Notice of Special Education Programs and Services
Students who (1) meet the eligibility criteria for one or more disabilities as defined in the Pennsylvania State Standards, and who (2) need specially designed instruction may qualify as exceptional students. Disabilities include autism, blindness/visual impairment, deafness/hearing impairment, deaf-blindness, emotional disorder, mental retardation, specific learning disability, traumatic brain injury, speech/language impairment, orthopedic impairment, multiple disabilities, and other health impairment. The school district engages in screening and evaluation procedures to ensure that students with disabilities are identified and receive an appropriate individualized education program (IEP) consisting of specially designed instruction and related services. Special Education services are provided in compliance with state and federal laws, at no cost to parents, and are designed to yield meaningful progress toward educational goals.
Screening activities are conducted throughout the school year to find children who may be eligible for special education. Screening procedures include review of cumulative and health records, report cards, test scores, as well as hearing, vision, physical, and speech/language screenings. If screening results indicate that a student may be exceptional, the district seeks parental consent for a multi-disciplinary team evaluation. Parents who suspect their child is exceptional may, at any time, submit a written request for an evaluation to the building principal.
Signs that your child may have a disability are: exhibition of an emotional disturbance over a long period of time that affects your child's ability to learn; consistent problems in getting along with others; difficulty communicating; lack of interest or ability in age-appropriate activities; resistance to change; difficulty seeing or hearing that interferes with the ability to communicate; health problems that affect educational performance including attention problems; and difficulty performing tasks that require reading, writing, or mathematics.
If after an evaluation, a student is determined to be eligible for special education an Individualized Education Program (IEP) is developed by a team that includes the parents, teachers, school representative, and others, as appropriate. The IEP is revisited, at minimum, once a year. The extent and location of services is determined by the IEP team and is based on the student's age and individual needs and abilities. The district also provides related services such as transportation or physical and occupational therapy to enable the student to benefit from education.
Parents not only have the right to notifications concerning evaluations and IEPs, but also the right to review their child's records, and to expect the school district to protect the confidentiality of student records. Parents may obtain more information on special education programs and services by contacting the Special Education Coordinator at 535-5523.