Welcome Back!

September 2020

Dear Special Education and 504 Families,

We are so excited to have you back! We have been working hard all summer and over the last two weeks to make OGS a safe place for students and staff. I CANNOT wait to have children in the building again; my anxiety is high, but I feel seeing them will make things so much better, masks and all. I spent the summer with my family at my parent’s house, nicknamed “Camp Keane,” trying to keep things as normal as we could for my nieces and nephews. Classlists are coming soon, but we have had to make some changes to our Special Education team assignments to comply with the district's COVID-19 plan. I would also like to offer a 10-15 minute call with any of you who would like to connect with me over the next two weeks. I will include dates and times below so that you can email me with what works for you.


If your child had an annual or triennial meeting postponed from the Spring, we would be working on getting those on the calendar in the first 45 days of school resuming. We want our teachers to get to know the students and assess where they are before making those meetings. ALL meetings at this time will be held via Google Meets.

We are looking forward to a great school year in these unique times. Communication will be the key to all of our success this year, and please know we are here to help you navigate your child’s IEP or 504 plans.


Sincerely,

Katy Keane, Assistant Principal

Staffing for our Special Education Students


At OGS, we have a talented and caring team of professionals in the Special Education department, which consists of our special education teachers: Jeanie Edwards, Denise Lotko, & Sarah Romaine; speech and language therapist, Jennifer Jaques; and our psychologist, Brenda Generazio. Also, we welcome Colleen Yenke, who will provide occupational therapy, Meagan White, our Teacher of the Hearing Impaired, and a soon to be named physical therapist.


We are also fortunate to have a dedicated team of professional assistants who will be working in our classrooms, supporting the students. This school year, we are happy to welcome back Ryan Mayo, Maureen Valenti, and Ron Capeci.

As mentioned above, our staffing model needed to be adjusted so that we could adhere to the guidelines. This year Jeanie Edwards and Ron Capeci will be working with our Kindergarten and First Grade friends. Denise Lotko and Ryan Mayo will be working with our Second and Third-grade friends. Last but not least, Sarah Romaine and Maureen Valenti will be working with our students in grades four and five.


Over the next week, you should be contacted by your child’s instructional monitor via a phone call or email to start the school year. By Tuesday, September 8th, you will receive a DRAFT schedule of your child’s day. This will be a DRAFT so that it allows your child’s monitors to work out any unforeseen issues with the schedule over the first full week of school. A finalized schedule will be sent by September 21st.

EDS Parent Representative's Welcome Back Letter

SPECIAL EDUCATION

OGS PTA Educational Differences Support — EDS

Dear Old Greenwich School EDS Families,

Welcome to the 2020/21 school year!

First and foremost, in case you are new to the Greenwich Public School system or just haven't familiarized with EDS, it stands for Educational Differences Support. (But you should also know that it is synonymous with SES or Special Education Support and the name change took place two years ago so it's still referred to as both.) Every public school in town has one or two reps and we are here to make sure you:

  • Know all that you need to know with regard to your child's services

  • Have all of the support as a parent that you want or need

  • Are informed about upcoming lectures and available services for your child (inside and outside of school)

  • Know who we (your OGS reps) are in the event you have a question, concern, or any parents you would like to refer to us

We should first let you know that all of the correspondence that you receive from us will come directly from our Assistant Principal Katy Keane. You will be ANONYMOUS to us unless you choose to communicate with us directly (or sign something with Katy to directly communicate with us). While we embrace what we believe are simply “learning differences” that our children (and really ALL children) share, we understand that being open and public about it is a personal choice. Amanda has a kindergartener this school year and Lindsay a first-grader, and we believe that networking, sharing stories, sharing resources, and openly showing support to each other and other Special-Ed parents has been very beneficial for us, but clearly, that is for you to decide.

Either way, you will have our support and we will do our best to share everything we learn and receive access to as the year progresses including information from the monthly EDS meetings (including notices about local lectures). Lectures occur in and out of the district and we will share those with parents as the topics vary and are all relevant and fantastic for schooling a child with special needs and challenges. Finally, below is a list of the entire Special Education staff at OGS and their contact information (as well as ours). Please use it as your “go-to” reference page.

We look forward to setting up an in-person coffee at some point, but don't currently have a date so please feel free to reach out to us by email or phone with any questions. We are here to help!

Looking forward to meeting you soon!

Amanda Allen

646.221.0118

amandakmallen@gmail.com

Lindsay Kiernan

214.684.5394

Lindsay.Kiernan@aenetworks.com


Social Stories and COVID Resources