Special Education: School Age Identification
A school staff member, parent or student may refer a student (ages 5-21) for special education identification. The student’s regular education teacher(s) conduct a variety of interventions with the student prior to the referral.
Please note: Special Education is not required or automatically provided for every student who experiences a disability. Schools do not do diagnostic testing simply to identify a disability. Our purpose is identification of educational need. We only test when there is an educational impact. Referrals will only be considered using academic data, and this data must indicate that a student requires specially designed instruction and cannot be supported with accommodations alone. If a student's data does not indicate this level of need, testing will not be done.
A parent or guardian may send a simple written request for testing to a building SPED Case Manager, or to the Special Programs Office directly. They can send it in regular mail, drop it off at the school office, or via email at the following:
- SES Case Managers
- Rachel Foster: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Pam Rasmussen: email@example.com
- Eric Utz: firstname.lastname@example.org
- SMS Case Managers
- Tammy Stanek: email@example.com
- SHS Case Managers
- Jaculin Johnson: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Jennifer Lindell: email@example.com
- Terri Mason: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Special Programs Office
- Kama Wells, Special Programs Secretary: email@example.com
Teacher or School Staff Referral
To make a referral from school staff, the following form must be used by school staff to request review by the Special Programs Office. Once a teacher or a building team has filled out the form, it can be sent or emailed to the case managers or Special Programs Office at the emails listed above.
A meeting is scheduled which the parent is invited to attend, to determine if an evaluation for special education should be considered. If it is determined that an evaluation needs to be conducted, the parent must provide written permission for the evaluation and is a participant in determining the types of evaluations needed. The time frame for an evaluation is 60 school days or less after parental consent is received.
An evaluation may consist of some of the following measures:
- File review of the student’s academic grades, state assessment scores, behavior, academic assessments, observations of the student in the school setting, assessments of the student’s receptive and expressive language ability, assessments of functional living skills, developmental history, fine and gross motor abilities.
This is not an exhaustive list; these are just some examples of assessments that the special education team (of which the parent is a part) may determine are appropriate to evaluate a student for special education services. The evaluation team may also request or need information from the student’s physician as well.
Individuals who conduct the needed evaluations are specifically trained in their areas of expertise and hold all the necessary licensure to provide the services. Evaluation staff may consist of the following professionals:
- Special Education Teacher, Speech and Language Pathologist, School Psychologist, Autism Consultant, Occupational Therapist and/or Physical Therapist
Special Education services are available in the Siuslaw School District for all students who have been identified as eligible for special education services. Students identified as eligible for special education services must meet the following two requirements:
1. Meet the federal and state eligibility requirements as having a disability in at least one of the following 11 handicapping conditions categories:
- Autism Spectrum Disorder
- Communication Disorder
- Emotional Disorder
- Hearing Impairment
- Intellectual Disability
- Orthopedic Impairment
- Other Health Impairment
- Specific Learning Disability
- Traumatic Brain Injury
- Visual Impairment
2. Needs specially designed instruction:
Siuslaw School District offers a continuum of services to eligible special education students. This continuum assures that the student will be educated in the least restrictive environment possible to meet the student’s unique learning needs.
Students will be served in their local school whenever appropriate. If the student’s educational needs can not be met adequately in the local school then other options will be provided such as special programs in other schools, day treatment, home tutoring or placement in residential facilities.
Special education staff will provide instruction utilizing research-based best practices for students receiving special education services. Staff is provided with on-going professional development to assure students receive the best instruction possible.
A meeting is scheduled with the parent to review the evaluation results. The Special Education Team (parent is a member) may determine that the student meets eligibility requirements for special education, and that the student requires specially designed instruction. If the child is found eligible under both of these criteria, an Individual Education Plan (IEP) is written by the team to specify services to the child. Once the IEP has been developed, then placement is determined.