Special Education Team
Murkland Elementary School
Preschool - 4th grade
Special Education Team
Evaluation Team Chairperson (ET ) - Alexis Florence
Psychologist - Sheela Pyles
Special Education Social Worker - Laura Bateman
Speech Language Pathologist - (SLP) - Stephanie O’Neil-Ly
Occupational Therapist - (OT) - Kelly Finn
Physical Therapist - (PT) - Deborah Webster
Board Certified Behavioral Analyst - (BCBA) - Beth Nolan-Stack
Board Certified Behavioral Analyst - (BCBA)- Mikaela Keefe
Available Special Education Programs
Mission Statement: The mission of the Adjustment Program of Lowell Public Schools, in partnership with parents and the community, is to provide students with an array of supports that allow each individual to succeed within the school environment and generalize these skills across all settings, including their home and the community. The end goal is for students to reintegrate into the mainstream environment and become successful learners. The teacher/student relationship and the promotion of adult/student trust is a cornerstone of the program.
Through a rigorous and supportive educational program, we strive to motivate each student to develop socially, emotionally, intellectually, and physically. We recognize that students need to have their social and emotional needs met in order to be ready to learn. We use positive behavior support as a means to encourage mutual respect and a safe learning environment.
Program Description: The Adjustment Program provides students with a structured, safe, and consistent environment that incorporates a therapeutic approach. Each classroom is staffed with a highly qualified teacher, providing students with rigorous academic instruction. Classroom supports include a full-time paraprofessional, Special Education Social Worker, and a Behavior Specialist. The program is also supported by the building based Special Education Team, which includes a School Psychologist and Evaluation Team Chairperson. In addition to academic support, students receive direct and explicit social skills instruction by a social worker and consultation from the Behavior Specialist. A behavior modification system is utilized in the classroom.
The foundation of our adjustment program is centered and grounded on procedures based upon the principles of applied behavior analysis (ABA). Applied behavior analysis is the science of human behavior. ABA improves important behaviors. Important behaviors are behaviors that are of social significance, and that we target to change.
ABA utilizes different evidence based interventions (EBI). Evidence based interventions are treatments that have been proven effective through outcome evaluations. EBI are treatments that are likely to be effective in changing target behavior. There are many evidence-based interventions that staff utilize in our adjustment programs:
~ Positive reinforcement
~ Negative reinforcement
- Response Cost