Framework for Independent Living

  • Learning gardening/landscaping skills The Framework for Independent Living (FIL) is a standards-based resource for the development of independent living skills for special education students.  This framework is not intended to serve as a complete curriculum, but rather as a guide which provides structure for districts to use in finalizing their own curriculum.  This framework will allow a teacher to use a systematic program of instruction that helps a student with special needs progress from basic skills to their highest level of independence.

    The FIL provides educators with a standards-based resource that informs instruction to grow learners' capacities to engage as active life participants. The FIL is a dynamic tool that enables systematic instructional planning for student achievement of benchmark performance at developmentally appropriate learning levels. The FIL blends academics and functional skill areas, focusing on transitional outcomes and bridging school experiences with adult life. The FIL also places heavy emphasis on learners' development of self-advocacy and self-determination skills. The Framework for Independent Living allows educators to customize learning programs to meet students' individual special needs, from grades K-12.

    The Framework for Independent Living embraces seven essential learning domains.  Each learning domain is organized around instructional strands that scaffold performance benchmarks in a developmental sequence.  It contains not only Horizontal Progression, but also Vertical Alignment of skill development.  All instructional strands in the FIL are referenced to Pennsylvania Academic Standards and/or Pennsylvania Alternative Academic Standards.  Thus, student instruction is geared toward appropriate learning levels within each strand.  The FIL provides a suggested set of goals to assist educators in planning for classroom instruction, RR and IEP preparation.  The FIL recognizes that achievement of children and young adults exhibits varying levels of strengths within and between each learning domain.

    Essential Learning Domains include:

    • Self Advocacy/Self-Determination
    • Social Skills/Behavior Continuum
    • Job Readiness Continuum
    • Human Development Continuum
    • Daily Living Skills Continuum
    • Functional Literacy
    • Functional Mathematics

    Email Brian Welles or 412-394-5732, for more information or to request an on-site presentation on the Framework for Independent Living.