The Student Support Department consists of five support teachers; a reading specialist (Primary only), a counselor, learning support specialist and two ELL (English Language Learning) teachers. These support teachers work with teachers and students to provide the most effective learning environment for all students.
All students receive meaningful and equitable access to the curriculum. This enhances their motivation to learn from multiple perspectives, through collaborative teaching approaches. These outcomes include improved academic skills, leading to increased self-esteem, and more positive relationships with others in the community. MEF IS supports inclusion practices when supporting students.
The learning support teacher provides students and teachers with strategies to support academic growth in literacy and numeracy. The learning support teacher collaborates with classroom teachers in order to utilize materials make learning accessible and monitor the needs of students in their classes.
Individual students are supported to enable them to access the curriculum through differentiation. The learning support teacher identifies the learning style of the student, scaffolds their learning, and differentiates the curriculum so that each student can be successful and optimize their true potential. Through these positive interactions, students gain self-confidence and build a knowledge base for the classroom curriculum.
Students can also receive assistance in the following areas
- organizational skills
- study skills
- time management
- note-taking skills
- fine motor skills
- work habits
The Primary Reading Specialist works with students during Guided Reading and Literature Circle activities. The reading specialist generally works with small groups of students or team teaches with the classroom teacher; both styles are used to create more individualized instruction for students. A variety of teaching methods are used to help students develop skills in the areas of:
- Phonemic Awareness
Collaboration between the Reading Specialist and classroom teachers is integral in order to utilize materials for extending the inquiry process and to monitor the needs of students in each class. There are also many reading resources available for teachers and parents to use as they work with students at all stages of their learning In the Secondary school the learning support program is designed for students who have been diagnosed with a specific learning disability or other difficulty supported by a psycho-educational assessment.
This can include the following:
- Additional direct instruction with subject matter content
- Instruction in study and organizational skills
- Instruction in self-regulatory and self-advocacy skills
- Accommodations based on student characteristics. Accommodations are in presentation, response, setting , timing and/or scheduling in regards to instruction and internal and external exams
- Consultation with student, teacher, parent, counselor, administrator
A continuum of learning services is provided to include itinerant services, inclusion and/or resource class time. The learning support team works closely with classroom teachers, and is skilled in differentiation to meet the students learning needs.