- May 22, 2020
TheLeast Restrictive Environment (LRE) is governed by the federal law,and it states that students with disabilities get provided with aneducation that has the least restrictive environment possible. Inother terms, a student with a disability should not be denied astandard education in a regular class because she is disabled unlessthe student`s disabilities require special needs. Furthermore, beforereferring a student to a special education program, all the resourcesavailable should be exhausted to ensure that she attends a regularclass (Tomlinson,2012).These resources include supplemental aids and services, and if theyare not useful, then the student should be considered for a specialeducation program. Some of the aids and services include specialbehavior strategies, modification of classrooms to fit a student`sneeds, resource rooms, and assistive technology.
Placementis the environment under which students with disabilities learn. Thefirst choice is usually a regular education classroom. However, if astudent cannot perform satisfactorily in a regular schoolenvironment, even after the provision of supplemental aids and needs,then, the student will be considered for a specialized educationprogram. Inasmuch as students with disabilities require a typicalsocial setting, the law requires that the educational benefits beprioritized over these benefits (Yell& Drasgow, 1999).Case in point: In the case of Mark Hartmann v. Loudon County, theU.S. Court of Appeal concluded that mainstreaming is secondary toeducational benefit of the child (Yell& Drasgow, 1999).For that reason, mainstreaming should only be an option only if theeducational gains of the student are entirely addressed otherwise,an appropriate learning environment is provided, but the student canstill benefit from partial inclusions and still have a normal sociallife. This allows the student to interact with non-disabled studentsin a regular education program occasionally.
TheIEP team is a group of certified professions who combine theirexperience, knowledge, and commitment to creating an educationalprogram that will assist the student to be engaged in and thrives inthe normal education curriculum. It should be noted that each memberof the IEP team has an equal say concerning the well-being and healthof the student therefore, no member of the IEP team has authorityover the rest of the members as each of them has a role to play(Lytle& Bordin, 2001).Moreover, IDEA (Individuals with Disabilities Education Act),recognizes the members of the IEP team and also delegates their rolesand responsibilities. The first members are the parents because theyhave an enduring and passionate interest in the well-being of theirchild, the parents provide moral and emotional support too.
Thesecond member is the special educator who has the information andexperience on how to educate a child with disabilities. Since thestudent is enrolled in a regular education program, regular teachersare present to help the child participate in a normal learningenvironment. Another member of the IEP team is the representative ofthe school system who is required by IDEA to be qualified to providespecial education to students with disabilities and be knowledgeableabout the overall education curriculum and the availability of theresources in the institution. The team also includes a professionalwho can interpret the implications of the evaluation results. It isimperative to determine the consequences of the outcome of theevaluation when designing the IEP (Lytle& Bordin, 2001). Any persons with special expertise or knowledge regarding the childare included at the discretion of the parents or the institution.However, the child in question is only included whenever appropriateas stipulated by IDEA.
Thetwo primary purposes of an IEP are to establish measurable annualgoals for a student with a disability and to include thesupplementary services and aids provided by the institution. Thenormal education curriculum is also the same that is given to thestudents without disabilities. Among the eight major components ofthe IEP, three will be discussed. The first element is thedescription of special education services, which can be bestexplained by the representative of the institution offering theservices. The type of services will determine the quality of learningprovided (Lytle& Bordin, 2001).The second component is the statement of participation in the regulareducation program, which can be clarified by both the special andregular educators. The combination of their knowledge and expertisewill create a conducive learning environment for the student.
Thethird component is the statement of transition, which determines ifthe student should advance to higher education. The third partrequires the expertise of the special and regular educator and theinterpreter to assess if the student has achieved her previous goalsand determine if she is eligible to advance to higher learning. Theservices provided by the institution, the learning environment, andthe success of the child are critical to her overall well-being, bothsocially and academically. Therefore, the three components discussedabove address the need for a conducive learning environment and aquality education curriculum, as well as setting the goals for thestudent`s anticipated post-secondary program. The presence of thesethree components alone is enough to aid the student cope with hercondition and still have a normal life without feeling like an alien.
Lytle,R. K., & Bordin, J. (2001). Enhancing the IEP team strategies forparents and professionals. Teachingexceptional children,33(5), 40.
Tomlinson,S. (2012). A sociology of special education (RLE Edu M). Routledge.
Yell,M. L., & Drasgow, E. (1999). A legal analysis of inclusion.preventing school failure: Alternative education for children andyouth, 43(3), 118-123.