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IEP Discussion Guide: What Specific Data is Available Transcript

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[Opening slide with the words, "This webinar series is provided by the Commission of Deaf, DeafBlind and Hard of Hearing Minnesotans and by the Minnesota Department of Education.]

[Title slide: "Data: Student's Present Level of Academic and Social Language. Presenter: Adan Burke, parent of a second-grade student who is Deaf."]

[A man appears (Adan Burke). He is standing on one side of the screen and begins to sign. To his side is a word cloud. The word "data" is the biggest word in the cloud."]

What specific data is available regarding the student's present level of academic and social language?

[The text next to Adan changes to, "Data: * Student's Language Level and Needs * Appropriate Programming * Multi-Method Approach"]

Adan continues: This section explains how to gather and use data to determine the student's academic language and other skills. Deaf and hard of hearing students have complex and diverse needs. So, a variety of methods and tests should be used when assessing them, to get the most reliable picture of their strengths and needs. 

[The text next to Adan changes to a bubble graph. In the center bubble is the word, "Data." There are 5 surrounding bubbles, each with a few words. Those words are, "Work Samples" "Informal Assessments" "Parent Information" "Formal Assessments" and "Observations".]

Adan continues: The team needs to be sure that the data collected is current, valid, and reliable. Using formal and informal assessments, systematic observations, work samples, and input from parents, students, and teachers, is important. This data will help the team accurately describe the student's present level of performance. The present level guides the IEP team to determine goals and objectives, necessary accommodations for communication access, language of instruction, and appropriate services.

[The bubble graph next to Adan changes to the following text, "Discussion Prompts. * Data - Current - Valid - Reliable - Evidence * Data provides present levels * Impact on student's growth" There is also an illustration of 5 rainbow colored figures with a think box above their heads.]

Adan continues: These prompts provided in this section look at whether or not the data is current, valid and reliable. The prompts also help people to decide if that data provides evidence to identify instructional strategies and appropriate adaptations. The team should also discuss how clearly the data describes the student's present levels of performance, and if it guides the team in determining what factors are affecting the student's growth. 

[The content next to Adan is replaced with the following text, "Factors to Consider *Knowledgeable evaluators (Teachers for the Deaf/Hard of Hearing, evaluators fluent in language of instruction and/or home language) * Student's primary language * Testing environment * Amplification" There is also a graphic of a stick figure holding up a giant question mark.]

Adan continues: Many assessments do not include deaf and hard of hearing students in the norming sample. This means that tests compare deaf/hard of hearing student performance with students who can hear. This may affect the interpretation of results. It is important to carefully interpret the challenging access for young students. This is especially true when interpreting information related to reading difficulties. This information should be clearly identified in the evaluation report. Because of the multiple factors involved with testing a student who is deaf or hard of hearing, it is very important that the evaluator be able to: explain, accurately interpret the impact of hearing loss, communicate fluently in the student's primary language, and interpret other factors that might impact student learning and development. For example, if the examiner is unaware of how hearing loss affects language development, he may assume the student has language or academic delays because of cognitive processing challenges (not because of access). Some students do have different disabilities but hearing loss impact must be carefully interpreted first. Therefore, a teacher for deaf and hard of hearing should be involved in testing to help interpret the impact of limited hearing access when using tests with spoken language. If the student uses American Sign Language, the evaluator should be fluent in ASL in order to maintain results that are reliable and to be able to accurately assess the student's skills in areas being evaluated.

[The content next to Adan is replaced with a preview to the Assessment Manual for Students on the Education Resources for Teachers of Deaf / Hard of Hearing Students University of Minnesota website. Underneath is the URL for the site. DHH Resources Assessment (PDF)]

Adan continues:  Another resource guide that has descriptions of assessments that are specific to deaf or hard of hearing students is available through this link (points to the website preview and link next to him).

[New text replaces the previous content, "Possible Information Sources * Assessment of academic skills, vocabulary and social language * Data from Minnesota Comprehensive Assessment and Measures of Academic Progress * Evaluation summary report * Informal assessment measures"]

Adan continues: Finally, the Guide also provides a list of possible sources and materials to consider when assessing students,

[The text next to Adan is replaced with the following text, "Possible information Sources * Formal assessments * Systematic classroom observations * Interview data * Curriculum-Based Measures * Running records/work samples"]

Adan continues: in the appendix at the end of this Guide. 

[The text next to Adan is replaced with the following text, "A Parent's Perspective"]

Adan continues: From a parent perspective, the Guide helps me understand the IEP process, and to ask questions about the data for my daughter. 

[Video fades to the original slide with the words, "This webinar series is provided by The Commission of Deaf, DeafBlind and Hard of Hearing Minnesotans and by the Minnesota Department of Education."]

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