Date of Conferral



Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)




Marcia Griffiths


The problem in an elementary school in Southern Texas was poor reading performance on grade level and progress monitoring tests for students with disabilities (SWDs). SWDs may learn to read proficiently when reading instruction is provided using the support facilitation model (SFM) that features a special educator who helps SWDs in literacy or mathematics in inclusion settings. The purpose of this bounded qualitative case study was to explore the perspectives of special and general education teachers about SFM. The universal design for learning framework, used to plan lessons based on how students learn, guided this study. The research questions focused on teachers' perspectives of SFM and its application. A purposeful sample of 2 special and 4 general education teachers, who taught SWDs using SFM in reading, volunteered and participated in semistructured interviews and classroom observations. The data were analyzed thematically using open, axial, and descriptive coding strategies. Participants supported inclusive education and voiced the need to understand their roles and responsibilities, and for a collaborative planning time to implement SFM. Findings indicated that SWDs learn to read best when they receive support through comprehension strategies and inclusion practices using SFM. Based on the findings, a 3-day training was designed to enhance teachers' knowledge of SFM, inclusion practices, comprehension strategies, and collaborative planning to support SWDs in reading. These endeavors may contribute to positive social change when administrators provide training for general and special educators to increase teachers' SFM knowledge and to apply collaborative planning, comprehension strategies, and inclusion practices, that may result in SWDs' improved reading performance.