SPED Family Newsletter

March 2023

Dear Families

Spring has arrived and we continue to focus on VUSDs Framework for the Future which includes kindness, confidence, compassion and equity. This month we had a successful parent workshop on inclusive strategies and reviewed VUSDs annual Community Advisory Committee Priorities. We appreciate everyone who attended the parent workshop and look forward to your continued participation. Thank you all for your continued support as we work together to meet our student’s needs.

With gratitude,

Nereida Gutierrez,

Director, Special Education

Extended School Year (ESY)

ESY will be from June 20, 2023 - July 14, 2023 for students who are eligible based on their IEP.

An email with more details will be sent to ESY families this week.

Parent Workshop

Thank you to all of our parents who attended the training! We appreciate your input and support.
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Community Advisory Committee (CAC):

On March 22, 2023 CAC Representatives and District Directors attended an evening ceremony to review each District’s CAC Priorities for the 2022-23 school year.
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A Community Advisory Committee (CAC) is made up of parents, educators, and community members who are involved in special education.The CAC of the North Coastal Consortium for Special Education (NCCSE) provides meetings and special events throughout the year and advises the superintendents of the 14 school districts about special education services. Each meeting includes information on a special education topic, resources for families, and opportunities to meet with other parents to exchange resources, information, and ideas.

Next CAC Meeting Wednesday, April 19, 2023

Inclusion Exemplars: How to Create Meaningful Inclusion Opportunities -

From Classrooms to Clubs

Join us to learn about some inspired new approaches in Inclusion Practices-from administrative structure and classroom tools to campus activities. We will have Two District Administrators and a Parent Leader to discuss the successful programs in their districts. Our discussion is planned to encourage parents and energize professionals.

Wednesday, April 19, 2023

CAC Business Items: 6:00-6:30 p.m.

CAC Presentation with Guest Speakers: 6:30-8:00 p.m.

Location: North County Regional Education Center 255 Pico Avenue, San Marcos, CA 92069

Click here for event flyer: English/Spanish


STARS of Excellence & Innovation is our staff recognition award program for Vista Unified School District. This recognition is for all VUSD employees. This award will be given at the end of every month and will include a gift from a local small business, a picture on the VUSD website, recognition in the community update, on social media platforms, and at the regular board meetings. Please see our current Special Education STARS below.
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NCCSE Scholarship Opportunity

The scholarship submission period for new applications for 2023-2024 is open until March 31, 2023.

  1. The Dr. Lynnette Robinson Scholarship for Inclusive Education - For high school seniors who want to pursue a career in special education or a related field.
  2. The Bob Grundstrom Memorial Scholarship Information - For high school seniors who receive special education services.

March is Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month

To raise awareness in our communities please share stories of people with and without disabilities living side by side.

Save the date! NCCSE will be having their Adult Transition Fair on Saturday, April 22, 2023 from 9:00am to 11:30am

Adult Transition Fair, Saturday, April 22, 2023 from 9:00am to 11:30am

Location: NCCSE 255 Pico Ave, San Marcos, CA 92069

Please share the event with our families, students, and staff who would like to learn about resources for their students after they exit high school or adult transition programs (ATP).

Please review the flyer for more information.

Transition to Adulthood Flyer English/Spanish

Blueprint/LCAP Community Forums and Survey Update

Every school district in the state of California is required to develop a Local Control Accountability Plan (LCAP) to outline the actions and services that will support student academic, social, and behavioral achievement. We call our LCAP the Blueprint for Educational Excellence and Innovation. The LCAP must go through an annual revision process to ensure that students, parents, teachers, and staff members have the opportunity to provide feedback on the current actions and services and to make suggestions for additional actions and services that students need to reach their full potential as learners. We are hosting community forums and a district-wide survey to capture this feedback. Please see the information below to share your voice and engage in our annual LCAP revision process.

SpEd Community Forum:

In-Person Community Forum - April 10th from 5:30 pm at the Vista Innovation Center located at 836 Olive Ave, Vista 92083


Vista Adult School

Upcoming Event: Resource and Career Fair April 5, 2023 5:30pm - 6:30pm

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California Autism Professional Training and Information Network, (CAPTAIN ):

North Coastal Consortium of Special Education (NCCSE), Regional Center, FRC/FEC is proud to partner with the California Autism Professional Training and Information Network, (CAPTAIN ) by promoting the use of evidence- based practices for students with Autism.

CAPTAIN is part of the California Department of Education Statewide System of Support in collaboration with Marin County SELPA

CAPTAIN website


Please don't hesitate to communicate with our Community Liaison. We are here to facilitate communication between VUSD and families. If you need assistance please reach out to Doris Cruz.

Phone number: (760) 726-2170 ext. 92914

Email: doriscruz@vistausd.org

SpEd Community Liaison Flyer English/Spanish

Special Education Department Contacts

Nereida Gutierrez, Director, Special Education, specialeducationdept@vistausd.org

Steffanie Rupp, Coordinator, Special Education, steffanierupp@vistausd.org

Rachel Schmidt, Principal, California Avenue School, rachelschmidt@vistausd.org

Katherine Abraham, Principal, Vista Adult Transition Program, katherineabraham@vistausd.org

Jennifer Gruman, Program Supervisor, jennifergruman@vistausd.org

William Foley, Program Supervisor, williamfoley@vistausd.org

Kinga Nagorny, Program Supervisor, kinganagorny@vistausd.org

Dr. Charyn Socket Berg, Program Supervisor charynberg@vistausd.org

Dafnee Ramirez, Administrative Secretary, Special Education, dafneeramirez@vistausd.org

Debra Harris, Data Tech, debraharris@vistausd.org

Yvonne Fortin, Data Tech, yvonnefortin@vistausd.org

Doris Cruz, Community Liaison, Special Education, doriscruz@vistausd.org

Special Education Department: specialeducationdept@vistausd.org