SPECIAL EDUCATION PROGRAM
SPED Services Provided at A+UP
Houston Charter Middle Schools
We built A+ Unlimited Potential (A+UP) charter school for middle school students because we believed that every child that wants an education, deserves to receive one. Our goal is not only to provide a fulfilling education, but to teach our scholars the life-long skills that develop their personal and academic growth. We invest in our scholars because we believe they have the unlimited potential that gives our school its name.
Parents of scholars with disabilities consider charter schools like A+UP middle school as an alternative option to traditional public schools. A charter school like A+UP can provide opportunities for scholars with learning differences that a public school cannot, such as small class sizes, dedicated staff for special education needs, mixed-ability classrooms, and a personalized learning plan.
A+UP’s special education program is designed to address each student’s unique needs to ensure their personal and academic growth. With small class sizes, A+UP is uniquely positioned to ensure each scholar receives a custom-fit curriculum that aligns with their personal goals and is able to learn in a safe and welcoming environment.
Historically, A+UP has served scholars with various learning differences and abilities. Special education needs for scholars enrolled in the program include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Specific learning disabilities (math, reading, writing)
Special Education Required Postings – PDFs
The Special Education Information Center (SPEDTex) provides resources and interactive features for increasing family awareness of disabilities and special education processes, with the goal of improving partnerships between schools and families.
Live Chat: www.spedtex.org
Why Do Parents of Scholars with Learning Differences Choose A+UP?
As an advantage of being a small charter school in Houston, TX, the day to day life of a scholar with learning differences is very similar to that of any other student at A+UP. Our school ensures that all scholars receive free tuition, access to resources (such as additional instruction, on-site counseling, etc.), small class sizes, and most importantly, involvement as a vital part of a safe and welcoming environment.
A+UP is designed to make sure that every scholar feels like they have a seat at the table and are a valued member of their class. That is why our classrooms are fully-inclusive and incorporate scholars with varying levels of ability. Our rotational learning model allows coaches to tailor the amount of additional instruction they provide to each scholar based on identified areas of strength and needed improvement. An added benefit to classrooms with mixed abilities is that it allows scholars to advocate for their peers. At A+UP, all scholars have the opportunity to holistically develop their academic and social and emotional skills at a pace that aligns with their needs.
What Skills do Scholars with Special Needs Learn at A+UP?
Their education at A+UP will provide an incredible opportunity to develop, practice, and learn virtues (the O-SPICES) that have lifelong value. Graduates of A+UP feel empowered to take agency in their ongoing education. Specifically for scholars with special needs, A+UP helps them develop their toolbox to achieve their personal goals and eases the transition into high school and social spaces. In our Road to Empowerment learning strategy, all scholars develop realistic expectations of goals during and after A+UP and set the vision for college and career readiness. Coaches work alongside each scholar and their team of support to help them achieve their goals.
What Support is Provided for Scholars with Special Needs?
Because scholars with special needs are educated in the general education setting at our school, they receive Push-In and Pull-Out support for additional instruction time from dedicated Interventionists. Although these forms of additional support were designed with special needs in mind, most or all scholars will eventually encounter periodic Push-In and Pull-Out support which normalizes the procedure for all scholars.
If a scholar with special needs requires additional accommodations, A+UP meets those needs on a case-by-case basis. Administrators work closely with each scholar’s ARD committee to have authentic discussions about the scholar’s personalized learning strategy with everyone involved. A+UP does its best to ensure that the committee works together to serve the child. The goal of the committee is to develop a holistic plan to give the scholar every chance to own their success. Once consensus in the committee is reached, accommodations can take various forms, such as (but is not limited to):
- Modified assignments (to match the scholar’s level)
- Additional time during tests
- Separate room for testing
- Push-In support – an Interventionist coach is present in the classroom to help the scholar
- Pull-Out support – small group session with an Interventionist coach or the scholar is pulled out of normal class time for additional one-on-one instruction
How Are Parents Involved?
Our school values the input of parents as they play a key role in completing the members of a child’s ARD committee. Special education administrators at A+UP work to cultivate a partnership with parents to establish best practices that empower each child to reach their full potential. Our goal for parents as members of the child’s personal ARD committee is to work with the child’s team of support and offer their voice in the decision-making process to provide their unique perspective on what is best for the growth of their scholar.
State Resources and Updates
- Special Education Updates required by SB139
- TEA Resources for Special Education in Texas
- TEA Guidance for Compensatory Services