California’s Proposed SPDG
In March 2007, California’s Department of Education, Special Education Division, applied to the federal Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) for its third State Improvement Grant (SIG), now State Personnel Development Grant, or SPDG.
Purpose: The central purpose of the SPDG is to continue to reform and improve California’s system of personnel preparation and professional development as part of a larger effort to increase student achievement and improve outcomes for students with disabilities.
Project Design: To achieve these goals, California’s SPDG will do the following:
- Provide and scale up high-quality professional development, training, and technical assistance in the use of scientific or evidence-based practices in literacy and positive behavioral supports to school teams of teachers, principals, administrators, related services personnel, paraprofessionals, and parents/families
- Sustain and support the knowledge and skills that personnel previously have gained by providing follow-up contact, wrap-around training and technical assistance, intensive coaching, and Web-based tools and communications
- Involve the parents/family members of students with disabilities
- Enhance California’s ability to recruit and retain highly qualified special education teachers.
Project Activities: Specific activities will include the following:
- Providing professional development, training, and technical assistance in the use of scientific or evidence-based interventions in literacy (Effective Reading Intervention Academy or ERIA) and positive behavioral supports (Building Effective Schools Together or BEST)
- Maintaining and expanding the Leadership Community (State Leadership Institute, Regional Leadership Institutes, and Leadership Site Award Program activities), which is characterized by collaboration between general education and special education; developing and sharing the knowledge and skills that are gained through the institute’s activities and that address the evidence-based CDE-approved “core message” areas
- Making available centrally coordinated technical assistance (TA) that is provided by content experts, along with site-to-site TA provided by the Leadership Community and centered around the evidence-based “core message” areas
- Creating, refining, and disseminating data tools for data-informed decision making at the state and local levels
- Enhancing the Family Participation Fund and Parent Training and Information Centers’ parent/family outreach efforts; and developing the Parent-School Involvement Facilitation Survey
- Expanding the capacity of the California State University Los Angeles (CSULA) education specialist credential intern program
- Expanding the content and increasing the readership of the TeachCalifornia.org website to help recruit special education (SE) teachers