Imagine Learning Sponsors Webinar on Reducing Number of English Learners in Special Education

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The overrepresentation of English learners in special education programs is a concern for educators nationwide. Imagine Learning is hosting a new webinar in the Ahead of the Class series designed to help educators address this important issue. The presentation will provide strategies for distinguishing between learning disabilities and language diversities in English learners.

"Diversity or Disability? Finding the Right Intervention for Your English Learners" is the latest webinar in the Ahead of the Class series.

Accurately assessing the needs of this growing student population has become a challenging yet crucial task for schools and districts across the United States.

Educational software company Imagine Learning is sponsoring a free webinar on reducing the misplacement of English learners into special education programs. The live presentation is part of Imagine Learning’s Ahead of the Class webinar series, which draws on expert educators to provide information on current topics in education. In this presentation, Mia A. Allen, an experienced dual-language educator, will share best practices for distinguishing between learning disabilities and language diversities in English learners. The webinar will air on Thursday, April 21, 2011, at 2:00 p.m. MDT.

According to the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act of 2004, schools and districts are encouraged to identify learning disabilities in students with academic or behavioral challenges and implement appropriate interventions. But for many educators, identifying learning disabilities in English learners has proven to be a difficult task. As a result, English learners are often overrepresented in special education programs and underrepresented in gifted and talented programs. Accurately assessing the needs of this growing student population has become a challenging yet crucial task for schools and districts across the United States.

Studies have shown that students placed in special education programs tend to remain in special education classes for the remainder of their schooling, so accuracy in assessing student needs is critical. “Schools and districts need to know how to properly distinguish between students who need additional special education support and those whose challenges are strictly language based,” said Allen. “Educators who participate in the upcoming webinar will learn valuable strategies for using Tier 1 interventions to help English learners overcome the language-based challenges that are often mistaken for learning disabilities.”

Allen will draw from her experience as an evaluator of multicultural special education programs as well as the latest research on RTI programs for English learners as she shares information on the following topics:

  •     Providing adequate training and support services for educators serving English learners
  •     Using authentic, culturally responsive assessment tools and techniques
  •     Providing early intervention services
  •     Increasing academic language proficiency for English learners

This is the second of six free webinars in the series. Space is limited, so educators who wish to attend are encouraged to register early at https://www3.gotomeeting.com/register/223034374.

Title: Diversity or Disability? Finding the Right Intervention for Your English Learners
Presenter: Mia A. Allen, Curriculum Specialist, Imagine Learning
Date: Thursday, April 21, 2011
Time: 2:00–3:00 p.m. MDT

System Requirements
PC-based attendees: Windows® 7, Vista, XP or 2003 Server
Macintosh®-based attendees: Mac OS® X 10.4.11 (Tiger®) or newer

Register now at https://www3.gotomeeting.com/register/223034374.

If you missed the first live webinar, The Art of RTI, visit http://www.imaginelearning.com/webinars/ to watch the archived presentation.

About Imagine Learning
At Imagine Learning, we’re passionate about bringing language and literacy instruction to the students who need it most. That’s why we used state standards and scientifically based research to develop Imagine Learning English, an innovative software program that uses first-language support, continual assessment and differentiated instruction to meet the needs of four key student populations: English learners, struggling readers, students with disabilities and early childhood education students. Imagine Learning English gives students one-on-one instruction and scaffolded support while keeping teachers abreast of student progress through real-time reports. Visit our website at http://imaginelearning.com to find out how we’re giving students, parents and teachers essential tools for language and literacy development.

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