The ACE program is a highly structured classroom setting designed for students with the most intense emotional and behavioral difficulties. The purpose of the program is to help students gain improved social skills while maintaining academic success. Although the primary focus is on teaching appropriate behaviors so students may return to the least restrictive environment, academic instruction is also emphasized. Instruction is individualized according to the student’s behavioral and academic functioning levels in accordance with their Individualized Education Plans (IEPs) as determined by the ARD committee.
In order for a student to be considered for the ACE program there must be documented evidence that the student has been unsuccessful through previous, less-restrictive interventions and placements. Behavior and emotional issues a student may exhibit include, but are not limited to:
"Adapted Physical Education is the art and science of developing and implementing a carefully designed physical education instructional program for an individual with a disability, based on a comprehensive assessment, to give the individual the skills necessary for a lifetime of rich leisure, recreation, and sport experiences to enhance physical fitness and wellness."
— (Auxter, Pyfer, & Huettig, 2001)
According to Public Law 105-17, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), "Physical education services, specially designed if necessary, must be made available to every child with a disability receiving a free appropriate public education." An appropriate physical education program should be discussed at IEP meetings and goals and objectives should be included in the IEP whenever a student needs an adapted physical education program. Adapted physical education is a "specially designed physical education program as prescribed in the student’s IEP" (PL 105-17).
A disability is any physical or mental impairment that substantially limits a person in some major life activity such as walking, talking, breathing, or working. Students with disabilities need physical education as much as their non-disabled peers. Physical education activities stimulate the central nervous system for optimal growth and development, assist in bone mineralization, promote the maintenance of lean body mass, reduce obesity, improve the function of the heart, and develop movement skills that are necessary for an active lifestyle. For many students with disabilities, movement is a mode for learning. Physical education can help students with and without disabilities learn to work and play together in movement and recreational activities available to all members of the community. Through an adapted physical education program that provides challenging activities, students with disabilities develop self-esteem by way of increased confidence, assertiveness, independence, and self-control.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. What is adapted physical education?
Adapted physical education is an instructional service – not a setting or placement. Students receive adapted physical education when, because of their disability, the instructional program is somehow different from what their peers receive or when they will be held to different criteria for success. Students can receive adapted physical education in an integrated or separate environment or a combination of instructional (PE) environments. This means that a student can receive adapted physical education in the environment that best meets the student’s educational needs.
2. How do you determine if a student should be considered for adapted physical education services?
All students who qualify for services mandated by PL 105-17 who have a disability which may affect their gross motor skills, strength, flexibility, physical fitness, and/or impact their ability to perform daily routines and participate in community based leisure and recreation should be referred for Adapted PE based on the following:
Student for whom some or all of the TEKS of physical education are not appropriate will need an APE evaluation
3. What is the appropriate physical education environment for a student with a disability?
Students with disabilities must be afforded the opportunity to participate in the regular physical education program available to non-disabled students unless:
The student needs an adapted physical education program, as determined by the IEP team and prescribed in the student’s IEP (PL 105-17)
4. What instructional environment should be available for providing adapted physical education?
The instructional setting will accommodate each student in the Least Restrictive Environment, depending on the student’s IEP. Settings could include:
5. How does the Admission, Review and Dismissal (ARD) Committee process address the physical education needs of students with disabilities as you proceed through the IEP process?
The ARD committee will :
6. Do you have to evaluate a student before placing a student in Adapted PE?
YES. The child is assessed in all areas related to the suspected disability, including, if appropriate, health, vision, hearing, social, and emotional status, general intelligence, academic performance, communication status, and motor abilities.
Students for whom some or all of the TEKS of physical education are not appropriate will need an APE evaluation. The goals and objectives for physical education should be developed as a result of the evaluation. They may include modified TEKS or unique goals specific to the child’s need.
7. What responsibilities should an Adapted Physical Educator assume?
Regional Program for the Deaf
Coordinator, Special Education Regional School for the Deaf - Victoria
The Regional Program for the Deaf - Victoria serves hearing impaired children between the ages of birth through 21 years of age, who meet the criteria for services. The Regional Program for the Deaf works in cooperation with 38 school districts in the Region III area as determined by our Shared Services Agreement.
Classrooms are established in four school districts (Bay City, Victoria, Yoakum, and Wharton) with certified teachers of the deaf, interpreters, and/or aides located in each school district.
A Speech-Language Pathologist is employed to provide individual evaluation and therapy for students. The deaf education teacher follows the Speech program on a daily basis in order to maximize the student's potential for speech, auditory training, and lip reading.
The Regional Program for the Deaf subscribes to the Philosophy of Total Communication and uses all methods of communication in order to enhance language development.
Services to children are based on the individual needs of the child. Educational options may include a variety of services from Parent-Infant services in the home, to full-time deaf education, or as little as one hour per week with a deaf education teacher. Transportation for students from districts outside the district where classrooms are established, are provided transportation by the local school district.