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Special Education



 Welcome to Special Education Student Services! 


If you/your child is new to BDHS or will be starting here, please don't miss our presentation on Special Education services by viewing this PowerPoint. It's packed with helpful tips and info! Turn up your speakers. Click here for our BDHS Special Education Presentation


Students with specific learning needs may have these needs formally planned for in writing via an Individual Education Plan (IEP). All students on IEPs are assigned a Special Education Resource Teacher (SERT) who facilitates the transition to BDHS and collaborates with current/previous teachers and parents to ensure needs are planned for, develops IEPs including required accommodations and post-secondary transition planning, communicates and consults with regular class teachers who implement IEP programming for the majority of students who take regular credit baring courses, oversees students' academic progress and wellness, implements supports and alternative programming as needed, and communicates with parents.

Special Education Resource Teachers at BDHS 2021-2022

Amy James: Special Education Department Chair, Gr. 8 Transition & Gr. 9 SERT,  ajames@scdsb.on.ca 

Christina Paton: Gr. 10 SERT,  cpaton@scdsb.on.ca

Cora Lea Peltier: Gr. 11 & 12 SERT,  cpeltier@scdb.on.ca

Laura Kell: Literacy Learning Centre SERT & part-time Life Skills SERT,  lkell@scdsb.on.ca

Jelka Pernar: Numeracy Learning Centre SERT,  jpernar@scdsb.on.ca

Christine Calver: Life Skills SERT,  ccalver@scdsb.on.ca


.Supports at BDHS

There are various levels of special education support in high school. Students may receive support from their classroom teacher or an educational assistant in the classroom, or in the resource room. The BDHS resource room (112) is open to all students with or without an IEP and functions on a drop-in basis. The resource room is open before school from 7:30-8:10am, at lunch and after school for 2:30-3pm for extra help. The resource room is not the same as an elementary learning centre. 

Depending on the needs outlined in the IEP, students will receive accommodations as part of their courses. High schools also offer a range of locally developed courses designed to meet the learning needs of students. Depending on their needs, students may be part of a specialized program or class (see below).

Some students with documented needs and a successful assistive technology trial, may be provided with a school board laptop or Chromebook to utilize assistive technology, like text to speech or speech to text through the Special Education Amount (SEA), as our application numbers allow. 

BDHS also offers a Gr. 9 Learning Strategies Course: Skills for Success in Secondary School – GLE1O1 open level             

To qualify for this course students must be on an IEP.  This course focuses on learning strategies to help students become better, more independent learners.  Students will learn how to develop and apply literacy and numeracy skills, personal management skills, and interpersonal and teamwork skills to improve their learning and achievement in school, the workplace, and the community.  The course helps students build confidence and motivation to pursue opportunities for success in secondary school and beyond. 

Note: Recommendation of the principal or Grade 8 teacher is required to take this course.   The Learning Strategies course has a focus on preparing students for the Ontario Secondary School Literacy Test (OSSLT) and on using assistive technology.           


Special Education Specialized Class Placements at BDHS 

The vast majority of students on Individual Education Plans (IEPs) are in regular credit baring courses working towards an Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD), where regular class teachers implement IEP accommodations and programming, supported by an assigned Special Education Resource Teacher (SERT). The vast majority of students on IEPs are in regular credit baring courses and complete the regular curriculum expectations and the IEP box on the report card is not checked in this case. We do not communicate IEP status to post-secondary institutions or outside agencies. For post-secondary applications, all students are accepted based on the marks and program requirements of the desired post-secondary institution. If students wish after acceptance, they can register with the post-secondary institution student services department for permitted post-secondary accommodations.  

For some students with more intensive needs BDHS has 2 specialized class options for students who meet the admission requirements, have the applicable needs, and if there is availability. Students must have an Identification Placement Review Committee (IPRC) meeting to confirm placement.  

  • Learning Centre: A specialized class for 2 periods a day where small groups of students to receive intensive literacy and numeracy support from a special education teacher. Learning Centre credits are not credit baring.  Students work towards an Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) or an Ontario Secondary School Certificate (OSSC).  Please note that the Learning Centre class is NOT the same as our Resource Room. 
  • Life Skills: A specialized class for students who require intensive full day programming and support in basic literacy and numeracy, technology integration, communication, self help, social skills and vocational training. Students work towards a Certificate of Accomplishment. 

SCDSB Specialized Class Placements (at other high schools but open to students in the BDHS area) 

Current or future student who reside in the BDHS area can be candidates for school board specialized classes that are hosted at select other SCDSB high schools, if they meet the admission requirements, have the applicable needs, and if space permits.  Students must have an Identification Placement Review Committee (IPRC) meeting to confirm placement. Here are some of the available classes: 


  • Gifted Congregated Program: Students are grouped with other students with gifted needs in credit baring courses. Teachers implement IEP programming and students work towards an Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD). 
  • Intensive Support Program (ISP): Students with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) take credit baring courses and have supportive period(s) with a Special Education Resource Teacher (SERT) for alternative programming instruction and support in credit baring courses. Students work towards an Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) or an Ontario Secondary School Certificate (OSSC).  
  • Secondary ASD Program: For students diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) with significant needs in the areas of communication, self-regulation, social skills, self-help, community awareness and academics. Students work towards a Certificate of Accomplishment.