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Psychological Profile

Problem Scenario

Possible Solution, Discussion Questions, and Bloom's Taxonomy

As a result of the STAT team meeting we were able to review Jozef Branovic’s file and discussed several options on how to assist this student both academically and behaviorally. It would seem that Jozef’s general frustrations is when he is unable to decode materials. He also has a visual processing problem where he is not able to read the material neither on the board nor in reading passages and be able to quickly and effectively process the information. He becomes frustrated and is presently unable to verbalizes his difficulties and so he shuts down. He is not getting all the assistance he needs from the general education, ESE, and ESOL teacher. The principal will accommodate the parents by discussing summer school options for Jozef so that he may be able to move on to the next grade level according to his progress. For the next year the following accommodations will be implemented for him.

Through one-on-one mentoring and tutoring from his general education, ESE, and ESOL teacher, Jozef will learn to read, decode, translate, discuss, write and apply new vocabulary from any reading passage on grade level.

• Using context clues, graphic organizers, picture dictionaries, cloze passages he will be able to read and comprehend any reading material and both verbalize and write a short summary to express comprehension at 70% accuracy over a nine week period.

• He will have 45 minutes a day with the ESOL teacher in a pull out session to work on language skills and basic reading drills.

• He will meet with the ESE teacher for 45 minutes a day for assistant with his visual processing and dyslexia where he will be taught coping strategies to help manage his disability. Also, he will receive social and interpersonal skills training to help manage his level of frustration.

• His general education teacher will give him extended time on all assignments in class and a two-day minimum time to complete any homework. She will also send home a weekly progress report on his academic and social skill improvements and/or difficulties. She will also grade his work on what he is able to accomplish presently and as he progresses he will be graded accordingly.

• Jozef will be given a planner where his homework will be written in each day and he is required to show to his parents. The parents will be responsible for signing the planner to show that they saw it and Jozef did finish his homework. If he is unable to finish due to lack of understanding and the parents are unable to assist him, an note will be written in the planner explaining why.

Discussion Questions

1. How id Jozef's L1 and L2 translations hinder his comprehension?

2. Can you describe the early childhood of Jozef Branovic, before he came to the United States?

3. What would the results be if Jozef were to have intelligence tests administered to him in “Bosnian” or Ijekavian? Or is he really semi-lingual?

4. Is Jozef Branovic, the son of a physician, learning-disabled, or does he have PTSD?

5. How could the parents have been more involved in Jozef's academic process?

6. What will be the plans for Jozef for the rest of the school year?

Bloom’s Taxonomy Questions

Level 1. Knowledge. - exhibits previously learned material by recalling facts, terms, basic concepts and answers.

What is the history of Jozef Branovic prior to his arrival in the U.S.?

Are the facts in the record as given correct, and if not, does it matter?

Can you describe the early childhood of Jozef Branovic? For example, what must those bombs have sounded like to Jozef from his birth until 1996? What must his (and his family’s) nutrition have been like during critical developmental years?

How could Mrs. Branovic home-school Jozef in English, cowering inside her house as tanks rolled by?

Has everyone considered it impolite to ask the Branovic parents to describe their life immediately before emigrating to the United States?

Level 2: Comprehension - demonstrating understanding of facts and ideas by organizing, comparing, translating, interpreting, giving descriptions and stating main ideas.

Who does Mrs. Branovic compare Jozef to?

Should we not attempt to re-interpret previous evaluation of Jozef’s difficulties? Should we not revisit what was noted about Jozef in first through fourth grades, or even earlier?

Did Mrs. Branovic really teach Jozef “Bosnian” ? Was that “Bosnian” really Ijekavian?

Where and how did Mrs. Branovic acquire her English in the country formerly known as Yugoslavia?

Should we not compare Jozef instead to his sister Maria, who, by contrast, is doing fine and exhibits no spelling, reading or other language difficulties at all, or other intellectual impairments?

Would it be possible to interview Maria about Jozef to see if she can recall specific incidents in their mutual childhood – frightening run-ins with troops, prolonged famine, exposure to cold -- that might have led to the learning disabilities Jozef is exhibiting now?

With a compromised water supply, did Jozef suffer from diarrheal illnesses that can have severe consequences later in life?

Level 3: Application - solving problems by applying acquired knowledge, facts, techniques and rules in a different way.

What would be wrong with retaining Jozef and not promoting him to Middle School and sixth grade?

What would the results be if Jozef were to have intelligence tests administered to him in “Bosnian” or Ijekavian? Or is he really semi-lingual?

If so, why has nobody suggested that Jozef (and other students from the same linguistic background, of which there should be several in Tampa) receive tutoring in “Bosnian” for a year?

Level 4: Analysis - examining and breaking information into parts by identifying motives or causes; making inferences and finding evidence to support generalizations.

Is there sufficient evidence to suggest that Jozef be examined by a psychiatrist for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder?

Do Jozef’s teachers find it hard to believe that, with well-intentioned parents like the Branovics, that Jozef might have been exposed to even one, let alone several, of these traumas?

Why is there no description of any symptoms of PTSD in his folder? Has he complained of headaches and gastrointestinal complaints?

Level 5: Synthesis - compiling information together in a different way by combining elements in a new pattern or proposing alternative solutions.

Is the lack of success with Jozef Branovic perhaps attributable to a problem inherent in a system that seeks simple solutions (IEPs with heavy emphasis on ESOL remediation) to remediate the behavior and teach the outward signs of success?

Is it easy to blame those closest to the problem – Mrs. Branovic, the mother, and Mrs. Johnson, the teacher, primarily – for not seeing that, at this turning point when Jozef will be held back or promoted, reading and writing English may be the least of his worries?

Level 6: Evaluation - presenting and defending opinions by making judgments about information, validity of ideas or quality of work based on a set of criteria.

Is Jozef Branovic, the son of a physician, learning-disabled, or does he have PTSD?

Because Mrs. Branovic has not reported any of the suggested history or symptoms, isn’t all of this likely to be opinion rather than verifiable fact?

Is it important to prove or disprove an underlying psychiatric cause of shortcomings that seem to boil down to nothing more than poor spelling and low reading skills?

Is the case of Jozef Branovic unique or even unusual?


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