The I.E.P. Deconstructed – What Is The Least Restrictive Environment (L.R.E.)? (4 of 6)

The Least Restrictive Environment was designed to level the playing field. This goes back to the reason why we have Special Education in the first place.

There was a time when there were an inordinate amount of blacks represented in Mentally Retarded (MR) classes, and/or the kids in Special Education were treated as second class citizens.

This basically says that the child has to be educated in the place where he/she will gain the most benefit. They shouldn’t be put in classes far away from other children just because they are in special education.

Here is the website that will explain more:

L.A.U.S.D. Training

I have been in training for the past two days. I had heard that it was boring, but that has not been the case with me. I am having a ball. We have a very small and intimate group and it’s a blast. I am learning a lot of good information. I feel so blessed. I have been in such great situations where I have had the opportunity to be in the right place at the right time. One of the things that I re-learned about was Howard Gardner’s Multiple Intelligences. I’d heard of it before, but was happy to have a refresher on it. I will write about it tomorrow  when I can!

Until next time, hasta la bye-bye!

Leadership Is A Serious Business!

I was just talking to one of my friends about the atmosphere of any given place. Most of it is dependent on the leader. The leader, for the most part, takes their organization in the direction that they want to go; whether it’s good or bad; positive or negative. The leader sets the tone for the environment.

This reminds me of Babylon 5, one of my favoritest (that’s right, I said favoritest) shows of all times that almost wasn’t. In the beginning, for the first season, the show sucked. The sets’ design was uninspired and the acting was just aiiiiight. However, the killer was that the overall tone of the show was too dark. I didn’t like it, but I decided to give it a chance since I love, love, love sci-fi.


Michael O’Hare, as Captain Jeffrey Sinclair, was the original star of the show. He was alright, but he didn’t have what it took to lead the show in the direction that it needed to go. Needless to say, he was cut from the starring role. Fast forward a little to  Bruce Boxleitner as the new leader, Captain John Sheridan.

A new star, redesigned sets and voilá, a whole new show – a whole new direction.

Michael O’Hare, the first captain didn’t have what it took to lead that series. So out he went! Once he was gone, the show was able to achieve its purpose – a successful sci-fi show. The same principles can and do apply in any setting- especially a school.I was at a school recently where the Principal set the (negative) tone for the entire school. It was an unfriendly environment with a lot of backstabbing going on; most of it sanctioned by the Principal.

In the classroom, the same thing applies. The teacher sets the tone of the class. If he/she is a good teacher and cares about the students, it will be reflected in all aspects of the classroom, from the way that the classroom is run, how he/she interacts with the students, how smooth transitions are, etc…

I am so happy that I am learning effective classroom management at B.N.U. I was really worried about classroom management; how I was going to handle problems involving discipline. I’m not so scared of that anymore now that I am finally in the position to be able to do that.

Teaching is a serious business. I take it very seriously. I do not take it lightly. It is very serious business. I know I have to be a strong leader to take my class room in the direction I want to take it.

So I will boldly go where so few strong men/women have gone before. (Different sci-fi show and I changed it a little, but you get the picture!)


natasha2.jpgFeel the rain on your skin
No one else can feel it for you
Only you can let it in
No one else, no one else
Can speak the words on your lips
Drench yourself in words unspoken
Live your life with arms wide open
Today is where your book begins
The rest is still unwritten

Unwritten, by Natasha Bedinfield has been stuck in my head all week. This song being stuck in my head said to me that there are so many things that have yet to be fulfilled; so many things that are yet up to me.

I fell in love with this song when I first heard it. The lyrics are fresh and challenging. They are a direct challenge to everyone listening to live life to its fullest.

I identify with this song so strongly because I believe that almost everything has a meaning and significance. To me, this song is telling me to get rid of my fear and my old and outdated beliefs.

I have a big job ahead of me. I know that no one else can do the job that I’m supposed to do. Here’s to living that impossible dream! The dream that only I can make come true.

My words, deeds, actions, thoughts and dreams are as yet still unwritten. I’m the determiner of my own destiny. I’ve got to write them and write them well.

Harping On That TFA Thing! Part 2

Sometimes I have to stop and reflect on my life and how blessed I am. Today is one of those days. I was thinking about not getting into TFA again. Okay, I know I’m harping on that TFA thing again. This time it’s in a good way though.

Let me take you back to the beginning. I had a plan. I was going to get into TFA, use the $9,450 of AmeriCorps money plus the 40% tuition discount and finish my education after I finished the other AmeriCorps program that I was involved with.

The only problem is that that’s one AmeriCorps award too many. Only two AmeriCorps awards are allowed. Period. (I didn’t know that)

The plan that I had involved getting accepted into TFA. Not getting in was devastating and shot all my plans to hell! Or so I thought!

Since I didn’t get in I had no choice but to accept that. I know that everything happens for a reason. I knew that God was working it out and that I shouldn’t be worried. But I was still very worried and very anxious.

Well, as it turns out, all that worry and anxiety was for naught. It just so happens that not getting into TFA was a good thing. A very good thing! Their schedule for the summer and for the duration of the program is CRAZY!! They have a lot of responsibilities and time commitments that would have been very hard for me to fulfill.

I talked to a couple of TFA members who expressed their sentiments on just how time consuming their commitment is. This made me even more convinced that God is working on my behalf on a plan that I can’t even begin to fathom the depths of.

Though I did accept that getting in was not for me. However, the only problem was the 40% tuition reduction that I would have enjoyed by being a TFA member. Well, as it turns out, I don’t have to worry about that anymore. My school, B.N.U., has a fantastic grant writer who has managed to write a grant that not only takes care of the TFA students but all the students in the Intern program. As we speak (drum roll) I now qualify for the 40% tuition reduction rate.

Thank you Jesus and Hallelujah!

I’m telling you, God really looks out for me. I get almost all of the benefits of being in TFA without the hectic schedule. Is that perfect or what?