In October 2012, the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) funded a center to provide technical assistance to urban, rural, and high-need school districts to improve outcomes for students with disabilities (OSEP, 2012). The OSEP-funded SWIFT Center partnered with 64 schools in 17 districts across five states—Maryland, Mississippi, New Hampshire, Oregon, and Vermont. Five years later, the partners in each of these states worked to continuously improve implementation of SWIFT features in their districts and schools. We would like to thank OSEP for providing the funding that launched this work, which ultimately led to improved outcomes for students with disabilities in these schools. We are grateful for the opportunity to play a role in supporting the educators, administrators, and personnel who are dedicated to SWIFT’s mission of equity-based inclusive education. We are proud of partner state as they built their capacity and now take steps to continue, sustain, and scale-up the work beyond the scope of the original grant’s funding.
As of October 16th, 2017, SWIFT Education Center will continue to pursue the mission that the OSEP-funded SWIFT Center embodied for five years. As part of this endeavor, SWIFT Education Center will continue to make available on our website www.swiftschools.org all the free resources produced through the OSEP funding. Additionally, SWIFT Education Center remains committed to producing future SWIFT Unscripted Podcasts, SWIFT Talk blogs, monthly newsletters, briefs, and products to keep you informed of the latest developments in equity-based MTSS research and services. You can find these products and many more on www.swiftschools.org along with information about how SWIFT Education Center can support your state education agency, school, or district.
We believe that together we can transform education so that it benefits each and every student, their families, and ultimately the communities in which they live. Our partners in Maryland, Mississippi, New Hampshire, Oregon and Vermont are testament to what can be accomplished when we work together to support the needs of all students. It is with great excitement that SWIFT Education Center looks forward to continuing to transform education with additional partners from coast to coast. To learn more visit www.swiftschools.org or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Amy McCart, Ph.D. is an Associate Research Professor with Special Graduate Faculty Status at the University of Kansas. Dr. McCart is the director of technical assistance for the SWIFT Center. Additionally, she is the principal investigator for multiple federal projects through the U.S. Department of Education to support urban schools implementing school-wide positive behavior support. As part of her work with school-wide positive behavior support, she serves as a collaborating partner in the National Technical Assistance Center on Positive Behavior Intervention and Support. Dr. McCart worked in a number of urban schools, including the Recovery School District in New Orleans, Louisiana, the Kansas City, Kansas Public Schools, and the District of Columbia, Washington Public Schools. She was the site director at an agency supporting individuals with low incidence disabilities working to improve quality of life. She is also focused on utilizing agency-focused multi-tiered prevention to support families with mental health needs in poverty and their young children.