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School-Based Speech-Language Pathologists' Assessment Practices With English Language Learners SE TESOL CONFERENCE SEPTEMBER 18, 2009 ATLANTA, GEORGIA


Introductions


TESOL Position Statement on Identifying ELLs with Special Needs  Disproportionate representation of CLD students in

special education 

an issue that has received increased attention

 Identification of ELLs with special needs complex

and difficult process  

Overidentification Underidentification


TESOL Position Statement on Identifying ELLs with Special Needs  Limited research on effective specific practices for ELLs with special needs  Numerous laws and legal precedents outline rights of ELLs in education, 

Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Equal Educational Opportunities Act (EEOA). IDEA 2004  entitles all individuals with disabilities to a free and appropriate public education.  includes provisions on how CLD students should be assessed for possible special education placement


TESOL Position Statement on Identifying ELLs with Special Needs  “Blueprint” for appropriate assessment

Must be in a form and language that will yield valid results  Cannot rely on a single assessment to determine learning disability  Should be given in student’s strongest language  May be student’s native language  Take into consideration student’s proficiency level in both English and native language, as well as dialect  Alternative assessments 


TESOL Position Statement on Identifying ELLs with Special Needs  

Ensure culturally appropriate content and tasks Guidelines for incorporating language acquisition or sociocultural factors provided throughout evaluation reports

 Culturally responsive expertise and purposeful

collaboration 

trained specialists in issues of bilingualism, second language acquisition, sociocultural factors, to understand processing or cognitive deficits, and to implement essential adaptations for students receiving services in special education programs Collaboration with ESOL/ESL and bilingual education professionals

 Clear communication with family members


 Special Education Elementary Longitudinal Study

(SEELS) (2000)  

Sponsored by the OSEP of the U. S. DOE Sample of more than 11,000 students ages 6 through 12 in 1999 and receiving special education services in first grade or higher Almost three-fourths classified as having a learning disability (43%) or a speech/language impairment (30%) – over 1 million students


 Study conducted by Artiles, Rueda, Salazar, &

Higareda (2000) 

ELLs in secondary grades and those with limited language proficiency most overrepresented in programs for students with MR, LD, and speech and language impairments ELLs more likely than English speakers to be placed in high incidence disability categories

Karen P. Harris Ph.D. CCC-SLP


SLP Roles and Responsibilities  Play a major role in the identification, assessment,

and intervention of students with disabilities  Common concerns and stakes in the educational outcomes of students with special needs, particularly those from CLD backgrounds  Incredible task of distinguishing disability from cultural difference

Karen P. Harris Ph.D. CCC-SLP


The Big Picture‌  The more diverse the population, the more likely it is

that speech-language pathologists will work with children and families from cultural, ethnic, and linguistic backgrounds different than their own.

Karen P. Harris Ph.D. CCC-SLP


GUARANTEEING A HIGHLY QUALIFIED POOL OF SPEECHLANGUAGE PATHOLOGISTS IS ESSENTIAL.


Purpose of the Study INVESTIGATE CURRENT ASSESSMENT PRACTICES OF SLPS WITH ELLS IN THE PUBLIC SCHOOL SETTING


Research Questions  What tools and techniques do school-based SLPs use

to identify students with diverse linguistic backgrounds for SLP services?  What nontraditional techniques do school-based SLPs use?  If nontraditional techniques are used, how did the SLPs become acquainted with them?


Methodology  Quantitative

 Qualitative

 Non-experimental

 Survey Instrument

 Descriptive  Survey Instrument   

25 Total Questions Multiple Choice Likert-Type

1 Open-ended Question


Participants


Participants  School-based SLPs in one Georgia school

district  Significant representation of ELLs  70 total SLPs employed by this district  Survey administered to 50 SLPs present at SLP meeting  28 respondents


Participant Demographics  Years working in SLP  12-20 years (4)  More than 20 years of experience (11)  Years working with children and youth  

12-20 years (4) More than 20 years of experience (11)

 Gender  Female (26)  Male (2)  Race/ethnicity  

AA/Black (not Hispanic/Latino) (22) Caucasian/White (not Hispanic/Latino) (6)


Response Rate 56% RESPONSE RATE


Results ď‚— Type of service provided


Limitations ď‚— Self-report


Implications  Ongoing collaborations among professionals  In U.S., ELLs with disabilities entitled to specialized services under

both laws  Schools required to provide both language services (e.g., ESL programs, native language support) and special education services.  Training SLPs in areas of:  Bilingualism  Second language acquisition  Sociocultural factors  Authentic assessment  Implementation of culturally appropriate essential adaptations for students receiving services in special education programs


Next Steps PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT THINK TANKS


Thank You!!! KAREN P. HARRIS, PH.D. CCC-SLP KHARRIS@WESTGA.EDU 678 839-6171


School-Based Speech-Language Pathologists' Assessment Practices With English Language Learners