MFE scores and sped classes

Discussion in 'Special Ed 101' started by flutterbee, Jan 7, 2009.

  1. flutterbee

    flutterbee Guest

    Wynter is in Gen Ed for all of her classes. In 6th and 7th grades she was in a lower level math class. A class that was the same curriculum as the gen ed math class, but moved at a slower pace. That is really what she needs and it was very successful.

    It states very clearly and repeatedly in the neuropscyh evaluation that Wynter has trouble with complex problems, however if given more time she can get it. The gen ed math class teaches the basic concept in one lesson. Then starts expanding on that in further lessons. However, each step is just one lesson. She needs more time. She's just starting to grasp the concept at the end of the lesson, but hasn't mastered it. Then they expect her to move on.

    So far, she's getting through by taking quizes and tests with prompting on each problem with me and her teacher. She is not learning any of it.

    I asked that she be moved into that sped class again this year. They are telling me they cannot because her test scores on the MFE from 2 years ago show her as being average in math.

    Their solution? Have the teacher do one on one sessions with Wynter (which we've already been doing) and go over other assignments, but not have her have to turn them in.

    IOW, gloss over it just to push her through. They told me that the law states that they can only place kids in the SpEd classes based on the MFE scores. When I asked for a re-evaluation they said they are backed up and they probably couldn't get to it until the end of the school year.

    Any advice? This feels like they are just passing her along. So, in high school then (next year), she won't be ready for algebra or pre-algebra. She'll have to take General Math to learn what she should have learned this year.

    ETA: The school told me that they are audited every year by the state and if they have students in a sped class whose MFE score for that class is not below average, they get cited.
    Lasted edited by : Jan 7, 2009
  2. flutterbee

    flutterbee Guest

    Does Section 1414 Evaluations, Eligibility Determination, Individualized Education Programs, and Educational Placements apply here?

    It reads in part:

    I know this is concerning the initial evaluation, but that is what they are using to say that Wynter can't be in the sped class.
  3. Superpsy

    Superpsy New Member

    So they are letting her pass Math by having her not do any graded work? Strange. I think you're right in saying that they are basing their decision on just one score/result. I think what the school district is saying (just purely from their perspective) is that there is not demonstrated need in the area of Math...I don't understand how they say that without grading her work. What do other Math assessments say (not just the assessment done in the MFE)?

    The situation with your daughter sounds like she is at grade level...maybe. The real danger is losing ground and not keeping pace with the lesson.

    Their statement about state audits is kind of a fuzzy truth. The state reviews student IEPs to make sure that current goals (for example, in Math) match with the needs mentioned in the IEP current levels of performance and the MFE. It sounds like the needs mentioned in the neuropsychologist report can be used to apply to a wide range of academic subjects.

    My advice?

    1. Put that request in doesn't matter if they are backed up or not. They have 30 days to respond to your request by a prior written notice. In the PWN they have to say what they are going to do.

    2. Call an IEP meeting to discuss her placement in math. As long as there is an area of demonstrated need there honestly should be no issue. Be sure to reiterate that her current placement is NOT appropriate. Feel free to voice your concern that she is just being passed along and not actually graded. Be sure to tell them you think (or better..bring data) that their current intervention (one on one) is not working.

    3. Unless your school is a "school in need of improvement" or not meeting annual yearly progress or some other issue like this then they are most likely not audited by the state yearly. Being audited by the state is kind of a big deal.

    4. Unfortunately it is common for students to receive less services than they should at the middle school and high school level. For whatever reason services usually get tapered back.

    Hope this helps. Good luck.
  4. flutterbee

    flutterbee Guest

    Thank you, Superspy.

    I sent an email to the Sp Ed (called DEC at this school) teacher about not using one assessment to determine educational placement. I quoted the law and all that.

    The DEC teacher forwarded a copy of the neuropsychologist report to the DEC Coordinator who called me today. In the meantime, I had gotten the evaluation done by the tutoring company (Wynter is receiving a tutor in math, paid for by the school) that showed the same thing as the neuropsychologist report: Wynter has trouble with multi-step problems. The one step problems she had a score of 100%. The trouble with multi-step, or complex, problems is part of the NonVerbal Learning Disorder (NVLD) and EFD.

    So, the DEC Coordinator asked for that report and they are going to do a re-evaluation, just to have something more current on their end. That should happen be finalized (with results and such) within 45 days.

    This is a charter school - a home-based, online school. So, they contract with various entities for services, i.e., speech, tutoring, psychologists for testing.

    I get frustrated always fighting for services, but this school is much, much, much better at working with the parents and children than our home district. Our home district's idea of an IEP is one size fits all. My son's girlfriend's sister (ha! confusing, huh?) is the same age as Wynter. She has epilepsy and her IEP was exactly the same as Wynter's. You have to be ready for a knock down, drag out to get the services your child should receive.

    In the interim, Wynter is going to do one on one lessons with the DEC teacher. I told them I don't want them glossing over material because that isn't helping the issue. She *is* capable of doing it if given enough time to master each step before moving on. She just needs more time is all.

    Thanks for the help, Superspy. I really appreciate it.
  5. svengandhi

    svengandhi Well-Known Member

    I had a similar issue with my dyslexic son but with reading not math. He was getting Orton-Gillingham and progressed so quickly that they switched him to Wilson. He then got close to grade level with intensive work. At our meeting, they said oh, we are going to stop reading instruction and just send him to resource room (which he also had) because he was doing so well. My response was great, so now we can watch him regress and deteriorate, I won't agree. The sped teacher then spoke up and agreed with me. Bottom line, Wilson continued one more year, then we switched to resource room 4 times a week and in middle school, he was sent out of district to a private Learning Disability (LD) school. He is in grade 7 and we are actually considering bringing him back to district for HS.

    I have found that the regression argument will work very well for some districts.

    In your position, I would make the argument that any progress has been solely and wholly due to the intensive work she got in that class and that she will regress, as she is doing, without that program. I would call the state agency and ask if it is true that they will get cited if her MFE is too high and if there is a possibility of a waiver if needed.

    The schools often lie to you. Do your research and make your arguments in a calm and objective matter. Remind them that YOUR only concern is YOUR child and that in terms of your child's IEP, they are not to think of any other child at the time.
  6. Sheila

    Sheila Moderator

    That's bull. The regs state the student gets what s/he needs. They can document that she is not progressing well in the current class and the IEP team considers this placement best for her.
  7. Sheila

    Sheila Moderator

    This is the IEP defined by court:

    Board of Educ. V. Rowley [458 U.S. 176 (1982)] Required that the program that was developed would be "individualized,"
    "personalized," "tailored," and "specially designed" to meet the "unique needs" of that one child. "The purpose of the IEP is to tailor the education to the child; not tailor the child to the education. If the child could fit into the school's without assistance, special education would not be necessary." [House Report 105-95 at p. 104]