It is important to recognize and appreciate the diversity of learners in our classrooms. At Collingwood, our mission is to provide an inclusive and supportive learning environment where the students’ intellectual, social and emotional needs are being met in collaboration with families and homeroom teachers.
The purpose of the Learning Support team is to assist individual students in achieving their full potential. By addressing the diverse learning needs of individual students, greater success is achieved both in and out of the classroom. Our view of Learning Support is that it’s a cyclical model where students can enter and exit depending upon a variety of criteria. This support can take place in the form of pull-out (one-on-one or small group sessions in the resource classrooms), or push-in (where a learning support teacher works with the student in the classroom setting), or a combination of the two. This is determined through collaboration between the classroom teacher and the resource team. Areas that a learning support teacher may work on include: focused skill development or remediation, self-regulation, independent learning strategies and/or subject support. Generally, students receive learning support 2-3 times a week. There is a designated learning support teacher for each grade team, with the structure of learning support looking slightly different depending on the grade level and student need.
Grades K/1: A student generally receives one-on-one or small group direct instruction 1 to 3 times a week for 20 to 30 minutes. Additionally, they receive in-class support once a week. Teachers use an Orton-Gillingham approach to teaching, which is multisensory, sequential, cumulative and personalized.
Grade 2/3: Students receive both in- class support and small group pullout sessions twice a week. The in-class sessions are during a core subject (e.g. socials, science, language arts) and the small group sessions follow the Orton-Gillingham framework.
Grades 4/5: Students who have been identified as needing additional assistance, but do not have a psycho-educational assessment, are supported when the learning support teacher ‘pushes in’ to their homeroom class during a core subject (e.g., socials, science, language arts) 1 to 2 times a week. Those students who have a psycho-educational assessment and an Individual Education Plan (IEP) also receive pull-out support. Subject support, organizational skills, and self-regulation are key areas of focus at this level
Grades 6/7: Students in grade 6/7 who have a psycho-educational assessment and are on an IEP do not receive push-in/pull-out support but are closely monitored by the Head of Learning Resources. Any accommodations are met at the classroom level.
Who may receive learning support?
Homeroom teachers conduct a baseline assessment of all students in September. Depending on the grade, this assessment may look at reading skills, reading comprehension, written expression, spelling, and Mathematics. The learning support team then collaborates with the classroom teachers to decide which students are in the greatest need of academic support. As the model of learning support is meant to be fluid and flexible, students participating will vary over the course of the year depending on their strengths and needs within the curriculum. Criteria used for determining who will receive learning support are based on their baseline assessments, external assessments, teacher observation and documentation.