Special Education at MHS

Students classified as in need of special education are supported through a number of different programs at MHS. Listed below are descriptions of the various supports.

Students do not pick a program like they would other high school courses. Instead, at your student’s meeting of the Committee on Special Education (CSE) the team will identify the most appropriate program for your student given his/her needs and goals on the IEP.

For more information on the classification process, please consult the Special Education Parent Handbook.


Self-Contained Academic Courses

Subject-specific special classes are self-contained, Regents-level classes designed to support students in achieving mastery of a challenging curriculum. In recent years, MHS has made strives to support students in leaving these special classes for successful achievement in the mainstream setting. As a result, the self-contained classes that remain are intended to support students in the eventual transition to less restrictive environments. Course offerings differ year by year depending on the needs of individual students.

Integrated Co-teaching (ICT)

The MHS co-teaching model consists of a special education and general education teacher sharing equal responsibilities for the instruction, management, assessment, and overall facilitation of a class. Both teachers bring their unique talents and experiences to bear in supporting the learning of all students in the room.

The Co-teaching program supports students in the first three years of high school such that students enter senior year with greater skills, confidence, and sense of independence.

Resource Room

The MHS Resource Room program is meant to provide special education students with a supportive environment within the school day to further the academic work of their core academic classes. At its core, the program provides specialized supplementary instruction to individuals or small groups. The class is limited to five students.

Students sometimes misconceive Resource Room as a “study hall” where they can complete their homework. While the Resource Room teacher may use assignments as a vehicle for specialized supplementary instruction, the primary purpose of the Resource Room is this instructional support.

Skills

This is a support class for certain students in ICT classes who need extra supplementary assistance beyond the support of the co-teaching environment. Typically, the Skills class supports former self-contained students in their first experiences in the main stream environment. The majority of ICT students do not attend Skills but instead have the opportunity to enroll in electives.

Learning Center

This is for students that are more independent and no longer require the Resource Room but are still in need of some support. Students are scheduled in the class one to three periods a week for assistance in organization, time-management, and study skills. Learning Center is typically provided to upperclassman to support their success in the mainstream environment and can contain up to fifteen students.

TASC (Therapeutic and Academic Support Class)

The TASC (Therapeutic and Academic Support Class) program is designed to serve students that are emotionally fragile. Most of our students in the program follow a mainstream schedule with support in their classrooms from either a special education teacher, teacher assistant, or an aide. Students that are not emotionally ready to attend classes on a particular day are serviced in the TASC classroom. Students have the daily option of eating lunch in the TASC room with other peers, or outside with the rest of the school building during lunch period. There is a built in Skills period that focuses on organizational skills, writing skills, content review, study skills, self-advocacy, coping with difficult situations, day-to-day stressors, time management, and social skills. A psychologist is attached to the program to provide support with social/emotional skill development. All teachers and staff members in the program are committed to building encouraging relationships that inspire growth academically, socially, and emotionally.