Self-Contained Class: CLUSTERING BASED ON DIAGNOSIS

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Miranda: My son in has Down syndrome. Currently he is in a self-contained classroom with 11 other children. 9 of them total have Down syndrome. I am under the impression this is a district-wide problem. Where do I find that information (the ratio of children with Down syndrome in self-contained vs Gen Ed)… also, is clustering based on diagnosis even legal?

Thank you.

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Hail

Hi all. My admin wants to cluster all sped students in one class per grade level to try and implement push in rather than pull out. Thoughts?

Jill G

Miranda –
A district cannot “cluster” students based *solely* on a diagnosis, but they can provide a separate classroom for students with similar needs and place a student in that classroom if his/her IEP Team determines that it’s appropriate.
As you likely know, the IEP is developed by the Team using evaluation data and other available information. After the IEP is developed, the Team must determine in what type of placement can the IEP best be implemented.
For most students, this is the general ed environment. But some student’s do better in a different environment. IDEA recognizes this and requires that districts provide a continuum of placements for students with disabilities.

Janet

Try to get him main streamed. LRE. Best thing for all kids.

Sophie

Sounds like it’s time to FOIL your district to get some numbers. Just put “FOIL” in the subject line, and describe the sort of data you would like. Don’t leave anything to their imagination! The more complete you can be in a FOIL request, the better your results will be. (FOIL = Freedom of Information Law.)

Miranda

What do I do once I have that information? Are they within their legal rights by stuffing the kids with the same diagnosis into a segregated classroom? I feel like this is discrimination based on disability!?!

Miranda

Thank you JG. My son has been to several schools in the district. A family member is a teacher and has been to several other schools in the same district. We have yet to see a child with Down syndrome in any Gen Ed room past Kindergarten (note that the Inclusion room is included in this observation. I find it difficult to believe that every child in the district with Down syndrome “needs” the same placement. It is my opinion that they are walking a very fine line. They have very sketchy practices. I can say this from my own experiences and that of other parents I have spoken to.

JSG

Miranda,

I agree with your belief that is unlikely all these children need to be in a self-contained classroom. Particularly not with Down syndrome. We have worked with integrating young children with down syndrome. I’m in Tennessee.