TASIS Portugal supports and recognizes the strengths and differences in each of our learners. Therefore, we offer a well-rounded, equitable educational experience so that each student may reach their full academic potential.
Classroom teachers, specialists, and our learning support teachers work in collaboration to support students with diverse learning profiles. We offer a learning support program designed for students with mild to moderate learning disabilities. In our Early Learning Center (ELC) and Elementary School, the learning support teacher often acts as a third co-teacher in the room, "pushing in" to enhance differentiation in a small group setting. Middle school and high school students whose IEPs specify individualized academic support will have it during the foreign language elective block.
If more support is required, families must engage outside specialists, who, if desired, can support during the school day in lieu of Portuguese class inside the school. Should you have questions or wish to see a list of recommended specialists TASIS Portugal has vetted, please contact Jenny Malloy, learning support specialist
A Team Approach
At TASIS Portugal, we believe in a team approach to individualized education. Our Early Learning Center and Elementary School utilize a co-teaching model to support differentiated instruction in most classes. In addition, our curriculum and learning specialists “push in” to lessons to further support teaching and learning. Students may also be “pulled out” of the classroom by a learning support teacher for small group instruction to target specific learning gaps.
At the middle school level, students can participate in a learning support class in place of the third-language elective. This class time is utilized to review and preview curriculum concepts, target learning gaps, and explicitly teach executive functioning skills and strategies.
In Partnership with Parents
Parents and guardians are an integral part of the student support team, and we welcome open communication with the educational team. We require families requesting learning support to share information regarding diagnosed (or non-diagnosed) learning differences so that we can determine the best ways to highlight your child's strengths while meeting their needs.
Framework for Intensive Early Intervention
When a student requires early intervention (i.e., speech therapy, occupational therapy, one-on-one behavioral support), we will work with the outside provider(s) to promote optimal benefit from the intervention(s) with progress tracked throughout the academic year. TASIS Portugal does not offer intensive student support services.
We assist families and therapists during the entire process:
- Evaluation and observation–Therapists are welcome to come and observe the child in our school setting. Teachers will complete required assessment forms.
- Planning–Team meetings guarantee that the goals of the intervention are aligned with the school's needs, including the opinions and schedules of teachers.
- Implementation–Therapists can work with the child during our regular school days, in partnership with teachers.
- Phase-out–Before support is lessened or removed, the plan should be agreed upon with the school. While each child is different, we look to phase out intensive intervention by the end of Elementary School.
- Monitor–Teachers will monitor the child's progress and communicate with families and outside providers should greater support be required.
Generally, we require intensive early intervention when students have needs in school regarding one or more of these areas:
- Safety–If there is the need for permanent adult supervision, either because they exhibit unsafe behaviors (ex. running out of the class) or affect the safety of others (ex. being aggressive when frustrated)
- Autonomy–Where greater assistance than can be provided by the school is required (ex. needs constant redirection; gets lost during transitions if a teacher is not holding their hand)
- Access the curriculum–Without one-on-one help, the child cannot fully access what is being taught in most of the classes (ex. inability to focus without an adult sitting next to them, pacing too fast, significant difficulty grasping concepts)
Learning Support Specialist
Jennifer "Jenny" Malloy has been providing an accessible and equitable learning experience as an educator for over 16 years. She believes the world is her classroom and has taught in Massachusetts, Ecuador, Brazil, Australia, and Hawai'i.
She holds an M.Ed. in curriculum and instruction from the University of Massachusetts and recently completed a graduate certificate in e-learning instructional design from the University of Washington. Jenny is credentialed by the Hawai'i Teachers Standards Board in elementary education, K-12 special education, and K-12 English as a second language.
Jennifer is proficient in Portuguese and Spanish and is currently learning Hawai'ian.