One of the most popular blog posts in the past year was a link to several resources for writing individualized education program goals aligned to the common core.
I’d like to continue that discussion with special education teachers and experts in a Twitter chat at 8 p.m. ET on Oct. 1 using the hashtag #ewedchat. I would like to keep this chat focused on tools and strategies—there is an important education policy debate to be had about the common core (and my colleagues Andrew Ujifusa and Catherine Gewertz are covering those debates admirably) but many special education teachers are looking for “news they can use” to make their jobs easier, right now.
As food for thought, let me share some previous Education Week resources on the topic:
Consultant Carol Kosnitsky and Barb Van Haren, who is now the director of special education in Wisconsin, were part of an Edweek chat back in November where they talked about IEP alignment and common standards. An informal poll of chat participants showed that fewer than a quarter of them had actually taken part in professional development on writing IEPs and the common core. Now that nearly a year has elapsed, do you feel like you’ve had an opportunity to learn more?
Also in 2013, I wrote a story about the struggle that many educators were feeling as they worked to break the core standards down into actionable goals. Does anyone feel like they have mastered this, or even gotten moderately good at it? What tips would you share with your colleagues?
Both Kosnitsky and Van Haren gave favorable mentions to Goalbook, an online toolkit that walks teachers through the IEP-creation process. Individual teachers can pay for the program, or school systems can purchase it so that it is available districtwide. Have you used this tool, and if not, are there other alternatives that can help teachers draft education plans?
I’m looking forward to a lively and useful discussion! I’ll see you at 8 p.m. Oct. 1. You can follow the hashtag #ewedchat or check out the Education Week Twitter feeds to contribute, and I will compile the best comments into a summary blog post at the end of the chat.
A version of this news article first appeared in the On Special Education blog.