Due to COVID-19, professional learning opportunities may be cancelled. OPI staff will make every attempt to keep the OPI Learning Opportunities current and accurate. Please see https://covid19.mt.gov/ for additional details impacting events.


ENROLLMENT OPENS May 10, 2020 – Orientation to Special Education for Paraeducators (May 31 – Jun. 27, 2020)

This module is designed to provide a basic introduction to special education and the needs of students who have disabilities. The content consists of introductory material regarding legal and historical foundations of special education, human growth and development, the nature of disabilities, and an introduction to the basic human needs that paraeducators must address.

Created by the University of Colorado, Par2a Center.

15 Renewal Units

Enrollment opens May 10, 2020

iPad Boot Camp

Discover what is new in the world of awesome apps, adaptations and accessories. Participants should bring their iPads to this course.

January 9, 2020

The awesome iPad and it’s many features to support students with disabilities

Resources for finding appropriate apps for specific functional limitations

There is an app for that—feature mapping and finding appropriate apps

Create access solutions for the iPad for vision impairments—tactile overlays

Build a multi-use iPad holder

Creating and using a scan and read station for the iPad for students with print disabilities

Creating access solutions for physical impairments

 

January 10, 2020

101 Uses for the iPad camera to support students with disabilities

Explore 10 ways to Interact with the iPad without ever touching the device – using voice, geo fencing, switch access

Creating access solutions for students with communication impairments

Apps and executive function impairments

Apps and adaptations for deaf and hard of hearing

Apps for self-regulation and relaxation

iPad access when using a wheelchair, table, floor, car or bed to accommodate for physical limitations

 

How to Enroll: Visit the MAEP website

ENROLLMENT OPENS Dec. 20, 2019 – Orientation to Special Education for Paraeducators (Jan. 13 – Feb. 23, 2020)

This course is designed to provide a basic introduction to special education and the needs of students who have disabilities. The content consists of introductory material regarding legal and historical foundations of special education, human growth and development, the nature of disabilities, and an introduction to the basic human needs that paraeducators and educators must address.

Created by the University of Colorado, Par2a Center. Facilitated by Jenny Malloy, Park County Special Education Cooperative Director and Beckie Squires, Paraeducator Specialist

15 Renewal Units

Enrollment opens Dec. 20, 2019

Visit Orientation to Special Education for Paraeducators on the Teacher Learning Hub to enroll

Paraeducator Day with Shawna Heiser

A thorough presentation of positive behavioral interventions in a variety of environments will be presented to conference attendees. Discussion will center around types of behaviors; task avoidance, escape motivated, attention seeking, behaviors that produce sensory consequences, and the role motivation plays in behavioral success in many settings-school, home, and community. Children with a variety of differences will be thoroughly discussed. The paraprofessional audience will be able to apply the information presented through videos, activities, and examples of how to set up positive plans for the children in a variety of environmental settings immediately in their respective situations. The training will also contain discussions about setting limits that work and the application of positive interventions. We will examine the common pitfalls that sabotage behavioral intervention plans and what to avoid when wanting to make significant behavioral changes. Further discussions of how to implement 504 accommodations in a regular education setting will be detailed.

Throughout the presentation, the attendees will receive a vast amount of information on what seems to work best for the children and adolescents with the various disabilities, and how to set up positive behavioral supports and interventions for the individuals they are serving.

Learning Objectives: After attending this session, participants will

1. Identify why difficult behaviors are occurring, and what to do to change the inappropriate behaviors.

2. Gain knowledge about working with people with emotional and behavioral disabilities using positive behavioral interventions. Discussions about what strategies can be most effectively utilized with which types of disabilities.

3. Apply positive behavioral interventions to children and adolescents with Severe Emotional Disturbance to make permanent behavior changes.

How to Enroll: Visit the Paraeducator day with Shawna Heiser registration webpage

Meaningful Participation in Statewide Assessments

This training focuses on increasing educator knowledge about federal requirements and options for participation in statewide assessments through the lens of ensuring that students with disabilities are able to meaningfully participate in the assessments required under ESSA. This training will cover how meaningful participation can be accomplished through ensuring that students have appropriate accessibility supports and accommodations and that those supports are selected systematically, based on student need. This training would be suitable for districts and schools to improve participation rates and performance of students with disabilities in statewide assessments.

Audience: Special education teachers, special education directors, system test coordinators, principals, and superintendents

Objectives:

  • Describe the purpose of statewide assessments for federal accountability under ESSA.
  • Describe participation requirements for statewide assessments.
  • Describe participation options for students with disabilities in statewide assessments.
  • Identify the appropriate usage of data from statewide assessments.
  • Understand shifts in thinking about accessibility for statewide assessments from accommodation based to universal design for learning and supports for all students with accessibility needs.
  • Implement a systematic data-based decision-making process in the selection of accessibility supports for statewide assessments.
  • Identify supports and accommodations for statewide assessments that meet individual student needs and reflect the supports and accommodations provided to students in classroom instruction and assessments.
  • Ensure accessibility of instruction and assessments by aligning the implications, supplemental aids and services, and statewide assessment accommodations and supports sections of the IEP.
  • Describe accessibility supports for each statewide assessment (ACT, Smarter Balanced, MSAA, Science, ACCESSfor ELLs)
  • Describe and implement a process to ensure that the accommodations and supports documented in the IEP are provided to students on statewide assessments.
  • Describe and implement standardized administration of accommodated testing sessions including following test specific accommodation protocols (scribing, read aloud).

Presenter Info:

Yvonne Field is the Assessment and Accountability Specialist in the Student Support Services Division at the Office ofPublic Instruction. She has worked at the OPI for almost 7 years; first as the assessment specialist for the MontCASspecial population assessments (ACCESS for ELLs and the Multi State Alternate Assessment) and currently as the assessment and accessibility specialist. She has a background in post-secondary special education and taught special education in grades 3-5 in Charlotte Mecklenberg Schools in Charlotte, North Carolina.

How to Enroll: Visit the Meaningful Participation in Statewide Assessments registration website

Meaningful Participation in Statewide Assessments

This training focuses on increasing educator knowledge about federal requirements and options for participation in statewide assessments through the lens of ensuring that students with disabilities are able to meaningfully participate in the assessments required under ESSA. This training will cover how meaningful participation can be accomplished through ensuring that students have appropriate accessibility supports and accommodations and that those supports are selected systematically, based on student need. This training would be suitable for districts and schools to improve participation rates and performance of students with disabilities in statewide assessments.

About the presenter: Yvonne Field is the Assessment and Accountability Specialist in the Student Support Services Division at the Office of Public Instruction. She has worked at the OPI for almost 7 years; first as the assessment specialist for the MontCAS special population assessments (ACCESS for ELLs and the Multi State Alternate Assessment) and currently as the assessment and accessibility specialist. She has a background in post-secondary special education and taught special education in grades 3-5 in Charlotte Mecklenberg Schools in Charlotte, North Carolina.

How to Enroll: Visit the Meaningful Participation in Statewide Assessments registration webpage

Alternatives to Guardianship webinar

The University of Montana Rural Institute for Inclusive Communities’ Transitions and Employment Projects is hosting a webinar on Tuesday, May 1, 2018, regarding the alternatives to guardianship.  This is for anyone who supports young adults with significant disabilities over the age of 18.  Various tools such as power of attorney will be discussed. Montana Transition Resources Project Coordinator Theresa Baldry and her son, Isaac, will present this webinar.  Register here to attend the webinar.  Visit the Rural Institute’s website for more information.

Transition from School to a Full Adult Life – Part 2

The University of Montana’s Rural Institute for Inclusive Communities is hosting a webinar about helping youth and young adults with disabilities make the transition from school to a full adult life.  This webinar is part 2 of the two-part series.  Ellen Condon, M. Ed., Director of the Transition and Employment Projects and the Montana Deaf-Blind Project at the Rural Institute for Inclusive Communities, and Melissa Dadmun, Project Coordinator for the Montana Deaf-Blind Project at the Rural Institute for Inclusive Communities, will be the presenters.  Topics discussed include:

  • Beginning early to plan the transition from school to adult life.
  • Setting expectations.
  • Identifying resources and agencies that can help with the transition.

Register here to attend the webinar.  Part 1 of the series is available here.