The goal of the Excellence in Co-Teaching Initiative is to provide a professional development model that promotes access to the general education curriculum for students with disabilities, recognizing effective co-teaching practices – especially in the areas of reading and math, and supporting teacher leaders.
During this second year of the initiative, twenty-three classrooms in twenty middle and high schools serve as co-teaching demonstration sites
, nine of which are located in regions 6 and 7
. These classrooms showcase the implementation of co-teaching by promoting a collaborative model – general and special education teachers share responsibility for the achievement of all students in the general education classroom through active co-planning, co-teaching, co-assessing with inclusive and research-based practices. The co-teaching partners in the demonstration sites will assist in enhancing current co-teaching practices of others by modeling effective practices in co-teaching during visits within their classrooms. General and special educator observers will have the opportunity to shadow their counterparts, observing the dynamics of the collaborative relationship during co-planning and co- taught classroom instruction, as well as other responsibilities of the teachers. Time to ask questions will be provided before and/or after observations. Opportunities for participating in a Distance Mentoring Program will also be available following a classroom visit.
Contact either the RU at 1-877-544-1918 or the VT TTAC at 1-800-848-2714 to determine which sites are open for visitation. Priority will be given to schools that did not meet their Annual Measurable Objectives for students with disabilities and/or divisions that are significantly below the target for Special Education Indicator 5: Least Restrictive Environment, as indicated in the Division’s Annual Performance Report. TTAC staff, in collaboration with the requesting school's building level administration, will determine the professional development needs and service options available. If a site visit is determined to be an appropriate professional development activity for an individual school, the site visit will be coordinated and pre-scheduled by TTAC. In addition, teachers who are unable to visit a demonstration site can learn about co-teaching online through the Real Co-Teachers of Virginia webshops. In addition to general information about co-teaching, the webshops include videos of demonstration site co-teachers as they co-plan, co-instruct and co-assess; SOL Enhanced Scope & Sequence Lesson Plans adapted for co-teaching; and a variety of resources. These webshops can be accessed through TTAC Online at Real Co-Teachers of Virginia