Supports for Educators
Please note office hours are intended to provide real-time technical assistance to educators, caregivers, parents, and students. Technical assistance is not legal advice. Specific questions concerning a student’s special education program or the laws relating to the provision of services in a child’s IEP (Individualized Educational Program) should be directed to ConsultLine at 800-879-2301
Testing your system:
Participants are encouraged to test your computers/devices prior to the date of the web conference using https://zoom.us/test, and to seek local assistance if you encounter difficulty.
Date/Time: Wednesday 1:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.
Email for Questions: Please email Lynda Lupp at firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule a meeting time.
*Be sure to visit the portion of this resource for Students with Cognitive Impairments and Alternate Eligible Content called “Vetted Resources” for additional supports beyond PaTTAN.
- Alternate Eligible Content (AEC) is the academic content – Reading, Writing, Mathematics, and Science - that students with the most significant cognitive disabilities are the expected to know and do in the tested grades. Stakeholders, including families, developed the AEC in 2015. All content is aligned to grade level standards but is presented at a lower level of difficulty. The AEC can be further modified by the teacher for instructional access. Visit this link and choose the subject to explore further. Be sure to scroll to the bottom of each page for available webinars on the topic. Visit this link and choose the subject to explore further. Be sure to scroll to the bottom of each page for available webinars on the topic. https://www.pattan.net/Disabilities/Students-with-Significant-Cognitive-Disabilities/Standards-Aligned-Instruction-and-Alternate-Eligib
- Access to Alternate Eligible Content is also available at http://pdesas.org/
- Essentialized Examples are sample resources showing how specific topics or alternate eligible content aligned to grade level standards in Mathematics and English Language Arts may be presented to a student with a significant cognitive disability. Three levels of difficulty are shown for each topic or standard so that every student can have access to the topic. https://www.pattan.net/Disabilities/Students-with-Significant-Cognitive-Disabilities/Alternate-Eligible-Content-and-the-Essentializatio/Essentialized-Examples
- Alternate Eligible Content Science: Making the Connection – The following four-part training series “Alternate Eligible Content for Science: Making the Connection” is now available via the PaTTAN YouTube Channel. This series is designed to support teachers of students with significant cognitive disabilities to better understand science instruction for this group of students. Learn how to make science content accessible using the process known as essentialization. Hear from two teachers in separate settings and with different grade level groups as they explain their instructional planning process.
- Module 1 Eligibility Criteria and Where to Locate the AEC is PA’s reduced depth and breadth content aligned directly to PA Standards. This content is assessed though the Pennsylvania Alternate System of Assessment (PASA). Participants will have an opportunity to explore eligibility criteria for accessing the PASA, as well as learn about the different science strands and content represented.
- Alternate Eligible Content (AEC)
- Module 2 Introduction to Intent and Teacher Resources - This module will provide participants with an overview of the purpose and utility of intent statements for teachers using Alternate Eligible Content. Resources for teachers to consider when planning their science instruction will also be provided.
- Module 3 Essentialization and Examples - This module will walk participants through the essentialization process. Participants will break down multiple examples of the eligible content in the categories do, know, and context. Participants will learn to modify and conceptualize content targets across a spectrum from most to least complex.
- Module 4 Science Voices from the Field - This module will demonstrate how participants can find the essentialized examples on the PaTTAN website. The presentation includes examples from grades 4, 8, and 11. This module ends with teachers that are using the AEC in the field discussing how they have used it successfully to support student achievement.
- PaTTAN Pod is a PaTTAN platform that posts podcasts to its website. Here are two relevant podcasts for families. In this first Podcast, two national leaders Pamela Mims and Ginevra Courtade who presented at the HELIX Conference and are experts in the area of teaching discuss Reading, Math, and Writing to students with significant cognitive disabilities. Available at
The following webinar series is provided for an audience that is supporting students with cortical visual impairment -
CVI Webinar: Identifying and Working with Children with CVI: What Need to Know
Session Dates: Thursday March 26, 2020 3:30 PM - 4:30 PM, Wednesday April 08, 2020 3:30 PM - 4:30 PM
This two-part training provides foundational information about children who have CVI, including those with deaf-blindness, looking at its causes, manifestations, and the issues that affect identification of children who have this condition.
Who are the Children with CVI?
CVI affects children in different ways depending on the age of onset of the condition, the parts of the brain compromised, and the extent of the damage. In this session the unique ways that CVI manifests in children will be examined and clarified. We’ll discuss what is CVI; who are children who have CVI; how are these children identified in the schools; and reasons underlying misidentification.
are provided by PaTTAN on important and relevant topics for various audiences. Below are two publications from this PaTTAN initiative -
Vetted Open Source
Find free curriculum guides and instructional lessons with scripts in English Language Arts and Math for teachers, families, etc. developed by leaders of students with significant cognitive disabilities and state partners. These resources are made available by the National Center and State Collaborative at https://wiki.ncscpartners.org/index.php/Main_Page
Find free recorded professional development modules on communication, math and writing (alternate pencils) developed by leaders of students with significant cognitive disabilities and state partners visit the Dynamic Learning Maps website at https://dynamiclearningmaps.org/professional-development
Find a variety of professional development modules at Modules Addressing Special Education and Teacher Education (MAST) including but not limited to English and Language Arts, English Language Learners with Disabilities, Individuals with Cochlear Implants, Learning Progressions, Mathematics, New Teachers and Paraeducators, Person Centered Plans for Education, Science, Social Studies, Standards-Based IEPs, Students with Deafblindness, Students with Significant Intellectual Disabilities. These were created to focus on important topics in special education courses and professional development for teachers. Concepts have broad application for all special education teachers have been formatted in brief modules which may be viewed in about one hour. There are links to resources which may also be accessed for additional information on the topic. This group of OSEP-funded modules is designed for use in courses to prepare special education teachers or for professional development activities with teachers. A nautical theme is the framework. Come aboard and travel with MAST on the journey! Go to https://mast.ecu.edu/picker
Find familiar, popular fiction and non-fiction books that are at reduced reading levels for all grades – ReadWorks https://www.readworks.org/
Find more familiar, popular fiction and non-fiction books along with lessons that are at reduced reading levels for all grades at the Paul V. Sherlock Center on Disabilities at Rhode Island College - http://www.ric.edu/sherlockcenter/wwslist.html
For information on communication needs of students with significant cognitive disabilities, visit the Communication Matrix, Kelly Fonner at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SdynGo6lAGA&list=PLCkBP2csbOssi3rUsfM-yQT1DVGUihxg2&index=52&t=0s
Distance Learning for Special Education - This site was designed by the University of Kansas by thousands of educators from across the country to support students with significant cognitive disabilities during this time of distance learning. https://sites.google.com/view/distance-learning-specialed/home