Each special education local plan area shall ensure that a continuum of program options is available to meet the needs of individuals with exceptional needs for special education and related services, as required by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act and federal regulations.
A full continuum of program options is available for educational placement of students with exceptional needs. Program options provide a spectrum of educational offerings, which range from regular classroom alternatives to the special site structured to deliver intense and specialized services. The Individualized Education Program team remains the primary decision-making body in determining the individual needs of students and the appropriate placement for them. Every effort is made to ensure that special education students have access to state determined frameworks and standards, and participation in academic and extra-curricular activities.
The continuum of program options shall include, but not necessarily be limited to, all of the following or any combination of the following:
(a) Regular education,
(b) A resource specialist program,
(c) Designated instruction and services,
(d) Special classes and centers,
(e) Nonpublic, nonsectarian school services,
(f) State special Schools
(g) Instruction in settings other than classrooms where specially designed instruction may occur,
(h) Itinerant instruction in classrooms, resource room, and settings other than classrooms where specially designed instruction may occur to the extent required by federal law or regulation,
(i) Instruction using telecommunication and instruction in the home, in hospitals, and in other institutions to the extent required by federal law or regulation.
Who is a School Psychologist?
A School Psychologist is a person specifically trained in the psychology of learning and child development as well as social and emotional adjustment. The School Psychologist is knowledgeable in data-based decision making, consultation and collaboration, effective instruction, child development, student diversity and development, school organization, prevention, intervention, mental health, learning styles, behavior, research, and program evaluation. School Psychologists use these skills as they work with all school personnel, parents, and students to help make education as rewarding as possible. School Psychologists are certified and/or licensed by the state.
What School Psychologists Do?
School Psychologists use problem solving techniques to improve the educational outcomes for individual students, as well as for whole classes, schools, and districts. They also develop programs to train teachers and parents about effective teaching and learning strategies, techniques to manage behavior at home and in the classroom.
Your School Psychologists work with teams in the following ways:
- Collaborate with teachers, parents, and administrators to find effective solutions to learning and behavior problems.
- Assist other educators, as well as parents, in understanding child development and how it affects learning and behavior.
- Establish and strengthen working relationships between teachers, parents, and service providers in the community.
- Evaluate eligibility for special services.
- Assess academic skills and aptitude for learning.
- Determine social-emotional development and mental health status.
- Evaluate learning environments.
- Promote tolerance, understanding, and appreciation of diversity within schools.
- Develop programs to make schools safer and more effective learning environments.
- Collaborate with school staff and community agencies to enable services aimed at improving the mental health of students and families.
Research and Planning
- Evaluate the effectiveness of academic and behavior management programs.
- Identify and implement programs and strategies to improve schools.
- Use evidence-based research to develop and/or recommend effective interventions.