It is important that schools be well prepared for a student’s return to class following a traumatic brain injury. There are crucial considerations to explore in the areas of information sharing, staff training and family support.
I. Information Sharing
- Establish a school team (school psychologist (LSSP)/educational diagnostician, special education teacher, general education teacher, school counselor, administrator, school nurse, occupational therapist, physical therapist, speech pathologist, or any other related service providers) for decision making. Include the student on the team whenever
- Secure parental permission to release confidential medical information to the team that would be helpful in supporting the student’s return to
- Request/review all reports/evaluations as they become available from the
- Review existing plan/schedule of current placement and information from the
- Translate medical and treatment information to school language, i.e., ensure that medical/treatment information is in language easily understood by school
- Share information with school staff as
- Obtain all facility records from hospital, cognitive rehabilitation, residential placement, and correctional or detention
- Determine need for additional services; be sure to invite facility representatives if not discussed prior to the student’s
II. Training Activities
- Train all school staff who have interactions with the student, include information about the unique characteristics of TBI and the types of strategies that are effective with students with
- Follow training with a facilitated discussion to identify the types of instruction and interventions that will be most successful for the individual
- Utilize the Education Service Center (ESC) as a resource for additional information and training: Education Service Center (ESC) Technical Assistance.
- Utilize the Office of Acquired Brain Injury: Office of Acquired Brain Injury as a resource for additional information.
- Support school staff by providing training time and resources necessary to differentiate instruction and develop
- Inform and support peers insofar as is allowable under Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).
III. Family Support
- Help family members understand educational language and
- Ensure parent has an understanding of the special education referral process: Parental Request for Evaluation Flowchart.
- Support family members through the grieving
- Assist in the identification of community resources and support groups and share information with the
REMEMBER: The keys to successful transitions for students with TBI are the support, understanding, and acceptance by the student’s family, school, and other significant parties.