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Initial Specialty Set: Deafblindness

Standard 1: Engaging in Professional Learning and Practice within Ethical Guidelines

Knowledge
DB.1.K1 Historical, legal, political, and sociocultural forces unique to the education of students who are deafblind and their relevance to current educational practices.
DB.1.K2 The central role of family in the lives of individuals with deafblindness and as active core members of the team.
DB.1.K3 Key qualities of programs serving individuals with deafblindness across the lifespan, and the critical roles of team members.
DB.1.K4 Multiple appropriate assessments according to age and individual characteristics with the learner’s team.
DB.1.K5 Specialized roles of educators of learners who are deafblind, including teacher of deafblind (TDB), in their various capacities (e.g. itinerant teacher, classroom teacher, and consultant) and as supervisors of interveners and other support staff.
DB.1.K6 Resources that provide specialized technical assistance, services, equipment, technology and adaptive materials at the local, state, and national levels related to the field of deafblindness, and how to access them.
DB.1.K7 Communication rights for individuals with deafblindness.
DB.1.K8 Principles of respectful interactions that promote access, meaningful participation, and skill development
Skills
DB.1.S1 Foster self-determination and advocacy in individuals with deafblindness and their families.
DB.1.S2 Support, train, communicate, and when appropriate, supervise interveners and other direct support staff.
DB.1.S3 Foster expressive and receptive communication development and interactions.
DB.1.S4 Determine, recommend, and support appropriate services and providers, including, when appropriate, the services of an intervener, based on evaluation.
DB.1.S5 Practice self-care to ensure well-being by accessing mentors and other sources of support, and engaging in other healthy living practices.
DB.1.S6 Engage in self-reflection, professional development, and participate in professional organizations to maintain professional learning and practice.
DB.1.S7 Advocate for learners who are deafblind and their families to obtain quality services and programming including access to common core curriculum, expanded core curriculum, the arts, physical education, extra-curricular, and vocational activities, ranging from early intervention to transition to adult services.

Standard 2: Understanding and Addressing Each Individual’s Developmental and Learning Needs

Knowledge
DB.2.K1 Effects of deafblindness on receptive and expressive communication and language development
DB.2.K2 Effects of deafblindness on an individual's relationship to self, including self-awareness, self-regulation, self-monitoring, and self-determination.
DB.2.K3 Effects of deafblindness on social and emotional development including relationships with others, attachment, trust, safety, empathy, friendships and autonomy
DB.2.K4 Effects of deafblindness on motor development, body concepts, engagement with physical activities, learning, play, and orientation and mobility
DB.2.K5 Impact of deafblindness on incidental learning.
DB.2.K6 Implications of combined hearing and vision loss on accessing, processing, and integrating information from the environment.
DB.2.K7 Roles of vision, hearing, touch, taste, smell, and movement (kinesthesia) in learning
DB.2.K8 Effects of deafblindness on cognitive development, including the development of concepts.
DB.2.K9 Impact of etiologies associated with deafblindness, medical conditions, and additional impairments on the individual with deafblindness
DB.2.K10 Brain development and neurological implications of deafblindness on learning.
DB.2.K11 Differences and implications of congenital and acquired deafblindness
DB.2.K12 Lived experiences and perspectives of the learner who is deafblind
Skills
DB.2.S1 Foster the efficient use of vision, hearing, touch, taste, smell and movement.

Standard 3: Demonstrating Subject Matter Content and Specialized Curricular Knowledge

Knowledge
DB.3.K1 Assistive technologies appropriate for students who are deafblind, including technologies that are available for students who are deaf, hard-of-hearing, blind and visually impaired.
DB.3.K2 Accommodations, modifications, and adaptations of materials, curriculum, and activities in the physical and virtual environment.
Skills
DB.3.S1 Integrate experiential learning and meaningful systematic instruction for the whole child, with state curriculum requirements, expanded core curriculum and sensory compensatory skills.
DB.3.S2 Collaboratively design and implement individually appropriate tactile instructional approaches to support literacy instruction including pre-braille and braille.
DB.3.S3 Collaboratively design and implement individually appropriate instruction to support communication, including symbolic and non-symbolic tactile communication.
DB.3.S4 Develop and deliver personalized lessons that incorporate the student's lived experiences.
DB.3.S5 Coach instructional personnel, teams, and families regarding specialized curricular knowledge and learning such as communication, literacy, and mobility.
DB.3.S6 Design and implement instruction that recognizes and expands the variety of communication modes used by students to facilitate learning and communication development.
DB.3.S7 Utilize the student’s primary communication mode(s) for assessment and instruction.
DB.3.S8 Provide meaningful evidence-based instruction specific to deafblindness to support mastery of content knowledge
DB.3.S9 Select and adapt assistive technologies appropriate for students who are deafblind.

Standard 4: Using Assessment to Understand the Learner and the Learning Environment for Data-Based Decision Making

Knowledge
DB.4.K1 Assessment approaches and accommodations for individuals with deafblindness
Skills
DB.4.S1 Collect data and monitor and report progress.
DB.4.S2 Conduct and collaborate on functional vision and hearing assessments of individuals with deafblindness
DB.4.S3 Assess expressive and receptive communication along a continuum from pre-intentional and pre-symbolic to full communicative proficiency.
DB.4.S4 Apply person-centered assessment and planning processes to determine instruction and program planning.
DB.4.S5 Observe behaviors to determine communicative intent in order to plan interventions.
DB.4.S6 Conduct assessments in order to evaluate and improve the learning environment and educational programs
DB.4.S7 In conjunction with the results of environmental assessments, conduct routine-based assessments to identify the individual’s knowledge and skills that support access and engagement
DB.4.S8 Conduct assessment of skills and environments relevant to individuals with deafblindness to engage in social activities
DB.4.S9 Conduct preference assessments of individuals with deafblindness across classes of various sensory stimuli
DB.4.S10 Conduct ecological assessments comprised of ecological inventories, task analyses, and discrepancy analyses as a component of program planning for individuals with deafblindness.
DB.4.S11 Conduct functional behavior assessment of problem behaviors displayed by individuals with deafblindness in order to develop positive behavior support plans that include an emphasis on communication.

Standard 5: Supporting Learning Using Effective Instruction

Knowledge
DB.5.K1 Understand the importance of being highly responsive to all forms of communication, including behavior.
DB.5.K2 Understand the importance of applying the principles of systematic instruction.
DB.5.K3 Understand the purpose and benefit of small group instruction to meet the learning needs of each student who is deafblind.
Skills
DB.5.S1 Directly teach concepts that are typically learned incidentally.
DB.5.S2 Provide consistent within and between activity routines to support students to anticipate, communicate, and feel secure.
DB.5.S3 Utilize positioning, environmental modifications, and assistive technologies to increase active student engagement, and opportunities to respond.
DB.5.S4 Teach students individually appropriate self-regulation techniques and skills.
DB.5.S5 Integrate communication in all contexts and activities to support active student engagement.
DB.5.S6 Make the purpose of the lesson clear to the learner.
DB.5.S7 Apply appropriate prompting systems, reinforcement, and other behavioral principles suitable to each individual and each lesson.
DB.5.S8 Use scaffolds, modeling, guided practice, and feedback to guide the learner to support mastery of specific learning outcomes.
DB.5.S9 Provide order and organization to learning environments to maximize participation and communication.
DB.5.S10 Adjust instruction based on learner’s response.
DB.5.S11 Teach for generalization across materials, people, and environments.
DB.5.S12 Configure homogeneous and heterogeneous groups that provide appropriate learning opportunities for learners who are deafblind.
DB.5.S13 Differentiate instruction to meet the access and learning needs of each student in the group.
DB.5.S14 Determine group sizes and composition that allow each student ample opportunities to respond and for the instructor to provide feedback.
DB.5.S15 Provide or support 1:1 instruction to introduce a new concept or provide additional practice, further clarification, or a more enriching learning opportunity.

Standard 6: Supporting Social, Emotional, and Behavioral Growth

Knowledge
DB.6.K1 Impact of deafblindness on interaction, motivation, and engagement with the physical, learning, play, and social environment at home and school.
DB.6.K2 Understanding that people learn social and behavioral skills incidentally through auditory or visual feedback
DB.6.K3 How families are impacted by supporting a child with deafblindness.
DB.6.K4 Understand the student’s family cultural/ethnic background from an asset and strengths based perspective
DB.6.K5 Impact of deafblindness on sensory integration, communication, emotional regulation, arousal states, and attachment may manifest in challenging behavior.
DB.6.K6 Tendency of learners with deafblindness toward withdrawal, anxiety, and engagement in restricted or repetitive behaviors, and/or behaviors that indicate dysregulation.
Skills
DB.6.S1 Arrange the physical environment, activities, and routines to support student anticipation and understanding.
DB.6.S2 Utilize skillful touch, movement, and following the child’s lead to promote trust and security in relationships.
DB.6.S3 Recognize, interpret, and be responsive to a child’s behaviors indicating emotional state and/or bids for communication to promote sustained, reciprocal, and harmonious interactions.
DB.6.S4 Utilize strategies to promote motivation, engagement, and social interaction within inclusive settings.
DB.6.S5 Utilize strategies to support access to and inclusion in the social environment including use of personal identifiers, and accessible individualized communication systems.
DB.6.S6 Demonstrate strategies to support families and other team members to understand and develop students' social, emotional, and behavioral needs.
DB.6.S7 Provide explicit instruction to learners with deafblindness related to social norms and how their behavior is perceived by others
DB.6.S8 Provide explicit instruction to teach play skills and cooperative interactions with peers.
DB.6.S9 Use positive behavior supports that include functional communication training, increasing access to the environment including communication partners, functional skill development, and emotional regulation to mitigate the impact of deafblindness on challenging behavior.

Standard 7: Collaborating with Team Members

Knowledge
DB.7.K1 Role of the intervener to ensure optimal access to age and developmentally appropriate communicative interactions that establish shared meanings.
DB.7.K2 Effective use of instructional coaching strategies to support the educational team for students who are deafblind.
DB.7.K3 Appropriate resources that provide technical assistance at the local, state, and national levels related to the field of teaching students who are deafblind.
DB.7.K4 Needs of families of children who are deafblind for family-centered and child-centered practices that build trust and opportunities for meaningful advocacy.
Skills
DB.7.S1 Support the student’s instructional team in understanding and respecting the student’s and family’s self-identified deafblind sensory culture and communication style.
DB.7.S2 Facilitate collaboration between the student’s instructional team to identify appropriate home and community resources to create a transition plan that includes opportunities for successful post-school outcomes.
DB.7.S3 Promote family engagement opportunities to connect families with educational, social, and peer support within school and community settings.
DB.7.S4 Connect families to community partners and family organizations to ensure they have access to unique supports outside the school system for individuals who are deafblind.
DB.7.S5 Support the development of self-determination skills through collaboration on the unique access, resource needs, and culture of students who are deafblind.
DB.7.S6 Coach the instructional team regarding best practice in all types of transitions that include the spectrum from day-to-day to life outcomes.
DB.7.S7 Participate and collaborate with the team throughout the evaluation process to assure the student's unique strengths and needs as an individual who is deafblind are being addressed to create cohesive and comprehensive evaluation reports.
DB.7.S8 Facilitate transdisciplinary collaboration between staff and service providers in evaluating the student’s access to sensory, communicative and environmental information and implementation of deafblind specific support strategies across educational settings.
DB.7.S9 Provide leadership to the team in defining the roles of interveners, interpreters and other specialized assistants across multiple environments according to the needs of the learner.
DB.7.S10 Model interpersonal and teaming skills including working with team members in their most effective learning style.
DB.7.S11 Collaborate with others on environmental assessments, adaptations, and designs to include the student who is deafblind as a full participant maximizing access to visual, acoustic, tactual and other sensory information for communication, mobility, and engagement.
DB.7.S12 Collaboratively determine when it is appropriate to engage in role release as professionals, and when appropriate, teach other team members the skills needed to address the unique communication and mobility needs of the student who is deafblind.
Last Updated:  27 September, 2022

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