Region III Region III MRESA/CSPD Council Meeting

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Region III Region III MRESA/CSPD Council Meeting
Region III
Region III MRESA/CSPD Council Meeting
October 10, 2014
Denise DesJarlais, MBI Consultant; Scott Dubbs, Lewistown Schools (via ITV); Sara Evans,
Billings Public Schools; Laura Gittings-Carlson, MSUB Extended Campus; Libby Johnson,
Red Lodge Schools; John Keener; Montana Center for Inclusive Education (MCIE); Sheila
Lovato, MCCS Liaison; Kara McDonald, Laurel Public Schools; Debra Miller, MCIE; Sigrid
Noyd, Hardin Public Schools; Leonard Orth, Eastern Yellowstone Cooperative; Monica Pugh,
Stillwater Sweet Grass Special Services Cooperative; Chris Rice, Central Montana Learning
Resource Center Cooperative; Marsha Sampson, MCIE; Chris Wanner, Roundup Public
Schools and guests June Hermanson, MyTransitions; and Tessie Rose Bailey, MSUB.
Welcome and Member Sharing
The participants introduced themselves and stated what school or organization they
CEEDAR Center Grant and RTI Initiative: Tessie Rose Bailey
Tessie and several other MSUB faculty/students are working with Billings Public Schools on a
Multi Tiered System of Support (MTSS) Project. Two cohorts are involved in the project this
year; cohort 1 consists of 10 schools that were in the project last year and cohort 2 consists of 5
schools. Each cohort will receive 3-4 team trainings and on-site technical assistance.
This is the final year of the OPI RTI grant. The training topics were selected based on a needs
analysis and include effective tier 1 strategies, data analysis, and behavior screeners. The
trainings are open to all Region III Schools. The project is developing technical assistance and
professional development resources to support sustainability of the project.
Montana received a technical assistance grant from the Collaboration of Effective Educator
Development, Accountability, and Reform (CEEDAR) Center January 2013. This year
Montana was one of five states to receive a five year intensive technical assistance grant from
CEEDAR whose mission is to create aligned professional learning systems that provide
teachers and leaders effective opportunities to learn how to improve and support core and
specialized instruction in inclusive settings that enable students with disabilities to achieve
college and career readiness standards. The grant will facilitate collaborative relationships
between OPI, institutes of higher education (MSUB, UM, and UM-Western), and lead
education agenicies to: reform teacher leadership preparation programs to embed evidence
based practices; revise licensure standards to align with reforms in teacher and leader
preparation; refine personnel evaluation systems in teacher and leader preparation programs;
and realign policy structures and professional learning systems.
Review Bylaws, Council Responsibilities, and Stakeholder List
Deb explained that the State CSPD Council is updating the CSPD Council Bylaws and has
requested that each region review the proposed amendments suggested by the State Council.
The council reviewed and approved the proposed changes. The Council reviewed the regional
stakeholder list and suggested adding the following individuals to the council:
• Allison Nys, Fred Graff Principal: Kara McDonald will contact
• Chad Sealey, Roundup Superintendent: Chis Wanner will contact
• John Fitzgerald, Superintendent Red Lodge : Libby Johnson will contact
• Larry Johnson, Hardin Intermediate Principal/Special Education Director: Sigrid Noyd will
• Behavior specialist (para): Sara Evans will recruit a representative
• Dan Jamieson, Shepherd Superintendent: Deb Miller will contact
• Mary Krenik, related services: Sara Evans will contact
• PLUK: Deb will check on the status of the current representative
• STEP: Deb will check on the status of the current representatives
• Corrections: John will check at the next Lunch N Learn session
• Developmental Disabilities: June Hermanson will recruit a representative
• Student representative: John Keener will contact Trudy Carey, MSUB, about recruiting a
• Rocky Mountain College: John Keener will contact Jo Swain or Stevie Schmitz
• Little Big Horn College: Sigrid Noyd will recruit a representative
The council discussed letters of appointment and agreed that teachers and paras and their
supervisors should receive letters of appointment from the Region III CSPD Council.
OPI and State Committee Updates
• Para Consortium: Monica Pugh
o The Title 1 conference will no longer have a paraeducator strand.
o Lynn Wetz and Tim Burg are developing an evaluation for paraeducators that will be
similar to the EPASS training for educators.
o The MEA/MFT PASS course is now being offered online through the Montana Digital
o The Orientation to Special Education Para Academy is being updated; the paper version
should be completed in the next two months. OPI is providing funding to have the
academy offered through the Montana Digital Academy and is looking for a facilitator
that can monitor participant’s progress. The Behavior Para Academy is being updated by
Par2A Center. Barbara Stimpson, formerly of the Par2A Center, may be coming to
Montana in February or March to present a Trainers of Para Academy (TOPA)
o Laura Gittings-Carlson, Sigrid Noyd, and Kara McDonald volunteered to be on the
selection committee for the Para of the Year, Para/Teacher Team of the Year, Leader of
the Year, and Yes I Can! awards.
• Early Childhood Partnership for Professional Development (ECPPD): Deb Miller
The Governor’s Early Childhood Initiative (Early Edge) - Governor Bullock plans to
include funding in the FY16-17 budget for early childhood block grants. These grants will
be for school districts that wish to provide half day preschool programs for four year olds
(170 days). Sites will receive $30,000 for up to 10 children, $60,000 for 11 to 20 children.
Participation will be voluntary for eligible children. School districts may partner with
qualified Head Start Programs, local child care centers, child care providers, or preschools
to provide services. Providers will need to be licensed and the preschool educators will need
to be certified. The Board of Education is considering preschool content and accreditation
standards, teacher licensure, and teacher preparation program standards. They are accepting
public comment until November and hope to have a guiding document of best practices
finished by December. Preschool teachers will have a provisional certification until 2018
when they need to have completed their requirements for endorsement.
• Montana Providers of Professional Learning Network (MPPLN): Deb Miller
Jean Howard retired from the Coordinator position and was replaced by Chris DeWald.
Each region will now have a MPPLN Core Group consisting of MCCS liaisons, MRESA,
CSPD, and others. Sheila Lovato and Pat Baltzley are the MCCS liaisons for Region III and
will help schools coordinate common core professional development.
• State CSPD Council Updates: Deb Miller
o OPI has received three new federal grants: (1) Climate Transformation Grant: $750,000
per year for five years. The grant will focus on PBIS/MBI and will be for Reservation
schools. (2) SAMSA (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services): $1.7 million
annually for 5 years. This grant will focus on mental health issues and suicide
prevention. Butte, Browning, and Kalispell will be the targeted school districts. (3) The
$250,000 Montana School Emergency Planning grant will assess and address the
emergency planning needs of each of Montana’s school systems and provide training,
materials and support to all schools to assist in their development and employment of
Emergency Operations Programs.
o The State CSPD Council is revising the training evaluation forms, so they are less
o Bill Johnson of the Center for Technical Assistance for Excellence in Special Education
(TAESE) reported that the regional resource centers have been replaced by one “super
center”. Westat will now provide technical assistance to states.
Activity Updates
• John Keener reported that Region III MRESA/CSPD sends out a weekly newsletter to
council members announcing upcoming statewide events and news and an activity
newsletter to approximately 2000 educators and community members announcing Region
III events.
• Deb Miller distributed a handout listing all of CSPD’s planned and proposed 2014/2015
Transition Committee
Joe Burst, LIFTT; Denise Desjarlais, MBI Consultant; June Hermanson, MyTransitions; Libby
Johnson, Red Lodge Schools; John Keener, Montana Center for Inclusive Education (MCIE);
Mark Mahnke, Montana Vocational Rehabilitation; Debra Miller, MCIE; Leonard Orth,
Eastern Yellowstone Cooperative; Marsha Sampson, MCIE; Chris Wanner, Roundup Public
Schools and guest Margaret Keener, North Central Independent Living Services.
MyTransitions Program: June Hermanson
The MyTransitions Project started in 2005 with funding received from Montana’s Department
of Public Health and Human Services and matching funds from the federal government. The
Project contracts with the four Independent Living Centers in Montana. June coordinates with
project coordinators at each center.
The four components of the MyTransitions Project include:
• A transitions website: June requested that each region sumbit their meeting minutes to be
posted on the website and send her region specific information to be posted.
• An annual transition conference: June would like regional groups to help recruit familes and
youth to attend the annual transition conference. Libby Johnson suggested promoting the
social aspect of the conference by letting youth know they will meet other youth with
disabilities that are similar to their disability and having students that attend, record
testimonials that can be used for promotional purposes. Scholarships from the Dennis
Washington foundation are available to help cover registration and stipends.
• Regional transition meetings: June asked the council to meet four times a year and develop
regional goals.
• Hosting the annual Disability Mentoring Day. Although Disability Mentoring Day is the 3rd
Wednesday of October, job shadow opportunities are offered when available for youth ages
Region II Transition Activities: Margaret Keener
There are 22 active people on the Region II Transition Council. At their council meetings they
have community partners talk about their agencies and services that they offer transition age
youth. This has been a good way for the agencies to network and has been helpful in expanding
the membership of their council. They have developed (1) A Region II Transition Guide Video
that includes 2-3 minute video snippets from regional service providers explaining their
services. (2) A flyer on mental health transitions “Moving on and Moving Up” (3) A flyer on
guardianship “Turning 18-Who Makes the Decisions? Transfer of Rights to the Adult Student.”
They also sponsor resource fairs at high schools.
Project SEARCH: Marsha Sampson and John Keener
Marsha showed a video explaining the Project SEARCH Program. The Project SEARCH High
School Transition Program is a unique, business led, one year school-to-work program that
takes place entirely at the workplace. The goal for each student participant is competitive
employment. The program provides real-life work experience combined with training in
employability and independent living skills to help youths with significant disabilities make
successful transitions from school to productive adult life. The Project SEARCH model
involves an extensive period of training and career exploration, innovative adaptations, longterm job coaching, and continuous feedback from teachers, job coaches, and employers. As a
result, at the completion of the training program, students with significant intellectual
disabilities are employed in nontraditional, complex and rewarding jobs. The presence of a
Project SEARCH High School Transition Program can bring about long-term changes in
business culture that have far-reaching positive effects on attitudes about hiring people with
disabilities and the range of jobs in which they can be successful.
Mark Mahnke told the group that Montana Vocational Rehabilitation is piloting a Project
SEARCH Program in Bozeman. If it is successful, they may consider offering a program in
Region III.
Region III Updates
The Red Lodge High School Fair will be this spring; it will be ½ day during the school day.
CSPD is sponsoring a Transition Fair on November 20th. The fair will feature an overview of
high school transition requirements, community agency presentations, and a best practices case
study by Libby Johnson. Deb Miller will contact OPI to see if they are able to present the
transition overview. CSPD will update its community agency transition resource manual and
record it on flash drives to give to participants.
Margaret distributed brochures on the Achieving Success by Promoting Readiness for
Education and Employment (ASPIRE) program. In September 2013, the U.S. Department of
Education awarded the ASPIRE program to a six state consortium that includes Arizona,
Colorado, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota and Utah. The purpose of ASPIRE is to (1)
Increase a youth and family’s overall household income, and thereby reduce the household’s
dependence upon public benefits, by increased educational attainment and increased career
achievement. (2) Inform federal policymakers in all the four federal agencies through
evaluation of interventions and outcomes. The six states will partner to recruit and enroll 2000
youth ages 14 to 16 who receive Supplemental Security Income (SSI) to an experimental
design. When enrolled, all the youth and family will receive information to further education
and employment. Half of the youth and families who enroll will be provided additional services
and supports. The ASPIRE team will assist youth and families to find and use services in their
communities. Each of the six ASPIRE states is responsible to recruit and enroll a specific
number of youth and families. One half of the youth will receive interventions defined as
ASPIRE Services. Interventions for youth and families assigned to ASPIRE Services include:
• Training and information for parents and families, including advocacy, community
resources, educational and employment opportunities, and more.
• A complete individualized explanation of the public benefits the youth and family are
receiving and how working and increased earnings will impact those benefits.
• A paid employment opportunity for the youth while he or she is still in high school.
• Self-determination training for the youth and families.
• Financial management education and training to assist families in understanding their values
and available resources to move from poverty to self-sufficiency.
• Case management services provided to the youth and family to assist them in navigating the
complicated systems of public benefits and assistance in accessing services, supports and
information to support greater self-sufficiency. This case manager will facilitate all of these
interventions, as well as interact with school personnel, vocational rehabilitation counselors,
and all other community services.
Montana Contact Information:
ASPIRE Montana
PO Box 4210
Helena, MT 59604
877-296-1197 Toll Free
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