Instructional Leadership

A Guide to Schoolwide Planning for Paraeducator Support
This is field-tested guide is meant to be used as a workbook for school teams to create a step-by-step plan for supporting paraprofessionals.
Authors: Michael F. Giangreco, Susan W. Edelman, and Stephen M. Broer
Publication Date: December 2002 
Publisher: Center on Disability and Community Inclusion, University of Vermont

Addressing the Paraprofessional Dilemma in an Inclusive School: A Program Description
This article offers an in-depth description of one elementary school over a 3-year period and includes the school’s use of an action planning tool to pursue alternatives to overreliance on paraprofessionals.
Authors: Michael F. Giangreco, Carter S. Smith, and Elaine Pinckney
Publication Date: 2006
Publisher: Research & Practice for Persons with Severe Disabilities

Alternatives to Overreliance on Paraprofessionals in Inclusive Schools
This article presents a three-component administrative model for effective utilization of paraprofessionals that includes paraprofessional supports, decision-making, and alternatives.
Michael F. Giangreco, Ann T. Halvorsen, Mary Beth Doyle, and Stephen M. Broer
Publication Date: Spring October 2004
Publisher: Journal of Special Education Leadership 

An Administrator's Guide to Preschool Inclusion
This guide offers practical strategies for administrators who are responsible for setting up, monitoring, supporting, and maintaining inclusive programs for preschool children with and without disabilities.
Authors: Ruth Ashworth Wolery and Samuel L. Odom
Publication Date: July 2000
Publisher: Early Childhood Research Institute on Inclusion

Challenges in Evaluating Special Education Teachers and English Language Learner Specialists
This Research & Policy Brief addresses the challenges associated with evaluating special education teachers particularly in accurately measuring student achievement growth and connecting that growth to teacher effects.
Authors: Lynn R. Holdheide, Laura Goe, Andrew Croft, and Daniel J. Reschly
Publication Date: July 2010
Publisher: National Comprehensive Center for Teacher Quality

Collaborating with Special Education Administrators
This article discusses three major questions that principals and special education staff should consider as they collaborate to effect education reform for all students
Author: Judith A. Green
Publication Date: November/December 2008
Publisher: National Association of Elementary School Principals

Collaboration Between General and Special Education: Making it Work 
This brief discusses service delivery and collaborative partnerships needed to support students with disabilities in general education settings.
Authors: Michael N. Sharpe and Maureen E. Hawes
Publication Date: Updated December 2007
Publisher: National Center on Secondary Education and Transition

Considering Tier 3 Within a Response-to-Intervention Model
This article provides a general overview of special considerations pertaining to the provision of Tier 3 prevention and intervention efforts and includes a self-questioning process to guide decision making at Tier 3. 
Author: Ruth A. Ervin 
Publisher: RTI Action Network, National Center for Learning Disabilities

Co-Teaching and Team Teaching: Promising Opportunities for Supporting Novice Special Education Teachers Within the School Culture
This brief discusses how special education teachers and general education teachers can work together for the common goal of providing a high-quality education for all students in the general classroom.
Publication Date: 2010
Publisher: National Center to Inform Policy and Practice in Special Education Professional Development

Critical Components of Successful Inclusion of Students with Severe Disabilities: Literature Review
This review provides an overview of literature regarding effective practices for inclusion with a focus on critical components of successful inclusion that work effectively with students with disabilities in inclusive schools.
Authors: Turki Alquraini and Dianne Gut
Publication Date: 2012
Publisher: International Journal of Special Education

Data-Informed Leadership in Education
This paper synthesizes and interprets ideas, frameworks, beliefs, and activities concerning the availability, quality, and use of data in the work of leaders at state and local levels related to the improvement of teaching and learning. 
Authors: Michael S. Knapp, Juli A. Swinnerton, Michael A. Copland, and Jack Monpas-Huber
Publication Date: October 2006
Publisher: Wallace Foundation

Dispelling the Myths of Inclusive Education
The purpose of this document is to share and dispel several common myths about inclusive education for students with disabilities.
Publication Date: Spring 2014
Publisher: TASH

Does Inclusion Help Students: Perspectives from Regular Education and Students with Disabilities
This study reported students with disabilities being highly motivated, fulfilled, focused, and successful both academically and socially when learning with students without disabilities. 
Authors: Bonnie Dupuis, Joyce W. Barclay, Sherwin D. Holmes, Morgan Platt, and Steven H. Shaha
Publication Date: Summer 2006
Publisher: Journal of the American Academy of Special Education Professionals

Dropout Prevention
This guide provides strategies that include identifying and advocating for at-risk students, implementing programs to improve behavior and social skills, and keeping students engaged in the school environment.
Authors: Mark Dynarski, Linda Clarke, Brian Cobb, Jeremy Finn, Russell Rumberger, and Jay Smink
Publication Date: August 2008
Publisher: Institute of Education Sciences

Early Childhood Inclusion
This joint position statement offers a definition of early childhood inclusion as a blueprint for identifying the key components of high quality inclusive programs. Included are recommendations for how the information should be used to improve early childhood services.
Publication Date: April 2009
Publisher: Division for Early Childhood and National Association for the Education of Young Children

Engaging Native American Learners with Rigor and Cultural Relevance
This Issue Brief explores three areas identified in the literature as promising strategies for improving educational outcomes for Native students: Instructional practices, Curriculum content, and School climate.
Authors: Abner Oakes and Traci Maday
Publication Date: August 2009
Publisher: Center for Comprehensive School Reform and Improvement

ESSentials LogoESSentials: Data-Driven Instruction/Intervention
This resource explains how Humboldt Elementary created a data-friendly, collaborative culture. Using color-coded data walls, teachers examine the data of all students then work together to provide interventions. Publication Date: June 2015
Publisher: Arizona Department of Education, Exceptional Student Services

ESSentials LogoESSentials: Digging into State Testing Data for Grades 4-8
This activity provides a global picture of how students are doing in general and identifies specific areas that need
improvement. The data will be used to guide collaborative team actions leading to increased student achievement.
Publication Date: April 2018
Publisher: Arizona Department of Education, Exceptional Student Services

ESSentials LogoESSentials: Explicit Instruction
This comprehensive resource offers guidance to special and general education teachers for using techniques of explicit instruction based on the book, Explicit Instruction: Effective and Efficient Teaching. Included are two video demonstrations of Anita Archer working with students at an Arizona middle school.
Authors: Anita Archer and Charles Hughes
Publication Date: April 2015
Publisher: Arizona Department of Education, Exceptional Student Services

ESSentials LogoESSentials: Interventions and Enrichment
This resource demonstrates how Arizona’s Mesquite Elementary gives students the additional time they need to master core concepts and elevate their learning to the next level.
Publication Date: June 2015
Publisher: Arizona Department of Education, Exceptional Student Services

ESSentials LogoESSentials: Positive School Culture/Climate
This resource explains the benefits of developing a positive school culture, includes National School Culture Standards, and features a demonstration video from Arizona’s Villa Montessori Charter School.
Publication Date: May 2015
Publisher: Arizona Department of Education, Exceptional Student Services

ESSentials LogoESSentials: Sharing Data to Create Stronger Parent Partnerships
This resource explains how Humboldt Elementary shares student reading data with parents so they understand it and can better work with the school to increase reading achievement.
Publication Date: June 2015
Publisher: Arizona Department of Education, Exceptional Student Services

ESSentials LogoESSentials: Student-Driven Differentiated Instruction
This resource explains how to create blocks of time to provide intervention and enrichment for all students. See how the staff of Humboldt Elementary collaborates to support the needs of all students in grades 4-6.
Publication Date: June 2015
Publisher: Arizona Department of Education, Exceptional Student Services

Frequently Asked Questions About Inclusive Education
This document answers questions regarding inclusive practices in education.
Publication Date: 2015
Publisher: Stetson & Associates, Inc.

From Good to Great: Exemplary Teachers Share Perspectives on Increasing Teacher Effectiveness Across the Career Continuum
This study defined the teacher career continuum as: Preservice, Novice, Career, and Teacher Leader stages. For each stage, it describes the professional experiences and supports that the National and State Teachers of the Year viewed as increasing teacher effectiveness as they progressed through the stages of their career.
Authors: Ellen Behrstock-Sherratt, Katherine Bassett, Derek Olson, and Catherine Jacques 
Publication Date: April 2014
Publisher: American Institutes for Research

General Education and Special Education Teachers Collaborate to Support English Language Learners
with Learning Disabilities

This article suggests collaboration between general and special education teachers and other specialists to work together to provide appropriate learning experiences and research-based strategies for ELLs with LD. 
Author: Huong Tran Nguyen
Publication Date: Spring 2012
Publishers: Issues in Teacher Education

High-Leverage Practices and Evidence-Based Practices: A Promising Pair
High-leverage practices (HLPs) and evidence-based practices (EBPs) when used together can become powerful tools for improving student outcomes. This brief is designed to show the promise of these practices in advancing educator preparation and practice and, subsequently, outcomes for students with disabilities and those who struggle.
Authors: Erica D. McCray, Margaret Kamman, Mary T. Brownell, and Suzanne Robinson
Publication Date: October 2017
Publisher: CEEDAR Center

High-Leverage Practices in Special Education
The high leverage practices are organized around these four aspects of practice: collaboration, assessment, social/emotional/behavioral practices, and instruction. 
Authors: James McLeskey, Mary-Dean Barringer, Bonnie Billingsley, Mary Brownell, Dia Jackson, Michael Kennedy, Tim Lewis, Larry Maheady, Jackie Rodriguez, Mary Catherine Scheeler, Judy Winn, and Deborah Ziegler 
Publication Date: January 2017
Publisher: Council for Exceptional Children and CEEDAR Center 

High-Leverage Practices in Special Education: Assessment
This document provides guidelines for school staff to fully understand the strengths and needs of their students with disabilities regarding formal and informal assessments. 
Publication Date: October 2020
Publisher: Council for Exceptional Children 

High-Leverage Practices in Special Education: Collaboration
This document provides guidelines for school staff to work together to ensure a more comprehensive understanding of each student’s needs, which can be used to more effectively plan and implement instruction and services.
Publication Date: October 2020 
Publisher: Council for Exceptional Children 

High-Leverage Practices in Special Education: Instruction
This document provides guidelines for special education teachers to provide a strategic, flexible, and recursive process of instruction that uses content knowledge, pedagogical knowledge (including evidence-based practice), and data on student learning to design, deliver, and evaluate the effectiveness of instruction.
Publication Date: October 2020
Publisher: Council for Exceptional Children 

High-Leverage Practices in Special Education: Social/Emotional/ Behavioral Practices
This document provides guidelines for school staff to employ several practices that are critical in promoting student social and emotional well-being.
Publication Date: October 2020
Publisher: Council for Exceptional Children

Homework in the Inclusive Classroom
This Ties Inclusive Practice Series TIPS sheet provides information and recommendations specifically relating to the collaborative educational team process for how to make homework successful for students with the most significant cognitive disabilities in inclusive classrooms.
Amy Clausen, Kristin Liu, Elizabeth Reyes, and Shawnee Wakeman
Publication Date: 2019
Publisher: University of Minnesota, TIES Center

IDEA’s Regulations on Discipline
This document contains IDEA’s discipline procedures as they are found in the final regulations for Part B of IDEA from §§300.530 through 300.536.
Publisher: National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities

Instructional Practices for Students with the Most Significant Disabilities in Inclusive Settings: A Review of the Literature
This report provides an update on what the literature says about instructional practices that have shown positive academic gains for students with the most significant disabilities in inclusive general education settings.
Authors: Alicia F. Saunders, Shawnee Wakeman, Elizabeth Reyes, Martha L. Thurlow, and Terri Vandercook
Publication Date: March 2020
Publisher: University of Minnesota, TIES Center

Is Value-Added Accurate for Teachers of Students with Disabilities?
This brief discusses the challenges of using value-added to evaluate teachers of students with disabilities and the comparability of value-added for special education teachers and the value-added for other teachers.
Authors: Daniel McCaffrey and Heather Buzick
Publication Date: January 2014
Publisher: Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teachers

Meeting the Needs of Significantly Struggling Learners in High School: A Look at Approaches to Tiered Intervention
This brief defines the RTI model, explores implications of applying RTI to the high school level, and provides resources appropriate for this application. 
Author: Helen Duffy
Publisher: National High School Center

MTSS for All: Including Students with the Most Significant Cognitive Disabilities
This brief explains MTSS and provides suggestions to include students with the most significant cognitive disabilities so that MTSS provides a whole school and whole district approach to be implemented by educators. 
Authors: Martha L. Thurlow, Gail Ghere, Sheryl S. Lazarus, and Kristin K. Liu
Publication Date: January 2020
Publishers: National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO) and TIES Center

Paraeducators Perceptions of Their Roles in Inclusive Classrooms: A National Study of Paraeducators
This study reveals paraeducators’ perceptions regarding their roles with inclusive classes, collaboration with general and special education teachers, and their responsibilities within the classroom regarding instruction.
Authors: Ida Malian
Publication Date: 2011
Publisher: CORE Scholar

Paraprofessionals: The "Sous Chefs" of Literacy Instruction
This article outlines commonalities from the body of literature discussing circumstances in which paraprofessionals were used successfully to improve the reading skills of students.
Authors: Julie Causton-Theoharis, Michael F. Giangreco, Mary Beth Doyle, and Patricia F. Vadasy
Publication Date: 2007 
Publisher: Teaching Exceptional Children

Preparing School Leaders for Every Student’s Learning
This document provides an overview of the leadership needed to support the learning of all students, a description of leadership roles that appear critical for all students to successfully learn, and reviews evidence on how program structures and strategies influence preparation outcomes.
Authors: G. Thomas Bellamy, Jean B. Crockett, and Chase Nordengren 
Publication Date: September 2014
Publisher: Collaboration for Effective Educator, Development, Accountability, and Reform Center

Preventing Disproportionate Representation: Culturally and Linguistically Responsive Prereferral Interventions
This brief highlights four key elements of culturally- and linguistically-responsive prereferral intervention that must be included in the RTI process for culturally and linguistically diverse students. 
Authors: Shernaz B. García and Alba A. Ortiz
Publication Date: 2006
Publisher: National Center for Culturally Responsive Educational Systems, Arizona State University

Principal Leadership: Moving toward Inclusive and High-achieving Schools for Students with Disabilities
This paper synthesizes research from both the general and special education leadership literature to identify critical research findings about effective practices and their implications for practice in supporting students with disabilities. An innovation configuration matrix is included for rating levels of implementation.
Authors: Bonnie S. Billingsley, James McLeskey, and Jean B. Crockett
Publication Date: August 2014
Publisher: University of Florida, Collaboration for Effective Educator, Development, Accountability, and Reform Center

Principals and Special Education: The Critical Role of School Leaders
This paper examines key leadership issues related to effective special education and reviews emerging standards for principal performance to determine the knowledge and skills that effective school leaders need.
Author: Michael F. DiPaola and Chriss Walther-Thomas
Publication Date: February 2003
Publisher: Center on Personnel Studies in Special Education  

Principles for Designing Intervention in Mathematics
The purpose of this guide is to provide brief explanations of practices that can be implemented when working with students in need of intensive intervention in mathematics.
Publication Date: 2016
Publisher: National Center on Intensive Intervention

Professional Learning for Culturally Responsive Teaching
This practitioner brief presents six research-based principles to guide professional learning experiences that foster culturally responsive teaching and four key arenas that have been at the forefront of teacher learning research.
Authors: K.A. King,
A.J. Artiles, and E.B. Kozleski
Publication Date: July 2013
Publisher: National Center for Culturally Responsive Educational Systems

Professional Standards for Educational Leaders 2015
The 2015 Standards (formerly known as ISLLC Standards) have been recast with a stronger, clearer emphasis on students and student learning, outlining foundational principles of leadership to help ensure that each child is well-educated and prepared for the 21st century. They elevate areas of educational leader work that were once not well understood or deemed less relevant but have since been shown to contribute to student learning.
Publication Date: October 2015
Publisher: National Policy Board for Educational Administration

PSEL 2015 and Promoting Principal Leadership for the Success of Students with Disabilities
This document provides guidance on how the Professional Standards for Educational Leaders 2015 can be applied to support inclusive principal leadership for the success of students with disabilities and highlights key competencies toward that end. 
Publication Date: 2017
Publisher: Council of Chief State School Officers

Questionable Utilization of Paraprofessionals in Inclusive Schools: Are We Addressing Symptoms or Causes?
This article discusses the per
spectives of paraprofessionals, professionals, and parents about school wide practices associated with inclusive special education and paraprofessionals.
Authors: Michael F. Giangreco and Stephen M. Broer
Publication Date: Spring 2005 
Publisher: Focus on Autism and Other Developmental Disabilities

School-Based Screening to Determine Overreliance on Paraprofessionals
This article describes the development of and directions for using a 16-item screening tool designed to assist cross- stakeholder school teams in determining overreliance of special education paraprofessionals.
Authors: Michael F. Giangreco and Stephen M. Broer
Publication Date: Fall 2007 
Publisher: Focus on Autism and Other Developmental Disabilities

School Practices and Accountability for Students With Disabilities
This report illustrates the findings of a study comparing school practices and accountability for students with disabilities. Among the findings, always accountable schools favored co-teaching, tiered instructional intervention, PBIS, and adopting reading across the curriculum.
Authors: Jenifer Harr-Robins, Mengli Song, Michael Garet, and Louis Danielson
Publication Date: February 2015
Publisher: Institute of Education Sciences

SELECT (Special Education Learning Experiences for Competency in Teaching)
These online courses are for special and general education teachers, administrators, and paraprofessionals. The courses are free for professional development hours but may be taken for university credit.
Publisher: Institute for Human Development, Northern Arizona University

Special Education Start-Up and Implementation Tools for Charter School Leaders and Special Education Managers
This comprehensive guide includes each special education component and ways to support school staff in meeting the needs of all students.
Authors: Beth Giovannetti and Nancy Opalack
Publication Date: 2012
Publisher: National Charter School Resource Center, American Institutes for Research

Special Education Certificates
This webpage provides the requirements for all special education certificates issued in Arizona.
Publisher: Arizona Department of Education

Students with Special Needs, Reading Education, and Principals: Bridging the Divide through
Instructional Leadership

This study discusses teaching reading to special needs students in self-contained and inclusion settings at the secondary level and how school leaders can more effectively facilitate special education reading programs.
Authors: Karen Sanzo, Jennifer Clayton, and Whitney Sherman
Publication Date: March 2011
Publishers: International Journal of Educational Leadership Preparation

Teacher Collaboration In Perspective: A Guide to Research
This research guide synthesizes research on teacher collaboration and how creating conditions for teachers to work more collaboratively might benefit students and teachers in their schools and districts. 
Publication Date: 2017
Publishers: Spencer Foundation and Public Agenda

Teacher Digital Learning Guide
This guide provides key considerations, guiding strategies, resources, and reflection questions to help guide your digital learning in a way that will be specific to your unique situation and the unique needs of your students.
Publication Date: January 2021
Publisher: U.S. Department of Education, Office of Educational Technology

The Challenges of Inclusion and Collaboration: Understanding the Needs of Novice Special Education Teachers
Find out how administrators can help novice special education teachers address the challenges they face with inclusion, collaboration, and interactions with other adults.
Publication Date: 2010
Publisher: National Center to Inform Policy and Practice in Special Education Professional Development 

The Impact of Explicit, Self-Regulatory Reading Comprehension Strategy Instruction on the Reading-Specific Self-Efficacy, Attributions, and Affect of Students with Reading Disabilities
This study discusses how students in grades 4-8 receiving the explicit, self-regulatory strategy intervention showed greater gains than participants receiving the less explicit intervention.
Authors: Jason M. Nelson and Genevieve Manset-Williamson
Publication Date: Summer 2006
Publishers: Learning Disability Quarterly

Tips and Strategies for Co-Teaching at the Secondary Level
This article includes strategies specifically geared to the secondary level for the three major areas involved in co-teaching: planning, instruction, and assessment.
Authors: Wendy W. Murawski and Lisa A. Dieker
Publication Date: 2004
Publisher: Council for Exceptional Children

UDL Guidelines: Examples and Resources
Each guideline includes examples and resources that clarify what is meant by each of the UDL checkpoints 
and gives teachers ideas of ways to implement UDL in their classrooms.
Publication Date: 2018
Publisher: CAST

Universal Design for Learning
This website offers everything you need to know about UDL, a blueprint for creating instructional goals, methods, materials, and assessments that work for everyone and can be customized and adjusted for individual needs.
Publisher: National Center on Universal Design for Learning

Universal Screening Within a Response-to-Intervention Model
This article discusses the component of universal screening within a Response-to-Intervention (RTI) model as a means to identify informed decisions about the nature of universal screening measures.
Authors: Charles Hughes and Douglas D. Dexter 
Publisher: RTI Action Network, National Center for Learning Disabilities

Use of Education Data at the Local Level From Accountability to Instructional Improvement
This report describes the types of data available to school staff, how school staff use electronic data systems, school practices with respect to data-driven decision making, and the supports and challenges for school use of student data in planning and implementing instruction. 
Authors: Barbara Means, Christine Padilla, and Larry Gallagher
Publication Date: January 2010
Publisher: SRI International

User Guide for Sample Reading Lessons
These lessons address key reading skills and incorporate instructional principles that can help intensify and individualize reading instruction for students who struggle with reading.
Authors: Zachary Weingarten, Tessie Rose Bailey, and Amy Peterson
Publication Date: 2018
Publisher: National Center on Intensive Intervention at American Institutes for Research

Using Co-Planning Time: Strategies for a Successful Co-Teaching Marriage
This article provides specific advice on how co-planning time can be effectively used to foster the necessary foundation for co-teaching success.
Authors: Lori Howard and Elizabeth A. Potts
Publication Date: March 2009
Publisher: Council for Exceptional Children

Using Data to Improve Schools: What’s Working
This is an easy-to-read guide to using data to drive school improvement in large and small districts. School system leaders and their staffs can learn how to build a districtwide culture of inquiry that values the use of data for sound decision-making.
Publisher: American Association of School Administrators

Using Student Achievement Data to Support Instructional Decision Making
This guide offers recommendations to help educators effectively use data to monitor students’ academic progress and evaluate instructional practices. It also recommends teaching students how to use their own data to set learning goals.
Authors: Laura Hamilton, Richard Halverson, Sharnell S. Jackson, Ellen Mandinach,Jonathan A. Supovitz, and Jeffrey C. Wayman
Publication Date: September 2009
Publisher: Institute of Education Sciences

What Do Paraeducators in Inclusive Classrooms Say About Their Work? Analysis of National Survey Data and Follow-up Interviews in California
This study explores the multidimensional role of paraeducators who work in inclusive classrooms.
Authors: Andrea G. Liston, Ann Nevin, and Ida Malian
Publication Date: May 2009
Publisher: TEACHING Exceptional Children Plus

What Every Teacher Needs to Know to Teach Native American Students
This article discusses the culture and learning styles of Native American students and offers educational practices that will likely aid this group of students to work to their potential.
Author: Hani Morgan
Publication Date: 2009
Publisher: Institute of Education Sciences

When Teachers Believe, Students Achieve
This article discusses why collective efficacy is important, how collaborative teacher inquiry can enhance collective efficacy, and how school leaders can support educators’ engagement in the process.
Authors: Jenni Donohoo and Steven Katz 
Publication Date: December 2017
Publisher: Learning Forward