Cornell School District

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Special Education

Cornell School District
1099 Maple Street
Coraopolis, Pennsylvania 15108

 

ANNUAL NOTIFICATION TO PARENTS

Each year, Pennsylvania school districts
are required to publish the following information.
Please read carefully.

SCREENING AND EVALUATION The Cornell School District employs the following procedures for locating, identifying and evaluating the needs of school age students requiring special education programs and/or services. These procedures, as required by state regulations, are as follows: As prescribed by section 1402 of the school code, the district routinely conducts screening of a child’s hearing and visual acuity. Initial screening for speech and language skills is completed during Kindergarten at the elementary building. This screening is also initiated at other times on a referral basis to the nurse. Gross motor and fine motor skills are assessed by the teachers and support staff on an ongoing basis. Teams at each building meet routinely to conduct various screening activities on an ongoing basis including: review of group-based data such as enrollment and health records, report cards, ability and achievement test scores and observable behaviors. Needs identified from these screening sources, as well as from parents and outside agencies are assessed, noted within the student’s records, and discussed with parents. Various plans may be implemented and monitored. If appropriate, a referral process is initiated at each building level. The school, in order to determine the need for further evaluation, then uses any assessment data accrued. If it is determined that a student may be eligible for special education services, the student is referred for a multidisciplinary team evaluation. After the evaluation is completed, an Evaluation Report (ER) is prepared with parent involvement. This report includes specific recommendations for the types of interventions necessary to deal with the student. When the ER report is completed in accordance with state regulations, an IEP team meeting with parent involvement is scheduled to develop an appropriate Individual Education Plan (IEP) for the student. Parents of students who suspect that their child is exceptional and in need of special education may request a multidisciplinary team evaluation of their child through a written request to the building principal. The time and location of an evaluation depends upon each student’s current placement, as well as Federal and State time guidelines.

 

SPECIAL EDUCATION POLICY The Cornell School District is responsible for locating, identifying and educating children who are in need of special education programming. If anyone in the community is aware of a child with a disability such as mental retardation, blindness or deafness or with an orthopedic disability and needs special placement and is not receiving it, contact the school district at (412) 264-5010 ext. 113 or 111.

SERVICES FOR PRESCHOOL AGE CHILDREN Act 212, the Early Intervention System Act, entitles all preschool age children with disabilities to appropriate early intervention services. Young children experiencing developmental delays, or orthopedic or mental disabilities are eligible for early intervention services. The Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare is responsible for providing services to infants and toddlers, defined as children from birth through two years of age.Information regarding the appropriate developmental milestone descriptors for infants and toddlers may be found at the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) website at http://www.cdc.gov/ or The National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities (NICHCY) website at http://nichcy.org/.

Contact: St. Peter Child Development Center, Inc., 2510 Baldwick Road, Pittsburgh, PA 15205-4144, (412) 937-1502. The Pennsylvania Department of Education is responsible for providing services to preschool age children from ages three through five. Contact: Project DART, 200 Commerce Court Building, Pittsburgh, PA 15219-1178, (412) 394-5736.

SERVICES FOR STUDENTS IN NONPUBLIC SCHOOLS Public special education is accessible to resident students attending nonpublic schools by permitting the nonpublic student to enroll on a part-time dual enrollment basis in a special education program operated in a public school. Special education programs are accessible to nonpublic school students through dual enrollment following the multidisciplinary team evaluation and development of an individualized education program (IEP). Parents of students in need of special education may request a multidisciplinary team evaluation of their child through a written request to the nonpublic school principal.

SERVICES FOR SCHOOL AGE EXCEPTIONAL STUDENTS The School District provides a free, appropriate public education to students with a disability according to state and federal mandates. To be eligible the child must be of school age, need specially designed instruction, and meet eligibility criteria for mentally gifted and/or one or more of the following orthopedic and mental disabilities as set forth in the Pennsylvania State Standards: autism/pervasive development disorder, blindness/visual impairment, deafness/hearing impairment, mental retardation, multi-handicap, neurological impairment, orthopedic disability, serious emotional disturbance, specific learning disability and speech/language impairment. Services designed to meet the needs of eligible students include the annual development of an Individualized Education Plan (IEP), triennial multidisciplinary reevaluation, supportive intervention in the regular class, supplemental intervention in the regular class or in a special education resource program, placement in a part-time or full-time special education resource program, placement in a part-time or full-time special education class in a regular school or placement in a full-time special education class outside of the regular services and the location for the delivery of such services are determined by the parents and staff at the IEP team meeting and are based on the student’s identified needs and abilities, chronological age, and the level of intensity of specified intervention. The school district also provides related services, such as transportation, physical therapy, and occupational therapy that are required to enable the student to derive educational benefits. Prior to the initiation of services, parents are presented a “Notice of Recommended Educational Placement” (NOREP) with which they may agree or disagree. If parents disagree with the program being recommended, they have the right to request a pre-hearing conference, mediation and/or a due process hearing.

CONFIDENTIALITY OF STUDENT RECORDS The Cornell School District upholds the privacy rights of parents and students as mandated by federal legislation known as a Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (Buckley Amendment), state regulations (Chapter 14-Special Education Services and Programs, Chapter 12-Student Rights and Responsibilities), and the district’s policy. The different categories of information maintained by the school district are as follows: educational and health records, personally identifiable information, and directory information. Educational and health records and personally identifiable information cannot be disclosed or released without parent consent or if a student is eighteen or older, without his/her consent.Information known as directory information can be released without consent. Directory information means information, which would be considered not harmful or an invasion of privacy if disclosed. This information includes the following: student’s name, address, date and place of birth, courses taken, participation in officially recognized activities and sports, weight and height of members of athletic teams, dates of attendance, degrees and awards received and the most recent previous educational agency or institution attended by the student. Written parental, or a student age eighteen or older, request is required for the disclosure of educational and health records, and personally identifiable information. The consent must: specify the records that may be disclosed, purpose of the disclosure, and identify the party or class of parties whom the disclosure may be made. A written record of the disclosure must be maintained by the school district.

EXTRA-CURRICULAR ACTIVITIES All special education students are encouraged to participate in extra-curricular activities regardless of the location of where they attend school. This includes special education students who are Cornell residents attending approved private schools, center placement and PRII placements. Building principals may be contacted for sports activities and extra-curricular activities and calendars are available in each district office.

CHAPTER 15 REGULATIONS In compliance with State and Federal Law, the Cornell District will provide to each protected disabled student without discrimination or cost to the student or family, those related aids, services or accommodations which are needed to provide equal opportunity to participate in and obtain the benefits of the school program and extra-curricular activities to the maximum extent appropriate to the student’s abilities. In order to qualify as a protected handicapped student, the child must be of school age with an orthopedic or mental disability, which substantially limits or prohibits participation in or access to an aspect of the school program. For further information on the evaluation procedures and provision of services protected disabled students, contact the Superintendent, Cornell School District, 1099 Maple Street, Coraopolis, PA 15108, (412) 264-5010.

The Cornell School District, an equal opportunity employer, will not discriminate in employment, educational programs or activities, based on race, color, religion, national origin, sex, age, ancestry, physical disability or union membership. This policy of nondiscrimination extends to all other legally protected classifications. Publication of this policy in this document is in accordance with state and federal laws including Title IX of the Education Amendments 0f 1972 and Sections503 and 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. Inquires should be directed to the Superintendent, Cornell School District, 1099 Maple Street, Coraopolis, Pennsylvania, 15108.