Academic and Content Resources
The IRIS Center - Developed in collaboration with nationally recognized researchers and education experts, the Center’s resources about evidence-based instructional and intervention practices—Modules, Case Study Units, Activities and others (including a number of Web-based tools)—are specifically created for use in college instruction, professional development activities and independent learning opportunities for practicing educators.
- High-Quality Mathematics Instruction: Module describes the components of high-quality mathematics instruction: a standards-based curriculum and evidence-based practices. It also highlights several evidence-based practices and other classroom practices for teaching mathematics.
- MTSS/RTI: Mathematics: This Module describes the RTI framework as applied to mathematics. It includes discussions of instruction, assessment and data-based decision making at the primary, secondary and tertiary levels.
- CSR: A Reading Comprehension Strategy: This module outlines Collaborative Strategic Reading (CSR), a strategy for helping students to improve their reading comprehension skills. In CSR, students work together in small groups to apply comprehension strategies as they read text from a content area, such as social studies or science.
- Improving Writing Performance: This module highlights the differences between students who write well and those who struggle. Elements of the writing process are discussed, as are the prerequisite skills students need to write good papers. The module outlines and describes the process for teaching students the POW+TREE strategy, a writing strategy to help students produce better persuasive essays.
- Cultural and Linguistic Differences: What Teachers Should Know Module
- Culturally Responsive Classroom Management Strategies document
- IRIS Resource Locator
Mathematics Assessment Resource Project: The project provides tools for formative and summative assessment that help support students’ mathematical knowledge and reasoning. It also provides resources for teachers that help them grow their ability to teach mathematical concepts.
Academic Resources for Teachers (from OSEP): OSEP provides a variety of resources to support instruction including resources on Evidence-Based Practices, Tiered Support, IEP’s, Supporting English Learners, Assessment and Technology.
National Center on Accessible Educational Materials (AEM) for Learning: AEM provides resources to promote equitable opportunities for children with disabilities to participate in high-quality early learning programs, be involved in and progress in the general education curriculum, prepare to meet college and career-ready standards, participate in assessments and transition to postsecondary education and the workforce. Resources include Best Practices for Educators & Instructors which provides information on how to create accessible educational materials.
Co-teaching Models: This resource outlines strategies that support best practices of co-teaching in the classroom.
Collaborative Teaching Practices for Exceptional Children Question and Answer Document (2011): This Question and Answer Document (Q & A) is intended to guide implementation and documentation of Collaborative Teaching/ Co-Teaching Practices for students with disabilities in Kentucky.
High-Leverage Practices in Special Education: Collaboration: This resource includes information and tools to support the implementation of collaboration practices among educators.
Specially Designed Instruction (SDI) Resources:
Teaching LD: Students with disabilities can demonstrate their knowledge when provided with uniquely tailored tools and strategies that support their learning. This page contains information and resources for teaching students with Learning Disabilities, including supports for content instruction, transition and behavior. Specific resources include but are not limited to Vocabulary Instruction (Reading), Mnemonics (Reading), Graphic Organizers and Explicit Instruction/Modeling (Math).
Intervention Central: Includes resources for various academic interventions. These resources can be used for both RTI and SDI.
SPLASH: The SPLASH initiative is grounded in research-based practices to increase teacher skillsets and administrator understanding of indicators of high-quality teaching and learning for students with moderate/severe disabilities (MSD).
Specially Designed Instruction (SDI): Improving Outcomes for Students with Disabilities: This graphic provides basic information and resources to support Administrators' understanding of SDI.
Evidence-Based Practices (IRIS): These research summaries - covering instructional strategies and interventions - offer information that includes levels of effectiveness as well as the age groups for which a given strategy or intervention is designed. Links to the original reports are also provided for those who might wish to explore further.
High-Leverage Practices (IRIS): This interactive alignment tool identifies which IRIS resources provide information on High-leverage practices. High-leverage practices are 22 essential special education techniques that all K-12 special education teachers should master for use across a variety of classroom contexts. Learn more about these practices in the guidance document High-Leverages Practices in Special Education.
Transition and Post-Secondary Resources
CTE, Accountability and Transition Readiness: Kentucky’s accountability system provides students with multiple, meaningful opportunities to engage in pathways that build awareness of career opportunities, provide real-world instruction and lead to credentials with labor market value. This KDE webpage provides information and resources to support Career and Technical Education (CTE) pathways.
Transition Resources (KDE): Webpage provides supports for families and districts as they develop meaningful transition plans for students with disabilities.
Office of Vocational Rehabilitation: The Kentucky Office of Vocational Rehabilitation (OVR) assists Kentuckians with disabilities (beginning at age 16) to achieve suitable employment and independence.
Social, Emotional and Behavioral Resources
IRIS Center: IRIS Center offers a wide variety of resources about evidence-based instructional and intervention practices to support behavior and classroom management, including modules, practice guides and research summaries to support students with disabilities. See the “Resources Locator” for information and training on how to support behavior and classroom management. Some resources include:
Intervention Central: Includes a wealth of resources from self-management to school-wide behavior intervention approaches.
Academic and Behavioral Response to Intervention (ABRI): The ABRI Project is focused on developing training and technical assistance in the basics of effective instruction and classroom management that formulate the universal level of PBS and RIT in the school and classroom. The website provides training and resource material for trauma, behavior supports, co-teaching, data-analysis and other topics.
Students with Disabilities and the Use of Restraint and Seclusion in K-12 Public Schools: This webinar from the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) and Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS) reviews implicated issues and requirements relating to the use of restraint and seclusion of students with disabilities. The webinar provides a brief description of OCR’s Civil Rights Data Collection System and some overall guidance regarding data reporting of restraint and seclusion.
Teachers: Social, Emotional and Behavioral Skills (from OSEP): To be successful and meet college and career standards (CCRS), students need support from their families and teachers who work collaboratively to meet both their instructional as well as their social, emotional and behavioral (SEB) needs. OSEP offers resources in seven critical areas to support the improvement of students SEB skills and improve school climate.
Special Olympics Kentucky (SOKY): The mission of Special Olympics is to provide year-round sports training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic-type sports for children and adults with intellectual disabilities, giving them continuing opportunities to develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage, experience joy and participate in a sharing of gifts, skills and friendship with their families, other Special Olympics athletes and the community. The Unified Champion Schools (UCS) initiative strategically supports inclusive sports, youth leadership and whole-school engagement.
Early Childhood Environments- Designing Effective Classrooms (IRIS): This module includes videos, information and resources on designing effective early childhood environments.
Early Childhood Behavior Management: Developing and Teaching Rules (IRIS): This module includes information on how to create developmentally appropriate behavior rules for early childhood classrooms so that they link to a given school's behavior expectations. The importance of communication with families about rules and expected behaviors is also stressed.
Preschool/Primary Resources (KDE): The preschool program is designed to be developmentally appropriate for young children. "Developmentally appropriate" is defined in law to mean that the program focuses on the child's physical, intellectual, social and emotional development, including interpersonal, intrapersonal and socialization skills. This page provides information and resources to support young learners.
U.S. Department's Early Learning Website: This site includes the latest information about the U.S. Department of Education’s work in supporting our nation's youngest learners, as well as a variety of resources.
Family Engagement Resources
Family Engagement Resources (OSEP): This site includes a variety of resources including those from Federally Funded Projects and Centers, U.S. Department of Education and Early Childhood Resources.
Global Family Research Project: This site contains resources and related research for building and evaluating family, school and community engagement practices, programs and policies; for strengthening professional and organizational development; and for creating a more equitable anywhere anytime learning ecology for all children and families.
Partners in Education: A Dual Capacity-Building Framework for Family-School Partnerships: For schools and districts across the U.S., family engagement is rapidly shifting from a low-priority recommendation to an integral part of education reform efforts. This resource from the U.S. Department of Education offers information and resources on how to build and strengthen family-school partnerships. Additional information can also be found in the Dual Capacity Framework for Family-School Partnerships, Version 2.
Kentucky Collaborative for Families and Schools: The Kentucky Collaborative for Families and Schools is a network of partners focused on increasing open communication, learning opportunities and shared decision-making power across the Kentucky Education system. Their site includes a variety of resources and engagement opportunities that promote the growth of partnerships between families, schools and communities.
National Association of Family, School and Community Engagement (NAFSCE): The mission of NAFSCE is to advance high-impact policies and practices for family, school and community engagement to promote child development and improve student achievement. Their site includes a variety of resources including webinars and toolkits.
Non-Traditional Instruction (NTI)/Distance Learning Resources
COVID-19 Considerations for Reopening Schools - KDE Parent QA Document (October 16, 2020): This document is intended to support parents of students with disabilities during the 2020-2021 school year.
Virtual IEP Meetings: This page from the Center for Parent Information and Resources (CPIR) includes “tip sheets” on conducting virtual IEP meetings in both English and Spanish.
COVID-19 Resources for Special Education and Early Learning: This KDE webpage includes a variety of resources related to COVID-19 including Frequently Asked Questions, National and Kentucky resources.
Special Education Regional Cooperative Webcast Series: This webpage includes webcasts and connected resources around a variety of topics related to distance learning.
Comprehensive Integrated Three-Tiered Model of Prevention (Behavior): The Ci3T Strategic Leadership Team and Ci3T Research Team are developing materials to support educators and families as we transition to a world of online and continuous learning. The site includes resources for teachers, administrators and families (English and Spanish).
Early Childhood Regional Training Centers Webcast Series: This webpage incudes a series of webcasts and connected resources around a variety of topics.
Universal Design for Learning (UDL)
CAST: The CAST organization is focused on transforming educational design through the Universal Design for Learning framework and UDL Guidelines. See Learning Resources, Technical Assistance for Accessibility and Online Tools for information and support on implementing UDL. Specific resources which may be of interest include:
UDL Toolkit (OSEP): This toolkit from OSEP provides information and resources on the UDL framework and principles of UDL, with a focus on UDL teaching and assessment methods.
Universal Design for Learning: Creating a Learning Environment that Challenges and Engages all Students: This module from the IRIS Center explores the three principles of UDL and how to apply those principles to learning goals, instructional materials, instructional methods and assessments.
Universal Design for Learning Course Enhancement Module (CEM): This CEM from the CEEDAR Center explores how UDL can be used to make curriculum design and classroom design accessible for students. Section 1 includes an introduction to UDL and an overview of the UDL Framework, while Section 2 provides participants an opportunity to practice planning instruction with UDL. Both sections include an anchor presentation, facilitation guide and participant handouts.
Individual Education Program (IEP) Resources
Guidance Document for Individual Education Program (IEP) Development: The IEP Guidance Document provides instructions and examples for developing IEPs for Admissions and Release Committee (ARC) members, including chairpersons, teachers, related service providers and parents.
Developing High-Quality IEPs (IRIS): The IEP serves as the blueprint for the services and supports necessary to meet a student’s unique needs and guides every facet of their special education program. This module provides information on how to develop a high-quality IEP.
Guidance for Monitoring and Evaluating Accommodations (KDE): This document provides a list of questions to consider when making determinations for student accommodations.
Kentucky Department of Education Autism Guidance: This document provides non-regulatory guidance specifically related to the unique needs of learners with Autism.
Related Services Guidance Documents: The Kentucky Eligibility Guidelines for Students with Speech or Language Impairment 3rd Edition (KEG-3) and Guidance for Special Education Related Services Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy and Speech-Language Therapy provide guidance to support the delivery and implementation of related services.
Assistive Technology (AT): Assistive technology is any device, software or equipment that helps people work around their challenges and is often essential for the success of students with disabilities. This page links to information and resources to support the use of AT.
Alternate K-PREP Training and Instructional Resources: This site includes podcasts, training materials and instructional tools to assist MSD teachers as they implement common core standards.
IEP and Lesson Plan Development Handbook: This handbook provides information and examples of many facets of Special Education. Some information includes Specially Designed Instruction (SDI), Supplementary Aids and Services (SAS), IEP goals and objectives, etc.
Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO)- Principal Leadership Standards in Support of Students with Disabilities: This document details Promoting Principal Leadership for the Success of Students with Disabilities and conveys high expectations for school leaders and administrators. The resource provides concrete examples and vignettes of how principals have worked to develop and demonstrate competencies and skills to better meet the needs of students with disabilities.
Promoting Principal Leadership for the Success of Students with Disabilities: This resource is a part of the CCSSO document above. It is a crosswalk chart that lists PSEL standards for Principal Leadership. There are 10 overall standards, and each standard is broken down more concretely into 3-4 proficiencies which describe in greater detail the competencies/skills that administrators should possess when leading their school teams to successfully meet the needs of students with disabilities.