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Nebraska SPDG (State Personnel Development Grant)
Principal Investigator: Amanda Witte
Co-Principal Investigators: Susan Sheridan
Funding Agency: Nebraska Department of Education (NDE)
Award Date: Jan 1, 2023
End Date: Dec 31, 2023
Nebraska students and educators benefit from the opportunities and resources provided by the State Personnel Development Grant. For more than a decade, this funding has been used to improve student outcomes by offering professional development and coaching support through Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS) to Nebraska schools.
Because challenges to school systems include educators moving on to other locations and significant social-emotional needs of youth, this project is designed to adapt current professional learning and educator development strategies into a comprehensive five-year plan to improve the social, emotional and behavioral outcomes of students with disabilities.
Researchers will promote the implementation of developmentally appropriate, evidence-based behavioral interventions and support the long-term sustainability of these practices within an integrated Multitiered System of Support (MTSS) framework.
This project aims to increase professional development opportunities for Nebraska schools; provide tailored implementation and coaching support to districts to build leadership team capacity and increase sustainability of research-based practices; increase capacity of state and district personnel to train and implement PBIS research-based practices to educators; and increase educator awareness of inclusive practices and reduce the use of exclusionary practices for students with disabilities.
Researchers will provide high-quality professional development using multiple modes of learning for educators, such as onsite professional development and virtual learning modules, and will provide consultation and coaching support. They will partner with other state initiatives, such as the Nebraska Multi-tier System of Support project, and provide a cohesive support system designed to support the needs of districts and schools.
At the end of this five-year initiative, researchers envision dozens of Nebraska school districts improving educational outcomes for their students with disabilities, with data reflecting a learning culture that facilitates inclusive learning opportunities for all learners.