This isn’t really what you might think it is. I’m not talking face transplants or being two-faced.
Nah, it’s a bit more complex.
I’m talking about the “changing face of special education.” My campus will be transitioning from having three self-contained learning environments to one next school year. Transition is nothing new for those of us that have worked in the field of special education for any amount of time. Thanks to “No Child Left Behind,” we are not alone as school districts across the country join us as we modify how we provide special education support to students in need of our expertise. In fact, we eliminated one of our self-contained learning environments last year and transitioned those students into mainstream classrooms with a minimum of difficulties.
I guess it’s significant to note that we made that transition with no additional staff.
We’ll most likely have to make this next transition the same way. Head Cheese & I have been pondering over the past several months about how we’d make this transition happen. Of course, all of our ponderings up to late last month had included the addition of more staff members. Last week, he told me that I should plan on doing this with no new staff.
I knew he had to be kidding and so I continued on with planning for next year in my typical business-as-usual manner. He wasn’t kidding. In all truthfulness, I wasn’t either. There didn’t appear to be any way to make the transition with the number on my existing staff.
One huge advantage to administering benchmark tests each morning is that it allows A LOT of time to think. And think I did! I came up with a viable solution to our dilemma and proudly explained it to Head Cheese this afternoon.
His response completely floored me. “The plan sounds good. Keep it under your hat. You don’t want the SpecEd Director to get wind of it.”
On it’s face, it sounded hurtful. The reality is, if SpecEd Director finds out that we really can do this with no staff, he won’t allocate new staff for us.
I’m just too darn good at my job for my own good.