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Resource Allocation

Resource Allocation Philosophy Statement
        According to Weishaar, Borsa, and Weishaar (2007), "The No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 (NCLB) changed the perception that program evaluation is primarily a product of regular education" (p. 118).  This act mandates that every child must be performing at grade level in reading and math by the 2013-2014 school year.  With that being said, special education administrators have experienced increased pressure to ensure that special education programs are preparing students to meet these standards.  Therefore, special education administrators need to demonstrate a solid understanding of special education program development, including needs assessment, design, and evaluation.  
        At the center of effective special education program development is an organizational change model.  Organizational change models provide a framework for facilitating planned, meaningful change in school systems (Hazel, 2007).  There are several different organizational change models cited in the research; however, the steps across the different models are similar.  The two models that I prefer are Zins and Illback's (1995) organizational change model and Kratochwill and Pittman's (2002) expanded problem-solving consultation model.  Following is a visual comparison of these two models (Hazel, 2007).

Organizational Change Model                  
Problem-Solving Model
Stage 1: Diagnosis Stage 1: Establishing a consultant-consultee relationship
  Stage 2: Problem Identification
Stage 2: Planning Stage 3: Problem Analysis
Stage 3: Initiation Stage 4: Plan Implementation
Stage 4: Implementation  
Stage 5: Institutionalization Stage 5: Plan Evaluation

 

       Zins and Illback's (1995) organizational change model describes the necessary skills for leaders facilitating change:  "the ability to solve problems cooperatively, establish cooperative partnerships, communicate effectively, and think beyond the traditional, client-centered consultation models (Zins and Illback, cited in Hazel, 2007, p. 127).  The model also acknowledges that meaningful change will take time and that multiple stakeholders need to be involved in the change process (Hazel, 2007).  Kratochwill and Pittman's (2002) expanded problem-solving consultation model appeals to me as a future special education administrator due to my familiarity and confidence in applying the problem-solving process to a wide variety of problems.
        In addition to demonstrating skills in special education program development, special education administrators need to be realistic about the limitations schools have in meeting all of the needs of students with disabilities. To overcome these limitations, special education administrators need to be knowledgeable about the different agencies and organizations that serve students with disabilities and their families.  Connecting families up with these resources can have a life-long impact on the student and their family, especially as the student transitions out of high school.
        In summary, I would like to close my philosophy statement with a quote from Holcomb (2004):

As the mandates and methodologies of No Child Left Behind play out in the coming days, the need and determination to tell our story will be a strong drive of data at the school and district level.  Relentless resilience will be needed to stay the course, keep our eyes fixed on the real goal of achievement for all, and maintain our determination to do the right things for our staff and students (p. 232).  

As a special education administrator, I plan to demonstrate the "relentless resilience" Holcomb describes and will strive to remain true to my main goal of increasing achievement for all students.  

References
Hazel, C.E. (2007). Timeless and timely advice: A commentary on "consultation to facilitate planned organizational change in schools," an article by Joseph E. Zins and Robert J. Illback. Journal of Educational and Psychological Consultation, 17(2&3), 125-132.  

Holcomb, E.L. (2004). Getting excited about data: Combining people, passion, and proof to maximize student achievement (2nd ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Crowin Press.

Weishaar, M.K., Borsa, J.C., & Weishaar, P.M. (2007). Inclusive educational administration: A case-study approach (2nd ed.). Long Grove, IL: Waveland Press, Inc.

Zins, J. E., & Illback, R. J. (1995). Consultation to facilitate planned organizational change in schools. Journal of Educational and Psychological Consultation, 6, 237-245.

C.  Resource Allocation: Sub-Competency for Director of Special Education

  1. demonstrate an understanding of special education program development including needs assessment, design and evaluation;
  2. demonstrate an understanding of the resources available, along with the agencies and organizations that serve students with a disability and their families.

Artifact

The following artifacts demonstrate my competency in the area of resource allocation:

The two artifacts above demonstrate my understanding of special education program development including needs assessment, design and evaluation (C1).  As a school psychologist, I have been involved in the planning of Extended School Year (ESY) for two years.  During my involvement, I have noticed a need to streamline the planning process and re-evaluate the overall programming provided.  By reviewing ESY survey feedback data, the Unique Learners Manager and I identified two major goal areas:  (1) revise the ESY time line to make the planning process more systematic, and (2) improve communication between case managers and ESY teachers to ensure higher quality, more individualized programming for students (see artifacts).

The two artifacts above further demonstrate my understanding of program development including needs assessment, design and evaluation (C1).  The concept for a Level III EBD program at Chisago Lakes High School was revitalized in the spring of 2009 based on the presenting student need.  Since August, I have taken on a leadership role in the development of the program.  Attached are two documents illustrating the program's design.  The flow chart was created to provide a visual illustration of how a student would typically progress through the behavior programming in our district.  The Level III program description provides an outline of the program's goals, overall structure, roles of staff, progress monitoring techniques, and program evaluation process.  

 

 
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