Program Standard 15: Field Experience in a Broad Range of Service Delivery Options

The program will ensure that candidates have planned experiences and/or interactions with the full range of the service delivery system, the providers of such services, and parents and families, including experiences in general education. The experiences must reflect the full diversity of grades/ages, federal disability categories and the continuum of special education services outlined in the specific credential authorization. The experiences are planned from the beginning of the program to include experiences in general education, experiences with parents and families, and experiences with a broad range of service delivery options leading to an extended culminating placement in which the candidate works toward assuming full responsibility for the provision of services in the specific credential authorization and is of sufficient duration for the candidate to demonstrate the teacher performance expectations for special educators. The culminating placement may be in any school, agency or program as defined in Education Code Sections 56031, 56360, and 56361 for the purpose of providing special education services.

For interns, this standard may be met by activities embedded in coursework and/or visits/ interactions with service providers. It is not intended that interns leave their work assignments for an extended period to meet this standard.

Program Standard 15 Component:

Courses in which the component is addressed:

planned experiences and/or interactions with the full range of the service delivery system, the providers of such services, and parents and families, including experiences in general education

SPED 120; 145; 171; 172; 175; 176; EHD 178

experiences must reflect the full diversity of grades/ages, federal disability categories and the continuum of special education services outlined in the specific credential authorization

SPED 120; 145; 171; 172; 175; 176

experiences are planned from the beginning of the program to include experiences in general education, experiences with parents and families, and experiences with a broad range of service delivery options leading to an extended culminating placement in which the candidate works toward assuming full responsibility for the provision of services

SPED 120; 145; 171; 172; 175; 176; EHD 178

sufficient duration for the candidate to demonstrate the teacher performance expectations for special educators.

SPED 120, 171, 172, 175, 176

The Education Specialist credential program at Fresno State includes a developmental sequence of carefully planned, substantive, supervised clinical/fieldwork experiences in public schools selected by the program sponsor. By design, the supervised fieldwork in the credential sequence of coursework: (1) extends candidates’ understanding of major ideas and emphases developed in program and/or prerequisite coursework; (2) contributes to candidates meeting the Teaching Performance Expectations; (3) contributes to candidates’ preparation for the performance assessments in the program; and (4) provides multiple opportunities across settings and culminates in a 350 hour (15 week - full day) Practicum.

Prior to beginning the teacher education program, teacher candidates take a pre-professional field experience course (EHD 50: Introduction to Teaching) or secure an approved waiver based on classroom experience, in which they observe different school sites including two to three levels (elementary, middle school, and high school). To secure an approved waiver applicants must document classroom experience of 45 hours and successfully complete written assignments.

Opportunities for school-based experiences and experience in a broad range of service delivery options begin in SPED 120: Introduction to Special Education. The Site-based Observation and Interview Report/Reflection gives candidates an opportunity in a special education program in a local school to observe, ask about, and reflect upon course content in a fieldwork experience. At the schools in our region, teacher candidates routinely interview/observe related service providers, RSP teachers, school psychologist, SDC teachers and para-educators. Students are primarily served in their neighborhood school providing access to a variety of disability categories, grades, and service continuum.

Once in the Education Specialist Program teacher candidates complete three semesters of field study. In all three phases, required concurrent courses have field study related assignments and/or field study competencies that ensure the link between theory and practice and opportunities for placements in a variety of grade levels and forexperience in a broad range of service delivery options. The first of the three field studies, EHD 178: Field Study B: Grades K-3, requires a general education classroom placement in grades K-3, four mornings a week (16 hours) plus seminars. The focus is to work with small groups of students in reading/language arts and social studies/visual performing arts. SPED 171/SPED 172: Initial Practicum is a setting that provides special education services which range from inclusive services, resource specialist programs, special day classes, and occasionally special schools/centers. This 15-week placement (16 hours a week) provides experiences with parents and families, and experiences with a broad range of service delivery options. SPED 175/SPED 176: Final Practicum isan extended culminating placement in which the candidate works toward assuming full responsibility for the provision of services which is of sufficient duration for the candidate to demonstrate the teacher performance. Teacher candidates are given opportunities to practice applying the methodologies and strategies learned in professional preparation courses;LEE 172: Cultural and Language Contexts of the Classroom; and LEE 173: Teaching Reading and Social Studies in Grades 4-8.

SPED 145: Designing Effective Environments for Students with Disabilities, requires the completion of a Site-based Needs Assessment about levels of inclusivity and integration for students with disabilities at placement or work site. This assignment requires candidates to gather information from a variety of stakeholders (who could include general and special educators, administrators, and parents) on a number of factors associated with the degree of inclusivity for students with disabilities at the school site.

SPED 172 and SPED 176: Initial and Final Practicum in Moderate-Severe Disabilities, are the fieldwork component of the Moderate-Severe disabilities credential. Both semesters of fieldwork are compromised of structured weekly expectations and activities, as well as the implementation of fieldwork requirements that are connected to content of core methods courses and observed by a university supervisor. Narrative observation notes are provided after each university supervisor visit and are the basis for structured feedback and dialogue between the university supervisor, candidate, and a master teacher. An Evaluation Criteria Checklist is introduced in SPED 172 (16 hours a week) and utilized throughout both semesters of fieldwork to guide candidates in programmatic development and change. Items on the checklist need to be developing and/or in place in order for candidates to exit SPED 176: Final Practicum in Moderate-Severe Disabilities (30 hours a week). Additionally, the Management Activities form is used at each visit from the university supervisor in order to support the candidate in creating ongoing programmatic changes throughout the semester in order to meet all items on the Exit Criteria Checklist. This form identifies three items related to program development/management that the candidate needs to complete prior to the next visit from the university supervisor.

SPED 171 and 175: Initial and Final Practicum in Mild-Moderate Disabilities, comprise the practicum component of the Mild-Moderate disabilities credential. SPED 171 requires teacher candidates to spend 16 hours a week in a special education setting, typically on a general education campus. SPED 175 Final Practicum is a 15 week full time student teaching experience of over 350 hours. Each semester requires teacher candidates to meet specific expectations and complete activities related to core methods courses. Both semesters, students are observed and supported by a university supervisor and Cooperating Teacher. Six formal observations are conducted each semester, along with a number of informal observations, to evaluate the student's ability to deliver effective and engaging instruction that yields successful student learning. Observation notes, related to Standards for the Teaching Profession, are provided after each university supervisor visit and facilitate feedback and discussion between the university supervisor, candidate, and master teacher. In addition to formal observations, teacher candidates are evaluated on the contents of their portfolio.

Intern Program Delivery Model:
This standard may be met by activities embedded in coursework and/or visits/interactions with service providers. It is not intended that interns leave their work assignments for an extended period to meet this standard. Program sponsors and the participating district collaborate in the selection of individuals who provide school site support and the placement of interns in teaching positions. Program sponsors and employing school districts ensure sites/teaching assignment for intern placement that will enable candidates to meet the program requirements. Each intern receives support from one or more mentor teacher(s) who are assigned to the same school, at least one of whom is experienced in the curricular area(s) of the intern's assignment.

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