Discussions fly about the least restrictive environment. There has been conversations overheard in teachers’ lounges and faculty meetings that the words ‘least restrictive environment’ equal the words ‘full time in general education.’ This is NOT true. ‘Least restrictive environment’ equals ‘where the child is placed to reach his educational potential.’
This discussion is a last step….
First evaluations and assessment.
Next, the determination of strengths and weaknesses.
Then the development of goals and objectives to work on those weaknesses.
Next is the determination of services (the all important time discussion) to work on those goals and objectives as well as collaborate with other educators to do so.
Finally, where all of this be done.
Placement is driven by the intensity of needs of each individual student.
Blind and Visually Impaired Students Educational Service Guidelines, NASDE 1999