State and Federal Law ensures that "all individuals with exceptional needs have available to them a free, appropriate public education and related services to meet their unique needs." When a child is being assessed for possible special education needs, an Individualized Education Program Team (IEPT) shall be convened. Parents are an integral part of that team.
Click here for a glossary of Special Education Acronyms.
The Special Education Local Plan Area (SELPA) provides special education services in cooperation with the school districts. The SELPA continues to ensure that eligible children, birth through age twenty-one, with handicaps have the opportunity to participate in programs and receive appropriate special education services. Programs and services are available for eligible pupils from infancy through age 21.
Designated Instruction and Service (DIS)
Such instruction and services will be provided by the regular class teacher, the special education teacher or specialists competent to provide such instruction and services. If not, the appropriately credentialed Designated Instruction and Service (DIS) specialist will provide such instruction and service. Some examples are: A-PE and S/L services. If your child needs a specialized service, which relates to his/her educational progress, it may be provided by the local school, County Superintendent of Schools or an outside agency.
Specialized Academic Instruction
Specialized academic instructional services are provided to students in order to implement their Individualized Education Plans (IEP). Pleasant Grove School provides special education services designed to facilitate the acquisition of state standard skills in the least restrictive setting. Teachers with the appropriate training and credentials provide direct instruction to special education students and assist parents and regular staff members with assessment, curriculum and classroom management. Special education staff also monitor pupil services in regular school programs. Students with more intensive needs receive additional time in a special education setting or additional services in general education settings.
Mild/Moderate services are designed to meet the needs of students who require direct special education services from special education teachers, and/or accommodations in a general education setting. Students in the mild/moderate program typically participate in general education settings for much of their school day.
Moderate/Severe services are provided for students who require direct instruction from a special education teacher for most of the school day.
Severe services are for those students who usually require special education services for the entire school day.
State Special Schools
The state provides residential schools and assessment for handicapped pupils as appropriate.
Non-Public Non-Sectarian Schools and Services
All appropriate public school programs in the SELPA or nearby SELPAs shall be explored prior to considering the non-public school program alternatives.
Student Study Team (SST)
The school site Student Study Team discusses and recommends intervention strategies using regular school resources and personnel. The team may coordinate assessment referrals for students whose needs cannot be met with modification of the regular program. The SST may refer a student to special education only after all resources of regular education have been considered and, where appropriate, utilized.
Referral & Identification
Referrals for identification of a child with possible special needs may come from:
Community agency personnel
School-based Student Study or Child Study Team
Any concerned individual
Assessment will be done only with parent permission at which time parents will also receive a copy of their rights. Upon identification of a special need for a child, the IEP Team shall consider appropriate services and placement.
Arrangements will be made to have a child's strengths and possible needs evaluated. This will be done through testing and conferences held among those who have worked with the child: teachers, nurses, counselors, therapists, psychologists and others. The assessment must be completed and an IEP meeting held within 50 days after receipt of a signed assessment plan.
Individualized Education Program (IEP)
If the parent and the school agree that the child has a disability and requires special education services, an Individualized Education Program will be designed to meet the child's needs. This will take place at a meeting attended by parents and the school personnel and may include others as appropriate.
An Individualized Education Program (IEP) will be developed during the planning meeting if it is determined that special education is needed. The following is a partial list of what the Education Code calls for in an IEP:A summary of the assessment findings, including your child's strengths as well as needs.
A statement of goals and objectives, which the group suggests for your child.
A list of specific services that will be used to find out how well the plan is working (evaluation).
A recommendation for placement.
The starting date and frequency of services.
IEP Planning Meeting
Parents are invited to an IEP meeting with appropriate district staff and, if necessary, personnel from the Sutter Coiunty Superintendnet's Office, the SELPA and/or other agencies. Parents may also bring other persons of their own choosing. The following are some tips on how parents can best participate:
Come Prepared. Jot down any questions you want answered or any suggestions you wish to make regarding educational objectives, health, transportation, schedules, and special information concerning your child's needs and strengths.
Ask Questions. If the professionals use such words as "20/60 vision," "50th percentile," "WISC-R," "Key Math," or any other terms you do not understand, please ask for an explanation.
At least once a year there will be a meeting to review the plan to determine if the plan is still appropriate or if it needs to be changed. Parents may also request a review as necessary.
Parent consent is required before the IEP can be put into effect. If parents are uncertain at the end of the meeting as to whether they want the plan to go into effect, they may decline to sign it. They may take it home and think about it if you wish. Those components of the plan that are approved will be implemented. Parents have other rights if they disagree with the discussion of the group. County or district personnel will answer any questions about those rights.
Parents are notified of all of their rights annually and at various stages within the special education process. Staffs from the District, Suuter County Susperintendent of Schools or SELPA are available to answer questions and provide assistance.
To view the Special Education Rights of Parents and Children, click the link below: