Connecticut’s School Climate Transformation Grant (CT SCTG)– Opportunity for Support

 CSDE has partnered with the State Education Resource Center (SERC) to assess the status of Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) implementation across the state.  By visiting schools that have been trained in PBIS and conducting the School-wide PBIS Tiered Fidelity Inventory (TFI) alongside the school’s team, SERC will be able to assist schools in evaluating their progress, guide their implementation, and develop action plans for improvement. This half-day support is at NO-COST to the school and district and is funded through the CT SCTG project.

The SWPBIS Tiered Fidelity Inventory (TFI) is  a tool schools can use to efficiently assess their implementation of PBIS. By measuring the core structures across all three tiers of this multi-tiered behavioral framework schools get a snapshot of their current implementation fidelity, an action plan for continued school improvement, and specific recommendations for content knowledge development that would advance implementation. To be eligible for this no-cost support, the interested school must have completed PBIS training in the past.  Once scheduled, the school’s leadership team will meet with an external TFI facilitator for 90-120 minutes to work through the TFI process.

To schedule your, SWPBIS TFI please visit and complete the Online Request Form. For troubleshooting questions, please call Lauren D. Johns, Education Services Specialist at (860) 632-1485 ext. 256 or For more information on the TFI process, please contact Sarah L. Jones, Project Officer at (860) 632-1485 ext. 307 or


2016 Achievement Through Technology Conference

Registration is open for the 2016 Achievement Through Technology Conference to be held on April 1, 2016 at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Cromwell, CT. To view the conference flyer for more details and the day’s agenda, please follow this link:

Guidance Regarding the Role of Paraprofessionals in IEPs and at PPTs

On November 27, 2015, Isabelina Rodriguez, Chief of the Connecticut State Department of Education (CSDE), Bureau of Special Education issued a memorandum to Directors of Special Education and Pupil Services. This memorandum served as further guidance for school districts regarding the June 2015 agreement between the CSDE and the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) which clarifies the role of Paraprofessionals in the Individualized Education Program (IEP) process.

To review the complete memorandum, please follow the link below.

Role of Paraprofessionals in IEPs memorandum 11-27-15

Upcoming Professional Learning Opportunities and Conferences

The Connecticut State Department of Education (CSDE) in partnership with the State Education Resource Center (SERC) is offering four professional learning opportunities related to Specific Learning Disabilities (SLD)/Dyslexia. In addition to these important SLD/Dyslexia learning opportunities, the CSDE/SERC partnership has planned an exciting Transition to Careers conference.

Please review the links below to learn more!

SLD-Dyslexia Professional Learning Opportunities 2015-16

CT Forum on Promising Practices in SLD- Dyslexia

Transition to Careers Conference

“Regional Chats” with the Bureau of Special Education’s Bureau Chief, Dr. Isabelina Rodriguez

With a focus on “Evolving Relationships that Work for Kids”, special education directors are invited to chat with Dr. Isabelina Rodriguez during a series of six sessions around the state designed to foster an open dialogue and address topics important to the field. With the first session scheduled for November 20th and the final session for June 17th, Dr. Rodriguez plans to discuss topics such as:

  • Partnerships Aligned with State Regulations and New Laws,
  • Building Capacity of General Education Administrators,
  • Working with Families in the Places Where They Live,
  • Creating Advocacy Opportunities for Students with Disabilities within Boards of Education and Central Office,
  • Working Together to Racially, Culturally, and Linguistically Diversify Our Special Education, and
  • Director’s Workforce, and Developing Community Partners.

For a complete list of sessions, locations and times, please see the following link:

Regional Chats with the Bureau Chief



Smarter Balanced Text-to-Speech and Read Aloud for English Language Arts Passages Decision Guidelines

On October 30, 2015, Dr. Isabelina Rodriguez, Chief, Bureau of Special Education, and Abe Krisst, Chief of Student Assessment, issued a memorandum to Connecticut Directors of Special Education and Pupil Personnel Services and District Test Coordinators. The memorandum offers guidelines for decisions related to the Smarter Balanced text-to-speech and read aloud for English Language Arts passages. Please visit the link below to review a full copy of the memorandum.

Smarted Balanced Text to Speech for ELA Reading


Nancy Prescott to Continue to Assist CPAC During New Executive Director Search

On October 19, 2015, Elizabeth Bumgardner, Board President for the Connecticut Parent Advocacy Center, Inc. (CPAC) issued a letter to partners regarding the role of retiring Executive Director, Nancy Prescott, at CPAC in the coming days.

For an opportunity to review this letter, please follow the link below.

CPAC Letter to Partners Oct 2015


New Memorandum Regarding Restraint and Seclusion in Schools

As you are aware, effective July 1, 2015, the Connecticut legislature passed new legislation, PA 15-141, that places significant limits on the use of restraint and seclusion in Connecticut schools.  This new legislation provides revisions to previous restraint and seclusion legislation, the implementation of which is further articulated in the current Special Education Regulations related to Restraint and Seclusion in Schools.   Attached you will find a memo from Dr. Isabelina Rodriguez, Chief, summarizing PA 15-141 and providing links to new guidance and resources.  Click below for memo.

New Legislation for Public Act 15-141