The Department of Special Services is available for those students who may experience academic difficulties. Presently, we have a range of program options from preschool through high school that provide children with access to a free and appropriate public education. Programs are determined and developed on a collaborative and individualized basis as we are mindful of the need to educate students within the least restrictive environment (LRE). General education with supplementary aids and services, in-class support, and resource center support are provided as appropriate. Additionally, out-of-district programs offered by approved schools for the disabled are considered when appropriate. Related services available to eligible students include: speech and language, occupational therapy, physical therapy, and counseling. It is to be noted that speech and language services may be made available to some students who are not part of the special education program.
When student progress has been limited, intervention strategies are initiated via a conference with the teacher, building administrator, and/or our school-based Intervention and Referral Services Committee (I&RS). Primary support is provided in general education classes through the Intervention and Referral Services Committee. The Intervention and Referral Services Committee is comprised of parents/guardians, teachers, and specialists who review the needs of students and offer suggestions, modifications, and accommodations within the general education program to parents/guardians and staff members. When the supports have been implemented and documented as not having met the individual needs of the student, a referral to the Child Study Team may be made. Parents/guardians may also make a direct referral to the Child Study Team.
Once a referral is received by the Child Study Team, a meeting is scheduled within 20 days from when the referral was received. The participants of the meeting are the parents/guardians, the classroom teacher, and the Child Study Team members. The Child Study Team consists of a learning disability teacher-consultant (LDT-C), school psychologist, and social worker. Related service providers may be part of the Team and include speech and language specialists, occupational therapists, and physical therapists. When a student between the ages of three and five is referred, a speech therapist will be included in the meeting. A case manager is assigned upon the written request for an evaluation, and an evaluation plan is developed. During the evaluation process, the student is considered to be potentially educationally disabled. The evaluation process may take as long as 90 days, involving the collection of data, test results, observations, interviews, and any other pertinent information that was agreed upon in the evaluation plan. The process concludes with an eligibility determination meeting. If eligibility criteria have been met, an Individualized Education Program (IEP) is developed with the IEP Team Members within the allowable timeframe.
If you have any questions about our services, we encourage you to contact staff members via telephone or e-mail.