Proctor Elementary School, Vermont. Photo by Michael McSheehan.
In our April newsletter we gave you a “sneak peek” at a flexible seating practice in a Vermont inclusive classroom. Here’s the rest of the story about how general and special educators worked together to create meaningful opportunities for a student to experience full membership and belonging….

ALL students had flexible seating options, making it very natural for a student with a low incidence disability to lay on his bed seat at floor level with his communication supports nearby (photo above). The class learned that when they move to the next grade level, their classmate will need to work at desk eye level. They worked on possible designs for his new seating so that he can continue as a full member of their class (check out one of the creative designs below).  

Proctor Elementary School, Vermont. Photo by Michael McSheehan.
Educators often wonder how well they can provide appropriate educational services to all students. Can it be that sometimes students’ needs are too intensive? In this month’s SWIFT Talk, meet Magger Chen , a talented young lady who requires extensive supports—power chair, medical ventilator, other assistive technology devices, and a personal assistant to help with transfer and position so she can fully participate in daily living activities. Learn about how this passionate student and her creative parent connected with a willing teacher to work toward inclusion.

Do you like to write and have a story to share about equity-based MTSS or inclusive education? SWIFT welcomes submissions that advance the practice of equity, excellence, and All Means All. Click here for submission guidelines. 
The recent SWIFT Unscripted Dan Habib Interview with Dr. Cheryl Jorgensen on Inclusive Education is another great resource to stimulate your thinking about why and how to meaningfully include students with significant needs in your general education culture and curriculum.

SWIFT Unscripted is a monthly podcast featuring guests from among the SWIFT community. A transcript link for each SWIFT Unscripted podcast is available at the end of its description. You can listen on SoundCloud or iTunes , or visit the SWIFT Unscripted page to download the podcast to your computer.  

Are students with significant needs experiencing full membership in your school? Try these four simple steps to get started moving in that direction:
1.      Identify students in your school who do not have a grade level classroom as their primary educational environment and begin developing transition plans
2.      Use language and practices that reflect services are based on need, rather than on disability labels
3.      Set expectations for collaborative instruction among peers
4.      Use paraeducators to support inclusive education

Check out SWIFT Guide’s resources for Integrated Educational Framework for more information and helpful resources to follow these steps to a fully integrated educational environment for students with extensive needs.

Copyright SWIFT Education Center, 2018. Permission is granted to share and reprint. Please cite as SWIFT News , Footer update: May, 2018; Issue 54
Lawrence, KS: SWIFT Education Center

 SWIFT Education Center
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Lawrence, KS 66049