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1. Aligning the IEP with : This session of training provides detailed information for the first task to be completed in the Idaho Alternate Assessment process. The studentís IEP needs to be aligned to the Alternate Knowledge and Skills on each rating scale.

2. Standards-based IEPís: When the alignment is being completed it is important to remember that the IEP is still an individualized program and the student may have goals and objectives that do not link to any of the Idahoís achievement standards. However, the IEP goals and objectives that do address studentís needs and are linked to state standards will show how the student has the opportunity to be involved in the general education curriculum.

3. Alternate Knowledge & Skills: IEP Linked or Not: To the degree possible, IEP teams should determine how goals and objectives are aligned to the alternate knowledge and skills within the Idaho Achievement Standards. When the annual IEP is developed. IEP members should be familiar with the alternate knowledge and skills in order to identify how the student is accessing the general education curriculum.
During the actual online rating process, the special education teacher will mark "yes" or "no" to indicate whether an alternate knowledge and skill on the IAA is aligned with a studentís IEP goal or objective.

4. Strongest Links: It is possible that a studentís IEP goals and objectives will have several links to alternate knowledge and skill items in various content areas, content sections, and achievement standards. The IEP team should align with the alternate knowledge and skills that have the strongest link and emphasis when writing the studentís goal and objectives.

Various examples of how IEP goals can align with alternate knowledge and skills will be given.

5. One alternate knowledge and skill within a single content area: As with any IEP goal and objective, start with a student need that is of high importance.
Example, Kay is a seventh grader and the IEP team identified that she needs to work on her ability to follow directions in a daily routine independently.

6. Example 1 (cont): Therefore, an IEP goal is written to address Kayís need by monitoring how she completes daily tasks following 2 Ė 3 step directions without adult assistance. When the IEP team begins determining the strongest link to the standards, Kayís goal indicates a focus on improving her receptive communication skills, which is part of the IAA Reading Scale. After reviewing the alternate knowledge and skills in the reading scale, the goal of following directions links directly to "interpreting symbolic expression for sequential routines which is the R4 alternate knowledge and skill.

7. Two or more knowledge and skill items within a single content area: Another example shows how a student need may be linked to two or more knowledge and skill items within a single content area.

We start with Kayís need to improve interpersonal relationships by initiating interactions through a written communication system.

8. Example 2 (cont): Therefore, an IEP goal is written to address Kayís need by monitoring how she will compose notes to peers and/or family members. When determining the strongest link to the standards, Kayís need indicates a focus on improving her expressive communication skills, which are imbedded in the IAA Language. After reviewing the alternate knowledge and skills in the AAL, composing notes to peers and also family members directly links to using words and pictures to create a message and use appropriate words or pictures specific to her peers and also her family. These two are W1 and W2 of the alternate knowledge and skills. Both of these are within the content section of the stateís writing standards.

9. Two or more alternate knowledge and skill items in different sections of a content area: The third example shows how two or more alternate knowledge and skill items in different sections of a content area can align with an IEP goal.

In this example, Kayís need is to read and understand her environment for various daily life activities.

10. Example 3 (cont.): Therefore, Kayís IEP goal was written to improve her accuracy in reading traditional and electronic materials in various environmental settings. When determining the strongest link to the standards, Kayís need indicated a focus on improving her receptive communication skills, which are imbedded in the IAA Reading. After reviewing the alternate knowledge and skills in reading, there are three content sections involving receptive communication. They are reading, listening, and viewing. The strongest links are made to reading and interpreting symbolic expressions for understanding and being able to interpret literal and figurative meanings with advertisements. These are R3 and V3 from the reading and viewing content sections.

11. Two or more alternate knowledge and skill items in different content areas & sections: The final example for alignment displays how two or more alternate knowledge and skill items in different content areas & sections can be aligned to a student IEP goal.

Kay needs to improve daily living skills through expressive vocabulary to identify needs and wants.

12. Example 4 (cont.): So, the IEP teams considers age appropriate activities and writes a goal to address Kayís need. The IEP goal will monitor her ability to indicate what she wants and purchase items from the school store, lunchroom and the school vending machines.

13. Example 4 (cont.): When determining the strongest link to the standards, the primary emphasis when writing Kayís goal was to improve her expressive communication skills along with some mathematics skills. After reviewing the alternate knowledge and skills in language and mathematics, Kayís goal would be monitoring how she can recognize numbers in environmental settings and use basic money skills, which are C1 and M2. The second part of the goal emphasized her speaking skills to indicate her wants which aligns with being able to express preferences and initiating an interaction with another person when she buys her desired items.

If IEP teams have difficulty in making the links, the sample applications with each alternate knowledge and skill may help. Letís look at some sample applications for a few of the examples.

14. Examples of Sample Applications for Aligned Items: The first example had Kayís goal of completing daily tasks using 2 Ė 3 step directions. Kay could demonstrate this by reading a daily job task list or picture card and then completing the steps of the task or job.

15. Sample Applications (cont.): For example 2, Kayís goal is to compose notes to peers or family. Therefore, a sample application of how she would demonstrate this would be to create a sequence of pictures to tell about her day.

16. Sample Applications (cont.): Another sample application for the second alternate knowledge and skill that is aligned with her goal, would be to use appropriate symbols with her peers in completing a group project that shows the crops grown in South America.

17. Sample Applications (cont): The last example used to show a sample application is purchasing lunch or other items for the alternate knowledge and skill of using money skills. This is the same type of activity in Kayís goal of "indicating wants and purchasing items up to $5.00 from the lunchroom."

18. When to Align: Some helpful hints when completing the alignment process are

Align when the IEP is developed, the IEP team will help in determining the emphasis of the goal.

If you were not a member of the IEP team when it was developed, make sure the alignment is done before you begin collecting data and information about the student.

Review the alignment annually with the IEP and when a student transfer in from another state. The IEP needs to be reviewed anyway, take advantage of the time.

19. Helpful Questions in : Finally four helpful questions when trying to make alignment decisions are:

1. What content area is emphasized? Expressive communication, receptive communication, mathematics? Even though science, health, social studies are not part of the current IAA, when appropriate, IEP goals should be aligned with any Idaho Achievement Standard.

2. Is the skill that is being taught a pre-requisite skill in a certain area? Sometimes a task analysis can identify the pre-requisite skill. For example, spatial relationships such as up, down, front, back, over, under are pre-requisite skills to measurement skills.

20. Helpful questions (cont.): 3. What are the underlying concepts on which the student is working, and how do they relate to a particular alternate knowledge and skill? For example, is the student working on concepts involving time management in their lives which would relate to using measurement skills.

4. Is the student working on two content areas at the same time? For example reading and mathematics or reading and writing.

In summary, the alignment task is not an exact science but is important to clearly illustrate how a student progress toward achieving the state standards for all students.