaching The program offers co-curricular and exposure to adapted and individualized core curriculum commensurate with student abilities Integration with students in general education classes and school-wide cocurricular activities to provide appropriate social and language role models Access to technology, including computer-based instruction and devices to promote universal design using a experiential approach to learning Development of pragmatic social/language skills via on-going language intervention strategies embedded in the curriculum as needed. Regular language services delivered in the classroom setting to support pragmatic language, peer relationships, and independence during lunch Development of positive social skills and interactions focusing on responsible decision-making and positive social interactions Data-driven, behavior intervention programmatic approach using a token economy Individualized behavior intervention plans and discrete trial instruction as appropriate A minimum of 2 hours on site consultation with BCBA, as well as collaborative transdisciplinary support Monthly supervisory team meetings Monthly parent counseling and training. With family consent, consultation with outside therapists and/or agencies that is individualized to specific student needs.
    Entry Criteria

    Preschool; Students demonstrate a moderate to severe delay across several domains, including cognitive, language, social, physical or adaptive functioning, using standardized tests, observations, and developmental checklists. The student’s needs and goals cannot be met in a less intensive special education program.

    Elementary; Moderate to severe deficits including multiple disabilities, developmental disabilities, intellectual disabilities, language disabilities, and/or autism which interfere with the ability to benefit from instruction in the general education setting.

    Significantly delayed academic skills Ability to work as part of a dyad and a small cooperative group with individualized support as necessary Student can navigate and be safely

    Exit Criteria Development of verbal behavior and self-management skills which enable the student to benefit from instruction in a less intensive education setting with appropriate modifications and supports

     

  • Program Location Brien McMahon High School; Norwalk High School
    Class Size Ratio  Maximum of 12 students
    Age Range High School
    Curriculum Modified and Adapted Curriculum
    Program Services Special Education Teacher, Teaching Assistant, Teacher Aide, Transition Coordinator, Job Coach, Travel Trainer, Consultation from Psychologist, Social Worker, and/or District-wide Behavior Consultant
    Program Description

    The program is designed for students to acquire functional literacy in reading and math, career-readiness skills, and self-determination skills.

    Foundations provides direct explicit special education instruction that provides academic intervention and skill development for independent living and self-management.

    The program offers community-based experiences and exposure to adapted and individualized core curriculum commensurate with student abilities

    Access to travel-training

    Career readiness skills and experiences in a variety of settings, including a restaurant-based culinary arts program, individually identified supported work experiences in a medical center and local businesses

    Integration of students in general education activities to provide appropriate social and language role models

    Access to technology, including computer-based instruction and devices to promote universal design using a experiential approach to learning

    Development of pragmatic social/language skills via daily language intervention strategies embedded in the curriculum as needed.

    Language skills instruction delivered in the classroom setting.

    Development of positive social skills focusing on responsible decision-making and positive social interactions

    Data-driven, behavior intervention programmatic approach using a token economy

    Individualized Behavior Intervention Plans (BIPs) which may include discrete trial instruction as appropriate

    Monthly on-site consultation with the district-wide behavioral consultant and collaborative training focus groups

    Monthly team meetings

    Development of adaptive living skills including: hygiene, money management, shopping, cooking, laundry, housekeeping, leisure and personal safety.

    With family or student consent, consultation with community-based agencies and adult services providers

    Foundations provides a coordinated set of transition activities and meaningful and measurable p

    Entry Criteria

    Severe disabilities including autism, intellectual and/or language disabilities which interfere with the ability to benefit from core curriculum in the general education setting

    Students may exhibit hearing and/or physical disabilities which can be addressed programmatically or by related service personnel

    Students require intensive individualized, data-drive instruction, constant supervision, and/or physical or visual prompts

    Student can be safely included in a mainstream school with individualized support as needed

    Students are eligible for the CT Alternate Assessment

    Exit Criteria Increased in academic skills to enable to benefit from instruction in the core curriculum with modifications
  • Program Location Community-Based at Norwalk Community College
    Class Size Ratio  Maximum of 12 students
    Age Range 18-21
    Curriculum Career-Readiness Curriculum
    Program Services

    On site Special Education Teacher and Paraprofessional/Job Coach. Daily embedded job development and job coaching from Employment Specialist/Skills Trainer from Abilities Beyond. Availability of Travel Trainer (Kennedy Center), Transition Coordinator, Consultation from Psychologist, Social Worker, and/or BCBA.

    Consultation and direct service delivery for follow along services and supports from Bureau of Rehabilitation Services (BRS), Department of Developmental Services (DDS) Bureau of Education and Services for the Blind from CT for students eligible for service from the State Agencies.

    Program Description

    Project SEARCHTM is a nationally recognized high school transition program for 18-21 year olds with cognitive and developmental disabilities that provides training and education leading to competitive employment and selfdetermination skills. It is a community-based career development program and serves as an alternative for students in their last year of high school. The cornerstone of Project SEARCHTM is total immersion in a large Business. Five days a week, students participate in Project SEARCH classroom instruction at Norwalk Community College to develop independent employability skills, soft skills, and self-management in the NCC classroom, and to develop job skills decision making skills for complex systematic tasks while participating in internship experiences on-site in a variety of departments. The goal of the program is upon completion, students will be ready to enter competitive or supported employment for a minimum of 20 hours a week. Project SEARCH may serve as the Capstone experience towards HS graduation.

    If necessary, high school credit recovery or remedial functional academic intervention is available via blended learning (on-line learning facilitated by the Project SEARCH teacher) in the Project SEARCH classroom.

    Entry Criteria

    18-21 year olds with significant cognitive and/or developmental disabilities.

    Can safely be integrated into a community-based business environment.

    Has the potential to work in competitive or supported employment upon exiting.

    Exit Criteria The student has met the criteria for a regular high school diploma including 26 credits and a Capstone experience AND has obtained competitive employment, enrolled in a College program as a matriculated student or is attending an adult secondary training program; OR at the end of the school year in which the student has reached the age of 21, whichever comes first.
  • Program Location Fox Run Elementary and Ponus Ridge Middle School
    Class Size Ratio  Not to exceed 5 students per cohort
    Age Range Fox Run 2nd and 3rd grade and Ponus Ridge Middle School 6th grade
    Curriculum General Education Core Curriculum Classes, Social Skills, and pragmatic language
    Program Services Special Education Teacher, General Education Teacher. Speech and Language Specialist, part time psychologist or Social Worker, District-wide BCBA and NEST consultant from NYU. Additional related services including OT, PT are provided as mandated by individual IEP’s.
    Program Description

    Integrated co-teaching services means the provision of specially designed instruction and academic instruction provided to a group of students with disabilities and non-disabled students.

    The maximum number of students with disabilities receiving integrated coteaching services in a class shall be determined in accordance with the students’ individual needs as recommended on their IEP’s.

    School personnel assigned to each class shall minimally include a special education teacher and a general education teacher.

    Development of pragmatic social/language skills via language intervention strategies embedded in the curriculum.

    Direct instruction leading to the development of skills in all academic areas consistent with the common core curriculum and Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS).

    Development of positive social skills focusing on responsible decision-making and positive social interactions.

    Dedicated weekly team meetings.

    Entry Criteria Using standardized and diagnostic test data, curriculum-based measures, state assessments, and other classroom measures, the student displays mild to moderate Autism and demonstrate deficits in areas such as communication, social skills, executive functioning, self-management, or study skills which interfere with the ability to benefit from general education with differentiation, accommodations, and other general education interventions.
    Exit Criteria Using standardized and diagnostic test data, curriculum-based measures, state assessments, and other classroom measures, gaps in academic and/or study skills have decreased and the student can benefit from general education with differentiation, accommodations, and other general education interventions.
  • Program Location Wolfpit (2-3), Naramake (4-5), West Rocks Middle School (6)
    Class Size Ratio  Maximum Group Size 12: 1+1 Paraprofessional
    Age Range

    Grades 2-3 Wolfpit

    Grades 4-5 Naramake

    Grade 6 West Rocks

    Curriculum Direct Explicit Instruction in ELA and Math using multi-sensory approaches and Common Core General Education Curriculum across content areas.
    Program Services Special Education Teacher, Paraprofessional (S/L/A)
    Program Description

    Part-time Special Education Classes providing direct explicit instruction in ELA reading, writing and math. The reading instruction uses research based methodology of Orton Gillingham based strategies. This highly structured program directly teaches the structure of language, reading and writing to students who have been unable to benefit with other teaching strategies and who may require multi-sensory instruction in reading, writing and math.

    The Special Education Program staff also provides specially designed instruction, accommodations and academic intervention to students with disabilities in the general education classroom for other core curriculum areas including social studies and/or science. Consultation (direct and indirect) are provided in electives and specials.

    Entry Criteria

    Using standardized and diagnostic test data, curriculum-based measures, state assessments, and other classroom measures, the students display average cognitive potential and exhibit moderate to severe learning disabilities including Dyslexia which may significantly impact decoding, fluency, reading comprehension and written expression. Learning Disabilities may also impact math calculation and problem solving. Students display significant difficulty applying previously learned rules of phonics.

    Students can benefit from special education supports and accommodations in the general education class and curriculum in social studies, science and electives/specials.

    Instruction in study skills and executive order functioning are embedded in the program.

    Exit Criteria Data demonstrates that the student has increased ability to decode, read fluently and have mastered specific reading and writing strategies that can be generalized in the general education classroom with support and accommodations.