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IB Diploma Programme Special Education Needs Policy
The International Baccalaureate Organization aims to develop inquiring, knowledgeable and caring young people who help to create a better and more peaceful world through intercultural understanding and respect. To this end the IBO works with schools, governments and international organizations to develop challenging programmes of international education and rigorous assessment. These programmes encourage students across the world to become active, compassionate and lifelong learners who understand that other people, with their differences, can also be right.
The aim of all IB programmes is to develop internationally minded people who, recognizing their common humanity and shared guardianship of the planet, help to create a better and more peaceful world.
IB learners strive to be:
Inquirers They develop their natural curiosity. They acquire the skills necessary to conduct inquiry and research and show independence in learning. They actively enjoy learning and this love of learning will be sustained throughout their lives.
Knowledgeable They explore concepts, ideas and issues that have local and global significance. In so doing, they acquire in-depth knowledge and develop understanding across a broad and balanced range of disciplines.
Thinkers They exercise initiative in applying thinking skills critically and creatively to recognize and approach complex problems, and make reasoned, ethical decisions.
Communicators They understand and express ideas and information confidently and creatively
in more than one language and in a variety of modes of communication. They work effectively and willingly in collaboration with others.
Principled They act with integrity and honesty, with a strong sense of fairness, justice and respect for the dignity of the individual, groups and communities. They take responsibility for their own actions and the consequences that accompany them.
Open-minded They understand and appreciate their own cultures and personal histories, and are open to the perspectives, values and traditions of other individuals and communities. They are accustomed to seeking and evaluating a range of points of view, and are willing to grow from the experience.
Caring They show empathy, compassion and respect towards the needs and feelings of others. They have a personal commitment to service, and act to make a positive difference to the lives of others and to the environment.
Risk-takers They approach unfamiliar situations and uncertainty with courage and forethought, and have the independence of spirit to explore new roles, ideas and strategies. They are brave and articulate in defending their beliefs.
Balanced They understand the importance of intellectual, physical and emotional balance to achieve personal well-being for themselves and others.
Reflective They give thoughtful consideration to their own learning and experience. They are able to assess and understand their strengths and limitations in order to support their learning and personal development.
Academic honesty is part of being “principled”. Academic honesty is an essential aspect of teaching and learning in IB programmes where action is based on inquiry and reflection.
The area of Special educational needs in Slovenia is regulated by the Law on Orientation of Children with Special Educational Needs, the Official Gazette of the Republic of Slovenia, no. 58/2011 (Zakon o usmerjanju otrok s posebnimi potrebami, Uradni list RS, 58/2011 available at: http://www.zrss.si/pdf/050911123118_zakon_o_usmerjanju_otrok_s_posebnimi_potrebami_22072011.pdf
The Special Education Policy defines principles, regulates rights and duties and helps to form mechanism which can help to identify students with special education needs and can help to meet their needs.
o Autism spectrum/Asperger’s syndrome
o Learning disabilities
o Medical conditions
o Mental health issues
o Multiple disabilities
o Physical and/or sensory challenges
o Social, emotional and behavioural difficulties
o Specific learning difficulties
o Speech and/or communication difficulties
The orientation procedure may be started by the parents/legal guardian or by the student (if older than 15) at the National Education Institute’s (NEI) regional office (Zavod za izobraževanje Republike Slovenije) or at the Children's personal physician. In the exceptional case when the orientation procedure is started by the school, the parents or student (who is of age) must agree with the induction of the orientation procedure by signing the orientation procedure application. Their signature authorizes the school to request a psychological evaluation and/or medical records. The application must include all available documentation (health records, psychological evaluations, special pedagogical, social and other reports). The application must also include the minutes of the meeting of the school counsellor and the student on the topic of orientation procedure.
The regional office of the NEI forwards a complete application to one of the commissions for orientation of children with SEN. The commission prepares an expert opinion which includes a summary of findings about the child, and establishes the kind and level of a SEN and proposes recommendations. The recommendations specify the scope, form and provider of additional professional assistance, as well as adaptations to premises and equipment in accordance with the national legislation.
The parents or the applicant may communicate their comments with regard to the expert opinion within eight days of its receipt. On the basis of expert opinion, the NEI issues the orientation decision which specifies the educational needs of the SEN student and the suitable educational programme. The decision is obliging exclusively for the school stated in it and is not transferrable to another school. The school must ensure the rights the SEN student is entitled to according to the orientation decision.
However, the school has an obligation through its international accreditation to only accept students who can be given an appropriate level of learning support. The school is a mainstream school and its facilities and staffing levels limit the amount of specialist support that can be provided. Where a prospective student has a learning difficulty, the school will require full details of the student's needs from parents during the admissions process to determine the level of learning support that is required. Clinical Psychologist reports and other relevant medical reports may be required.
The SEN team of the school includes:
Head of school
An Individual Development Plan will be created for each student with SEN admitted with identified learning needs. The Individualised Plan (IP) will address the students learning goals, support/intervention, implementation, responsible parties and time frame for evaluation and review. Teachers will make regular assessments of progress for all students. These should seek to identify students making less than expected progress given their age and individual circumstances.
Partnership with parents plays a key role in creating a successful learning experience for all students with SEN. The school recognizes that parents hold key information and have knowledge and experience to contribute to the shared view of a child’s needs and the best ways of supporting them.
The school recognises the important contribution that external support services make in assisting to identify, assess, and provide for, SEN students. When it is considered necessary, colleagues from the following support services will be involved with SEN students:
speech and language therapist;
hearing impairment services;
visual impairment services;
1. Gimnazija Kranj ensures that inclusive arrangements for a candidate are aligned with the IB policy and are carried out during the 2 year IB Diploma Programme.
2. The inclusive assessment arrangements provided for a candidate are carefully individualized, planned, evaluated and monitored. The purpose is to take away the disadvantage, to the extent possible, due to the candidate’s challenge. Under no circumstances should it give the candidate an advantage.
3. All requests for inclusive assessment arrangements are submitted six months prior to an examination session. That is, November 15th for candidates registering for the May examinations session and by May 15th for candidates registering for the November examinations session to ensure that modified papers arrive to Gimnazija Kranj on time.
4. Gimnazija Kranj submits requests for access arrangements on two forms of supporting documentation that are uploaded to the online application “Request of inclusive assessment arrangements”. The first document is a psychological/psycho-educational/medical report from a psychological or medical service and the second is educational evidence from the school.
5. A candidate is permitted to take an examination in a separate room if it is in the best interests of the candidate or other candidates in the group. If the examination is taken in a separate room, all regulations governing the conduct of IB examinations are observed. The candidate is kept under the constant supervision of an invigilator.
6. The coordinator may arrange for appropriate seating to meet the needs of individual candidates (for example, sitting near the front may be appropriate for a candidate with vision or hearing difficulties).
7. An assistant, if necessary a nurse, may be in attendance if this is necessary for the welfare or safety of a candidate. The assistant must not be another candidate or a relative of the candidate.
8. A candidate who normally uses an aid (for example, a coloured overlay, a Braille slate, a sound amplification device, a radio aid, a hearing aid, a low vision aid, a magnifying aid, coloured filter lenses) is allowed to use the aid in examinations.
9. A candidate with a hearing condition may receive instructions from a communicator. This arrangement is confined to explaining the conduct of the examination and the instructions in an examination paper. The communicator must not convey information about any aspect of a question in the paper without prior authorization from IB Assessment centre.
10. If a candidate has difficulties in reading or attention, test directions may be clarified by the invigilator or a designated reader. This arrangement is strictly confined only to clarifying the directions and the instructions and not the content of the questions.
11. Magnifying devices to enlarge and read print may be used by candidates with vision issues. These may include magnifying glasses and line magnifiers.
12. For a candidate who has colour blindness, the coordinator (or invigilator) is permitted to name colours in an examination paper (for example, on a map in a geography examination). However, no other form of assistance may be given without authorization from the IB Assessment centre.
13. A candidate who is hypersensitive to sound is permitted the use of noise buffers such as headsets, earplugs and individual workstations with acoustic screens. If an individual workstation is employed, all regulations governing the conduct of IB examinations must be observed. The candidate must be kept under the constant supervision of an invigilator.
14. A candidate is permitted rest breaks if required to do so due to medical, physical, psychological or other conditions. The amount of time permitted for rest breaks is not counted towards the duration of the candidate’s examination. Rest breaks must be supervised to ensure that the security of the examination is maintained. The amount of rest time in general is recommended to 10-minutes per hour is the general recommendation. During a rest break, the candidate is not permitted to read, respond to the examination paper or write notes of any kind. Candidates may be allowed to leave the room for all or part of the rest periods. For example, a candidate with diabetes may be provided rest breaks to check blood sugar levels and take medication. If a candidate’s personal examination timetable is such that, with rest periods and additional time more than six and a half hours of examinations would take place in one day, rescheduling is requested.
15. A candidate may be permitted the use of a prompter due to attention issues, psychological or neurological conditions. A prompter would ensure that a candidate pays attention to the examination. The use of the prompter should not disturb other candidates. The coordinator or invigilator may act as a prompter, but the examination must be conducted according to IB regulations.
16. At the discretion of the coordinator, a candidate may be given additional time to complete assignments during the two-year programme (for example, the extended essay, the theory of knowledge (TOK) essay) .
o Meeting student learning diversity in the classroom, International Baccalaureate Organization, published May 2014
o Zakon o usmerjanju otrok s posebnimi potrebami, Uradni list RS, 58/2011
o Programme standards and practices, International Baccalaureate Organization, published January 2014
o The Diploma Programme: From principles to practice, International Baccalaureate Organization, published April 2009
o IB learner profile booklet, International Baccalaureate Organization, published November 2008, updated January 2009
Head of Gimnazija Kranj Franc Rozman
IB Diploma Programme coordinator Nataša Kne
School counsellor Tanja Varjačič