Special Education & 504
It is our mission to prepare every student to be a contributing member of society and to participate successfully in local, community, and global settings.
We are committed to providing specialized academic, social and emotional support and services to students in order to fully engage them in high quality learning environments. Our students are educated in a school community where everyone belongs and is accepted. Every attempt is made to educate students with special education needs in the least restrictive educational environment. Our primary goal is to integrate these students into general education classes; however, we make accommodations, modifications and provide supplementary aids and services to support our students. We enjoy working collaboratively with families, students, community, colleagues, and other professionals in order to promote every student's success.
When students are identified as eligible for special education services, an Individual Education Plan (IEP) is developed for the areas of need.
Continuum of Services for Students with Disabilities
When determining services, the Least Restrictive Environment (LRE) is considered. The Least Restrictive Environment ensures that students with disabilities are educated to the maximum extent possible with students who are not disabled.
Therefore, the continuum of services chart above is fluid where students may access different learning environments throughout the day (i.e. general education, general education with support, and resource services).
Educational Rights and Responsibilities: Understanding Special Education in Illinois, A Parent's Guide
- Early Childhood - Structured Teaching Program
- Early Childhood - Instructional Special Needs Program
- Special Needs Kindergarten (SNK) - Blended Kindergarten
- Special Needs Kindergarten (SNK) - Instructional
- Special Education Resource Program
- Special Education Co-Taught Program
- Instructional Skills Program
- Behavioral and Emotional Supported Teaching (BEST)
- Structured Teaching Education Program (STEP) 1
- Structured Teaching Education Program (STEP) 2
- Educational Life Skills (ELS)
Are also provided to supplement all levels of service. These may include the following below.
Speech and Language services
Students who exhibit delays in articulation, expressive and/or vocal difference deficits that have an adverse effect on student performance may be eligible to receive speech and language therapy services.
Physical / Occupational therapy
Students who have educational needs related to sensory regulation and gross and fine motor skills may be eligible to receive physical or occupational therapy services.
Social Work / Counseling
All schools have social workers on staff to support the social emotional well-being of all students in general and special education through group, individual, and consultative services.
Individuals with Disabilities Act
The District receives Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA) federal funds. A "proportionate share" amount of those funds is used to support students with disabilities in homeschool, private or parochial schools within the District 62 attendance area.
The District also performs "Child Find" services for those students who are homeschooled or are enrolled in private/parochial schools within the District 62 boundaries.
The District also has other services to assist teams in supporting students (not recognized as related services)
A behavior specialist is a certified teacher or social worker who can be accessed through the district MTSS process.
This individual can support building teams and/or classroom teachers with the following structures:
- Classroom management strategies
- Consultation of behavior interventions for students with challenging behaviors
- Training and professional learning around research-based practices
- Guidance and collaboration with data-driven decisions around student behaviors
- Crisis support
- Co-planning and co-teaching
School psychologists provide diagnostic information about individual students including their intelligence levels, learning styles, and personality patters.
They also confer with parents and teacher to interpret test results and offer recommendations for follow up.
Assistive Technology (AT) Specialist
The AT Specialist works directly in general and special education environments to support students and staff in the full continuum of communication and technology interventions, tools and devices.
The AT Specialist also functions as a diagnostic team member and provides ongoing technical assistance.
The Intervention Coach works with interventionists and special education teachers to train and support them as they work to implement, with fidelity, District-identified curriculum, strategies and programs.
Each school has a nurse that will assist in meeting individual student medical needs.
Section 504 Services
Students who do not qualify for an IEP under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act may qualify for services under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 if the child 1) has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities, 2) has a record of physical or mental impairment or 3) is regarded as having a physical or mental impairment.
All children with disabilities have the right to a free appropriate public education. If you have concerns about your child and believe that he/she has a disability that may require Section 504 Plan accommodations or special education services, please contact your child's school administrator to begin the referral process.