The Spectrum School Age Program is an intervention program specifically designed to meet the needs of students in grades K-12+ that as a result of their educational diagnosis have a difficult time meeting their full potential in the traditional school environment. Students considered appropriate for placement in the Spectrum Program are those that require a multimodal approach to academics combined with an intensive behavior management system to function successfully across settings. To meet the demands of this special population, during the elementary years, Spectrum provides highly structured self-contained units where students remain with their assigned teaching team to access direct instruction in all core subjects. This model establishes a daily routine with minimal distractions and transitions thereby increasing attentive skills and academic performance. As students move to their Junior/Senior High grades, a team teaching approach is utilized and designed to enhance consistency while ensuring the implementation of highly qualified instruction. Each classroom unit follows a specially designed curriculum map that aligns instruction with state standards using state of the art methodologies and materials. The Spectrum Graded Course of Study has been submitted to the State of Ohio for review and approval of an educational option.
In addition, a school wide positive behavior support system is a vital component of the Spectrum Program and has been designed to teach students coping strategies, responsibility, and resiliency to persevere. In the classroom, staff collect data on individualized target behaviors and use both visual aids and behavioral cues to assist students in making progress towards goal attainment. In addition to the innovative academic and behavioral programming, students receive social skills instruction based on research studies that indicates there is a high correlation between social skills development and the ability to succeed in school and beyond. By providing a structured framework for learning along with remedial and enriched academic curriculum, Spectrum offers each student placed in our program an optimal opportunity to achieve their full potential.
The multi-systemic facets of the Spectrum Program include the following aspects:
- 2:1; 3:1; 4:1 Intensive Self Contained Supportive Elementary Grade Classrooms
- 2:1 – 6:1 Intensive Team Teaching Junior-Senior High School Classrooms
- Closed Circuit Video Monitoring for Observation and Training
- SRA Direct Instruction Core Academic Methods and Materials
- Positive Behavior Support System
- Social Skills Training
- Outcome Data Collection for Progress Monitoring
- On Site Consultation Services for Speech/Language, Occupational and Sensory Integration Plans
- Adaptive Behavior Training and Self-Help Skills
- Community Based Learning Opportunities
- Daily Home-School Communication and Parent Support
- Vocational and Transitional Services
- Post Secondary Options Programming at Lorain Community College
- On line educational options for advanced studies
- Enclave Employment Training
The admissions process for any of the Spectrum Programs includes the submission of a completed application, an observation of the child in the natural environment, an interview with the family, a records review, and tour of the facility that includes a program orientation for new families at the beginning of each school year. The Spectrum Program is a parent choice program and accepts direct referrals from parents that have the desire to have their child with Autism Spectrum Disorders attend a specialized program to address an integrated academic, behavior and social skills program. In addition, the Spectrum Program accepts referrals from public and private school districts, social service agencies, and other network providers with students accepted for placement on a case-by-case basis. In addition, all Spectrum programs are operated and managed by Spectrum Consulting Services, LLC, an approved private provider from the Ohio Department of Education. The Spectrum Program recruits and admits students of any gender, race, color, national or ethnic origin, age, ancestry, and religion.
At the time of placement, the Spectrum Program utilizes a diagnostic-prescriptive model of assessment to determine a baseline of functionality across domains. The initial assessment process requires one week for student orientation followed by three weeks of data collection. Depending on the age and ability of the student, a developmentally appropriate battery of research-based material is used to identify individual strengths and weaknesses. In the classroom, intervention specialists continually use informal testing methods to assess the student’s current abilities and growth. At Spectrum, assessment is an on-going process and used to identify needs, measure progress, and revise student portfolios as necessary.
Individualized Supplemental Support Plan (ISSP)
Following the initial assessment phase, Spectrum supervisory staff collaborate and review the collected data and the student’s current Individualized Education Plan (IEP). Once the review process is completed, Spectrum administration meet with the student’s family to design a student supplemental plan that will follow the student throughout the Spectrum School Program. Using the district’s IEP/ETR and the results from the Learner Accomplishment Profile (LAP3) and/or the Woodcock Johnson Test of Achievement III, the ISSP identifies areas in need of intervention and target goals with benchmarks established.
The ISSP goals are subject to progress monitoring techniques that generate outcome data for each student. Each new skill identified in the ISSP undergoes a task analysis that is based upon the student’s existing repertoire. When introduced, the student’s behavior is shaped by giving positive reinforcement at predetermined check points and monitored for skill acquisition.
As new skills are acquired, students are gradually introduced to higher task demands with fewer prompts. Tantrums, meltdowns, refusals, and misbehavior are managed by determining the function of the behavior and designing interventions that decrease inappropriate behaviors while increasing alternative replacement behaviors.
Home-school communication, sensory integration and diets, motivation assessments for individual reinforcers and group positive behavior support planning are all features of the Spectrum Program and incorporated into the ISSP. The end purpose of the individualized plan is to prepare the student in all areas of development for success in the school setting and beyond.
Specialized Instructional Programs
The Spectrum Program presents an educational program that is designed to remediate and enhance the academic, behavior, communication, self-help and social skills of our students. The Spectrum program’s daily schedule provides each student the opportunity to engage in a variety of small group instructional periods as well as individualized intervention based activities to ensure that all areas of deficit will be addressed.
The framework employed by Spectrum integrates research design methods and materials within a best practices implementation model for the effective delivery of our services. To complement the core curriculum of Science Research and Associates Direct Instruction, Spectrum utilizes The Prepare Curriculum and Skillstreaming Program to teach an array of social skills that improve the student’s social behavior both at home and community as well as in the school setting.
In addition to the scripted curriculum, vocational, sensory, and recreational breaks are built into each student’s daily schedule that includes but not limited to; core strengthening movement and routines, gross and fine motor developmental workshops, daily living skills activities, and weekly community based learning opportunities.
It is the philosophy of Spectrum Consulting Services that our students present with many interests and hidden talents that need to be nurtured and developed. As such, the Spectrum Program seeks out novel community based opportunities for students to explore while practicing appropriate behavior and social skills both in the school setting and community at large including further educational and vocational opportunities that include certified on line instruction for advanced studies, post secondary classes at Lorain County Community College and pre-vocational training in our community supported enclave program.
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