Special Education means specially designed instruction, at no cost to the parents, to meet the unique needs of child with a disability (34CFR300.17). Special Education is individualized instruction, it is not a place.
Students are eligible for special education after a comprehensive evaluation has been completed and the multidisciplinary evaluation team (MET) determines whether or not the student meets eligibility criteria for special education. Each special education category has specific evaluation criteria which must be met.
What areas does Special Education Cover?
- Autism (A)
- Other Health Impairments (OHI)
- Emotional Disability (ED)
- Specific Learning Disability (SLD
- Emotional Disability B Private (EDP)
- Speech/Language Impairment (SLI)
- Hearing Impairment (HI)
- Severe Mental Retardation (SMR)
- Mild Mental Retardation (MIMR)
- Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)
- Moderate Mental Retardation (MOMR)
- Visual Impairment (VI)
- Multiple Disabilities (MD)
- Preschool Speech/Language Delay (PSL)
- Multiple Disabilities B Severe Sensory Impairment (MDSSI)
- Preschool – Moderate Delay (PMD)
- Preschool – Severe Delay (PSD)
- Orthopedic Impairment (OI)
Who Services Our Students?
Special education teachers, speech therapists, and a psychologist service children in grades K-8. Preschool children in special education are served in the District Preschool programs or the Tolleson Head Start Program. Special education teachers provide service to students in a cross-categorical model. The level of service for each student varies and depends on the recommendations (based on student need) in the Individual Education Program (IEP). The amount of time in special education ranges from consultation services in the regular classroom to receiving all academic content in the special education classroom. Related services (i.e., Occupational Therapy and Physical Therapy) are provided when needed.
What is our Special Education Curriculum?
Curriculum content for each student is based on the strengths and needs identified in the evaluation, the specific learning style and functioning level of the student, district standards/curriculum, functional needs, and IEP team input.
What is the SLIEP process?
The Student Led IEP (SLIEP) process is a way students with disabilities can develop an understanding of their strengths as well as their disabilities. It is a system of instruction that enables students to become active participants as they learn about special education, the laws that have been passed on their behalf, and the process of planning their own futures. SLIEPs result in students who feel and act like equal members of their IEP team, instead of passive recipients of other people’s decisions about their lives. Students in preschool through primary grades participate by sharing their strengths and needs. Young children share what they like about school and what is hard for them. Students in intermediate grades participate by sharing what their strengths and needs are and what accommodations work best for them. Middle school students participate to a greater extent. They are included in the planning and setting of goals (particularly for transition), accommodations, and often lead the entire meeting.
What is the Exit Criteria?
Students are no longer eligible for special education services in the Tolleson Elementary School District if they are re-evaluated and they are no longer determined eligible by the MET or if the student is promoted to high school (services in special education continue, if the student is eligible).