Commonly used Acronyms in Special Programs at Southside ISD.
Accommodations – strategies, techniques and materials that make learning easier and help students share what they know without changing the basic curriculum.
Achievement Tests – Tests (such as the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills, TAKS) that measure acquired knowledge in certain skills, in content areas such as reading and math
Adapted Physical Education (APE) – Adapted Physical Education is a diversified and systematic program of developmental activities, exercises, games, and sports that are designed in the psychomotor domain. The program is organized and presented in a sequential and developmental manner that is geared to the needs, limitations and abilities of the individual student.
Admission, Review and Dismissal (ARD) Committee – A knowledgeable group of professionals, including the parents (or guardians) of a student with a disability that annually determines by consensus whether the student qualifies for special education services, has or continues to have an educational need for those services, and sets measurable goals for those services through an IEP designed to help the student progress in an appropriate educational setting. When appropriate, the student must be a member of the ARD Committee.
Assessment – This is a formal process used to learn about the strengths and needs of students for the purpose of educational planning.
Assistive Technology (AT) – Any item a student needs to increase, maintain or improve the student’s educational progress in school. AT may include very simple (e.g. a pencil grip) to advanced (e.g. a voice output device) technological or manual devices that allow students with or without disabilities to carry out easy or complex educational tasks.
Auditory Impairment (AI) – AI is a disability of severe hearing loss as determined by a licensed otologist or an audiologist (specialist who determines the degree of hearing loss). Public schools serve students with auditory impairments from birth to age 22.
Autism (AU) – Autism is a brain disorder that typically affects a person’s ability to communicate, form relationships with others, and respond appropriately to the environment.
BASE (Behavior Assistance through Support and Education) – This is a proactive intervention strategy for special education students experiencing emotional/behavioral difficulties.
Behavior Intervention Plan (BIP) – The ARD Committee develops a plan to help prevent problem behaviors. The plan helps a child learn new appropriate behaviors. A positive behavior plan is not a list of punishments. The plan uses information from a Functional Behavioral Assessment (FBA).
Career and Technology Education (CTE) – A general education program providing training and instruction designed to prepare students to work in certain trades or professions.
Case Manager – A case manager or contact teacher is assigned each year to monitor student progress and keep in touch with parents or the student with disabilities eligible for special education services as they moves through the educational process. Child Find – A coordinated set of activities designed to help find students with disabilities aged 3-21 who may be in need of special education services. This includes students with sensory impairments (blind, deaf, visual or auditory impaired) who are birth to three years old.
Consent (also known as Informed Consent) – A written agreement stating that parents have been informed and understand the purpose and intent of special education, special education evaluation and the types of services available through the program. The form says the parent understands consent is voluntary, and the parent can take it back at any time before the school implements the plan. Parents can revoke the consent for evaluation, but it does not cancel what the SISD has already completed.
Due Process – This is a formal legal process (much like a court case) for resolving disputes between parents and school districts in the area of eligibility, services, and placement of students with disabilities. The filing of a request for a due process hearing to be heard by an independent hearing officer is used as a last resort by parents who believe that the district is not doing the right thing for their child. The district may also use due process to resolve a dispute as a last resort when the district believes the best interest of a child is in question.
Early Childhood Intervention (ECI) – ECI is a program run by the Texas Department of Health for children with a disability under the age of three.
Eligibility – The determination of whether or not a student has a disability and an educational need that qualifies him or her for special education services.
Emotional Disturbance (ED) – ED is a specific psychological or behavioral condition which significantly affects a student’s educational performance as determined by a licensed specialist in school psychology or a licensed or certified psychologist or psychiatrist.
Evaluation or Full and Individual Evaluation (FIE) – This is a formal process using appropriate instruments to learn about the strengths and needs of an individual student for the purpose of educational planning. A licensed professional gathers information about a student to decide if they qualify for special education, related services and/or the kind and amount of services the child needs. Evaluation may include testing, observing, or talking to people who work with the child.
Extended School Year (ESY) – ESY provides classes to students during vacation breaks so that they can continue working on the Individualized Education Program goals and objectives when they are likely to not recoup those skills within a short time of returning to school. ESY services are determined by an individual student’s ARD Committee.
Extracurricular or Nonacademic Activities – School activities outside the educational coursework including activities such as meals, recess, clubs, athletics, and special interest groups usually led or supervised by faculty members.
Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) – This is the federal law that governs the privacy of a student’s school records.
Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) – The entitlement that students with disabilities have to specially designed instruction and related services in order to meet their unique and individual needs which is free of charge to their parents.
Functional Behavior Assessment (FBA) – The ARD Committee through an FBA determines the cause of persistent problem behaviors and develops a plan of how to assist the student learn more appropriate behaviors
General Education Curriculum – The Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) students without disabilities learn in their general education classrooms.
Homebound Services – Homebound special education services are for medically determined illnesses (form completed by an MD licensed to practice in the U.S.) Homebound provides certified teachers for one-to-one instruction in the student’s home. Lessons and exams are provided by the student’s classroom teacher(s) to ensure that similar content is provided. If a student will be on homebound for the entire semester, the homebound teacher will provide the lessons.
Home-School – Parents choose to teach their child with a home school curriculum in their home instead of in the public school to learn basic subjects. A home school is considered a private school in Texas.Inclusion – An ARD/IEP Committee determination which states that a special education student is educated in classes or the community with his or her non-disabled peers for some or all of his or her school day with appropriate modifications and/or accommodations.
Independent Educational Evaluation (IEE) – A separate evaluation done by a qualified person who does not work for the school district is an IEE. Many psychologists or other professionals meeting the same guidelines as SISD staff who are in private practice perform these evaluations. This may be helpful if parents disagree with an evaluation which has already been performed by the District.
Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) – IDEA is the federal law that requires school districts to provide a free appropriate public education to students with disabilities who have an educational need for those services.
Individualized Education Program (IEP) – This is a plan that is developed within an ARD that outlines specific educational goals with strategies and services a student needs based on assessment to help meet the student’s annual goals.
Initial Placement – The first setting in which a student receives special education services is the initial placement. Parents must sign an approval form for this first-time setting.
Instructional Assistant (IA) – A trained person who assists both teachers and students with educational plans in and out of the classroom setting.
Itinerant Instruction – Instruction that is provided by staff traveling to multiple schools or school districts and offer services in such areas as Visual Impairment, Hearing Impairment, Orientation and Mobility, Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy, etc.
Learning Disability (LD)– A student who is not learning or achieving like his or her peers as determined by an evaluation team and based on very specific testing is LD. These problems may be due to perceptual disabilities, brain injury, dyslexia or aphasia, but are not due to visual, hearing or motor disabilities or severe intellectual disabilities (MR), emotional disturbance, lack of schooling or environmental, cultural or economic disadvantage.
Least Restrictive Environment (LRE)– LRE is a concept referring to the extent of removal of a student from education with students who do not have disabilities as little as possible. The goal of special education is an attempt to teach students with disabilities in settings that allow as much interaction as possible or as appropriate between disabled students, their non-disabled peers and the community.
Mainstreaming – This is often confused with Inclusion or the term LRE. Placement of students with disabilities in a classroom
with non-disabled peers is an accurate definition of mainstreaming.
Mediation – This is a formal meeting between parents and school personnel to settle, compromise, or reconcile serious differences in opinion regarding evaluation, an IEP or placement of a special education student. There is usually an outside mediator invited to help resolve these differences.
Mental Retardation (MR) – This is a condition of low intellectual (cognitive) ability and adaptive behavior that is determined by a licensed specialist in school psychology which severely affects a child’s educational performance.
Modification – A change in the course content or instructional level which changes the standard for a student with disabilities is known as a modification.
Occupational Therapy (OT)– Is a related service that addresses participating in functional activities that may be difficult to perform due to cognitive, sensory, or motor concerns. Services are based on assessed need, ARD/IEP determined and provided by a licensed professional. These services address academic needs and daily living skills that may be impaired due to the above mentioned difficulties to help students participate in school and make progress toward their IEP.
Orthopedic Impairment (OI)– A bone or muscle disability, as diagnosed by a physician, severe enough to affect a child’s educational performance makes a student eligible as OI.
Other Health Impairment (OHI/OH)– Is a medical condition diagnosed by a physician and not covered by other eligible disabilities that severely affect a child’s educational performance. Examples include heart conditions, diabetes, Attention Deficit with Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Tourette’s, cystic fibrosis (CF) or leukemia.
Orientation and Mobility Training (O & M)– Is training for students with visual impairments who need to safely move around the school and community.
Physical Therapy (PT) – Is a related service that serves students with physical disabilities who have needs in the areas of mobility, positioning and/or accessibility in the school setting. Services are based on an assessed need, IEP/ARD determined and provided by a licensed professional to help students participate in school and make progress toward their IEP.
Placement – The educational setting in which a student with a disability receives special education services, either in a school or in the community.
Preschool Program for Children with Disabilities (PPCD) – The Preschool Program for Children with Disabilities provides early childhood education for students with disabilities, ages 3-5, in neighborhood schools, in employee collaborative classrooms and in some community-based day care centers.
Procedural Safeguards – Are the legal requirements outlined in a formal handout given to parents at least annually which is designed to ensure that students with disabilities are treated equally and fairly throughout the special education decision- making process.
Referral (Referral Process) – A written request for an evaluation to determine if a student may be eligible for and in need of special education services.
Region 20 Education Service Center of Texas – A state funded regional organization in San Antonio that provides high quality and cost effective educational programs for teachers, professionals, nonprofessionals and parents. The center offers information on special education as well as general education. Region 20 may be reached at 210-370-5460.
Regional Day School Program for the Deaf (RDSPD)– Provides a wide range of service options available to RDSPD students. Options include itinerant services at the student’s home attendance campus, RDSPD classrooms clustered on one campus, and fully inclusive classrooms with RDSPD teachers co-teaching in general education. Audiological services, interpreting services, speech and specialized counseling services are also available as related services.
Related Services – These are additional services that a student with a disability may receive in order to benefit from special education and progress on their IEP. They are included in the IEP and based on assessed need.
Response to Intervention (RtI) – High-quality instruction or tiered intervention strategies matched to individual student needs that have been demonstrated through scientific research and best practice to result in high learning rates for most students such that they can progress in the general education classroom without referral for special education.
Special Education -Is defined by law as specially designed instruction to meet the unique needs of a student identified with a disability. The services are provided at no cost to the parents. The services can be provided in many different settings.
Special Olympics – The program currently serves students ages 6-22. These students are located on different campuses.
Speech-Language Program (SLP) – This program helps students improve their speech and/or language skills and assists students in becoming more successful in school by improving their speech-language skills.
Supplementary Aids and Services – Services and supports provided in general education classes, special education classes and other community settings to help a student with a disability be educated with students or adults who do not have disabilities to the extent possible and appropriate.
Texas Education Agency (TEA) – The state agency ultimately responsible for ensuring that every student in Texas receives a free appropriate public education.
Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) – The standards of knowledge and skills (the curriculum) a student must complete to earn credit for a course K-12 as determined by the State Board of Education (SBOE).
Transition – Transition planning is required for every student moving from Birth to Three Programs to a school’s Preschool Program for Children with Disabilities (PPCD) or Kindergarten. Transition is also a term used in IDEA for preparing a child for life after high school. A Transition Plan is a required as part of every student’s IEP starting at age 16 (or younger if needed). Sometimes transition planning happens when a student moves from one grade to the next, or one school to the next. Transition sometimes means moving from one class to the next class in school.
Transition Plan – Assists students in making a successful transition from public school to adult living, the ARD/IEP must address post-secondary goals. This must occur no later than age 16. A coordinated set of activities and IEP objectives must be determined to help students reach these adult goals.
Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) – TBI is an injury occurring after birth which impairs a person’s normal cognition, memory, language or motor functioning and/or development.
Triennial Review (Three Year Re-evaluation) – A special ARD/IEP (Admissions, Review and Dismissal) held every three years. Triennial Review includes an evaluation whereby parents and staff review previous and current information about a student with disabilities in an effort to determine if the disability continues to be present and if there is still a need for special education services.
Visual Impairment (VI) – A serious visual disability, even with correction, as determined by a licensed ophthalmologist that
affects educational performance.