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CASE STUDY John, Supplementary, Social/emotional

Year level
Educational setting
Mainstream school

Level of adjustment
Category of disability
Included in data collection

John's story

John is a student in his first year at a regional school. He was enrolled in Kindy last year but attended rarely as he became upset and his mother decided not to persevere with sending him as she felt he was too young. John has been attending prep for a term and a half but still refuses to leave his mother, is reluctant to try new activities at school and often becomes upset and refuses to participate.

John has seen an occupational therapist to address sensory processing issues in the past and the school has observed that John appears anxious at times. His mother does not want him to be referred to Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services or a private psychologist.

The teacher, principal and school psychologist have met with John’s mother to develop a management plan they can put in place to assist John to manage his anxious behaviours.

Strategies include:

  • identifying cues and triggers and assisting John to manage these as they arise. For example, pre-warning John of new activities and talking him through how he will manage them, in particular, the management of noisy situations
  • a morning routine including John’s mother handing him over to a staff member who talks through the day’s visual timetable with John
  • taking into account John’s sensory needs when planning class activities, for example, placing John on the edge of the group for an activity involving a lot of movement
  • teaching John strategies to manage his anxiety, such as asking for help and breathing exercises.

The class teacher has a communication book with John’s mother to keep communication open while still allowing John’s mother to come and go with the other parents. A meeting has been arranged at the end of Term 3 to review John’s progress.

Information that supports inclusion in the NCCD What's this?

  • Step 1. Is there an adjustment to address disability? Yes

    • Yes, adjustments are provided to enable a student with disability to access education on the same basis as other students.
    • As defined by the Disability Discrimination Act 1992, John has an imputed disorder, illness or disease that affects his thought processes, perception of reality, emotions or judgement, or that results in disturbed behaviour.
  • Do you have evidence? Yes

    • Records of meetings to plan for adjustments with specialised staff (school psychologist)
    • Notes from meeting with John’s mother
    • Adjustments to teaching noted on teacher unit, weekly or term planning
    • Record of socialemotional interventions provided
    • Management plan that includes staff morning preparation sessions
  • Step 2. What is the level of adjustment? Supplementary

    • Modifications to teaching strategies to support explicit instruction
    • Specific cues to support access to content
    • John needs extra time to process/prepare for the day’s activities
    • Support provided each morning by a member of staff to prepare for the day’s activities
  • Step 3. What is the category of disability? Social/emotional

    • John has a social/emotional disability in the form of sensory processing issues and imputed anxiety.
  • Step 4. Record and submit the data Yes (Student is included)

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