Accommodations: Accommodations are practices and procedures in the areas of presentation, response, setting, and timing/scheduling that provide equitable access during instruction and assessments for students with disabilities/Section 504/English Language Learners (ELL). Accommodations are intended to reduce or even eliminate the effects of a student’s disability; they do not reduce learning expectations.  Accommodations provide access to buildings, curriculum, and assessments.

Alignment: The process of matching instruction and materials to the Utah State Core Curriculum.

Behavioral Intervention Plan (BIP): A written plan for changing a student’s behavior, including target behavior, strategies for teaching replacement behavior, reinforcers, and a schedule for review of intervention effectiveness data.  A BIP can be part of the IEP.

Collaboration: A systematic process of cooperation between two or more people with shared goals and perceived outcomes occurring in a climate of trust.

Collaborative team: A group of two or more people with shared goals and perceived outcomes who meet on a scheduled or as-need basis and fill a specific function or purpose. Collaborative teams can be formed both at the district and school levels. School-based teams are developed and sustained as determined by need and are accessible to any administrator or teacher concerned with the educational needs of students.

Differentiated instruction: The matching of instruction with the different needs of learners in a given classroom by modifying delivery, time, content, process, product, and the learning environment. One or more of these elements can be modified to provide differentiation.

English Language Learners (ELLs): English Language Learners (ELLs) are students whose first language is not English and who are in the process of learning English.

Evaluation: Summarizing assessment results, then making decisions based on these results.

Explicit instruction: Instruction that is clear, overt, and visible.

Extended school year services:Special education and related services that:
 a.        Are provided to a student with a disability:
            (1)        Beyond the normal school year of the LEA;
            (2)        In accordance with the student’s IEP;
            (3)        At no cost to the parents of the student, and
b.         Meet the standards of the Utah State Office of Education (USOE).

Fidelity: A teacher demonstrates that instructional programs, strategies, and materials are implemented with intensity and accuracy, and consistently delivered as they have been designed and validated, as directed in teacher’s guides available from publishers.

Functional Behavioral Assessment (FUBA):A systematic process of identifying problem behaviors and the events that (a) reliably predict occurrence and nonoccurrence of those behaviors, and (b) maintain the behaviors across time.

IDEA: The Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act 2004. IDEA governs the provision of special education.  This Act strengthens academic expectations and accountability for the nation’s 5.8 million children with disabilities and bridges the gap that has too often existed between what children with disabilities learn and what is required in regular curriculum. 

Instructional intervention:
Explicit and systematic instruction delivered by highly skilled teachers tailored to meet the identified needs of students who are struggling.

Intense intervention: Explicit and systematic instruction delivered by highly skilled teacher specialists. This instruction is targeted and tailored to meet the needs of struggling readers in small groups or one on one, with increased opportunities for practice and teacher feedback.

Literacy coach: A coach who provides ongoing, consistent support for classroom implementation and the instructional components of literacy. A literacy coach supports teachers in their daily work to instruct all readers, but particularly struggling readers.

Modifications (assessments): Changes in the test or assessment conditions that fundamentally alter the test score interpretation and comparability. Providing a student with a modification during a state accountability assessment constitutes a test irregularity because it invalidates the student’s test score.
Multisensory: Simultaneously engaging the visual, auditory, and kinesthetic modalities.

Reading Specialist:Reading specialists provide expert classroom instruction and assessment particularly for struggling students. They may also provide literacy leadership within the school in addressing the needs of all readers.

Scaffolding: Support given to assist students in learning a skill through explicit instruction, modeling, questioning, feedback, etc., to ensure student performance. Scaffolding should gradually be withdrawn as students become more independent of teacher support.

Scientifically based: Based on empirical research that applies rigorous, systematic, and objective procedures to obtain Reading Research (SBRR) valid knowledge.      This research:

­  Employs systematic, empirical methods that draw on observation or experiment.

Has been accepted by a peer-reviewed journal or approved by a panel of independent experts through a comparably rigorous, objective and scientific review.

­  Involves rigorous data analyses that are adequate to test the stated hypotheses and justify the general conclusions drawn.

­  Relies on measurements or observational methods that provide valid data across evaluators and observers and across multiple measurements and observations.

­  Can be generalized.

Section 504: A student may be eligible for accommodations under Section 504 if the student has a mental or physical impairment that substantially limits one or more of the student’s major life activities that affect education. The Utah Parent Center’s website includes information and training video’s on Section 504 and can be found using the following links.

Section 504 Information:
Training Videos:

Skill: Something a student knows how to do expertly and automatically.

Special education: Specially designed instruction, at no cost to the parents, to meet the unique needs of a student with a disability, including instruction conducted in the classroom, in the home, in hospitals and institutions, and in other settings; and instruction in physical education. The term includes speech-language pathology services and may include other related services, travel training, and applied technology education, if they meet the definition of special education.

Strategy:The conscious use of a specific method.

Supplemental intervention: An addition to Tier 1 classroom instruction targeted to meet specific needs of students in one or more of the five critical elements of reading instruction.

Supplemental materials: Materials that are aligned with and support the core instructional program.

Systematic instruction: A carefully planned sequence for targeted instruction.

Team members (IEP): At least one regular educator of the student, special education teacher, LEA representative, special education student when appropriate, and person to interpret data, as well as others as needed.

Targeted: Focused instruction on an identified skill.

Tutoring: Additional practice for struggling students provided by trained individuals. Tutoring does not serve as an intervention. USOE-published tutoring programs include:

  •   STAR tutoring program
  •   Cross-age tutoring program
  •   Parent STAR tutoring program
  •   STAR advanced tutoring program


Utah Core Curriculum: The curriculum adopted by the Utah Board of Education that is required for all students.