Horizon Middle School Academic Support
Academic support is developed to promote and implement a well-integrated system connecting students with high quality, standards-based instruction and intervention that is matched to their academic, social-emotional, and behavioral needs. This system monitors and analyzes data to track the progression of students within the three tiers of support to assist with targeted remediation or acceleration, dependent on the students’ individual needs.
Special Education Overview
Our special education teams and services work to keep you informed of and supported in the educational trends related to standards-based instruction, accommodations, and classroom assessment for students with a disability.
Highly effective school environments prioritize the academic achievement and social skills of all students.We identify research-based strategies and practices that support positive behavioral outcomes for all students. Implementation of effective strategies and best practices within a variety of host settings, improves school climate and student outcomes.
Accommodations play an important role in educational settings, particularly for students whose disabilities interfere with performing learning task (such as reading a book, taking notes in class, or writing an essay) or testing tasks (such as getting through the items within the time limit or filling in the circles on a multiple-choice test). A critical part of teaching and assessing students with disabilities, then, is providing them with accommodations that support learning and that support their ability to show what they know and can do.”
It is our goal to provide educators and administrators current information and resources in the areas of instructional accommodations and assessment for students with a disability. Please contact your district or school special education teams to take advantage of state guidance documents, professional development training opportunities and other resources designed to support all students with a documented need, including students with a disability.
School District 49's strategic plan fully embraces and supports gifted learners through its fifth Big Rock, "Every Student": "District 49 will ensure educational experiences are individualized, capable of launching every student toward success." If you have any questions about gifted education in District 49, please contact the district gifted coordinator, Diane Neff.
District 49 Definition of a Gifted Student/Child. A student/child between 4 and 21 whose aptitude or competence in abilities, talents, and potential for accomplishment in one or more domains are so exceptional or developmentally advanced that they require special provisions to meet educational programming needs. Gifted students/children are hereafter referred to as gifted students. Children under five who are gifted may also be provided with early childhood special educational services. Gifted students include gifted students with disabilities (i.e. twice exceptional) and students with exceptional abilities or potential from all social-economic, ethnic and cultural populations. Gifted students are capable of high performance, exceptional production, or exceptional learning behavior by virtue of any or a combination of these areas of giftedness:
- General or specific intellectual ability
- Specific academic aptitude
- Creative or productive thinking
- Leadership abilities
- Visual arts, performing arts, musical or psychomotor abilities
District 49 Gifted Education Vision. All Gifted students will accomplish challenging post-secondary work/force goals and become productive, creative citizens capable of succeeding in their area of strength.
District 49 Gifted Education Mission. Ensure gifted student growth and achievement through systems of support, programming, and advocacy.
District 49 is dedicated to identifying and providing exceptional programming for gifted students. Schools throughout the district are committed to identifying those students who meet the district and state criteria of a “gifted learner.” Teachers work collaboratively with Gifted Specialists to develop Advanced Learning Plans for all our identified gifted students to ensure gifted children are challenged and experience academic growth throughout the year.
Gifted needs are addressed using a variety of instructional strategies and programming options. District 49 offers early access for highly gifted kindergarten and first-grade students who do not meet the age requirements for enrollment. Elementary schools provide differentiation instruction through grouping, advanced learning opportunities, and after-school academic classes, clubs, and contests. Our middle schools provide a wide range of honor and enrichment classes as well as many academic after-school opportunities. High school students have many opportunities to individualize their learning by choosing to attend one of our Career Academies, earn an International Baccalaureate Diploma, select from a wide variety of Advanced Placement courses, or take concurrent enrollment courses, which provide both high school and college credit simultaneously. Additionally, for students who desire a self-paced online curriculum, Falcon Virtual Academy provides a rigorous, digital learning environment. In District 49, we strive to provide gifted students with a wide range of opportunities to support their academic, social, and emotional development.
District 49 believes that parents are partners when it comes to meeting the needs of gifted learners. Parents and teachers work together to ensure children are not only challenged but also valued for their unique abilities. The gifted education website is designed to provide parents of gifted learners support and resources as well as provide information on District 49 gifted education and associated processes and procedures.
Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Education
District 49’s Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Education (CLDE) team supports the growth of every English language learner, so each student becomes academically and socially fluent. The CLDE program provides rigorous instruction to English language learners to develop their listening, speaking, reading and writing skills, so they achieve grade-level proficiency and become successful in workforce and post-secondary environments. The Board of Education expects the entire district staff to take ownership in assuring our English language learners demonstrate language proficiency and ultimately improve in achievement. CLDE teachers and paraprofessionals empower each learner, through differentiated instruction, research-based instruction and assessments and 21st century skills. As a team committed to student success, the program uses compassion in order to create productive citizens in a global society.
Middle school- English language learners who qualify are offered CLDE or resource support. Teachers offer this in the form of an elective class, but there are also co-teaching models and push-in support provided in the core content classrooms. Teachers monitor the progress of students in their core instruction and provide resource support when deemed necessary. In the elective CLDE class, students receive differentiated instruction in reading, writing, speaking, and listening depending on their specific language goals as identified in the English language plan.
The following skills are emphasized: social communication, academic vocabulary, grammar, reading strategies, writing skills, as well as the use of technology to better access curriculum. Teachers have access to the Colorado Department of Education approved intervention programs Imagine Learning and Lexia Power Up to master reading and speaking skills on technology. Accounts can be accessed at home to help fill literacy gaps in students of all age groups.