Seven Steps to Separating Difference From Disability

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SAGE Publications, Oct 22, 2010 - Education - 160 pages
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Ensure appropriate placement and services for your school s diverse students!

This timely book shows how to adapt the widely used Response to Intervention (RTI) model to distinguish between learning differences and disabilities in culturally and linguistically diverse (CLD) students. Readers will find:

  • A seven-step framework for determining each student s unique strengths and needs and making appropriate decisions regarding resources, referrals, and integrated services
  • Discussion of cognitive learning styles, language acquisition, acculturation, the role of family and community, and other key considerations
  • A running case study demonstrating the book s strategies in action

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About the author (2010)

Learn more about Catherine Collier's PD offerings


Catherine Collier, Ph.D. has over 45 years experience in equity, cross-cultural, bilingual, and special education. Dr. Collier is a nationally recognized expert on diverse learners with learning and behavior needs. She established and directed the Chinle Valley School, Dine Bitsiis Baa Aha Yaa, bilingual services for Navajo students with severe and multiple disabilities for the Navajo Nation. She was the director of a teacher-training program, Ikayurikiit Unatet for the University of Alaska for seven years, preparing Yup’ik Eskimo paraprofessionals for certification as bilingual preschool, elementary, and special educators. She was an itinerant (diagnostician/special education) for Child Find in remote villages in Alaska. For eight years, Dr. Collier worked with the BUENO Center for Multicultural Education, Research, and Evaluation at the University of Colorado, Boulder, where she created and directed the Bilingual Special Education Curriculum/Training project (BISECT), a nationally recognized effort. She is active in social justice activities for culturally and linguistically diverse learners and families. She started the first bilingual special education programs for the Navajo Nation and the White Mountain Apache. She is currently the director of the national professional development project Curriculum Integration for Responsive, Crosscultural, Language Education (CIRCLE) at Western Washington University. She works extensively with school districts on professional and program development for at-risk diverse learners. Dr. Collier provides technical assistance to university, local, and state departments of education regarding programs serving at-risk cognitively, culturally and linguistically diverse learners. She works with national organizations to provide professional development in the intersection of crosscultural, multilingual, diversity, special needs issues in education.

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