Specialists serving our students with disabilities include special education certified teachers, psychologists, speech-language pathologists, occupational therapists, physical therapists, music therapists, teacher specialists, and Para Professionals trained to serve students, grades Pre K-8 who have at least one of the following conditions: autism/autism spectrum disorder, emotional disability, hearing impairment, other health impairments, specific learning disability, mild, moderate or severe mental retardation, multiple disabilities, multiple disabilities with severe sensory impairment, orthopedic impairment, speech/language impairment, traumatic brain injury, and visual impairment, (preschool moderate delay, preschool severe delay, preschool speech/language delay).
The Special Services Department includes professionals who specialize in working with students who have various disabilities and may need related services. Related services may include speech therapy, occupational therapy, physical therapy, adapted physical education and assistive technology. Students must meet eligibility requirements to enroll in a Special Education program.
The goal of Special Education is to help students become independent learners, to teach learning strategies to prepare them to be successful in their regular classes, and to prepare them for high school and post-secondary experiences. This goal will be achieved through a partnership between student, home and school. Cartwright School District Special Services offers a broad continuum of services for students Pre K-8th grade. Following a comprehensive assessment that may include a psychological evaluation, educational testing, speech-language assessment, audiological testing and other assessments, a student may be eligible to receive services in one or more of the following categories:
- Emotional/Behavioral Disorders
- Hearing Impaired
- Orthopedically Impaired
- Other Health Impaired
- Preschool Special Education
- Related Services
- Specific Learning Disabilities
- Speech-Language Impaired
- Traumatic Brain Injury
- Visually Impaired
- Intellectual Disabilities (Mild, Moderate, Severe/Profound)
Classes serving students with disabilities are located in elementary, middle, high schools, and psycho-educational centers. Delivery models for instruction include regular classroom, resource self-contained home-based settings, and residential settings. All programs are not represented in every school. In these instances, students are assigned to a program nearest the home school and transportation is provided.
The Program for Exceptional Children is required to provide free, appropriate public education to eligible children in cooperation with parents and other agencies under the Individual with Disabilities Education Act. Each eligible student must have an Individual Education Plan (IEP), which is developed by a team composed of teachers and other qualified school personnel, parents or guardians and the student, when appropriate. The IEP is revised when necessary and reviewed at least annually.
All students referred for Special Education Services must first go through the Teacher Support Team/Response To Intervention process. This means that strategies in the regular education setting must be considered and documented before referral to Special Education. Parents and guardians are encouraged to contact their child’s home school for more information if they suspect that their child has a disability.