DGSD Special Education Services

The Delta/Greely School District provides comprehensive educational services through the Special Education Department to all children ages 3-21 who experience and have additional needs beyond those which generally can be met by the regular classroom program. The special education programs for these children are cooperatively developed by an Individualized Education Plan Team including the parent as a contributing member of the team. These teams make every effort to provide the appropriate special education program to the child in a setting as close to his/her normal classroom as possible. In addition to providing the necessary special education services, related services such as speech therapy, which are necessary to the student’s school success, are provided as an integral part of the child’s school program.

Children experiencing disabilities are guaranteed a free appropriate public education under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act and Alaska State Regulations.

Alaska State Regulations also provide a definition for gifted students and mandates the Delta/Greely School District to develop an Individualized Education Plan for each gifted student as appropriate.

A child is a “qualified disabled person” under Section 504 of The Rehabilitation Act of 1973 if he or she (1) has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities (such as caring for one’s self, performing manual tasks, walking, seeing, hearing, speaking, breathing, learning, and working), has a record of such an impairment; and (2) is of an age at which it is mandatory under state law to provide preschool, elementary, secondary, or adult education to the disabled (in Alaska State, ages 3 to 21). [34 CFR 104.3(j) and (k)(2)]. A child with a diagnosis of ADD/ADHD is a “qualified disabled person” under Section 504 if (1) he or she is between the ages of 3 to 21, and (2) the disabling condition substantially limits the child’s ability to learn or to otherwise benefit from his or her education program.

The Delta/Greely School District recognizes the need for physical access to school facilities by individuals with mobility impairments. While not all buildings are fully accessible, each student with a mobility impairment will have an equal opportunity to educational programs within the District. Students are afforded the opportunity to have an accessibility study completed relating individual needs to the facility of choice to determine the appropriateness of that facility. Please contact the building principal with questions or requests.

DISABILITIES

Autism – A child that experiences irregularities in communication; resistance to environmental change and unusual responses to sensory experiences.

  • Deaf-Blindness – A combination of hearing and visual impairments causing severe communication, developmental and educational problems.
  • Early Childhood Developmental Delay– A child who is 3-8 years old and is significantly developmentally delayed in one or more of the following five areas: cognitive development, fine and gross motor development, speech/language development, psycho-social development, self-help skills.
  • Hearing Impairments – A hearing impairment that adversely affects a child’s educational performance may require a student to have special education, hearing aids, or other assistance or may be so severe as to result in total deafness so that the child cannot understand what is being said with or without a hearing aid.
  • Learning Disabled – A disorder affecting the child’s understanding or use of spoken or written language that adversely affects educational performance. The student’s ability to listen, think, speak, read, write, spell or do mathematical calculations may be affected. Conditions such as perceptual disabilities and developmental aphasia can be included in this category. This term does not include children who have learning problems that are primarily the result of visual, hearing, or motor disabilities, of mental retardation, of emotional disturbance, or of environmental, cultural, or economic disadvantage.
  • Mentally Retarded – Both significant sub-average general intellectual functioning and deficits in adaptive behavior, these deficits should have been observable throughout the child’s development and adversely affect educational performance.
  • Multiple Disabilities – A combination of impairments, other than deaf-blind, which adversely affects the child’s educational performance to the extent that any one of the impairments cannot be determined to be primary.
  • Orthopedically Impaired – A severe physical disability that adversely affects educational performance. The term includes impairments such as club foot, absence of limb, cerebral palsy, poliomyelitis, bone tuberculosis, etc.
  • Other Health Impairments – Limited strength, vitality, or alertness due to chronic or acute health problems such as rheumatic fever, asthma, hemophilia, leukemia, etc., which adversely affects the child’s educational performance.
  • Emotional Disturbance – Children who have a marked degree of one or more of the following characteristics, which adversely affect educational performance and are displayed over a long period of time.
    • An inability to learn which cannot be explained by intellectual, sensory or health factors.
    • An inability to build or maintain satisfactory interpersonal relationships.
    • Inappropriate types of behavior or feelings under normal circumstances.
    • A general pervasive mood of unhappiness or depression.
    • A tendency to develop physical symptoms or fears associated with personal or school problems. (This term does not include students who are socially maladjusted, unless they are also seriously emotionally disturbed.)
  • Speech or Language Impairment – A communication disorder, such as stuttering, impaired articulation, a language impairment, or voice impairment which adversely affects a child’s educational performance.
  • Traumatic Brain Injury – A student who experiences impairments that adversely affect educational performance as a result of serious open or closed head injury.
  • Visually Impaired – A visual impairment which, even with correction, adversely affects a child’s educational performance. The term includes both partially seeing and blind children.
  • PROGRAMS/SERVICES AVAILABLE THROUGH DGSD SPECIAL EDUCATION DEPARTMENT

    • Audiological – Hearing testing and medical referral services are provided
    • Blind or Visually Impaired – Students with visual impairments are served by the itinerant teacher of the visually impaired in a regular classroom setting
    • Elementary Special Education – Special education services for students experiencing disabilities are available in all elementary schools dependent upon individual needs. These services provide support and accommodations to students experiencing severe academic deficits as a result of a disability, behavior concerns, or sensory impairments. Emphasis: parental envolvement • basic skill development • communication skills • attendance in home school/regular classroom • adaptive materials • special instruction techniques
    • Hard of Hearing – Itinerant resource support for identified students. Emphasis: audiological evaluation
    • Physical Therapy/Occupational Therapy – Offered to students needing these services to succeed in their special education program. Emphasis: screening • evaluation • consultation
    • Preschool Special Education – Provides an early childhood program for young children 3-5 years of age with special needs. Emphasis: services for all children experiencing disabilities • communication and social skills • developmentally appropriate classroom activities
    • Psychological Services – Assistance in educational programming and menta
      l health adjustment for students. Emphasis: diagnostic assessment • short-term counseling • consultative services • behavior management
    • Secondary Special Education – Middle school and high school special education services are provided in each secondary facility. Emphasis: collaboration • support • adapted curriculum • vocational education•part-time work experience • individualized programming • adaptive materials • transition planning for post graduation
    • Speech/Language Services – Provides diagno-sis/speech/language services to students ages 3-21. Emphasis: parental involvement • coordination with classroom teachers • augmentative commun-ication • specialized instruction

    SUMMARY OF PARENTS’ RIGHTS
    The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act is a federal law which provides for a free and appropriate public education to all children experiencing disabilities in the least restrictive environment. This law requires school districts to provide parents with every opportunity to become involved in their child’s educational program and to document that involvement. These rights place responsibility on parents to become actively involved in the education of their child.

    To ensure that this involvement occurs, several rights to which parents are entitled were included in the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. These rights are referred to as “procedural safeguards.” Following is a summary of specific areas addressed in these “procedural safeguards.”

    1. Prior Notice – Parents must receive written notice before their child is evaluated or placed in any specialized educational program. Written notice is also required before any change in program.
    2. Consent – Parent consent must be obtained before conducting a preplacement evaluation and before initial placement of a child experiencing disabilities in a program providing special education and related services.
    3. Evaluation – Before any action is taken with respect to the initial placement of a child experiencing disabilities in a special education program, a full and individual evaluation of the child’s educational needs must be conducted. A re-evaluation must be conducted every three years or more frequently if conditions warrant or if the child’s parent or teacher requests an evaluation.
    4. Independent Educational Evaluation – Provisions in the law describe when an independent evaluation completed by non-district personnel can be performed at public expense.
    5. Least Restrictive Environment – To the maximum extent appropriate, children experiencing disabilities, including children in public or private institutions or other care facilities, are to be educated with children who do not experience disabilities. Special classes, separate schooling or other removal of children experiencing disabilities from the regular educational environment should occur only when the nature or severity of the disability is such that education in regular classes with the use of supplementary aides and services cannot be achieved satisfactorily.
    6. Confidentiality of Information – With the exception of certain individuals (school officials, for example, and teachers with legitimate educational interests), no one may see a child’s records unless parents give their written permission. A parent who believes that information in their child’s records is inaccurate, misleading, or violates the privacy or other rights of the child may request the District to amend the information.
    7. Impartial Due Process Hearing – If at a point during identification, evaluation, or placement, parents do not agree with the educational decisions made concerning their child, they have the right to request a hearing. The right to appeal the findings and decisions of the hearing also is assured.

    For more information contact:
    Laural Jackson Assistant Superintendent
    895-4657

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