This course is designed to provide pre-service teachers knowledge and skills necessary to communicate and collaborate with parents in school and community settings to facilitate the development, education, and socialization of students with and without disabilities from early childhood through grade 12. Students will develop knowledge of family systems theory, the impact of disabilities upon the life of the child and family members, family legal rights, structure of the family, history of the family, family coping strategies, and the impact of culture, the environmental milieu and cultural and linguistic diversity on development, learning, and behavior. Students also identify sources of services, resources, networking, and organizations that assist families of children and also persons with disabilities such as the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) and a variety of additional national, state, and local agencies and organizations. In addition to the focus on interactions with families, this course also allows teacher candidates to develop critical skills needed to collaborate with other education professionals to assess performance, plan instruction, monitor progress, provide interventions, solve problems, create Individualized Education Programs (IEPs), and provide all students with instructional and behavioral supports that will allow them to be successful learners. As part of a project-based field experience, teacher candidates must interview the parent(s) of a child with a disability, and the child (if appropriate). The information gathered is used to write a Family Case Study Report and a Family Action Plan. A project-based field experience is required for this course.
Offered for 3 Semester hours.