SPECIAL PROGRAMS NEWSIES

JUNE 2020

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MESSAGE FROM THE DIRECTOR

I can't believe it's June!!!


The 2019-2020 school year has been a year of twists, turns and unprecedented events. We in partnership with our families have navigated these waters with commitment, determination and perseverance that could never be matched by others. We have proven that as a team, we can make just about anything happen when our students are the #1 priority. Caroline County Public School's Special Education department has worked hard to ensure all of our students have received an appropriate education whether it was through virtual learning or phone calls and learning packets.


We do have an AMAZING staff but this could have never been accomplished without AMAZING families.


During the Summer, we want our students to continue learning. Our Special Education department will be providing ESY to students with disabilities that have been determined eligible for these services. In addition, we will be offering reading and/or math interventions and a variety of online educational resources for students with disabilities. We know this has been a unique experience for everyone but we want you to know that we are committed to supporting our students and families as we continue through these ever changing times.


As this year comes to a close, the CCPS Special Education Department wants to thank all our families for their continuous support throughout this school year and our dedicated staff for their creativity and hard work.


Have a safe and relaxing Summer!!! and of course, STAY HEALTHY!


Elizabeth Anthony

WHAT'S HAPPENING IN SPECIAL EDUCATION

At the end of March, CCPS educators quickly jumped into action to plan, design and implement instruction for all students in both a virtual or paper-packet format. Not only are our students with disabilities accessing the general education curriculum via a computer or paper packet, but they are also receiving specially designed instruction via an Individualized Distance of Learning Plan (IDLP) that was developed in collaboration with the student’s family.


CCPS educators have created 600 Individualized Distance of Learning Plans (IDLP) for our students with disabilities based on their current IEP to be implemented during the COVID19 extended closure. Case managers made over 2,597 phone calls home to families in the beginning of April, so they could work collaboratively to develop an IDLP that best meets the child’s needs. These IDLP do not replace the IEP, but instead, they supplement it during our extended closure.


Here’s a few important things to know:

  • If a student with disabilities does not have internet access at home or they simply work better with hands-on materials, then they have been provided with individualized packets based on their IDLP.

  • Case management services are also continuing through phone calls or video conferencing with Zoom for our families.

  • IEP team meetings are still being held with Zoom video conferencing or by telephone - whichever method the family prefers. We have actually held 173 IEP meetings by mid-May!


To help our teachers organize all this new information, we have created a COVID19 webpage that houses all documents from MSDE, our special education department plus how-videos for the latest technology uses for specially designed instruction. It’s been getting a lot of action with over 839 views from 164 unique users!

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In addition to providing specially designed instruction and running IEP meetings, our teachers have actively been engaged in professional development over the past 4 weeks learning about new digital tools and ways to enhance their distance instruction. In fact, our Special Education Teacher Specialists have hosted 67 virtual training sessions with over 250 teacher attendees!
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There are a lot of changes right now in so many elements of our lives, so you might be thinking, “How can I best help my child and their special education teacher during this closure?” Here are a few ideas:

  • Make sure your child develops a schedule that works best for them to get their schoolwork done.

  • If your child has weekly appointments with their case manager, set an alarm 30 minutes prior to the start time so they have plenty of time to get ready. Our case managers have tight schedules and we want to make sure they don’t miss a moment of time instructing your child.

  • Set-up a work area for your child that has necessary materials like pencils, pens, scratch paper, calculator (if they use one) etc. It should be in a quiet area away from distractions so they can focus on their work.

  • Keep an eye on your child’s stress level and make sure they take breaks from their work. We want this to be as stress-free as possible continuation of their learning ;-)


Remember - we have a team ready to support you and your child so please reach out if you have any questions!

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FAMILY SUPPORT SERVICES - Special Education Citizen's Advisory Committee (SECAC)

A Special Education Citizens’ Advisory Committee (SECAC) is a committee established by the local school system to seek meaningful input from parents, community partners, service providers, educators, and administrators on local issues relative to the provision of a free appropriate public education (FAPE) and the achievement of students with disabilities. To work most effectively a SECAC operates as a partnership between parents and families, community leaders and organizations, educators, and administrators at the local level. A local SECAC enables a local director of special education to collaborate with others on local issues and it has the potential to facilitate positive changes in the delivery of special education services and the achievement of students with disabilities. [COMAR 13A.05.02.13I]


Please contact Cynthia Brummell, Family Support Resource Coordinator 410-479-3609 or brummell.cynthia@ccpsstaff.org with any questions or concerns.

SECONDARY TRANSITION

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INFANTS & TODDLERS

  • Infants and Toddlers and their Families are being provided with Virtual Sessions via Zoom

  • Approximately 98% of families are staying engaged with their child’s Individual Family Service Plan (IFSP)

  • IFSPs are being fully implemented

  • Social Story shared with infants and toddlers and their families - provided by Conscious Discipline

EARLY CHILDHOOD

Regional Pre-K 3 Programs: Preston and Ridgely Elementary Schools


  • 1st Continuity of Learning Home Packets provided to children and their families March 16 - April 24, 2020 (school distributed)

  • 2nd Continuity of Learning Home Packet mailed to children and their families April 27- May 15, 2020

  • In addition to the Continuity of Learning Home Packets, a variety of parent resources:

    • Home schedule with activities

    • App and directions for home use: Khan Academy Kids

    • Access to Frog Street Parent Portal for Online Books

    • Links to websites for Read Alouds

  • Continuity of Learning Home Packets and Parent Resources are posted on CCPS Website

  • Pre-Kindergarten-3 students have received learning packets containing Language and Literacy, Mathematics, Fine Arts, and Physical Well-Being and Motor Development activities. They also received Social Foundations activities, along with suggested parent resources from Frogstreet Three and Conscious Discipline.

  • All parents have regular contact with their teacher via Zoom and Google Voice.

  • Students with disabilities receive virtual instruction as per their Individualized Distance Learning Plan (IDLP)

  • Social Story shared with children and families - provided by Conscious Discipline

Pre-Kindergarten Programs

  • 1st Continuity of Learning Home Packets provided to children and their families March 16 - April 24, 2020 (school distributed)

  • 2nd Continuity of Learning Home Packet mailed to children and their families April 27- May 15, 2020

  • In addition to the Continuity of Learning Home Packets, a variety of parent resources:

    • Home schedule with activities

    • App and directions for home use: Khan Academy Kids

    • Access to Frog Street Parent Portal for Online Books

    • Links to websites for Read Alouds

  • Continuity of Learning Home Packets and Parent Resources are posted on CCPS Website

  • Pre-Kindergarten students have received learning packets containing Language and Literacy, Mathematics, Fine Arts, and Physical Well-Being and Motor Development activities. They also received Social Foundations activities, along with suggested parent resources from Frog Street Pre-K and Conscious Discipline.

  • All parents have regular contact with their teacher via Zoom and Google Voice.

  • Students with disabilities receive virtual instruction as per their Individualized Distance Learning Plan (IDLP)

  • Social Story shared with children and families - provided by Conscious Discipline

GIFTED AND TALENTED / ENGLISH LEARNERS / 504

Gifted and Talented News

Gifted and Talented teachers have been using Zoom and Google Classroom to provide enrichment activities in reading and math as well as using magnets to paint, finding items around the house to create musical instruments, and creating Rube Goldberg Machines. We have some very creative and talented students!


Please do not hesitate to reach out if you have any concerns or questions about our gifted and talented program. I look forward to a continued collaboration with teachers, counselors and administration to implement programs to meet the needs of our gifted and talented learners.

English Learners News

EL teachers have also been working hard to maintain consistent communication with students and families. They have found Google Voice most helpful because of the translating feature and secondary EL teachers are reporting that students are using these numbers to reach out as needed to ask for help. I would like to give a huge shout out to my EL teachers at all levels for all of their hard work they are putting into individualizing the work that is being sent home for our students. They are translating documents and providing a lot of resources that would be used in a classroom setting to support our EL students.


Caroline County Public Schools continues to ensure that English learners (ELs), including immigrant children and youth, attain English language proficiency and meet the same standards that all children are expected to meet. We currently have almost 500 English learners enrolled in Caroline County Public Schools. CCPS wants to work hand in hand with our EL students and their families to make sure your child is successful in school and that you have the resources you need. Please do not hesitate to reach out to your child’s teacher, guidance counselor or school administrators if you have any questions or concerns.

504 News

504 Chairpersons are doing a great job of tracking their students' progress. They track students weekly by communicating with teachers about students participation, progress and any information communicated by the family or teachers related to concerns about the students.


Please remember to make the school aware of any changes that can have an impact on your child’s 504 Plan. Please do not hesitate to reach out to your child’s school should you have any questions or concerns about their 504 Plan. You do not have to wait until the date of your annual review to ask questions or check in on your child’s progress.


Christal Harkowa

Supervisor of Instruction

English Learners, Gifted & Talented and 504



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