Partnering with Parents

To Meet the Needs of Our Students with Special Needs

February, 2021 Volume 3 Issue 5

If you are accessing this newsletter via the Parent Portal, please type this link into your browser so you can access the links in the newsletter- Or you can find the link on Facebook or Twitter @HTDSspecialed.

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Hamilton Cares

As an additional avenue to support our HTSD community, a hotline has been set up for all families to call if they are in need of any assistance. The number for the hotline is (609) 476-6138. If you or someone you know needs assistance with meals, wellness, or any other related service, please call the hotline, leave a message, and we will reach out as quickly as possible.

*The state has recently extended our free meal program until the end of the school year. ALL students eat free in Hamilton Township Schools this year.

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Important Dates


Black History Month

National School Counseling Week- February 1-5

Random Acts of Kindness Week- February 14-20

School Bus Driver Appreciation Day- February 22

4- Mid Trimester 2

9- Parent Teacher Conferences

10- Parent Teacher Conferences

14- Happy Valentine's Day

15- Presidents' Day- Schools Closed

17- Random Acts of Kindness Day

19- 100th Day of School!

22- School Bus Driver Appreciation Day

Parent Teacher Conferences

Here is a good resource for parents and helpful talking points as you go into conferences:

Family Guides: Supporting Learning in 2020-21

These guides provide information on the most important things students should be learning, and how to reinforce learning with everyday activities, tips for talking to teachers and online resources that match the most important content.

Promoting Literacy Development at Home

If you are the parent of a prek to grade 3 student in our district, please complete the brief survey linked below if you have not already. This process will allow us to get a $500 grant for Hess and a $500 grant for Shaner to promote literacy at home.

"The Hamilton Township School District is partnering with SPAN Parent Advocacy Network (SPAN) to support literacy development for students in grades PreK through 3. We need your help in identifying the types of reading support you need for your child(ren) at home. You can help us by completing this brief survey Families and staff will be invited to discuss the results of the survey at a follow-up meeting. Together we will also develop a plan to promote literacy development at home through COVID-19 and beyond. For questions and to complete the survey by phone, contact Ms. Tatsiana DaGrosa, Parent Group Specialist at SPAN, at (609) 401-9423."

Special Education Parent Advisory Group (SEPAG)

We have a Special Education Parent Advisory Group (SEPAG) in the district. Each district board of education shall ensure that a special education parent advisory group is in place in the district to provide input to the district on issues concerning students with disabilities (N.J.A.C. 6A:14-1.2(h).

Please contact Marylynn Stecher- if you would like to serve as a member of this group and you will be added to the email list to get reminders of meetings. Our first meetings for the 20-21 school year were on Wednesday, October 21 and Tuesday, January 12. Upcoming meetings are scheduled as follows:

  • Tuesday, March 9, 2021 from 6:00-7:30 p.m.
  • Tuesday, May 11, 2021 from 6:00-7:30 p.m.

SPAN Parent Advocacy Network

SPAN Parent Advocacy Network is pleased to present the following virtual workshops in February:

Using Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS) - February 9, 2021

Time: 7:00 - 8:00 PM

The focus of this workshop is on interventions and supports for students who exhibit challenging behaviors (e.g. aggression, self-injury, tantrums).


Student-led IEPs - a Path to Success - February 10, 2021

Time: 11:00 AM - 12:15 PM

This presentation will discuss what parents need to do to begin the student-led IEP process for students, what students need to know to begin the student-led IEP process and what student-led IEPs look and feel like for students, families, and teachers.


Literacy Strategies for Families - February 10, 2021

Time: 6:00 PM - 7:15 PM

This workshop will help families to support their child's reading achievement, especially children who are struggling readers.


Procedural Safeguards: What You Need to Know - February 11, 2021

Time: 7:00 - 8:00 PM

This workshop will provide information on parental rights under the NJ Administrative Code pertaining to written notice, consent, confidentiality, access to records, dispute resolution procedures, disciplinary protections, and more.


Interventions and Supports for Struggling Students - February 16, 2021

Time: 6 PM - 7:15 PM

This workshop will provide information on resources and helpful strategies for use at school and at home to help avoid student failure.


All Kids Belong: The Importance of Least Restrictive Environment (LRE)/Inclusion - February 16, 2021

Time: 11:30 AM – 12:30 PM

This workshop will review the IEP process with specific focus on the legal requirement of the Least Restrictive Environment.


VOCES LATINAS Presenta... ¡Empoderados, Comprometidos y Efectivos!

18 de febrero de 2021

Haga clic aquí para registrarse:

Una serie interactiva y totalmente en español de empoderamiento familiar. Aprenda como navegar el sistema de educación especial. Identifique los apoyos disponibles para los estudiantes que están teniendo estragos en su educación. Organice un plan de acción para involucrase efectivamente en los grupos de toma de decisiones. Anote las fechas: Todas las reuniones serán de 6:00pm – 8:00pm

Para más información o si necesita ayuda registrándose contacte a: Fanny Ochoa o llame al 551-260-0046

Transition to Adult Life – February 22, 2021

Time: 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM

This workshop will discuss issues related to transitioning from school to adult life.


Family 2 Family Health Advocacy - February 22, 2021

Time: 7:00 - 8:00 PM

This workshop will provide information about various insurance models - who is eligible, what is covered, and how to apply.


NJ Resources and Options for Families – February 23, 2021

Time: 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM

This workshop will discuss resources and information SPAN can provide to families as well as various other organizations and agencies to help families.


Essential Components of the IEP - February 23, 2021

Time: 6:00 PM - 7:15 PM

This workshop provides participants with a review of the essential components of an Individualized Education Plan.


From Measurable Goals to Making Progress - February 24, 2021

Time: 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM

This workshop provides parents and professionals with strategies to create IEP with measurable annual goals and objectives as well as the required information regarding student progress.


Please click on the button below to check out the START-Engaging Parents of Students with Disabilities (START-EPSD) Project At-a-Glance resources. This is a very comprehensive tool.

Mental Health and So Much More!

Please check out the Mental Health webpage on our Hamilton Township School District website. There are a ton of great resources. I have included a button below to take you directly there if you are accessing this newsletter via Facebook or Twitter. If you are accessing this newsletter via a PDF copy on the parent portal, please go to our Facebook or Twitter page @HTSDspecialed so you have access to all the links contained in the newsletter.

Social Emotional Learning and Mindfulness

SEL at Home: Top Resources to Share with Families

Grow Kinder (at Home) Podcast

Grow Kinder (at Home) is a series of mini podcast episodes designed to help educators and families through the dramatic changes brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic. With discussion topics ranging from teacher self-care and reopening schools to supporting anxious kids and managing screen time, Grow Kinder (at Home) explores real-life challenges and how we can overcome them by using our social-emotional skills and practicing empathy.

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Physical Health

Covid-19 Information Hub

Covid-19 Information for Schools

There are updates dated 1/19. They are highlighted so it is easy to see the changes. Click on the link above or the button below.

Covid-19 Resource Guide from AtlantiCare

COVID-19 Testing for Kids-

Please review the video prepared by our school nurses linked below.

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Project Child Find

Parents of Hamilton Township who are concerned that their school age child (3 years to 21 years) may have special needs can receive assistance from the local school district's Child Study Team. In addition, the Hamilton Township Schools are organizing a Child Find campaign to locate and provide services for children ages three to five who may have physical, cognitive, language or emotional difficulties. Information also may be obtained on how and where to receive services for children with special needs who are younger than three. Professional guidance, assessment and an educational program are all available free for eligible children. For more information contact the Hamilton Township School District Child Study Team office at 476-6111.

The Project Child Find Fact Sheet

NJDOE Project Child Find Information

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Register Ready – New Jersey’s Special Needs Registry for Disasters

Register Ready – New Jersey’s Special Needs Registry for Disasters allows New Jersey residents with disabilities or access and functional needs and their families, friends, caregivers and associates an opportunity to provide information to emergency response agencies so emergency responders can better plan to serve them in a disaster or other emergency."

For more information, click on this link.

Administrative Team

Supervisor of Special Education and Child Study Teams

Marylynn Stecher

Supervisor of Instruction in Special Education

Dana Kozak

Supervisor of Special Projects

Jeff Wellington

Notice of Nondiscrimination

The Hamilton Township School District does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, gender, affectional or sexual orientation, ancestry, disability, age, or social or economic status in its programs and activities.

The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies:

Marylynn Stecher

Affirmative Action Officer



For further information on notice of nondiscrimination, visit for the address and phone number of the office that serves your area, or call 1-800-421-3481.