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New BTU Contract includes wins for Inclusion Done Right!
The newly ratified 2021-2024 Contract will honor a commitment to overhauling special education to meet student needs, including school-based inclusion teams with educator voice, targeted reductions in overall class sizes based on equity and hiring more educators dependent on the need of student IEPs and English Learner needs. See p. 7-18 of the BTU/BPS agreement for details.
Boston Teachers Union Vision for Inclusion
BTU members fought alongside our BPS community to win a new contract that creates inclusion planning teams at every school. Each school will create a staffing and funding plan for teaching and learning so all students, including those with disabilities and multilingual learners, get what they need to thrive. Through the inclusion planning team, educators, families, students, and community have a seat at the table as we continue our fight for Inclusion Done Right!
School Based Inclusion Planning Team Guidance
The recently ratified 2021-2024 BPS-BTU Contract establishes a historic shared vision for and commitment to reforming special education and ensuring district-wide inclusive practices in Boston Public Schools. A critical piece of this vision is each school’s Inclusion Planning Team. The guidelines below provide information about forming the team and engaging in the work.
Inclusion Implementation FAQ's
- Which schools should start an inclusion planning team and when?
K-6 and K-8 schools in Cohort 1 and all high schools need to form an inclusion planning team as soon as possible.Eventually, all schools will need an inclusion planning team and should determine when it most makes sense to commence the planning process.
- Any school beginning a planning process that is not in Cohort 1 or a High School should notify the BTU and the BPS Office of Inclusion.
- What if we are already an “inclusion school?” Do we still need a planning team?
- Yes. You may already have a team, which can continue as long as it meets the guidelines in this document, or a new team can be established. However, by agreement, your model should remain the same until the planning team considers models as part of a planning process, and the school approves and begins a new model.
- Do in-district charter schools or schools with other forms of autonomy need to form Inclusion Planning Teams?
- Yes. All schools must be inclusive and use the inclusion planning team process.
- Once we have an inclusion planning team, what does that mean for our timeline in implementing inclusion in our school?
- The collaborative work of Transforming Boston Public Schools into an inclusive district and all schools into inclusive schools will take years. Each school will move at its own pace, but the need for change is urgent and necessary. Planning is already underway for changes to systemic elements such as school funding and budgeting, student assignment, coding special education students, and writing IEPs to meet the needs of each individual student, and more. This means that all schools must begin to prepare for these transitions.
- The specific timeline of the move to inclusion will be different for each school. The purpose of the planning team is to set, plan for, and enact a vision for inclusion. While some schools may need to make small changes, others will need deeper change that will require more learning and planning. As a result, what you learn from the planning process will be a major factor in determining what the timeline will be for any changes in your school.
There are a range of resources available to support your school team.
- Boston Public Schools Office of Inclusion
- Ethan D'ablemont Burnes, Assistant Superintendent of Inclusive Education: email@example.com
- Julia Bott, Executive Director of Inclusive Education:: firstname.lastname@example.org
- BTU Field Reps and Organizers
- Lea Serena email@example.com
- Caren Carew firstname.lastname@example.org
- Colleen Hart email@example.com
- Katina McClain firstname.lastname@example.org
- Erica Kouka email@example.com
- BPS/BTU Inclusive Practices Liaison
- TBD. For now, contact Paul Tritter firstname.lastname@example.org
- Boston Public Schools Office of Inclusion
- BTU Spring 2020 Report - Inclusion and Racial Equity in the Boston Public Schools
- The BTU's vision for Inclusion Done Right: