Betty Nowicki (10) (5) (7.5) (5) (7.5) (5)
1. Importance of topic. It has long been
known, both by research and observation, that there are better ways to
help some students who have difficulty with reading or math. There may
be push-back as well from some teachers—often because they have been
[down] this road before, being told that this method is better than
the old, only to have it turned 180 degrees in a couple of years due
to cost. Consistency counts to staff as well as students.
2. Value of further study. Depends on
whether or not this could actually happen. Where will the money come
from to start its implementation? Her district received special
funding to start this back when the legislature supported public
education. Does anyone realistically see that happening now?
3. Education lags research. Educators
have been through a lot of "flavor of the month" changes. There has
been a lot of research out there, about a lot of areas that will help
students succeed. It fails because funders (legislatures) want to see
immediate improvement. It takes money.
4. Instruction for many inadequate. We
have administrators that should be supporting frequent paid time for
staff to be updated on new ideas and techniques that are grade/age
appropriate. To often these days are filled with meetings that are not
involved with curriculum or teaching techniques.
5. Poor readers mislabeled. It is hard
on self-esteem to know that you can't read as well as your classmates.
When we set hard rules about criteria for intervention with a student,
whether it is about behavior or learning it is hard to get that help
to a student early because they don't meet the criteria.
6. Reform regular education. Special
Education costs money. We will still have students that need that type
of help, but if we can reduce the number of students who get a label
we will all better off.
7. Early intervention key. I agree;
however, many of their needs do not disappear when they enter
kindergarten. Money may need to follow them for a while until we know
they can succeed in a regular classroom setting. We do not take the
social stigma away when we pull them out for "special" help.
8. Leadership essential. Without their
buy-in, it will not succeed unless you have a strong core of dedicated
teachers willing to fight hard for it. They need to be sold that this
will work and that it is worth the extra hours they will need to put
Dave Broden (10) (7.5) (2.5) (10) (10) (10)
1. Importance of topic. The best
discussion of Special Education approach and issues. Innovation and
success. Shows effectiveness of good leadership and flexibility.
2. Value of further study. The Special
Education subject is worth more study but only if the interviewee is
really engaged in working to improve the process and can show results.
3. Education lags research. There are
multiple studies and approaches to teaching reading, many of which
seem to show benefits. The real issue is how each is applied. More
research is perhaps always beneficial but application approach and
achieving results is the real issue.
4. Instruction for many inadequate. Many
children receive inadequate instruction because of the teaching
approach and effectiveness, not due to the type of reading methods.
Both of course are critical but the interaction and encouragement of a
strong and effective teacher must be included.
5. Poor readers mislabeled. One apparent
problem with special education is that many students are not properly
evaluated and placed in the correct classroom to achieve the desired
results. Better "diagnosis" is definitely needed.
6. Reform regular education. Reforming
both and seeking to have a full spectrum view of education is needed.
7. Early intervention key. The RTI
approach discussed in the interview seems to capture the real need and
yield benefits. This can change the way children are categorized.
8. Leadership essential. Principals and
Superintendents certainly must be key but real support and buy-in by
the teacher, whether special education or basic education, must be the
Ray Ayotte (10) (10) (10) (10) (10) (10)
Bruce Lundeen (7.5) (7.5) (2.5) (5) (5)
(7.5) (7.5) (10)
1. Importance of topic. With what is
spent on Special Education, moderately important to all taxpayers.
2. Value of further study. I think
rather than inquiring about relevancy, you should concentrate on
3. Education lags research. Teachers
have received professional development ad nauseam.
Bert LeMunyon (7.5) (7.5) (7.5) (7.5) (7.5)
(10) (7.5) (10)
Don Anderson (5) (5) (7.5) (10) (7.5) (10)
Sandy Vargas (10) (10) (10) (10) (10) (10)
1. Importance of topic. Very important
to examine why the mass education process we use throws kids overboard
when they don't learn the same way.
2. Value of further study. I think this
is an important topic to dig into. We need reform of our educational
system and we have research and technology that could help many
3. Education lags research. I agree. How
then does the research get transferred into big systems that want to
keep the fundamental status quo in place?
4. Instruction for many inadequate. We
do not make sure that teachers have adequate information, training and
the ability to practice their new skills.
5. Poor readers mislabeled. Because we
have the mind-set of mass education any variable beyond a certain
range will mean kids get moved into a structure of Special Education.
This is an all-or-nothing mind-set. We have tools to help kids but the
current set up doesn't allow for tailoring education to the individual
needs of the students. We have to build a new mindset and a new
6. Reform regular education. I totally
agree. There is still a need for special education but just because
someone speaks a different language or learns in a different way
doesn't mean they can't learn with tools that get put forward for
7. Early intervention key. I don't know
much about this program but it seems to be the answer in principle.
8. Leadership essential. Leadership is
key. They have to believe it.
Roger Johnson (10) (10) (10) (5) (7.5) (2.5)
Tom Spitznagle (7) (7) (7) (8) (8) (8) (9)
Chuck Lutz (8) (8) (9) (9) (8) (8) (9) (8)
Paul Gilje (8) (8) (10) (10) (10) (10) (8)
Carolyn Ring (8) (8) (10) (10) (10) (10)
There is no doubt early identification of
reading problems is "key" to success in other subjects. I am so old I
can remember when there were 3 reading groups in every class beginning
in 1st grade. Teachers worked with students and parents to identify
the problems and take measures to improve reading skills. High school
drop out rate was practically non-existent.
William Kuisle (9) (8) (6) (7) (8) (10) (8)
Wayne Jennings (8) (7) (6) (7) (7) (9) (6)
I looked for research on RTI but found it
mixed in terms of results. I think part of the problem is the
expectation that all students will learn the same things at the same
time and rate. That's unrealistic as kids learn very differently
according to maturation, interests, motivation, learning styles,
intelligences and other factors. RTI works for some but may do harm
for others who simply are not ready and thus, even with good RTI
instruction, once again prove themselves "dumb" when in fact they are
different in many ways. I agree that special education has not done
well with many students primarily because it tries to force a standard
education, which is weak on experiential approaches.
Al Quie (10) (10) (10) (10) (10) (10) (10)
Tom Swain (10) (8) (5) (7) (9) (10) (10) (9)