Presentation on theme: "Special Education... No challenge too great, no victory too small! SPECIAL EDUCATION POLICIES AND PROCEDURES AT A GLANCE."— Presentation transcript:
Special Education... No challenge too great, no victory too small! SPECIAL EDUCATION POLICIES AND PROCEDURES AT A GLANCE
THOUGHTS TO CONSIDER The majority of administrators receive little to no training in the area of special education. Trying to navigate the nuances of special education can be like “trying to put together a 1000 piece puzzle without the box top”. Special Education services should be considered under the umbrella of General Education, not as a separate entity. These services provide students with disabilities access to the core curriculum.
COMPLETE HANDBOOK The complete policies and procedures handbook can be found on the district website: nlmusd.org To access: Log on Scroll down departments and click on Special Education; menu will appear on the left Click on “Policies and Procedures” Click on the blue title “Sp. Ed. Policies and Procedures Handbook”; handbook will download on your desktop This is a work in progress; it will be updated as needed. For this reason, a hard copy is not being provided to administrators.
ADDITIONAL RESOURCES The district website special education department page also includes several other resources that can support students in both special and general education classrooms.
RESOURCE BANK The Resource Bank can be accessed on the special education department web page. Created by the Special Education Action Team, the resource bank is filled with suggestions and links that general education teachers can use to increase access to the core curriculum for all students. The resources will help the general education teacher understand different disorders and disabilities as well as realize how they manifest themselves in the classroom.
RESOURCE BANK, con’t. By clicking on the sub-pages within the Resource Bank, teachers can easily access information on the following disorders: Visual Processing Auditory Processing ADD/ADHD Receptive Language Expressive Language Memory Deficit
SECTION 504 PLANS General ed support for students with disabilities. Revised forms are available on the website. Copies of 504 plans should be sent to the Special Education office. All 504 plans should be revised during the first month of school.
CAPSS The Collaborative Action Process for Student Success is a three level process for providing differentiated instruction and appropriate interventions, documenting progress, and determining if special education services are warranted.
Level 1 Procedures Teacher provides differentiated instruction, standard accommodations, and interventions to student and documents all efforts as well as the student’s response to these efforts. If concerns continue, teacher collects baseline data on student including web based (I- Ready, Accelerated Reader, I-Pass, etc.) and other assessment data. At least four different assessment measures are required. Teacher sends Teacher Concern Letter** to parents. Teacher meets with his/her grade level/department team and/or CAPSS Coordinator to develop an Intervention Plan (using Action Plan/Progress Check forms**). Document discussion using Initial Meeting Minutes **(pgs. 1 and 2). Attach all documentation to intervention plan and place copies in CAPSS folder. Teacher implements classroom interventions per intervention plan, documents progress each week (using Action Plan/Progress Check forms**) and reassesses student after four to six weeks. Teacher reviews results with his/her grade level/department team and/or CAPSS Coordinator and determines next steps. If no significant improvement is noted, try another intervention (and repeat step 5), or refer to CAPSS Level II.
Level II Procedures – Referred by Parent Send Prior Written Notice** letter home. Include copies of the prior written notice letter and the written parent request in the CAPSS folder. CAPSS Coordinator schedules Student Study Team meeting within 10 days of parent request Teacher or CAPSS Coordinator sends questionnaire to parent (and student for middle and high school) along with invitation to the SST meeting; teacher completes Level II referral**. CAPSS Level II meeting (SST) is held; document SST discussion on Initial Meeting Minutes (pgs. 1 and 2) Intervention Action Plan is developed (use Action Plan/Progress Check form**) is developed.; if parent still wants assessment after SST meeting; sign assessment plan and proceed to CAPSS level III. If parent decides to rescind request, document on signature page and in the minutes. Designate a team member to monitor action plan. Calendar a follow up meeting within 4-6 weeks. Determine at follow-up meeting whether to repeat or try a new intervention. If no significant improvements, proceed to CAPSS Level III.
Level II Procedures – Referred by Teacher Teacher submits CAPSS Level II Referral to CAPSS Coordinator; CAPSS Coordinator schedules Student Study Team (SST) meeting. Teacher or CAPSS Coordinator sends Parent Questionnaire home (and student for middle and high school) along with invitation to the SST meeting. CAPSS Level II meeting (SST) is held; document SST discussion on Initial Meeting Minutes **(pgs. 1 and 2) Intervention Action Plan (use Action Plan/Progress Check form**) is developed. CAPSS Level II team designates a team member to monitor action plan; if needed, a follow-up meeting is calendared within 4-6 weeks. If little to no improvements are noted, proceed to CAPSS Level III. Determine at follow-up meeting whether to repeat or try a new intervention. If no significant improvements, proceed to CAPSS Level III.
Level III Procedures CAPSS Coordinator brings referral, screening,and observation data to Multidisciplinary Assessment Team (M.A.T.) meeting. MAT determines additional interventions and refers back to CAPSS Level II. If no further interventions are appropriate, develop an assessment plan.
Level III Procedures, con’t. 60 day timeline begins MAT completes the multidisciplinary assessment. Hold staffing to review information gathered. Hold IEP If student qualifies, determine needed services.
Level III Procedures, con’t. If student does not qualify, implement recommendations in MAT report; develop action plan and/or 504 plan.
CHILD FIND All schools are required to have procedures in place for identifying children who have or are suspected of having a disability and needing special education and related services. Utilize the CAPSS process for students already enrolled in the school. For students placed in private school, provide assessment plan for parent and complete process within the 60 day timeline; services are limited to eight (8) sessions.
ENROLLMENT PROCEDURES for students with active IEPs Enroll student at school of residence; Do Not send the student home! Place student temporarily in most appropriate classroom on site. Contact psychologist and program specialist within 24 hours. They will contact the school within 48 hours to determine the appropriate placement.
TIMELINES IssueWithin... Provide parent with requested copies5 business days Provide requested assessment plan15 calendar days Hold IEP requested by parent30 calendar days Assess and hold initial IEP60 calendar days Update parents about student progressAt each reporting period Review and refine/rewrite goals1x a year on/before date of previous IEP Re-evaluate eligibilityOnce every three years on/before date of last triennial Initiate services2-3 days of IEP
IEP PARTICIPANTS Mandatory participants -Parent(s) -Administrator/designee -General Ed teacher -Special Ed teacher or service provider Optional participants -Psychologist (must be at triennial or initial) -Student (must be invited if 16 or older) -Other service providers -Others who are familiar with the student
IEP NOTES ARE MANDATORY Notes should document key aspects of the meeting: Who was there, type of meeting, date Whether parents were provided Procedural Safeguards and whether they waived a reading/ explanation of these rights. A statement indicating that the document is a draft and that parents may provide input Documentation that team members had meaningful input Any requests or concerns (especially parent concerns) The essence of all discussions What options were considered A written offer of FAPE (services and placement) -
SCHEDULING IEPS It is strongly recommended that administrators meet with their special education teams at the beginning of the school year to schedule annual and triennial IEPs for the school year.
RESCHEDULING IEP MEETINGS Schools have an obligation to schedule a mutually agreeable IEP meeting date. Document in writing all attempts to schedule the meeting. If parent does not show up, call to see if s/he will agree to hold the meeting without them or to hold the meeting via phone conference Offer an alternate date and time; send an invitation by mail (keep copy for documentation). If they do not show up, reschedule a third time, send a letter by certified mail informing parent that this is your third attempt to hold the meeting and that the meeting will be held with or without them (you can legally hold a meeting without parents after three attempts.) Contact the special education office after your third attempt so that we can decide whether to file for due process or not.
WHEN PARENTS DISAGREE If parents disagree with one or more parts of the IEP: encourage them to sign for the parts they do agree with e.g. goals have them note on the signature page what they disagree with within 24 hours, call the Special Ed office and send a copy of the IEP with the parent comments to the Director, Program Specialists, or our Alternative Dispute Resolution Specialist. They will call parents and attempt to resolve the critical issues. If unsuccessful, they will write a prior written notice to the parents.
PRIOR WRITTEN NOTICE Under 34 CFR §300.503(a), the school district must give parents a written notice whenever the school district: (1) Proposes to begin or change the identification, evaluation, or educational placement of their child or the provision of a free appropriate public education (FAPE) to their child; or (2) Refuses to begin or change the identification, evaluation, or educational placement of their child or the provision of FAPE to their child. The Program Specialists, Director of Special Education, or the General Counsel will be responsible for writing and sending Prior Written Notice Letters. The school administrator should notify the special education department within 24 hours when a parent disagrees with IEP provisions or the offer of FAPE so that we can try to resolve the issue and if not, so that the Prior Written Notice Letter can be sent in a timely fashion.
ROLE OF THE ADMINISTRATOR The administrator is the person who is responsible for ensuring that the IEP is compliant and that the services and placement being recommended constitute an offer of FAPE. The administrator or district representative should either facilitate the meeting or take the IEP notes. S/he should also make the offer of FAPE.
CASE MANAGER ACCOUNTABILITY The administrator plays a vital role in ensuring case manager accountability, IEP compliance, and effective use of fiscal resources. Administrators should review their IEPS on SEIS on a monthly basis (e.g. on pay day).
EVALUATING CASE MANAGERS Site administrators are responsible for evaluating all special education personnel assigned to their site with the exception of the school psychologists and the school nurses. Since writing and reporting IEPs are an integral part of a case managers job, they can be evaluated on how well they perform these duties: writing appropriate goals (#1,3,4 of evaluation document) reporting student progress (#1,5) holding IEPs on time and meeting all timeline dates (#3) writing compliant IEP documents (#3, #4)
SPECIAL CIRCUMSTANCE PARA- EDUCATORS Please follow established protocol when considering the need for additional adult support. Do NOT promise additional adult support. If a parent requests an aide, explain that the team must follow protocol to determine whether adult support would be essential to FAPE. As a team, complete the referral packet for consideration of additional adult support. A final decision will be made by District office staff. If a para-educator is assigned, a fade-off plan must be part of the IEP and the need for continued assistance must be reviewed at each annual/triennial IEP.
PROVISION OF SERVICES Services must be provided within 5 school days of the IEP signature date. DIS services (Speech, RSP, OT, PT, etc) must begin by the first full week of the start of school and should continue through the last full week.
Compensatory Services When the service provider is absent or unavailable, that time must be made up. Service providers are not required to make up time lost due to the absence or unavailability of the student. However, if the time can be made up, that is strongly recommended. It is recommended that service times exceed the minimum outlined in the IEP so that if time is missed the student still receives more than the required time.
MANIFESTATION DETERMINATION Under §300.530(e), a manifestation determination must occur within 10 days of any decision to change the child’s placement because of a violation of a code of student conduct. Legal Issues IDEA 2004: limits the requirement to perform a manifestation determination to removals that constitute a change of placement under IDEA’s disciplinary procedures; does not require a manifestation determination for removals for less than 10 consecutive school days that do not constitute a change in placement.
MANIFESTATION DETERMINATION PROCEDURE The LEA, the parent, and relevant members of the IEP Team (as determined by the parent and the LEA) are involved in conducting the review. Their purpose is to determine: (i) If the conduct in question was caused by, or had a direct and substantial relationship to, the child’s disability; or (ii) If the conduct in question was the direct result of the LEA’s failure to implement the IEP. [§300.530(e)(1)-(2)]
M.D. con’t: IF THE DETERMINATION IS: YESNO There are two scenarios under which the manifestation determination would be “yes.” These are when the conduct: -was a manifestation of the child’s disability, or -the direct result of the LEA’s failure to implement the child’s IEP. If either condition is met, the student’s conduct must be determined to be a manifestation of his or her disability [§300.530(e)(2)-(3) and (f)]. In other words, the manifestation determination is “yes.”But it matters which of the two conditions was the basis for the determination of “yes.” A manifestation determination of “no” means either that: the child’s behavior was not caused by or did not have a direct and substantial relationship to the child’s disability; or the child’s behavior was not the direct result of the LEA’s failure to implement the IEP.
M.D. con’t: PLACEMENT YESNO “yes”. The child must be returned to the placement from which he or she was removed as part of the disciplinary action, with two exceptions: if the behavioral infraction involved special circumstances of weapons, drugs, or serious bodily injury; or if the parents and LEA agree to change the child’s placement as part of the modification of the BIP. If either of these exceptions apply, then the child need not necessarily return to the same placement “no,” school personnel have the authority to apply the relevant disciplinary procedures to the child with disabilities in the same manner and for the same duration as the procedures would be applied to a child without disabilities, except—whatever special education and related services the school system is required to provide the child with disabilities under §300.530(d).
SPECIAL ED SUPPORT STAFF Sherry Herrera, Director ext. 2085 Codean Reed, Program Specialist PK-5 ext. 2084 Jerell Hill, Program Specialist 6-Adult ext. 2219 Gail Nugent, Alternative Dispute Resolution ext. 2037 Dina Wilson, mental health services ext. 2275 Richard Liston, technology support ext. 2254 Jana Porcelli, Workability ext. 2083 ASSIST Team (Autism support) ext. 2079 Rita Galvan ext. 2086 Cathy Addcox ext. 2080 Renee West ext. 2092 Angie Herndon ext. 2099