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Special Ed

From DA

Make room for a sensory break

Ariana Fine
February, 2016
Occupational therapist Jennifer Stell works on one student’s balance and strength using a therapy ball.

Photo Essay: A ball pit, trampoline, squeeze machine, swing, balance beam and tactile boxes offer a sensory break from overstimulation—bright lights, loud noises and constant motion of a classroom—to elementary students at Woodbury City Public Schools in New Jersey.

School leader paves a more promising path

Matt Zalaznick
February, 2016
Clayton County Public Schools Superintendent Luvenia Jackson, left, and Principal Michael Robinson speak to two students at the district’s newly opened Martha Ellen Stillwell School of the Arts.

Luvenia Jackson knows students can’t learn when they’re in jail. During 40 years in education, the Clayton County Public Schools superintendent has seen that academic performance cannot improve systemwide under zero-tolerance discipline.

Social-emotional learning enhances special ed and beyond

Alison DeNisco
January, 2016
A Chicago Public Schools teacher leads a social emotional learning lesson in an elementary classroom.

Social-emotional learning programs improve the grades and behavior of all learners—but special ed students may benefit even more from lessons on mindfulness, self-regulation and cooperation, experts say.

New law expands role of special education paraprofessionals

Alison DeNisco
January, 2016

A first-of-its-kind Connecticut law allows parents to include their child’s paraprofessional in school planning and placement team meetings that create individualized educational programs.

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