Support for Schools
Our professional consulting services are designed to support the day-to-day practice of educators working with students “in the trenches”. Grounded on principles identified as best practices by expert researchers in the field, our consultants draw upon their own extensive professional experience as educators supporting students with a broad range of disabilities in inclusive K-12 settings.
We meet educators where they are at, within their existing school infrastructure, to help co-develop sustainable models that promote the effective instruction and inclusion of students with Down syndrome, intellectual disabilities and other complex learning needs.
Our recommendations consider the individualized needs of the students, capacity of the school team, and availability of current resources.
Whole Student Approach. We believe in comprehensive programming that addresses the multiple areas of need of our students. Our work includes coaching on specialized instructional approaches developed for the cognitive profile of our students. Concurrent with this, we demonstrate the use of visuals and data collection systems to help promote communication and interpersonal skills for our students in the classroom. We also focus on the development of self-care skills, essential for longer-term independent living. Behavior and regulation needs must also be considered, as they relate to academic readiness, transitions and achieving meaningful inclusion with the overall goal of equity and independence.
Meaningful Inclusion. Students with complex learning profiles often require differentiated instruction but there is strong evidence on the clear benefits of inclusion. A central part of our work includes modeling the development of individualized unit plans that highlight key takeaways identified for all students, but matched to the unique skills of our students. Teaching by example, we demonstrate the process of creating curriculum materials that support the targeted learning goals of each student. At the same time, we help develop or enhance internal school communication systems as this work must be a collaborative effort among team members. We believe this is the foundation necessary to ensure our students have opportunities to work alongside peers in grade-level curriculum at their access point. Our goal is to give educators tools and resources to strengthen their practice by allowing them to find entry points into the curriculum frameworks. In doing so, we effect meaningful academic inclusion opportunities for our students.
Our engagements can take the form of one-time professional development workshops or training modules, team coaching over a defined period, or extended retainer arrangements for continuous support.
Note that while our referrals often come from families already familiar with our work, our consulting services target system-wide solutions, not advocacy for individual students. Ultimately though, students will be the direct beneficiaries of our work.
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Please contact us for more information on ways we can help.