Part I: Contextual Factors

Children whose behavior diverges from society’s standards for ordinary behavior for certain ages and stages of growth are known as having disabilities. Behavioral anticipations vary from setting to setting; for example, screaming on the football field is tolerable, but yelling when the teacher is explaining the lesson to the class is not. Different cultures have diverse principles of behavior, further obscuring the question of what constitutes a behavioral problem. People also have their individual views and standards for what is acceptable and what is not. Some behavioral problems are openly articulated; others are inwardly engaged and not very obvious. Because of these factors, the terms behavioral disorders and emotional disturbance have become almost interchangeable (Smith, 2001).

While nearly all children at times show behaviors that are hostile, with­drawn, or otherwise inappropriate, the IDEA definition of serious emotional disturbance (SED) focuses on behaviors that persist over time, are intense, and impair a child’s ability to function in society. The behaviors must not be caused by temporary stressful situations or other factors such as depression over the death of a grandparent or anger over the parents’ impending divorce. In order for a child to be considered seriously emotionally disturbed, he or she must exhibit one or more of certain characteristics over a long period and to a marked degree, that adversely affects a child’s educational performance. These are; incapacity to learn that cannot be explicated by rational, sensory, or health reasons; Inability to uphold agreeable interpersonal interactions; unsuitable types of behaviors; the overall prevalent mood of unhappiness or despair; Physical symptoms or fears linked with personal or school problems (Brown, 2000).

Type of information needed Include a rational for the selection of the assessments along with citations requiring particular assessments for specific exceptionalities. What assessments will you plan to use to gather information about the areas of concern? If modifications of assessments are necessary, provide a rationale.

What modifications are necessary while gathering information?

Source of new information needed
Pre-Academic/Academic Achievement Stanford-Binet: The test will evaluate the students’ skills, vocabulary, and comprehension. The test scores will determine the age a student will answer specific questions No modifications needed. The parents.
Social Competence/Emotional Behavior Weschler Intelligence Scale for Children: No modifications Parents, sibling and teachers.
Self Help/Adaptive Skills WAIS-III


No modifications Parents and teachers.
Psycho-Motor/Physical Development Bender Gestalt Test of Visual Motor Integration: The test provides information that will support the results from WAIS- III No modifications Parents and medical doctor.
Language/Speech/Communication California Verbal Learning Test-Children’s Version: assesses the strategies and processes  used in learning and recalling verbal material No modifications Teachers.
Cognitive/Intellectual Development Woodcock-Johnson III No modifications  
Health Assessment Clinical Interview: I will elicit information about the understanding of the problematic behavior. The interviews will be designed to suit each participant. All participants.
Vocational/Prevocational Prevocational Assessment Screen: assessment of aptitudes and abilities relating to skills


No modifications None.


Contextual Analysis

The Community

The family lives in a relatively small town, Whitfield County, Georgia, with a population near 20,000. Of these occupants, nearly 4% are Asian, 30% are African-American; 65% are Caucasian, and 1% are Native American and Hispanic. 20% of the individuals living in this region, as per the U.S. Census Bureau, live below the poverty level. The town is considered a low socioeconomic region.

The Classroom

The K-12 school, Southeast Whitfield High School in Whitfield County Georgia, which the child is enrolled serves 880 students with an average class size of 25 on a single campus. The school has a relatively small number of staff, which includes special services teachers, as well as extracurricular activity teachers. The school has a standing for solid discipline and high levels of parental participation. The child is in the 9th grade, which has 23 students. Two teachers are responsible for the class, and these are the adult persons that will be contacted during the case study and they are Mrs. Howell, the general education teacher, and Mr. Thompson, the inclusion teacher

The Student

The student emanates from a family of four, a sister, and two parents. The student is 15 years old and as previously stated attends Southeast Whitfield High School. The student has a below average intelligence with moderate to severe emotional behavior disorder affinities with no other health complications. She struggles both educationally and socially. She needs a substantial level of backing to prosper in school, and even with these backings, remains below grade level.

However, he has basic self-care skills (eating, dressing, hygiene) and relatively good skills in reading recognition and math computation. This student has much more difficulty in reading comprehension, math reasoning, and both the social and functional use of language. While she will respond to the social overtures of others, she does not initiate any social interaction. Unlike her sibling and classmates, she has few friends and spends a noteworthy amount of time in antisocial activities.

The youngest in the family is an 8-year-old girl attending the 4th grade with well above average intelligence and with no other health problems. This young girl is quite proficient academically. She has competed multiply in the National Spelling Bee held in Washington, DC annually. She is a “straight A” student with exceptional mathematical abilities, and especially interpersonal relationships. She has few friends and expends a significant amount of time on isolated activities. His parents have urged him to take part in sports and community groups, but efforts in this area have proven ineffective.

The father is a 48-year-old engineer. He is a long-term employee at a local federal manufacturing plant. The father has few friends and opts to while his free time at home. His personality is introverted, and his participation in community organization is marginal or non-existent. The father has never sought out information on ADHD because he prefers his wife to take up that role.

The mother is a 47-year-old homemaker who is extensively involved in the lives of her two children. After the realization that one of her children had ADHD tendencies, the mother decided to have no more children. She sees her full-time role as advocating her own children and online consultation with other parents who have children with ADHD. The mother stays abreast of developments in the field of ADHD, continually reading books on the subject and occasionally traveling to attend workshops. Because the family lives in a relatively small community, there is no particular support group or doctor with ADHD specialty. Therefore, the mother has taken part in related support groups, such as ARC. As an advocate, she spends significant time in the local school, enabling the insertion of her child. The mother devotes an hour at the school each day educating her son during study hall. Prior to the commencing of each school year, she dedicates a momentous amount of time to spotting several classrooms to identify the most suitable teacher and classroom climate for her child.