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Meeting Minute Summary October 2012

Advisory Commission on Special Education October 2012 Meeting Summary.

ACSE Meeting Webcast Archive

Item 1, Orientation

A member orientation was provided by Jill Rice, Assistant Legal Counsel, State Board of Education that included, but was not limited to, a review of the Bagely-Keene Open Meeting Act and discussion of statutory roles and responsibilities of the Advisory Commission on Special Education (ACSE), e.g. bi-annual ethics training. A general overview of special education was provided by State Director of Special Education, Dr. Fred Balcom.

Item 2, Common Core Standards and Post-Secondary Outcomes

Ed Amundson, California Teachers Association's liaison to California Community of Practice on Secondary Transition, reported on issues and opportunities for students with disabilities (SWDs) not on the traditional High School diploma track.

Item 3, Employment for Individuals with Disabilities

Paul Hippolitus, Director, Disabled Students Program, University of California at Berkeley reported on strategies and approaches leading toward increased opportunities for gainful employment for SWDs. An outline of UC Berkeley’s professional development and disability course was provided as a handout.

Item 4, Amendments to Title 5 (Education), California Code of Regulations

Dr. Fred Balcom, State Director of Special Education reported on proposed regulatory changes and amendments to California law to address instances where California law exceeds federal requirements.

Item 5, State Board of Education Report

Carl Cohn, Member, State Board of Education (SBE) and SBE liaison to the ACSE, commented on a recent story in the San Francisco Chronicle reporting that the high rate of use of the California Modified Assessment for students with special needs has raised concerns not only about academic expectations, but also about the impact on overall state test scores and proficiency rates. The emerging question for the SBE is what is to be done about it, Mr. Cohn stated.

Item 6, Public Comment

Comments were heard related to implementation of AB 114, transition of special education and related services formerly provided by County Mental Health Agencies.

Item 7, Report from the Chair of the California Assembly Committee on Education, Joan Buchanan

None

Item 8, SB 1458: School Accountability, Academic Performance Index, and Graduation Rates

Susanna Cooper, Education Policy Consultant, California State Senate Pro Tempore Darrell Steinberg's Office, provided an update about concerns related to the high school and middle school drop-out rates.

Item 9, Legislative and Budget Information

Jennifer Moreno and Carol Bingham, Government Affairs Division, California Department of Education reported, respectively, on the State Superintendent of Public Instruction’s 2013 Legislative Priority Working Paper and the current budget outlook with its potential impact to special education funds.

Item 10, Grazer Outstanding Achievement in Learning (GOAL) Award

Chair Wright presented a revised scoring rubric for the ACSE’s consideration, for use in the GOAL award selection process. By concurrence, the rubric was adopted as presented.

Item 11, ACSE Minute Summary

Dr. Fred Balcom explained that every ACSE meeting is digitally recorded and, moving forward, the meeting DVD's will be archived online as the official record. Every meeting recording will have a one or two sentence description inked to the DVD file marker for each agenda item. Formal action, if any, taken by the ACSE will be captured in the agenda item’s description.

Item 12, Response to Instruction and Intervention

Phil Lafontain, Director, Professional Learning Support Division, California Department of Education provided an update on implementation of Response to Instruction and Intervention.

Item 13, Common Core Standards

Barbara Murchison, Common Core Systems Implementation Office, California Department of Education and Nancy S. Brownell, Senior Fellow, Office of the State Board of Education reported on activities related to the Common Core Standards (CCS). Discussion followed as to ACSE’s role in providing input towards the implementation of CCS in California.

A motion was duly made, seconded, and unanimously carried to forward a letter to the Mathematics Curriculum Framework and Evaluation Criteria Committee, the Instructional Quality Commission, and the State Board of Education urging early consideration and adoption of Universal Design for Learning (UDL) principles, including consideration for the necessary staff development/professional learning that would provide guidance to teachers on instructional tools to differentiate their instruction and scaffold the learning opportunity for all students.

Item 14, Statewide Assessment Reauthorization Work Group

Debra Sigman, Deputy Superintendent; District, School & Innovation Branch; California Department of Education provided an update on the work of the Statewide Assessment Reauthorization Work Group (formerly known as the AB 250 Panel). Commissioner Schulman agreed to represent the ACSE as its liaison on the related CDE workgroup(s).

Item 15, Organization Input

Stakeholder organizations provided updates and input to the ACSE.

Item 16, Instructional Quality Commission

Tom Adams, Director, Curriculum Frameworks and Instructional Resources Division, California Department of Education reported on the work of the Instructional Quality Commission (IQC). He invited ACSE membership on the IQC, in order to provide input on the adoption of curriculum instruction and frameworks that affect SWDs.

Item 17, "Special Education Expenditures, Revenues and Provision in California" Report

Tom Parrish, American Institutes for Research as a Partner in the California Comprehensive Center at WestEd, having appeared before the ACSE at its September meeting, provided a brief update on concerns related to the rising costs associated with special education expenses and inequity.

A motion was duly made, seconded and unanimously carried to forward the Special Education Expenditures, Revenues and Provision in California draft report (dated July 23, 2012) by Tom Parrish, American Institutes for Research, as a partner in the California Comprehensive Center at WestED, to the State Board of Education (SBE) as an information item at the January 2013 SBE meeting.

Item 18, State Special Schools Report

Scott Kerby, Director, State Special Schools and Services Division, California Department of Education reported on improved achievement results for state special schools.

Item 19, Public Comment

Comments were heard about transition goals and free and appropriate public education (FAPE) for SWDs.

Item 20, Commissioner Reports

Commissioners provided brief reports on their activities related to the ACSE and their stakeholder groups.

Item 21, Special Education Report

Fred Balcom, Director, Special Education Division, California Department of Education provided a report that included, but was not limited to: (1) A review of the annual special education self-review process; (2) A report on collaborations with the national Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium for developing a student assessment system aligned to a common core of academic content standards; and (3) Efforts to prepare for the upcoming legislative session as relates to restraint and seclusion and behavioral interventions, both of which the legislature intends to concentrate on.

Item 22, Unfinished Business

Regarding the January 2013 ACSE agenda, Commissioner Burness and Chair Wright will provide a follow-up to the multi-tiered system of support/response to intervention implementation survey initially discussed at the ACSE September 2012 meeting.

Further, the ACSE’s Legislation and Policy Review and Development committees will meet from 10:00 a.m. to 12 noon on the first day of its two-day meeting.

Questions: Venetia Davis | vdavis@cde.ca.gov | 916-323-9773 
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