Oct 3/16: Ed Policy&Directions: Point of Order: How It Works

P 5

Ministry of Education BC Per-student special education funding levels and categories:

  • Level 1 ($37,700 per student)
    Category A: Physically dependent
    Category B: Deaf/Blind
  • Level 2 ($18,850 per student)
    Category C: Moderate to Profound Intellectual Disability
    Category D: Physical Disability or Chronic Health Impairment
    Category E: Visual Impairment
    Category F: Deaf or Hard of Hearing
    Category G: Autism Spectrum Disorder
  • Level 3 ($9,500 per student) 
    Category H: Intensive Behaviour Intervention or Serious Mental Illness

It’s autumn, October 2016, and staff in schools now  know the students. You [and I] will not know how many children in a particular school are designated “Intensive Behaviour Interventions or Serious Mental Illness ” (or any designation, as no BC School Districts  provide class size and composition reports. The last report on the VSB site was 2013.). These students need much more support than the Ministry funds them for.

It is a major struggle for children  and for school staffs to get any funding at all for children who desperately need help.

CUPE 947 job description for District Education Assistant here.  Salary $24.59 / hr. Number of days in session for 2015-16 was 189. ($9500/$25 ) / 189 = 2 hours a day. Two. Hours. A. Day. For the rest of the school day  everything will be fine with no assistant time. Right? So, think about where the funding for the support for the rest of the day might come from.We all need to advocate for better funding for students with special needs.

Here is the protocol [based on Ministry of Education criteria (p 56-62) and accepted in all BC public schools] taken from the from SD85 website, for Students with Intensive Behaviour Support Needs / Severe Mental Illness in the School District #85 Vancouver Island North Special Services Handbook Revised 2012: Designation of Students who have Intensive Behaviour Support or Serious Mental Illness.This is how it works everywhere  BC.

Students identified in this category are those most in need of intensive interventions. They are expected to be less than one percent (1%) of the student population province-wide. [Some schools  have many more children designated in this category than this statistic presents.] These students should have access to coordinated school/community interventions, which are based on inter-service / agency assessment processes that are required to manage, educate, and maintain the students in school and in their community.

Students Requiring Intensive Behaviour Interventions are eligible to be reported in this special education funding category if they exhibit:
• antisocial, extremely disruptive behaviour in most environments (for example, classroom, school, family, and the community);
• and· behaviours that are consistent/persistent over time.

In addition to meeting one of the conditions above, to be eligible for special education funding, these behaviour disorders and or illnesses must be:
• serious enough to be known to school and school district personnel and other community agencies and to warrant intensive interventions by other community agencies/service providers beyond the school [if there is no “outside agency involved, the school will not get funding for a support person. Some parents choose not to get “outside help” ie a psychiatrist or counselling] ; and
• a serious risk to the student or others, and/or with behaviours or conditions that significantly interfere with the student’s academic progress and that of other students; and
• beyond the normal capacity of the school to educate, provided “normal capacity” is seen to include the typical special education support / interventions such as school-based counselling, moderate behaviour supports, the use of alternate settings, and other means in the school environment. [School personnel / teachers have to go far beyond the “extra mile” to show that the school cannot educate the student without additional support.] Reduction in class size or placement in an alternate program or learning environment is not by itself a sufficient service to meet the criteria. “Beyond the normal capacity of the school to educate, provided “normal capacity” is seen to include the typical special education support / interventions such as school-based counselling, moderate behaviour supports, the use of alternate settings, and other means in the school environment.”

It is possible the school will get no funding for support, if parents  refuse services of community  psychologist or psychiatrist.

Then  what?

Save

About Diane McNally