high schools and Parish schools across the United States of America
are responding to the call to welcome persons with disabilities in all
aspects of Church life. This growing trend is allowing more students
with developmental disabilities than ever before to enroll in Catholic
schools alongside their siblings and peers.
Catholic High Schools in our region and across the
nation are successfully incorporating students with disabilities into
their schools, including those schools that strive to maintain a rigorous
college prep curriculum. Furthermore, welcoming students with disabilities
into the school is leading to impressive benefits, not only for those
persons with disabilities, but for the faculty, staff, and other students
who befriend and support them.
A number of years ago, programs for students with
learning disabilities were created in area Catholic high schools. The
schools acknowledged that there was a need to serve these students and,
thanks to the hard work of administrators and parents, several programs
now exist to serve students with learning disabilities. Those Catholic
schools responded to the call then and CCSE, Inc. urges you to respond
to the call now, by opening your doors to a small group of students
with disabilities. The teachings of our faith challenge us to continuously
strive for progress in the lives of all the faithful. CCSE, Inc. invites
you to join them on this path towards providing hope, possibility and
- Students with disabilities can attend
school with their siblings and peers.
Students with disabilities will thrive in an environment
that welcomes them and celebrates their spirit and gifts. They will
benefit spiritually, academically and socially from being with age
appropriate peers in a nurturing, close knit community.
- Teaches ALL children important lessons
about life, and about parenting.
Studies have consistently shown that a person’s ability
to parent a child with special needs is directly influenced by prior
experiences with people with special needs. Therefore, children who
have positive interactions with peers who have special needs will
be better prepared to parent their own children one day. They will
also be better prepared to handle the demands placed on caregivers
who provide daily assistance to a disabled spouse or elderly relative.
- Academic benefits for all students.
- The special education teacher may consult with the regular education
teacher to better serve students who may be struggling in school.
- Research indicates that typically developing students derive
academic benefits from their involvement and relationships with
students with disabilities. The presence of students with disabilities
in the general education classroom provides a catalyst for learning
opportunities and experiences that might not otherwise be part of
- Positive group dynamics.
Including students with disabilities creates a more diverse group
and exposes all students to a wider variety of personalities, interests
and abilities. This in turn tends to promote a more open, accepting
social environment. One of the benefits of this experience can be
a decrease in teasing and bullying among the entire student body.
- Increased interest in pursing careers
serving persons with disabilities.
Students’ experiences with peers with disabilities will foster
greater interest in pursuing studies and careers in special education
and other disabilities-related professions.
- Your school as a Witness.
In opening your doors to students with disabilities you will serve
as a leader and teacher of the principles of social justice to your
students, your community and all the faithful. Your example will lead
to contemplation and further action by other schools.
Apply for a Grant
If your Catholic school is located in Washington, D.C. or Maryland and
is considering expanding or creating a program to enroll two or more
students with developmental/intellectual disabilities
who would benefit academically and spiritually from qualified special
education instruction CCSE invites you to submit a proposal. Funds from
CCSE can be applied to hiring special education staff and to purchasing
materials necessary to provide appropriate accommodations and adaptations
to the curriculum.
›› Read our letter to schools announcing the opening of this year’s grant process.
CCSE will also consider unique requests not otherwise
anticipated but which meet CCSE objectives. Please submit a Letter of
Intent/Inquiry (for preferred format, see the Washington
Grantmakers Common Grant Letter of Intent). Upon receipt of your
Letter of Intent/Inquiry CCSE will send you a complete Request for Funding
Application (RFA). Should you have any questions whatsoever about this
process, please do not hesitate to contact us. CCSE wishes to support
as many schools as possible. There is no deadline.
CCSE does not provide long term continuing program
support and requests for renewed support are considered on the basis
of reports received, site visits and CCSE priorities. A negative response
does not reflect upon the merits of a proposal or the quality of an
organization, but results from the fact that the number of proposals
received far exceeds CCSE's resources, or because a given project does
not fall within CCSE piority areas of involvement.
Apply for Technical Assistance
Below please find an application to participate in our TA outreach.
CCSE will fund a limited number of technical assistance seed visits
in Washington, D.C. and Maryland with the objective of promoting and
facilitating the implementation of special education instruction.
Preference will be given to schools that already have a special educator
on staff, that are considering expanding or creating new special education
services or that have or will enroll two or more students with developmental/intellectual
disabilities who would benefit academically and spiritually from qualified
instruction in a Catholic school setting. CCSE will also consider unique
requests not otherwise anticipated but which meet CCSE objectives. There
is no deadline.
Technical Assistance may consist of:
- Raising disability awareness among administrators,
department chairs, faculty, members of the board of trustees, parents,
student council and student body through specifically targeted programs
to include renowned speakers and other special guests from the special
education and Catholic community. Educating the entire community is
essential to removing barriers created by fears, biases and myths.
This will ensure that everyone understands the importance of welcoming
students with disabilities and is a key factor in the success of programs
serving students with special needs.
- Support in establishing a peer mentoring program
and social skills group for students with special needs
- Guidance in establishing and designing a new program
specifically tailored to the students’ needs and designing a
- Guidance in creating policies on grading, behavior
standards, granting a diploma or Certificate of Completion. The Options
Program at Paul VI High School in Fairfax, VA. could serve as a model
and public school policies and practices could also serve as guidelines
- Guidance in hiring special education professionals
- Defining the Admissions process, reviewing IEP’s
and educational reports as well as tracking students progress and
identifying potential needs
- Assistance in implementing appropriate modifications
- In-Service training and site visits to other Catholic
schools and non-public schools serving students with disabilities
- Developing co-teaching and collaborative teaching
- Assistance throughout the year to address specific
challenges or concerns as they may arise, as needed
For more information please contact:
(301) 933-8844 or firstname.lastname@example.org
3750 University Blvd. W. Suite 203
Kensington, MD 20895