(SANFORD, FL) – Seminole County Public Schools has been awarded a $4 million grant to be used over 5 years for the ESE Curriculum Project by the U.S. Department of Education – Education Innovation and Research (EIR) Early Phase Program.
The EIR program, established under section 4611 of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, as amended (ESEA), provides funding to create, develop, implement, replicate, or take to scale entrepreneurial, evidence-based, field-initiated innovations to improve student achievement and attainment for high-need students; and rigorously evaluate such innovations. The EIR program is designed to generate and validate solutions to persistent education challenges and to support the expansion of those solutions to serve substantially larger numbers of students.
SCPS submitted the Exceptional Student Education Curriculum Project (ESECP) for consideration in the EIR Early-Phase Competition. The ESECP will infuse a behavioral approach into the traditional instructional pedagogy, creating a significant merger between clinical interventions for children and youth, and instructional strategies for students with certain exceptionalities. The goal of ESECP is to systematically implement the use of evidenced-based approaches to education which provide teachers the tools and skills necessary to design, implement, and evaluate instruction that helps students with disabilities acquire, generalize, and maintain knowledge and skills to improve these students’ quality of life in school, home, community, and workplace settings.
The project aims to improve capacity of ESE teachers to implement applied behavioral analysis techniques in the classroom setting, with overall outcomes to include: improve academic achievement for students with disabilities, and reduce the performance gap between students with disabilities (SWD) and non-SWD on national/state assessments. The project will serve approximately 1,000 high-need students in grades K-5 at 13 elementary schools. Under this project, the district defines “high need students” as those students who are at-risk academically due to developmental delays and/or who have been identified as a student with a disability. Approximately 60% of the target population is also economically disadvantaged.