ISE Student Support Policy - May 2016

In order to ensure that the learning opportunities are available to meet a variety of needs within a diverse population, differentiated tasks and assessments are required, as well as accommodations, adaptations, alternative resources and specialist teachers to ensure all students have access to a curriculum that is “relevant, engaging and challenging” and developmentally appropriate to the individual students.

To this end, in partnership with the ISE community, the Student Support Team at ISE works to meet the diverse needs of every student to reach their full potential.

ISE strives to realize its philosophy into practice throughout our continuum of programs. The on-going development of learning support resources and the documentation of that process by means of this policy is evidence of our commitment to making it visible to stakeholders.

Introduction

The International School of Estonia (ISE) is supportive of inclusion and accepts students with mild learning needs under the condition that the student is able to meet the academic requirements of the educational program, with the support outlined in this policy. At present, ISE cannot provide services for students with moderate to severe exceptionalities. This is defined as a child who requires modification of the curriculum within the core academic program or those who benefit from extending the curriculum.A student identified as having a mild learning exceptionalities is expected to function within the regular classroom given appropriate modifications and/or accommodations to the delivery and assessment of the content, in accordance to the teaching and learning policies and practices of ISE. For more information about admissions please see the Admissions policy.

ISE is devoted to providing an inclusive environment that supports learners with cognitive, social, emotional, physical and other special needs, to the extent that our resources and facilities allow. ISE’s Student Support Team inquire, reflect and communicate regularly to address student needs and create a framework of effective instructional strategies and accommodations.

ISE does not provide specialized support in the areas of speech language therapy, occupational therapy and academic tutoring. These services may be found in the Tallinn area but must be paid for privately. Due to accessibility issues with the school’s facilities, ISE is unable to appropriately accommodate students with limited mobility (future school renovations are planned to remove this barrier).

 

 

 

In concurrence with IBO guidelines ISE aims to offer an inclusive PYP, MYP and DP programme that can cater to the needs of all students, guided by the ISE Inclusion-SEN Policy

Philosophy

In order to ensure that the learning opportunities are available to meet a variety of needs within a diverse population, differentiated tasks and assessments are required, as well as accommodations, adaptations, alternative resources and specialist teachers to ensure all students have access to a curriculum that is “relevant, engaging and challenging” and developmentally appropriate to the individual students.

To this end, in partnership with the ISE community, the Student Support Team at ISE works to meet the diverse needs of every student to reach their full potential.

ISE strives to realize its philosophy into practice throughout our continuum of programs. The on-going development of learning support resources and the documentation of that process by means of this policy is evidence of our commitment to making it visible to stakeholders.

Aims

ISE’s Student Support Policy aims are:

  • To ensure teaching practices and learning opportunities provide access to the curriculum
  • To provide clear expectations about what ISE can do to support students based on their exceptionalities
  • To provide students with opportunities to progress throughout the school program and report their progress to relevant stakeholders
  • To create an atmosphere of trust and open, respectful communication when discussing individuals with learning exceptionalities; including those with social, emotional, physical and other challenges
  • To build awareness and foster respect throughout the school and surrounding community of the prevalence of learning exceptionalities, based on the IB Learner Profile
  • Students make more progress when teachers supporting them work collaboratively as an effective team
  • Curriculum is differentiated to address students’ learning needs
  • Assessment tools provide insight to teachers and students for setting goals and designing appropriate activities in line with their abilities and needs
  • All stakeholders have a shared understanding of learning needs.
  • Teaching and learning is multi-sensory and relevant and takes into account individual profiles and learning styles to the best extent possible
  • Relevant information on student progress is communicated to all stakeholders in a timely manner.

Student Support Team

The role of the Student Support Team is to determine whether a student with a range of learning exceptionalities will benefit from the ISE education program and should be referred for services or in-school evaluations. The SST also makes recommendations for differentiation strategies or accommodations to support students with learning exceptionalities.

ISE is able to support students by:

  • Utilizing instructional strategies and materials that support a diversity of learning styles
  • Allowing extended time periods for assessments
  •  Providing accommodations during class time and assessments.
  • Assisting students in goal setting and planning
  • Modifying summative assessments
  • Modifying student’s schedule to reduce stress and promote success
  • Allowing use of technology to support learning needs in class
  • Facilitating collaboration with other teachers
  • Communicating regularly with parents, teachers and students to build awareness
  •  Assisting parents with arrangements for testing or other support outside of school
  • Providing assessment of progress as well as achievement
  • Making recommendations for in-school or outside assessment
  • Providing short term school-based counseling services
  • The creation and development of learning plans, including International Individual Learning Plans (IILP)

ISE is unable to:

  • Provide an alternative or modified curriculum
  • Provide a self-contained special needs classroom and program
  • Provide related services, such as speech or physical therapy
  • Accept students with limited intellectual capacity or mobility
  • Diagnose students
  • Guarantee enrollment through continuous grade levels
  • 
ISE regards open communication and collaboration with parents essential to successful integration and support of students with learning exceptionalities.

When considering whether or not ISE is the optimal learning environment for a child with learning exceptionalities, we request the following:

  • Frequent and open communication with parents
  • An evaluation of the student by a psychologist, neurologist, or other related specialist valid within the last three years
  • On-going communication from specialists (if any) working with the student outside of school
  • An understanding that in the event that the child’s needs cannot be met by differentiated instruction and other interventions, provided by classroom teachers and the Student Support Team, it may be necessary to seek 
placement in another school
  • After admission, if the school is not able to meet the child’s learning needs, ISE reserves the right to ask parents to help further support their child beyond the school’s designated support
  • Parental support for recommended educational testing, consultations or other services to benefit the student’s opportunities for success
  • An understanding that students with learning exceptionalities require a long-term commitment on the part of the parents and the school and that regular monitoring and assessment is necessary to ensure appropriate process 
in meeting the individualized objectives and goals has been achieved
  • Any related therapy, specialized evaluation or tutoring (all outside of school time and conducted by outside specialists) must be financed by the parents.
  • ISE staff are held to a high standard in maintaining confidentiality. All verbal and written information including records, internal and external testing, are only accessible to the Learning Support, Counseling, Administrative team, as well as the teachers who teach that child. If there is parent permission and written requests, all relevant documents can be sent forward to the next school.

Policy Review This policy will be reviewed bi-annually by the Student Support Team and/or in accordance with the school’s curriculum review cycle.