Category Archives: Ontario Ministry of Education

Ontario Special Education: Categories and Definitions

The Ontario Ministry of Education uses five broad categories of Exceptionality that are defined further.   The following is from the Ministry document  Special Education: A Guide for Educators (2001)

The following five categories of exceptionalities have been identified in the Education Act definition of exceptional pupil:

• Behaviour

• Communication (includes: Autism, Learning Disability, Speech and Language Disorders and Deaf / Hard of Hearing)

• Intellectual (includes: Gifted, Developmental Disability, Mild Intellectual Disability)

• Physical (includes: Physical (neuromuscular) and Blind/Low Vision)

• Multiple

 

These broad categories include the following definitions, as clarified in the memo to school boards of January 15, 1999:

 

Behaviour Exceptionality Category

A learning disorder characterized by specific behaviour problems over such a period of time, and to such a marked degree, and of such a nature, as to adversely affect educational performance, and that may be accompanied by one or more of the following:

 

a) an inability to build or to maintain interpersonal relationships;

b) excessive fears or anxieties;

c) a tendency to compulsive reaction;

d) an inability to learn that cannot be traced to intellectual, sensory, or other health factors, or any combination thereof.

 

 

Communication Exceptionality Category

Autism

A severe learning disorder that is characterized by:

a) disturbances in:

– rate of educational development;

– ability to relate to the environment;

– mobility;

– perception, speech, and language;

b) lack of the representational symbolic behaviour that precedes language.

 

Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing

An impairment characterized by deficits in language and speech development because of a diminished or non-existent auditory response to sound.

 

Language Impairment

A learning disorder characterized by an impairment in comprehension and/or the use of verbal communication or the written or other symbol system of communication, which may be associated with neurological, psychological, physical, or sensory factors, and which may:

a) involve one or more of the form, content, and function of language in communication; and

b) include one or more of:

– language delay;

– dysfluency;

– voice and articulation development, which may or may not be organically or functionally based.

 

Speech Impairment

A disorder in language formulation that may be associated with neurological, psychological, physical, or sensory factors; that involves perceptual motor aspects of transmitting oral messages; and that may be characterized by impairment in articulation, rhythm, and stress.

 

Learning Disability

A learning disorder evident in both academic and social situations that involves one or more of the processes necessary for the proper use of spoken language or the symbols of communication, and that is characterized by a condition that:

a) is not primarily the result of:

– impairment of vision; impairment of hearing; physical disability; developmental disability; primary emotional disturbance; cultural difference;

b) results in a significant discrepancy between academic achievement and assessed intellectual ability, with deficits in one or more of the following:

– receptive language (listening, reading);

– language processing (thinking, conceptualizing, integrating);

– expressive language (talking, spelling, writing);

– mathematical computations; and

c) may be associated with one or more conditions diagnosed as:

– a perceptual handicap;

– a brain injury;

– minimal brain dysfunction;

– dyslexia;

– developmental aphasia.

 

Intellectual Exceptionality Category

Giftedness

An unusually advanced degree of general intellectual ability that requires differentiated learning experiences of a depth and breadth beyond those normally provided in the regular school program to satisfy the level of educational potential indicated.

 

Mild Intellectual Disability

A learning disorder characterized by:

a) an ability to profit educationally within a regular class with the aid of considerable curriculum modification and supportive service;

b) an inability to profit educationally within a regular class because of slow intellectual development;

c) a potential for academic learning, independent social adjustment, and economic self-support.

 

Developmental Disability

A severe learning disorder characterized by:

a) an inability to profit from a special education program for students with mild intellectual disabilities because of slow intellectual development;

b) an ability to profit from a special education program that is designed to accommodate slow intellectual development;

c) a limited potential for academic learning, independent social adjustment, and economic self-support.

 

Physical Exceptionality Category

Physical Disability

A condition of such severe physical limitation or deficiency as to require special assistance in learning situations to provide the opportunity for educational achievement equivalent to that of pupils without exceptionalities who are of the same age or development level.

 

Blind and Low Vision

A condition of partial or total impairment of sight or vision that even with correction affects educational performance adversely.

Multiple Exceptionality Category

Multiple Exceptionalities

A combination of learning or other disorders, impairments, or physical disabilities  that is of such a nature as to require, for educational achievement, the services of one or more teachers holding qualifications in special education and the provision of support services appropriate for such disorders, impairments, or disabilities.

Special Education Handbook: A Guide for Educators (2001)

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Filed under Categories and Definitions, Ontario Ministry of Education, Ontario Ministry of Education Policy Documents

Ontario Ministry of Education & Ontario College of Teachers Documents

Ontario Ministry of Education  & Ontario College of Teachers Documents:

This is a quick list of current Ministry of Education and Ontario College of Teachers documents that related to Special Education.  BOOKMARK this page.  Do it! NOW!

 

Education for All:  The Report of the Expert Panel on Literacy and Numeracy

Instruction for Students with Special Education Needs, Kindergarten Grade 6,  2005

www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/document/reports/speced/panel/speced.pdf

 

Effective Educational Practices for Students with Autism Spectrum Disorders (2007)

http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/general/elemsec/speced/autismSpecDis.pdf

 

Growing Success: Assessment, Evaluation and Reporting in Ontario Schools (2010)

http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/policyfunding/growSucess.pdf

 

The Individual Education Plan (IEP) A Resource Guide (2004)

http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/general/elemsec/speced/guide/resource/iepresguid.pdf

 

Learning for All: A Resource Guide K – 12 (Draft 2009)

http://www.ontariodirectors.ca/L4All/L4A_en_downloads/LearningforAll%20K-12%20draft%20J.pdf

 

The Standards of Practice for the Teaching Profession and the Ethical Standards for the Teaching Profession (Ontario College of Teachers)

www.oct.ca/standards/standards_of_practice.aspx?lang=en-CA

www.oct.ca/standards/ethical_standards.aspx

 

Shared Solutions: A Guide to Preventing and Resolving Conflicts Regarding Programs for Students with Special Education Needs (2007)

www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/general/elemsec/speced/shared.pdf

 

Special Education Companion (Ontario Curriculum Unit Planner) (2002)

http://www.ocup.org/resources/documents/companions/speced2002.pdf

 

Special Education: a Guide for Educators (2001)

http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/general/elemsee/speced/guide/specedspecedhan.pdf

 

 

Note: This is a PERSONAL blog, not an official Ministry of Education website. This is a forum for sharing.

Please add comments and your favourite resources (and let me know if there are any dead links!) Thank you!

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Welcome to Special Education in Ontario: on the bell curve!

Welcome to Special Education in Ontario: on the bell curve!

I hope this blog serves as an introduction to Special Education in Ontario and Canada.  Information about specific Exceptionalities is drawn from all over the world, but with a focus on education in Ontario. 

Information about specific policies, procedures and paperwork (such as IEPs and IPRCs) focus on Ontario, but I have included other provinces as well.  Special Education in Ontario: on the bell curve is an annotated bibliography, a compendium of resources for a range of Exceptionalities – ADHD, ODD, ASD, SPD, etc…   This is a slavishly organized and well-researched guide about Exceptionalities, the Ontario School System and how to navigate it all.

 

Please explore the site using the Categories tabs or the Search tool.

If there is something you want added, let me know! 

You can reach me on Twitter @onthebellcurve

  

Note: This is a PERSONAL blog, not an official Ministry of Education website. This is a forum for sharing.

Please add comments and your favourite resources (and let me know if there are any dead links!) Thank you!

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Filed under How to Teach Students with Special Needs, Ontario Ministry of Education

How to Teach Students with Special Needs

These are the HOW-TO documents!

How to do paperwork.

How to teach students with Special Needs.

These resources are for Parents and Teachers.

They focus on Special Education in Ontario and Canada, but many ideas can be used elsewhere.

These resources are great for those interested in the Educational System (the land of IPRCs and IEPs) as well as classroom resources for HOW to teach students with special needs in the general education class or other settings.  Many documents can be searched according to specific Exceptionality (i.e. you want a list of accommodations for Autism).  This is NOT just for teachers.

Parents, please bring this information into your school case conferences so you can advocate for your child.  Why not hand the teacher a package that suggests preferential seating or frequent breaks? Just because they’re doing something in Alberta doesn’t mean we can’t do the same thing in Ontario.

Parents – Tell the teacher how your child will learn best! Parents – please check out the policy and procedure documents.  You can also learn about the ridiculously huge Special Education systems that you and your children are a part of (and hopefully make the system work for you!)

Alberta Ministry of Education Policies and Procedures http://education.alberta.ca/admin/special.aspx

Alberta Ministry of Education

Amazing Resources for SPECIFIC EXCEPTIONALITIES (LD, ASD, ADHD, Mental Health, Deaf and Hard of Hearing, Multiple, Developmental Disabilities, Gifted, First Nations, etc…) http://education.alberta.ca/admin/special/resources.aspx

British Columbia Ministry of Education Policies and Procedures http://www.bced.gov.bc.ca/specialed/ppandg.htm

British Columbia Ministry of Education

Amazing Resources for SPECIFIC EXCEPTIONALITIES (LD, ASD, ADHD, Mental Health, Deaf and Hard of Hearing, Multiple, Developmental Disabilities, Gifted, etc…) http://www.bced.gov.bc.ca/specialed/sped_res_docs.htm

Teacher’s Gateway to Special Education 

Developed by the Ontario Teacher’s Federation and Ontario Minisrty of Education – fantastic easy to use compendium of teaching strategies and resources for specific exceptionalities.  In my opinion ALL teachers should be using this site.   http://www.teachspeced.ca/index.php?q=splash

Ontario Ministry of Education – Education for All

The Report of the Expert Panel on Literacy and Numeracy Instruction for Students With Special Education Needs, Kindergarten to Grade 6 Every teacher should read this – whether you teach in Ontario or Zimbabwe; or you whether you teach Elementary, Intermediate or Secondary.  A must read! http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/document/reports/speced/panel/index.html

Ontario – Ministry Special Education Document Gateway 

This site can direct you to info about funding, procedures for identification and placement, IEPs, Policy/Program Memoranda (ie. our recent PPM 140 mandating ABA training for teachers of students with ASD) http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/teachers/speced.html

The Special Education Companion, 2002

Possibly the BEST and most under-used document in Special Education!  This document lists countless ways to help students under each Exceptionality Category.  If you look at ‘Gifted’ you have 10 pages of characterisitics of gifted students, issues, general teaching and learning strategies, program ideas, subject-specific strategies (reading, spelling, mathematics) and assessment strategies!

Do NOT write an IEP without reading this document! Parents and Teachers should use this resource to determine appropriate accommodations, modifications, and strategies for the classroom.  Parents, please bring this to your teacher meetings to advocate for your child!

http://www.ocup.org/resources/documents/companions/speced2002.pdf

or alternate link

http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/policyfunding/ocup/documents/speced2002.pdf

Note: This is a PERSONAL blog, not an official Ministry of Education website. This is a forum for sharing.

Please add comments and your favourite resources (and let me know if there are any dead links!) Thank you!

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Filed under How to Teach Students with Special Needs, Ontario Ministry of Education, Ontario Ministry of Education Policy Documents

Special Education in Ontario – Policies & Procedures

Select documents from the Ontario Ministry of Education about Policies, Procedures and Paperwork.  These are the cornerstones of Special Education in Ontario.

Parents and Educators – try to navigate the system!  Help yourself!

Ontario Ministry of Education Special Education Policies and Procedures Documents:

Special Education, a Guide for Educators, 2001

This is my all-time favorite document that provides an easy-to-read overview of the Special Education System in Ontario.  Includes categories of Exceptionalities, Funding, IPRC and IEP info as well as funding and appeal information.  A must read! http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/general/elemsec/speced/guide.html

Individual Education Plans and Program Development: The Individual Education Plan (IEP), A Resource Guide (2004)

Guide for Teachers to write IEPs.  Parents should be aware of the process as well. http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/general/elemsec/speced/guide/resource/index.html

The Special Education Companion, 2002

Possibly the BEST and most under-used document in Special Education!  This document lists countless ways to help students under each Exceptionality Category.  If you look at ‘Gifted’ you have 10 pages of characterisitics of gifted students, issues, general teaching and learning strategies, program ideas, subject-specific strategies (reading, spelling, mathematics) and assessment strategies!

Do NOT write an IEP without reading this document! Parents and Teachers should use this resource to determine appropriate accommodations, modifications, and strategies for the classroom.  Parents, please bring this to your teacher meetings to advocate for your child!

http://www.ocup.org/resources/documents/companions/speced2002.pdf

 

Identification, Placement and Review Committees (IPRC) Regulation 181/98 Idenification and Placement of Exceptional Students

This is the original document – use it to check for the legal wording and full details regarding Identification and Placement of Exceptional Students.  Pretty hard to read. http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/general/elemsec/speced/reg181.pdf

Highlights of Regulation 181/98 Identification and Placement of Exceptional Students

This document is easy to read and gives a good overview of the Identification and Placement Process, some key definitions and information about Appealing IPRC decisions. http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/general/elemsec/speced/hilites.html

Note: This is a PERSONAL blog, not an official Ministry of Education website.  This is a forum for sharing. 

Please add comments and your favourite resources (and let me know if there are any dead links!)  Thank you!

Leave a comment

Filed under Ontario Ministry of Education, Ontario Ministry of Education Policy Documents