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Kennedy Krieger High School
Kennedy Krieger High School: Greenspring Campus • 3825 Greenspring Ave. • Baltimore, MD 21211
We’re ahead of the curve!!
In late July, the Maryland State Board of Education added a recommendation (COMAR 13A.03.06.01) that all schools use Universal Design for Learning (UDL) in designing instruction for their programming. We have been using UDL and have had a committee working on the incorporation of UDL in our program for several years. This is another example of Kennedy Krieger Schools being on the cutting edge of best practice.
School Programs in the News:
- ABC2 NEWS:
- MARYLAND LEARNING LINKS:
Kennedy Krieger High School is a non-public special education day program approved by the Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE). The school serves students aged 14 to 21 who have been referred by their local school system. Students may work toward earning a Maryland high school diploma from their local school district, or a Maryland State Certificate of Completion. They can also earn one or more industry-based certificates. All placements are made after an interview and a thorough review of student records and needs.
Students at Kennedy Krieger High School thrive in our intimate environment. We maintain a low student-teacher ratio, which allows our team to implement Individualized Education Programs (IEPs) that meet the diverse needs of our students, while offering the highest quality education. Our parents and families play primary roles in the team approach, which is a key component of all Kennedy Krieger School Programs and our students’ success.
Instruction is provided in accordance with Maryland’s Common Core State Curriculum, which may be modified to accommodate the needs of each student. Assistive technologies are used when needed. The curriculum may also be supplemented with community-based instruction, which builds functional daily living skills.
Classrooms are well-equipped with interactive technologies that support instruction. Additionally, students have access to the France-Merrick Media Center, staffed by a certified media specialist.
All students participate in industry training within specially designed industry classrooms and student-run businesses, as well as work-based learning within the school and with business partners in the community. Instruction through industry training and work-based learning enables students to learn about their career interests in authentic settings. The coupling of an individualized classroom and a spectrum of workplace experiences provides students with opportunities to experience and attain the skills necessary to be successful in a range of work settings.
At Kennedy Krieger High School, instruction is based on a school-to-work model that prepares students with disabilities to meet the workplace challenges of the 21st century. The goal of our program is to provide a dynamic high school experience that enables a complete and seamless transition from school to the next step in life, whether that’s training, employment or supported employment, higher education, or another alternative. Kennedy Krieger High School offers a unique combination of instruction and workplace experiences in an environment that promotes industry competence and sound academics.
Our team includes highly trained educators, related service providers, and paraprofessional staff who receive ongoing training in evidence-based methods, including instruction in current technology and its use in the learning environment. Full-time related service providers are onsite daily to ensure comprehensive programming and collaboration with each student’s educational team. During the IEP process, the IEP team evaluates students to determine their eligibility for special services. Recommendations for services are student-specific and IEP-driven, and may include the following:
- Special education
- Behavioral support services
- Counseling and mental health services
- Expressive therapy, such as art and music therapy
- Speech-language pathology
- Occupational therapy
- School health services
- Assistive technology
Kennedy Krieger High School operates two "schools within a school," known as academies. These academies are designed to allow students to achieve their academic goals in the least restrictive setting possible. Our academy design incorporates specialized delivery of instruction, classroom structure, and behavioral interventions. Students may transition between academies as their developmental needs change. Academy assignments are based on a team review of the academic, social, and behavioral needs of each student.
Academy I students are enrolled in courses within the general curriculum, leading to a Maryland high school diploma. These curricula are designed by the local school system and aligned with Maryland’s Common Core State Curriculum. Our students receive academic support, including IEP-driven accommodations and modifications within the curriculum. Each student must also meet all academic requirements of their home school district in order to receive a diploma upon graduation. Students in this program will participate in the Maryland High School Assessments (HSA) schedule, and are required to pass these assessments or receive a state-mandated combined score through other testing or additional interventions in order to earn a diploma. Additionally, IEPs are reviewed for quarterly assessment of progress and included in the report card shared with families.
Academy IA is the least restrictive academy and requires the most independence in social and behavioral areas. Students are placed in Academy IA based on a team decision after considering the level of social and behavioral support each student requires.
Academy 1B serves students with greater need for social or behavioral support. These students may be diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders (ASD), anxiety disorders, or communication disorders that require increased social and interpersonal support from educators and mental health clinicians.
Academy II students have disorders or disabilities that significantly impact academic or cognitive function, and require a high level of special education or related support services in the classroom setting. Instructional experience is also supplemented through the use of functional or skill-building curricula. Students enrolled in this curriculum participate in community-based instruction, cooking classes, and other functional offerings. Academy II concentrates on global, daily support for all aspects of academic, social, and communication needs.
The Academy II program offers a continuum of services and supports. Class assignments are made after considering students' academic, social, and emotional needs, resulting in "specialty classrooms" that serve students with similar social and academic needs. These students may work primarily in a single classroom or travel between two classrooms in a dyad model to receive exposure to general curriculum content.
Students enrolled in the functional or life skills curriculum will participate in the Maryland Alternative Assessment (Alt-MSA) and will graduate with a certificate of completion.
Additionally, IEPs are reviewed for quarterly assessment of progress and are included in the report card shared with families.
Preparation for Employment:
Our school offers students a chance to prepare for entry-level jobs in one of five career clusters:
- Information Technology
- Hospitality and Tourism
- Manufacturing and Construction
- Retail and Consumer Services
In their first year, students complete an industry survey course exploring aspects of each industry in the program. Students learn what types of jobs are available and what skills are needed to pursue those opportunities in these fields. During the survey course, each student's abilities and interests are assessed by the educational team through observation, as well as formal and informal assessment.
After completion of the survey course, the educational team, parents, and students follow guidelines to select an industry "major," which will guide each student’s career education at Kennedy Krieger High School. These majors may change during a student's high school career depending on student interest, parental input, and school team decision. Each cluster involves a student-run business that provides experience for students in all aspects of work in their cluster major. These majors include:
Information Technology (IT): Students in IT usually concentrate on one of two areas: the troubleshooting and maintenance of computer hardware or the use of office-based computer applications. They also focus on tasks related to the production and distribution of desktop publishing. The cluster operates two school-based businesses. Paper Trails offers graphic design services to Kennedy Krieger Institute departments and other organizations, and Bulldog Systems offers technical assistance to staff and students.
Horticulture: Students in Horticulture learn the skills and requirements of careers related to floriculture and landscaping. Students work in a classroom setting or in designated areas on-campus to support a greenhouse. Instruction includes safety, propagation of horticulture plants, and maintenance of seasonal crops.
Hospitality and Tourism: Students in this major prepare for jobs in the hospitality and food service industry. Students learn appropriate kitchen hygiene, and how to manage tasks such as inventories, dishwashing, and food preparation. Students in this cluster work in the school café--Café James--which serves light breakfast and lunch fare daily to Kennedy Krieger employees. Students operate restaurant equipment and work with customers, taking orders, preparing food, operating the cash register, and arranging deliveries.
Manufacturing and Construction: Students in this major learn a wide variety of tasks related to building and maintenance, preparing them for careers in building trades such as carpentry, painting, drywall hanging, roofing, and mechanics. Students may work in Bulldog Construction, a school-based business in which students complete furniture construction or repairs to order, and work on larger products such as gazebos and ticket booths.
Retail and Consumer Services: Students in Retail and Consumer Services prepare for careers in stores, malls, and supermarkets, as well as human services professions. Students are prepared for jobs in customer service, stock and inventory management, personnel management, data entry, marketing, and sales. Job skills needed for success in Retail and Consumer Services are wide-ranging. To meet those varied skills, the school has established three student-run retail and consumer businesses. At the credit union, students master data entry, accounts payable and receivable, and basic bookkeeping. Students working in the school store have the opportunity to choose products, maintain inventories, and work with vendors, in addition to handling customer requests and making sales. Working in the upscale M&M Boutique teaches students how to greet customers, help them find the items they want, make sales, and create displays.
Work Based Learning (WBL)
Kennedy Krieger High School offers an array of job experiences outside of the classroom. Partnering with over 40 regional businesses, the school provides students with opportunities to use and expand the knowledge and skills they have learned within their industry classrooms.
Through work-based learning, students are offered a number of task-analyzed and progressively independent work placements that give students authentic experience in a job directly related to their chosen industry or interest. These jobs can range from a short-term or introductory placement to a long-term, intensive work experience with formal training.
Before they begin their jobs, all students in the work-based learning program receive a formal orientation and a student work manual that outlines the rules and expectations of the program. Supervision is provided by school staff who work directly with students. The work-based learning staff member acts as a job coach, though students may eventually work with very limited support from school staff.
Students working toward a certificate of completion have the opportunity to participate in instruction in the community, which helps them practice their academic, social, and recreational skills in a natural environment. Classroom groups are escorted by academic staff members or related service members to predetermined locations in the community to work on skills learned in the classroom. CBI trips have included Target, grocery stores, and local restaurants. Community-based instruction with the support of special education staff is a critical component of our students' successful transition from high school.
Students at Kennedy Krieger High School may participate in activities common to most high schools--yearbook, school newspaper, weekly podcasts, varsity and intramural sports, dances, clubs, and Young Marines of Central Maryland.
School-Wide Positive Behavior Intervention:
Our school provides support to students to help them remain on task and productive in their classroom or workplace assignments, without disruption or distraction. We encourage students to maintain their focus on cooperation, completion of tasks, and appropriate social interactions by using a positive behavior management system. This system includes the use of a daily point sheet to monitor compliance with individual target behaviors, as well as universal expectations for cooperative and productive behavior. All school staff undergo extensive training in positive behavior management techniques to provide support for students who experience behavioral difficulties to help them regain control and return to instruction or work-based learning activities.
For additional information please contact Patrick Seay, Associate Director of Admissions, Compliance and Transition, at (443) 923-7800.