Cons- Accommodations and Modifications

  • Requires extra money for resources and personnel and therefore money is taken/cut back from other school sources or budget is increased.
  • Taking from other school sources can make students suffer if programs or supplies are cut
  • Budget increase causes hardship to tax-payers.
  • Can lower self-esteem of students who receive accommodations and modifications because they may be teased or ostracized
  • Requires more time from teacher- planning, setting up accommodations and modifications, collaboration time, meetings, etc.
  • Extra time and demands to meet needs can cause anxiety and stress for teacher
  • Accommodations and modifications may not be uniform among teachers and testing (Ex. state testing)
  • Students not receiving accommodations and modifications are treated unfairly- less time and resources are spent on meeting their needs and leads to anger and frustration
  • Creates an “unleveled” playing field, especially at the high school level, where grades are not “equal”

Accommodations and modifications can present many problems and difficulties to teachers and students. The federal law mandates that students receive the appropriate accommodations and modifications that are needed. However, since there is such a wide range in disabilities and degree of disabilities, providing appropriate accommodations to all students in need requires extra money and resources as well as more time. Also students receiving the accommodations and modifications may be hindered because they may experience low self-esteem and social problems. The students who do not receive any services are also impacted negatively because they may not receive the time or level of instruction they need.

Some students with needs require special resources such as computers or an aide or nurse to assist them with their learning or getting to school. These resources cost the school money and therefore the tax-payers money. When teachers and specialists have to attend IEP or CSE meetings, oftentimes a substitute is needed for the teacher’s class. This requires the school to spend time finding someone to cover the class as well as pay them to do so.
When students receive accommodations or modifications in education, the teacher needs to make sure these needs are being met. This means the teacher must spend time preparing how to meet these needs. The teacher may have to spend more time arranging the classroom so students with visual or auditory problems receive their accommodations. Modifying the curriculum also requires extra time for the teacher since he/she needs to make sure all students can participate in the lesson. This may require a teacher to find more resources or materials or additional ways of instruction. If there are children with varying disabilities, this causes even more work for the children. Oftentimes the teachers are not given sufficient time to accomplish this, and as stated previously, the teacher needs to make sure the accommodations are being met. This can cause the teacher to feel anxious- especially if there are limited resources (material and human) to help them.

Accommodations and modifications can hinder those students they are supposed to help. Many times these students experience low self-esteem and are made fun of by peers. When children with needs receive services they are made aware that they are “different”. Oftentimes, this has a negative impact and can result in a lower self-esteem. Most students want to fit in. If they receive accommodations and modifications, they are continually made aware that they are not getting what everyone else is getting. They receive special services. Many times, those students who do not receive services are also aware of the accommodations and modifications being given. These students may complain and say it is not fair or make fun of the student with needs. Thus, causing the student to feel bad about him/herself.

Students receiving accommodations and modifications may also be hindered by differences in how and when accommodations are given. Many times state testing requires different accommodations or limited accommodations. This poses a problem if students are used to particular accommodations and therefore can not perform to expected standards.

Students who do not receive special accommodations are also affected in a negative way. When a teacher has to spend so much time modifying a lesson or making sure accommodations are being met, time is taken away from the rest of the students. Lessons may not be as good as they good be because too much time is spent elsewhere.

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