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An Evaluation of Education Provision for Students with Autism Spectrum Disorder in the Republic of Ireland

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An Evaluation of Education Provision for Students with Autism Spectrum Disorder in the Republic of Ireland Preliminary Findings Dr. Patricia Daly, Dr. Emer Ring ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: An Evaluation of Education Provision for Students with Autism Spectrum Disorder in the Republic of Ireland


1
An Evaluation of Education Provision for Students
with Autism Spectrum Disorder in the Republic of
Ireland Preliminary Findings
  • Dr. Patricia Daly, Dr. Emer Ring, Principal
    Investigators,
  • Dr. Margaret Egan, Johanna Fitzgerald, Claire
    Griffin, Stella Long,
  • Eucharia McCarthy, Dr. Mary Moloney, Trevor
    OBrien, Anne OByrne, Siobhan OSullivan, Marie
    Ryan and Professor Eugene Wall
  • with Ruth Madden, Research Associate.

2
Overview of Presentation
  • Background and Purpose
  • Evaluation Framework
  • Data-Collection Instruments
  • Data Sources
  • Findings Issues for Reflection
  • Conclusion

3
Background and Purpose
  • Request for Tenders September 2013 Overview and
    Empirical Evaluation.
  • Policy Advice.
  • Methodology to ensure a coherent, consistent and
    objective approach to data gathering and
    analysis.
  • Against a framework of indicators and principles
    based on identified good practice.

4
MCA / NCSE Evaluation Framework
5
Sampling
  • NCSE data-bases for school-based provision.
  • DES data-bases for July Education Provision and
    Home-Tuition.
  • A range of subgroups identified and stratified
    with reference to geographical location gender
    socio-economic groupings language and
    needs-based.
  • Purposeful random sampling was conducted with
    reference to these strata.

6
Overview of Research Sites
Site A ASD-Specific Early Intervention Classes (2) Band E and B
Site B Mainstream Primary Schools (3) Band H, C and F
Site C Mainstream Post-Primary Schools (3) Band H, E and H
Site D Special Classes Primary Schools (2) Band A and H
Site E Special Classes Post-Primary Schools (2) Band I and G
Site F Special School for Students with Mild General Learning Disability (1) Band D
Site G Special School for Students with Moderate General Learning Disability (1) Band C
Site H Special School for Students with Severe or Profound General Learning Disability (1) Band A
Site I ASD-Specific Special School (3) Band B, A and B
Site J Home-Tuition (3) Band A
Site K July Educational Provision (3) Band B, Band C
7
Data-Collection Instruments
  • Observation Schedules paired observation of
    learning and teaching
  • Conducted with PI Team member
  • Ranked using rating system
  • Inter-observer agreement measures
  • Semi-structured Interviews
  • Principals
  • Co-ordinating Teachers
  • Special Class Teachers
  • Mainstream Teachers
  • Special Needs Assistants
  • Tutors
  • Parents
  • Child-Conversations
  • - Semi-structured interview and draw-a-picture

8
Total Data Sources
Data Source Principal Int. Teacher Int. Special Needs Assistant In. Child Conversation   Child Drawing Parent Int. Document Review Obs. of Practice
Total Data Sources 271 20 50  33  25  36  60  22 25
9
Specific Measurement and Weighting Criteria for Triangulation of Data Collected Specific Measurement and Weighting Criteria for Triangulation of Data Collected Specific Measurement and Weighting Criteria for Triangulation of Data Collected Specific Measurement and Weighting Criteria for Triangulation of Data Collected Specific Measurement and Weighting Criteria for Triangulation of Data Collected
never/almost never rarely sometimes often always/almost always
0-10 11-20 21-50 51-90 91-100
Confirmed by Findings from 10 of Data Sources including Classroom Observation Confirmed by Findings from 11-20 of Data Sources including Classroom Observation Confirmed by Findings from 21-50 of Data Sources including Classroom Observation Confirmed by Findings from 51-90 of Data Sources including Classroom Observation Confirmed by Findings from 91-100 of Data Sources
Unacceptable Fair Good Very Good Excellent
10
Statement 1Teaching and Learning
  • Assessment
  • Understanding and a recognition of the importance
    of assessment of, and for learning in all sites.
  • Assessment curriculum-focused.
  • Positive approach to the management of behaviours
    that challenge evident in all sites.
  • FBA almost always used in early intervention,
    primary and special school sites.

11
Statement 1Teaching and Learning
  • Assessment Issues for Reflection
  • Challenges in developing pragmatic processes for
    recording the positive assessment practice
    observed.
  • ASD specific assessments.
  • Co-occurring special educational needs in the
    context of assessment.
  • Role of student in assessment.
  • Parents and assessment.

12
Statement 1Teaching and Learning
  • Individualised Planning
  • Well-developed in early intervention primary and
    special schools at an initial stage in
    post-primary.
  • Linked to schools existing individualised
    planning where July Education Programme in
    school. Variable in Home-Tuition sites.
  • Parents almost always involved.

13
Statement 1Teaching and Learning
  • Individualised Planning Issues for Reflection
  • Adequate access to external professionals.
  • Student-involvement.
  • Identifying clear and attainable targets.
  • Linking July Education Programme to students
    school setting.
  • Developing parents understanding of the
    individualised planning process.

14
Statement 1Teaching and Learning
  • Transition
  • Very good transition protocols to and from the
    early intervention classes.
  • Excellent understanding of signalling transitions
    within the school day.
  • Good understanding of the importance of
    supporting transition from primary to
    post-primary.

15
Statement 1Teaching and Learning
  • Transition Issues for Reflection
  • Documenting transition protocols in school
    documentation.
  • Scope to include transition planning in students
    individualised planning at post-primary level.
  • Allocating students a more central role in the
    transition process.
  • Transitioning children from school to the July
    Education Programme.

16
Statement 1Teaching and Learning
  • Curriculum
  • Child-centred individualised differentiated
    and focused on the holistic development of the
    child.
  • Primary School Curriculum Aistear certification
    options at post-primary and Guidelines for
    Students with General Learning Disabilities.
  • Focus on students social and life-skills in the
    July Education Programme.

17
Statement 1Teaching and Learning
  • Curriculum Issues for Reflection
  • Curriculum Guidelines for early intervention
    classes.
  • Potential of Aistear.
  • Guidelines in relation to childrens access to
    Irish in Irish-medium schools.
  • Guidelines in relation to the curriculum foci of
    the July Education Programme.

18
Statement 1Teaching and Learning
  • Teaching Methodologies
  • Excellent use of generic and ASD-specific
    teaching approaches used in all early
    intervention, almost all primary and special
    schools.
  • An individualised approach, which considered
    students strengths, interests and preferences
    evident.
  • Almost all school and classroom environments were
    well-structured and visual structures used
    appropriately.

19
Statement 1Teaching and Learning
  • Teaching Methodologies Issues for Reflection
  • Referencing teaching methodologies and rationale
    for selection in school documentation.
  • Addressing the importance of the continuity of
    students experiences in the context of the July
    Education Programme.

20
Statement 2Inclusive School Culture
  • Communication
  • Communication between staff in all sites almost
    always ranged from good to excellent and a strong
    sense of collegiality and collaboration was
    evident.
  • Awareness and understanding of the importance of
    communicating with parents was evidenced in all
    sites.
  • The value of the advice and support of external
    professionals was affirmed by all sites.

21
Statement 2Teaching and Learning
  • Communication Issues for Reflection
  • Providing accessible information for parents with
    regard to the communication structures in place
    in the school.
  • Developing CPD for principals and school staff to
    develop structures that can optimise
    communication with parents.

22
Statement 2Inclusive School Culture
  • Student Wellbeing
  • Students well-being fostered in an affirmative
    and proactive manner in almost all sites.
  • A safe, secure and positive environment was
    almost always evident and interactions were
    respectful and affirming.
  • Positive relationships and positive mental health
    promoted.

23
Statement 2Teaching and Learning
  • Student Wellbeing Issues for Reflection
  • Clearly documenting the range of strategies
    evidenced in school documentation.
  • Identifying a staff member as a resource for
    students who may be concerned with mental health
    issues.
  • Parent wellbeing
  • CPD for all staff in relation to students
    wellbeing, parent wellbeing and their own
    wellbeing.

24
Statement 3 School Management
  • Leadership
  • Committed leadership - Principal
  • Importance of shared vision
  • Communication structures
  • Staff deployment

25
Leadership Issues
  • Small schools, rural, remote
  • Time-table management and deployment
  • Additional tasks for Principal
  • SNA roles

26
Statement 4 Staff Development
  • Understanding Knowledge of ASD
  • Excellent levels by direct care staff and some by
    whole school staff
  • Expertise within the school
  • Rotation across the school
  • SNAs around sensory awareness
  • Special schools all staff

27
Understanding Knowledge of ASD Issues
  • Levels for mainstream teachers in Primary and PP
    environments
  • Levels for Principals in large schools
  • Home tutors - variable

28
4. Continuing Professional Development
  • Principals
  • Special schools
  • Teachers
  • Specialist vs Mainstream
  • SESS MCA - Patron Bodies - Others

29
Contining Professional Development Issues
  • SNAs
  • Entry qualifications
  • CPD pathways
  • Parents
  • Home Tutors
  • Individual AND school-wide approaches

30
...it gives us a better perspective on the whole
child development...it gives a depth to the soul
of us all
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