Thursday, August 4, 2016
Breaking: Feds Issue Guidance on Positive Behavior Supports for Students With Disabilities #Positive BehaviorSupports
The U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS) today issued guidance in the form of a Dear Colleague Letter (DCL) that emphasizes the requirement that schools provide positive behavioral supports to students with disabilities who need them. It also clarifies that the repeated use of disciplinary actions may suggest that children with disabilities may not be receiving appropriate behavioral interventions and supports. When schools fail to consider and provide for needed behavioral supports through the Individualized Education Program (IEP), it is likely to result in children not receiving the free appropriate public education to which they are entitled under federal law.
Data indicates students with disabilities are disciplined at far higher rates than their non-disabled peers. The DCL includes two resource documents to assist teachers and school leaders. The Department is providing supports to assist teachers with classroom management strategies and assist schools in implementing school wide behavioral efforts to create safe and effective environments where all students are given an opportunity to positively engage in their education.