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Support Services To Teachers To Increase Preparedness Of Students With Emotional And Behavioral Disabilities (EBD) For Statewide Assessments: A Case Study Open Access

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There is a significant need to address the academic outcomes of students with emotional and behavioral disabilities (EBD). Of the 13 federal disability categories under which a student can be classified to receive special education services, students with EBD have the highest dropout rate, the highest failure rate, and pose the most behavioral challenges for schools (Lane, 2004). Furthermore, since the reauthorization of Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) 1997, the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act 2001, and most recently the reauthorization of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) 2004, all students—including those with disabilities—must be included in state assessments (Thurlow, House, Scott & Ysseldyke, 2000).While there has been considerable research on behavioral interventions for students with EBD, little has addressed academic interventions (Wagner, Friend, Bursuck, Kutash et al., 2006). This exploratory case study addressed gaps in the literature regarding how schools are addressing the academic needs of their EBD student population, specifically the support services that educators receive to prepare students with EBD for statewide assessments. Statewide assessments are &ldquotests; administered by the states and designed to measure the extent to which students’ mastery of content standards is at a level specified in state performance standards” (McDonnell, McLaughlin & Morrison, 1997, p. 27). Through feedback from classroom teachers, education coordinators, and school directors, this study sought to understand how teacher support services are designed to enable educators to better address the readiness of students with EBD for the Maryland School Assessment (MSA).

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