Special Education at New VistaAt New Vista we believe that all students learn best with their peers; therefore we use a full inclusion model to provide special education services. While we may occasionally meet with a student outside the regular classroom, the vast majority of special education needs are met within the regular classroom, by the regular education teacher.
Special education case managers consult with regular education teachers to inform them of students needs. In addition, special education teachers offer classes in developmental reading, writing and math for all students who need to target these areas. They also teach "Making It at New Vista" which is open to all students and emphasizes organizational study skills and time management.
Federal law requires that reasonable accommodations be provided to permit the participation of children with disabilities in District programs. It does not, however, require focus schools, such as New Vista, to make fundamental alterations of legitimate admission criteria or program goals to allow for participation of children with disabilities.
Therefore, a staffing is convened for each special education student who has been selected through the lottery process, to determine if there is a match between the student's needs and the New Vista educational program.
Key questions to discuss during the staffing:
Can a student's individual special education needs be met in New Vista?
Is there a match between New Vista's philosophy/goals and programs and the learning style/needs of the student?
What kind of services and accommodations will be necessary to meet the student's needs?
A further consideration is the fact that New Vista offers students a degree of both freedom and responsibility which is almost always a significant leap beyond that in the student's current school. Many students have been unable to make this transition successfully. We encourage staffing teams to seriously consider whether an intermediate environment, with more overt structure, is a better option to promote student success. Sometimes, New Vista is a better placement later rather than sooner.