St. Ignatius School strives to meet the needs of a wide variety of learners, from gifted to those who have special needs. Differentiated instruction and enrichment opportunities are available across the grade levels. Instructional specialists bring a depth of knowledge to their subject areas, and intervention specialists are assigned to each grade.
Our Inclusion Support Team includes the following roles:
Director of Inclusion Services
Our Director of Inclusion Services works with classroom teachers, parents, instructional therapists and related services specialists to meet the needs of all children at St. Ignatius. The directory of inclusion services oversees the Jon Peterson and Autism Scholarships for our students and their families. The director serves as the liaison between St. Ignatius and our students’ local school districts. Our director maintains academic data on all students to ensure that their academic and emotional needs are being met. She assists the administration and the grade-level teams in planning for special services and accommodations. The team of specialists dedicated to supporting all learners is described below.
School Psychology Services
Two school psychologists provide support for staff, students, parents and administration in developing strategies for academic, emotional and behavioral supports for students. If a child’s educational team suspects that a student has a disability, our school psychologists lead the school-based evaluation team.
On any given day the school psychologist staff can be found facilitating small group activities to help children learn strategies for self-regulation or managing anxiety, observing students in classes, or meeting with parents and teachers in intervention assistance meetings. Additionally, our psych team helps to develop schoolwide programs and initiatives to build and maintain a positive culture and understanding of good mental health.
Our school counselor teams up with the school psychologists and staff to support students in and out of the classroom. The counselor will focus on academic and social-emotional problem-solving. Our counselor works to help students process the issues they face, plan goals, and set action steps to achieve those goals. The St. Ignatius School Counselor supports students, staff, and parents in the following areas: transition and adjustments, friendship skills, family changes, conflict resolution, loss and grief, promoting positive communication, stress management, small group support, and individual support. The counselor also helps oversee school-wide or grade level preventative programs.
A full-time nurse dispenses medications as directed by a physician, provides monitoring of medical conditions as needed, maintains medical records and advises staff of student needs.
Intervention specialists are assigned to a grade level, where they share a room with a homeroom teacher. Most support services take place in the regular classroom, either in small group activities or as one to one assistance. When necessary, and as indicated on a student’s IEP or ISP, services may be provided in a resource room outside of the classroom. This typically addresses the need for a quiet environment such as when working on listening skills or phonics instruction.
Speech & Language Pathologists
Our licensed and highly trained speech/language pathologists provide therapy in both the classroom and/or in pullout settings to work in small groups or individually with students. Research-based therapy techniques are used and data is collected to monitor student progress. Areas addressed in therapy include pragmatic (social language) skills, phonological awareness, articulation, receptive language, abstract and non-literal language, expressive language, voice, listening skills, and speaking fluency. Our SLPs help develop behavior plans/charts, social stories, role-playing techniques, and video modeling to foster independent social skills. The speech/language pathologists work collaboratively with all teachers and parents to develop and implement strategies that will benefit the students.
The occupational therapist works with small groups and individual students to help with sensory processing deficits, social interactions, and fine motor development. They may develop sensory diets or sensory breaks. Occupational therapists can help the classroom teacher to create an environment and provide visuals to increase readiness for learning. They work in gym class or at recess to teach social interactions. They consult with parents and teachers to provide the best outcomes for the student.
The physical therapist works with students to build strength, range of motion, balance, and flexibility. Skills addressed may include walking, stair climbing, and movement around the classroom.
An itinerant School Audiologist supports our students who have hearing impairments and provides the hearing assistive technology that is needed to meet their needs. They also provide staff training, professional development, and consultation as well as direct services to students in self-advocacy, and the use of hearing assistive technology for the hearing impaired.
Itinerant Vision Specialists support students and teachers through consultation and direct services to help students to access the school and classroom environment.