Why is it imperative to write goals that minimize confusion?

  • Spelling

Goal- By June 15, 2016, given daily spelling instruction, Mario will improve his spelling accuracy to be able to spell 80% of the words correctly on weekly spelling tests over 3 consecutive trials as measured by curriculum based weekly assessments

Objective- By March 1, 2016, when asked to complete in-class spelling assignments, Mario will use resources (weekly spelling unit pattern rules) in order to ensure that he understand the rules for the given group of words and is spelling them correctly.

Objective- By May 1, 2016, when asked to spell a series of words at the 3rd grade level, Mario will demonstrate letter-sound correspondence knowledge and structure analysis by writing 12 out of 15 words correctly on weekly spelling tests (Winterman & Rosas, 2014).

Comprehension

Goal- By the end of the second grading period, when given a grade level reading passage with accommodations, Mario will demonstrate comprehension by making and confirming predictions about content on 3 out of 4 collected work samples (Virginia Dpt of Ed, 2011).

 

Objective- By March 1, 2016 Mario will read one passage on a 3rd grade level and will be given three comprehension questions on a weekly basis. If he is unable to correctly answer 2 out of 3 comprehension questions he will be given the passage in an alternate format and given the same questions to answer. He will be given the material in alternate or combined formats until he is able to correctly answer 2 out of 3 comprehension questions (Alexander, 2013).

 

Objective- By June 1, 2016 and pending his performance on objective one (above).

Mario will read two passages on a 3rd grade level and will be given five comprehension questions on a weekly basis.  If he is unable to correctly answer 4 out of 5 comprehension questions he will be given the passage(s) in an alternate format and given the same questions to answer. He will be given the material in alternate or combined formats until he is able to correctly answer 4 out of 5 comprehension questions (Alexander, 2013).

  • Why is it imperative to write goals that minimize confusion?

It is imperative to write goals that minimize confusion because many different individuals may be using the goals.  The child could have more than one teacher working on the same goals, the child could move to a new district and the goals will be transferred with him/her, the child’s teacher(s) could move and new staff could take over.  Everybody who looks at those goals needs to be able to understand what the skill is that is being measured and how to go about measuring it.  When goals are clearly written, teachers can easily communicate to other teachers, administrators, and parents precisely what has been taught, what will be taught, and how the student is progressing to meet the goals (Winterman & Rosas, 2014, p. 59).

  • What are the ultimate consequences of poorly written goals?

When IEP goals are not written in measurable terms the IEP will be inadequate (Winterman & Rosas, 2014).  The skills being measured will be hard for others working with the student to make sense of and a certain amount of guess work will be done.  The work at hand is too important to allow for guess work and/or an inadequate IEP.  Not only is it bad for the student, but it also opens up the school department to legal action.

References

Alexander, D. (2013, March 19). Basic Examples of IEP Goals and Objectives for Students with Learning Disabilities. Retrieved March 27, 2016, from http://www.brighthubeducation.com/special-ed-law/63909-basic-examples-of-iep-goals-and-objectives-for-students-with-learning-disabilities/

Virginia Department of Education. (2011, July 28). Standards-based IEP Sample Measurable Goals English/Reading K-12. Retrieved March 27, 2016, from http://www.doe.virginia.gov/special_ed/iep_instruct_svcs/stds-based_iep/smg_english_reading.pdf

Winterman, K. G., & Rosas, C. E. (2014). The IEP checklist: Your guide to creating meaningful and compliant IEPs. Baltimore, MD: Paul H Brookes Publishing.

 

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