The Core Access Teachers for Students with Significant Cognitive Disabilities (CATS) initiative was begun during the 2005-2006 school year. The teachers involved in this initiative were chosen for their leadership qualities in teaching students with significant cognitive disabilities. This group of teacher-leaders has provided support, lessons and materials to assist colleagues across the state in providing access to the Georgia Performance Standards to students with significant cognitive disabilities. The contributions and cooperation of these teachers having been actively involved in this initiative are significant to the continuing success of students on the Georgia Alternate Assessment (GAA).
The CATS have participated in individual and group teacher support, redelivery of training, and through sharing networks and communities of practice. Through the development of lessons and materials, they have been instrumental in expanding the regional capacity of teachers of students with significant cognitive disabilities. These lessons and materials are available to teachers throughout Georgia on the Resource Board for Access to the Georgia Performance Standards (GPS) for Teachers of Students with Significant Cognitive Disabilities developed by the Georgia Department of Education in conjunction with the CATS.