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Transcript of Advocacy Presentation
literature reviewed from other countries
In 1989 the United Nations established the conventions on the right of the child (CRC). The CRC was signed and adopted by 194 countries-- the United States NOT being one of them. Although many countries have ratified the CRC and many other treaties to protect Human Rights, it is arguable that the United States is ahead of the curve with discussion around Least Restrictive Environment. Ratifying the CRC in other countries has led to inclusion of women in schools, and making schools non-discriminatory (meaning that students with disabilities can now enroll), but the United States still leads in inclusive Environments (Harmening and Jean-Francois).
my research ~ my findings
overwhelming amount of agreement that making trauma-informed LRE decisions was important
interviewees felt that they never got to actually make LRE/special education placement decisions
interviewees felt that we are not equipped as a school and/or district to make trauma-informed LRE decisions
Convention on the Rights of the Child, Nov. 20, 1989, 1577 U.N.T.S. 3, available at
Educating Traumatized Children Summit 2017. (2017, October 09). Retrieved from https://creatingtraumasensitiveschools.org/educating-traumatized-children-summit-2017/
Harmening, E. (2015). Around The World: America Ahead of the Curve with Discussion Around Least Restrictive Environment: Education Rights for Children with Disabilities Around the World. Children’s Legal Rights Journal, 35(3). Retrieved April 19, 2018, from https://www.luc.edu/media/lucedu/law/students/publications/clrj/pdfs/vol353/Harmening.pdf.
Jean-Francois Trani & Mitchell Loeb, Poverty and Disability: A Vicious Circle? Evidence from Afghanistan and Zambia, 24 J. Int’l Dev. S19–S52 (2012).
Kazlauskas, E., Javakhishvilli, J., Meewisse, M., Merecz-Kot, D., Şar, V., Schäfer, I., … Gersons, B. P. R. (2016). Trauma treatment across Europe: where do we stand now from a perspective of seven countries. European Journal of Psychotraumatology, 7, 10.3402/ejpt.v7.29450. http://doi.org/10.3402/ejpt.v7.29450
Schools within SFUSD need professional development around Trauma-Informed practices. It was found through the collection of my qualitative data that in order to provide Trauma-Informed Least Restrictive Environments, the whole school community needs to be versed in Trauma-Informed practices.
In addition to educating school-sites on Trauma-Informed practices, schools should be educated in the benefits of a Least Restrictive Environment as found in the Literature.
As of now there is no protocol or guidance for IEP teams in choosing an LRE for students. The district should provide guidance to IEP teams that help them make trauma-informed decisions that meet the student’s academic, emotional, and behavioral needs.
"One element of the CRC is education for students with disabilities. Education rights are discussed at length in the CRC under Articles 23, 28, and 29. Article 23 specifically focuses on children with disabilities. Additionally, it addresses the responsibility for the state actor to provide free education so the child is “achieving the fullest possible social integration and individual development.” Extensive research shows that inclusion in education can help pull people with disabilities out of a vicious cycle of poverty across the globe" (Harmening).
The OHCHR (Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights) noted that it was rare to find a country with “least restrictive environment” laws or inclusion for students with disabilities.
What should an IEP team consider in choosing a
trauma-informed, least restrictive environment?
I leave you with this...
Should the United States join the other 194 countries and ratify the CRC, ensuring the rights and protection for students with disabilities?
One element of the CRC is education for students with disabilities. Education rights are discussed at length in the CRC under Articles 23, 28, and 29. Article 23 specifically focuses on children with disabilities.
If we have LRE laws, does ratifying the CRC matter?
Trauma Informed Practices in Other Countries:
Key persons from 7 different European countries got together to discuss Trauma Treatment and Trauma Informed Policy in their countries. The results of the meeting were as follows:
Turkey, Switzerland, Poland, Netherlands, Lithuania, Germany and Georgia all met and discussed how they are supporting their citizens who have experienced a great deal of trauma.
With a presence of refugees in these countries, the group discussed how they were supporting refugee children in their schools.
"Effective and evidence-based trauma-focused treatments have been developed and disseminated during the last few decades; however, little is known about the actual state of affairs of trauma practice"
They concluded that "there is still a gap between the need for trauma-focused treatment and the availability of such treatment."
National Conference for Creating
The National Conference for Creating Trauma-Sensitive Schools begins Sunday, February 18 through Tuesday, February 20 at the Washington Hilton in Washington DC
This was the first time this conference was held! There were people representing 38/50 states, and countries from around the world!
The conference covered many aspects of Trauma-Informed practices. Some of the speakers touched on the following topics:
Trauma-Informed Schools: Specific Classroom Strategies
A Review of the Compton Case – the Implication for Schools and Special Ed Policy
Bad Behavior vs. Developmental Trauma