What's Going on in Special Education in Bedford
Special Education Day 12-2-2022
IDEA resulted in many changes beyond bringing student's equal education. The integration of students with disabilities also helped to remove the stigma of disabilities. Another result of the IDEA was the development of technologies for student with disabilities for use in the classroom that improved the education of all students.
How Can We Observe National Special Education Day:
- Raise awareness to end the stigma around disability-Children with disabilities are often stereotyped based on their disability and assumed to be unable to do anything rather than focusing on their strengths. Today, make time to talk about it with family and friends to help them understand about inappropriate labels and end this stereotype.
- Show gratitude to special education teachers and students-Celebrate this day by thanking a teacher or teaching assistant who works towards empowering special children and their education. Call them or write them a thank you card for their efforts. It is a challenge teaching children and it can be more challenging and takes special patience when teaching students with disabilities.
- Thank the special education advocates-Another way to celebrate the day is by thanking the advocates working towards supporting and guiding students and families in need of special education.
- Share the story of Special Education Day on Social Media- Share inspiring stories about special children and their education with friends and family on social media to celebrate Special Education Day. Use hashtags #NationalSpecialEducationDay and #SpecialEducationDay to post on social media.
District Curriculum Accommodation Plan (DCAP)
Massachusetts General Law Chapter 71 Section 38Q 1/2 requires that a school district adopt and implement a curriculum accommodation plan to assist principals in ensuring that all efforts have been made to meet students' needs in regular education. The plan should be designed to assist the regular classroom teacher in analyzing and accommodating diverse learning styles of all children in the regular classroom and in providing appropriate services and support within the regular education program including, but not limited to, direct and systematic instruction in reading and provision of services to address the needs of children whose behavior may interfere with learning, or who do not qualify for special education services under chapter 71B. The curriculum accommodation plan shall include provisions encouraging teacher mentoring and collaboration and parental involvement.
Many times, parents believe that they must go through an evaluation process to determine if their child has a disability in order for them to receive accommodations in the classroom. That simply is not true. Bedford Public Schools has a comprehensive district accommodation plan. This accommodation plan outlines all of the supports, services and accommodations available to students within general education and without the need of an evaluation or a disability.
The DCAP can be found on the district's website.
Teachers often differentiate instruction or accommodate for individual students needs in the moment. However, if you feel your child requires any of these supports or accommodations, please speak with your child's teacher, guidance counselor, assistant principal or principal.
If you haven't already found Understood.org, I recommend you take a look. Many parents, including myself, have found it very helpful.
2023 Special Education Determination under Part B of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) – Meets Requirements (MR)
- 5-Year Cohort Graduation rates for students with disabilities;
- Annual Dropout rate for students with disabilities;
- Public School Monitoring special education compliance data;
- Problem Resolution System special education complaint data;
- Performance on Special Education State Performance Plan/Annual Performance Report (SPP/APR) Indicators; and
- Data and findings of Significant Disproportionality.
For the full LEA Determinations Rubric, see the Special Education Policy Memo SY2022-2023 — 3: 2022-2023 Determinations of Need for Special Education Technical Assistance or Intervention.
The Special Education Department in Bedford Public School District earned 30.5 out of 34 possible points on the rubric, or 89.7%. This puts us in the Meets Requirements category indicating that we do not need technical assistance or interventions
Department of Mental Health (DMH)
Some of the services offered are Child/Adolescent Case Managements, Individual and Family Support Services, Day Services, Caring Together Services, Clinical Intensive REsidential Treatment (CIRT), Intensive Residential Treatment Program (IRTP), Parent and Family Support Services, Transition Age Youth, School and Community Therapeutic Support, Information and Referral and Consultation and Education, Juvenile Forensic Court Services, Continuing Care Inpatient Services and Massachusetts Child Psychiatry Program (MCPAP).
More Information about these services or to apply for DMH services, please visit their website https://www.mass.gov/service-details/dmh-child-youth-and-family-services-overview.
For Emergency/Crisis Help, call 1 (877) 382-1609
Occupational Therapy and Physical Therapy in the School Setting
In Bedford, we have four occupational therapists (OT) and two certified occupational therapy assistants (COTA). We have one physical therapist.
Here are the dates and Zoom links for your December and January SEPAC meetings.
December SEPAC Meeting
Time: Thurs Dec 15, 2022 08:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)
Join Zoom Meeting
January SEPAC Meeting
Time: Wed Jan 18, 2023 08:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)
Join Zoom Meeting
Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission (MRC) Family Partnership Forum
Tuesday, December 13 from 6:00-7:30 p.m.
The Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission (MRC) hosts their next Family Partnership Forum. Expand your knowledge about MRC and the services we provide, and be part of a discussion about the unique needs of families across the Commonwealth.
Accessing Disability Benefits for Your Child & Family
The Transition to an Adulthood Program
Ask the Insurance Guru Live!
December 8th: Ask The Guru Live!
Have insurance questions about Autism and Behavioral Health? Don't miss the chance to ask the Insurance Guru live! Register for the Insurance Resource Center for Autism and Behavioral Health's FREE December Online Lunch and Learn today!
Registration required. Spanish translation available. All presentations will be recorded and posted on the the Insurance Resource Center for Autism and Behavioral Health website.