The Ventura County Office of Education (VCOE) operates schools and programs in support of 20 local school districts. These programs serve students at: Gateway Community School, Providence Court School and Special Education schools. This Local Control Accountability Plan will serve to detail how VCOE is working to improve and increase services to students in court and community schools and special education programs.
Gateway Community School serves expelled and referred students in grades 6-12. Students enrolled at Gateway deal with challenges such as: credit deficiency, chronic truancy, severe behavioral issues, substance abuse, mental health issues, gang involvement and academic skills gaps. Students at Gateway have access to the core curriculum, specialized academic instruction and other related services, career education and English Language Development services. In addition, Gateway provides drug and alcohol treatment, behavioral health services, restorative practices and intensive supervision by the Ventura County Probation Agency in addition to the academic program.
Providence Court School provides educational services to minors incarcerated in the Ventura County Juvenile Justice Detention Facility. Educational programs include access to the core curriculum, specialized academic instruction and other related services, career education and English Language Development services. As with Gateway, student transiency introduces numerous challenges to the program offerings and outcomes. In response to these needs, the school partners with Ventura County Probation, Ventura County Behavioral Health, and numerous community-based organizations to provide comprehensive support services.
VCOE special education students are served in three types of placements: students with developmental delays, students with social-emotional needs, and students with a diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Each of these programs provides specialized services delivered by highly trained teachers, paraeducators, school psychologists, nurses, occupational therapists, speech pathologists, behavioral specialists, physical therapists, and vision and hearing specialists. For sites that serve students with moderate to severe disabilities, instruction is aligned to the content standards and is based on the seven functional curricular domains: domestic, vocational, recreation/leisure, community access/motor skills, communication, social-emotional and functional academics. Students learn functional skills that will maximize future independence and vocational skills.
For students with social-emotional needs, there are three Phoenix School campuses that include a partnership with the Ventura County Behavioral Health to provide mental health services based on the student's Individualized Education Program (IEP). Students in these schools undertake a course of study in academics similar to their general education peers of the same age. Lastly, students with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) are served at Triton Academy which is a highly specialized, researched-based school environment designed to address the needs of students with ASD, grades 3 -12. The program specifically addresses the language, communication, behavioral, sensory and social needs which are often associated with ASD through evidence-based practices.
The VCOE LCAP for 2017-18 represents a continuation of our major goals which are: (1) Improve Academic Achievement, (2) Improve School Climate and Culture (3) Increase Community and Parent Partnerships (4) Facilitate Services to Expelled Youth (5) Facilitate Services to Foster Youth.
In addition to continuing these worthy goals, VCOE will work to eliminate actions and services detailed in the previous LCAPs when such actions and services have either been accomplished or are in a strong position such that emphasis can be shifted to those actions and services requiring more focus. It is the intent of VCOE that in making these changes, VCOE’s LCAP will be more focused, accessible and transparent.
It is also important to note that due to the unique nature of our county office programs, an emphasis will be placed on metrics most applicable to our programs which include: 1-year graduation rate, suspension rate, attendance, discipline referrals, failed placements, provision of counseling services and career education course completion. Academically, an effort will be made to document a shift to more project-based learning and authentic assessments of student work.
Although there were numerous areas where VCOE made significant progress in better serving its students, the following items represent the areas of greatest progress:
- Improved attendance at Gateway Community School by 4%
- Reduced number of students considered chronic absentees by 31%
- Development and Implementation of a Foster Youth Transportation MOU among all 20 school districts, VC Human Services Agency and VC Probation.
- Improvements to facilities and technology
- Increased Support Services
- Professional Development
- Reduced Failed Placements at Gateway from 10 to 5
- Reduced the number of student suspensions by 46%
- 100% 1-year graduation rate
LCFF Evaluation Rubrics (Spring 2017 Dashboard data) are not available for VCOE schools at this time. The CDE is currently exploring relevant CA Dashboard data (LCFF Evaluation Rubrics) for alternative schools. Despite this, there are ongoing needs to address:
- Academic achievement as evidenced by pre-post skills assessment results.
- Adoption of instructional materials in English Language Development
- Implementation of project-based learning to increase student engagement
- Increased enrollment and course completion in Career Education Courses.
LCFF Evaluation Rubrics (Spring 2017 Dashboard data) are not available for VCOE schools at this time. The CDE is currently exploring relevant CA Dashboard data (LCFF Evaluation Rubrics) for alternative schools.
Increased or Improved Services
- For English Learners, VCOE will adopt and implement new standards-aligned instructional materials.
- For Foster Youth VCOE needs to complete the effort to implement a data sharing portal through a collaborative effort with Ventura County Human Services Agency and fully implement Transportation Plan/MOU
- For Low income students VCOE needs to increase engagement and college and career readiness through the increased infusion of career education and project-based learning in its court and community school programs.
Read the Full VCOE LCAP