CCSA's Special Education Team Announces STAR Award Winner!

January 4, 2016

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CCSA and the Special Education Team would like to congratulate Sara James from Sierra Academy of Expeditionary Learning (SAEL) for winning CCSA's STAR award! The STAR Award recognizes and celebrates charter school teachers, program administrators/coordinators, and school leaders who demonstrate innovation and best practices in the field of special education.

After receiving a number of outstanding nominations, it was apparent that Ms. James stood out as a teacher who constantly strives to improve education for all students. Ms. James has successfully implemented scaffolding strategies, adaptive technology accommodations, and a full program of push-in specialized academic instruction (SAI) at her school.

By collaborating with SAEL's authorizing school district, Ms. James created and continues to coordinate the special education department on the campus of her charter school. Ms. James also shows an extraordinary level of support to all of the general education teachers, helping them modify and differentiate their curriculum to enable as many students as possible to remain in the general education setting.

"The opportunity to develop my teaching at an Expeditionary Learning school has been the perfect match for my teaching style, enabling me to apply my passion for inclusion and adventure in an engaging, project-based learning environment," said Ms. James. "In particular, our daily Crew class has been a great chance for me to teach academic mindsets and learning strategies in an inclusive environment, something that I believe it essential for the success of all students, especially those with disabilities."

Learn more about Sierra Academy of Expeditionary Learning.

CCSA thanks Ms. James for all of her hard work on behalf of her students! If you know of an inspiring special education teacher like Ms. James, nominate them for CCSA's STAR Award by filling out the survey. Winners are selected twice a year.