Specialized Education

Welcome to Eastern Carver County School’s Specialized Education web site! This site is designed as a resource for parents and community members seeking specialized education information. This site will be updated regularly, so please check back often for current information and resources.

 

Our Mission

Our mission is to work in collaboration with students, parents and community providers to ensure
a high quality education for our students
based on Eastern Carver County Schools’ Mission, Vision, and Values statements.

Special Education Special education is specially designed instruction and related services that enable a student with a disability to access and benefit from their program of education. The focus of special education is to insure a Free & Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) for eligible students identified to have a disability and who are in need of individualized and specialized instruction. This instruction must be calculated to provide for progress toward goals and objectives through a collaborative process between parents/guardians, students and professional staff. Special education addresses the individual needs of the child that arise from a disability and is provided at no cost to the parents. Specially designed instruction means adapting the content, methodology, or delivery of instruction (i.e. what we teach and how we teach it) to address the student’s unique needs that arise as a result of their disability, and to ensure access to the general education curriculum.

We are dedicated to meeting the unique needs of our special education students and their families. Our mission is to:

  • Create an equal partnership between parents, teachers and learners to foster open, honest communication.
  • Provide an effective educational experience in neighborhood schools for students, families, staff and community members in an atmosphere where differences are accepted, valued, and supported by all.
  • Provide an atmosphere of respect where students will improve weaknesses and capitalize on strengths to become independent learners.
  • Dedicate ourselves to a collaborative team approach for meeting student needs in the least restrictive environment.
  • Protect student rights and demonstrate program benefit by applying state and federal due process laws.
  • Develop and implement individualized programs for students which are monitored through thoughtful data collection and analysis.
  • Provide ongoing development opportunities for special education staff in effective, research based instructional strategies.
More About Specialized Education

If you are new to the school district or exploring options – welcome! We are happy to assist in any way possible and would be thrilled to welcome your child in our schools.

If you are a current family in our school district, but new to specialized education – we look forward to working with you! We will be working closely with you and your child’s classroom teachers to help your child succeed.

If you are already served by Eastern Carver County Schools specialized education services – we are pleased to serve you! We hope the information we share here will help as you work with us on behalf of your child’s learning.

Eastern Carver County Schools provide specially designed instruction and programming for students with special learning needs. We pride ourselves on the quality of our staff and on our efforts to provide appropriate instruction for each student based on the latest educational research. We are committed to developing the skills and potential of every student we serve.

Our specialized education department serves approximately 1,200 children age birth through 21. The majority of the students receive specialized education services in their home schools. However, Eastern Carver County Schools offers a wide range of service delivery models including home-based services for infants and toddlers, resource programs and center-based programs. In addition, we access specialty programs offered by the SouthWest Metro Intermediate District 288.

Please feel free to contact us if you need assistance.

Special Education

Upcoming Events

Department Contacts

Director
Specialized Services
Laura Pingry-Kile
Administrative Assistant to
Specialized Services Director
Barb Schug
schugb@district112.org
(952) 556-6170
Specialized Services
Supervisor
Erin Copeland
Specialized Services
Supervisor
Jennifer Davie
(952) 556-6177
Specialized Services
Supervisor
Ellen Grossman
Specialized Services
Administrative Assistant
Barb Franks
Special Education Early Childhood Supervisor
Michele Bedor
bedorm@district112.org
(952) 556-7241
Specialized Services Fiscal Accountant
Kerri Whitney
(952) 556-6179
Student Services Administrator
David Brecht
(952) 556-6141

Specialized Education Advisory Council (SEAC)

About SEAC
  • Represents the interests of district learners with disabilities from birth through age 21.
  • Advises the special education department on parent involvement, current issues, program development and department priorities.
  • Serves as an advocate for high-quality special education programs.
  • Promotes communication among family, school and community.
  • Meets approximately four times during each school year. Meetings are held from 6:30-8:00 p.m., at the school district education center.
  • Members of SEAC are appointed or elected by the special education director to voluntarily serve as a representative for a two-year term, with the opportunity to reapply for additional terms.

For more information about SEAC, contact Laura Pingry-Kile, Director of Specialized Education Services.

Special Education Advisory Council Needs You!

The Special Education Advisory Council:

  • Represents the interests of district learners with disabilities from birth through age 21.
  • Advises the special education department on parent involvement, current issues, program development and department priorities.
  • Serves as an advocate for high-quality special education programs
  • Promotes communication among family, school and community.
  • Members of the SEAC are appointed or elected by the special education director to voluntarily serve as representatives for a two year term, with the opportunity to reapply for additional terms. The council consists of approximately 20 members, including parents, community representatives, and school staff. At least 50% of the members are parents representing diverse disability areas.

Primary Responsibilities:

  • Review and abide by SEAC bylaws, including confidentiality of person-specific information shared in meetings or in SEAC related activities.
  • Attend scheduled meetings and sponsored parent events. To remain in current standing, members are required to attend at least 50 percent of the meetings scheduled in a year.
  • Prepare for meetings: Read SEAC agendas, minutes, reports, and related materials. Provide requested input prior to meetings. Come prepared to discuss agenda items using relevant examples or supporting information.
  • Participate in meetings: Provide requested feedback. Contribute ideas for solutions. Identify barriers or challenges experienced by other families; represent family concerns; focus on student needs as a group, rather than on individual student concerns. Share personal experiences as they relate to decisions regarding policies and procedures; ask clarifying questions.
  • Encourage parent involvement and participation: participate in community awareness activities and information sharing with families in the district.
  • Work collaboratively with the school district or cooperative’s special education director as well as other school personnel and SEAC parent and community members to fulfill the local SEAC’s purpose and mission.

Meeting Schedule:

  • The council is scheduled to meet four times during the school year. Meetings are held from 6:30-8:00 p.m. at the school district education center. In addition to the council meetings, SEAC sponsors and assists in a few other events during the year such as a Parent Transition Evening and Regional Trainings.

For more information about the SEAC, contact Laura Pingry-Kile at 952-556-6170 or PingryKileL@district112.org

Printable Information on SEAC

Mission & Vision

Mission:

  • To advise District Administration regarding the need for and provision of special education and services from the parent perspective.

Values:

  • The Advisory Council will act in support of human worth and dignity of every student. The Advisory Council’s actions are guided by respect for each individual.

Strategies:

  • Serve as key point of contact representing parental perspective regarding special education.
  • Increase community awareness and understanding of special education, disabilities, and individual potential.
  • Increase parent’s involvement and represent parents of students with special needs in district decision-making.
  • Advocate for high quality education and services.
  • Promote partnerships with other entities to address special education needs.
  • Tell stories as a means of building community.

*adopted in 2003, reviewed in 2010

Printable Copy of Mission & Vision

SEAC Resources

Restrictive Procedures

How are Restrictive Behaviors Used?

In accordance with Minnesota Statute 1125A.0942, Subd. 1, every school district is required to develop and make public a plan that discloses its use of restrictive procedures. The plan specifically outlines the list of restrictive procedures the school intends to use; how the school will monitor and review the use of restrictive procedures, including post use debriefings and convening an oversight committee; and a written description and documentation of the training staff that have completed the training. 

Eastern Carver County Schools uses restrictive procedures only in response to behavior(s) that constitutes an emergency, even if written into a child’s Individual Education Plan (IEP) or Behavior Intervention Plan (BIP). Below is the plan and supporting documents for all schools in Eastern Carver County School District including the following elementary schools: Kindergarten Center/La Academia, Bluff Creek, Chanhassen, Chaska, Clover Ridge, East Union, Jonathan, and Victoria. The following middle schools: East, West and Pioneer Ridge. The following high schools: Chaska and Chanhassen. The following special education separate site programs: STAR and Early Childhood Special Education.

Restrictive Plan and Appendices

Mental Health Services and Resources

About Mental Health Services

Eastern Carver County Schools supports a full continuum of mental health supports and services for students. Our schools utilize a positive behavioral interventions and supports (PBIS) approach. All buildings have assigned staff with expertise in mental health services and intervention teams to support student success. Additionally, the district supports a campaign effort to reduce stigma around mental health, called “#Stigma 180.”  Mental health training and staff development is available and provided at no cost to the community and staff members. For students that need more individualized mental health support, the district provides special education services and has established collaborative partnerships with mental health agencies. Through our collaborative partnerships students may access onsite co-located mental health services. Additionally, the district provides educational services within the Anicca program which is a local mental health day treatment program operated by Carver County. The district also provides educational services within PrairieCare Chaska partial hospitalization program, a mental health agency within our district boundaries. In addition to building and specialized education staff supports, two district-wide Family School Coordinators maintain an inventory of local mental health resources and provide direct and indirect services to building staff, students and families to support children’s mental health.

Mental Health Services Contacts

Madalyn Larsen
Family School Coordinator
Eric Dean
Family School Coordinator
deane@district112.org
(952) 556-6266
Ellen Grossman
Specialized Services Supervisor
Tara Cliff
Health Services Supervisor
clifft@district112.org
(952) 556-6116

Homebound Services

About Homebound Services

The purpose of Homebound Instructional Services is to provide K-12 students who are unable to attend classes at a school building for health or other reasons with educational services which will allow the students to maintain academic progress on agreed upon classes and to facilitate a successful transition back to a school building as quickly as possible.

 Medical Homebound Instructional Services are educational services provided to a student in the home or other non-school building site within Eastern Carver County Schools boundaries when a medical authority (ie; licensed physician, psychiatrist) submits verification of the student’s confinement to their home and inability to attend school. The district referral process includes receipt of the following: written documentation of a medical diagnosis, anticipated dates of absences and possible return dates, as well as a medical request for homebound service to begin during the treatment process which includes verification of the student’s confinement to their home and inability to attend school.  It is expected that homebound instructional services will be short-term and unless there are exceptional circumstances, homebound services shall not exceed 172 school days, i.e. the normal school year.  While a student is receiving homebound instructional services that student remains enrolled in and the responsibility of the school site the student attended immediately before receiving homebound instructional services.

For more information contact Jen Hayes, Coordinator or David Brecht, Student Services Administrator.

Nonpublic Specialized Services

About Nonpublic Specialized Services

Children enrolled by their parents in private schools or who are home schooled may participate in publicly funded special education programs, and school districts have the clear responsibility to offer a free appropriate public education (FAPE) to students with disabilities. The amount that local education agencies must spend for special education services for parentally enrolled private school students with disabilities is limited by federal law to a proportionate share of federal funding available to the local education agency under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEIA). This allocation also includes the provision of Health Services, Secondary Counseling and Guidance, along with management of Title funding.

Eastern Carver County Schools is also responsible for locating, identifying, and evaluating all children with disabilities within its boundaries, including those who attend nonpublic schools within its boundaries.  Please take a moment to review resources identified below. If you have more questions regarding any of this information, please call Laura Pingry-Kile, Ed.D. Director of Specialized Education Services or Jen Hayes, District Representative for Specialized Education Services.

Homeschooling

This section of our website is for the convenience of home educators residing within Eastern Carver County School District. In accordance with state law, the district is required to ensure all school-age children living within the district’s boundaries are being educated. The district’s role is to act as the liaison facilitating enrollment and reporting requirements outlined by the Minnesota Department of Education.For more information contact Barb Franks, Specialized Services Administrative Assistant or David Brecht, Student Services Administrator.

Intervention Planning (iTEAM)

About i-TEAM

It is essential that intervention planning, implementation and evaluation be conducted in systematic, planned and individualized ways. The following process is an outline for all teams across the district to use when addressing intervention for learning and/or behavior concerns being manifested within the educational setting. It is understood that each building within the district may have slight variations to match their educational model. It is also important to consider which school personnel in each building will be responsible for each step in this process. The pre-referral process is initiated when there are significant concerns about a K-12 student’s progress. This process can be initiated by a parent or by school personnel. In situations where school personnel initiate the process, it is very important that parents have been informed regarding concerns before this formal intervention planning begins. Intervention planning process consists of four steps. The steps are an outcome of a district-wide task force and three working committees with representatives from all schools, including both general education and special education staff. Along with the description of each step, there are suggested documentation forms to facilitate completion of the steps. Based on the results from this general process, building teams may decide that:
a) there has been sufficient improvement in the identified problem, and the interventions will be continued to support the continued success of the student
b) although improvements have been noted, there are still concerns and the intervention process should be continued with revisions
c) no improvements have been noted and a special education evaluation may be requested
– If a special education evaluation is being requested, the referral packet will actually consist of the forms completed throughout the intervention process.

 

Minnesota Statutory Requirements (2007):
Alternative Instruction Required Before Assessment Referral

Before a pupil is referred for a special education evaluation, the district must conduct and document at least two instructional strategies, alternatives, or interventions using a system of scientific, resource-based instruction and intervention in academics or behavior, based on the pupil’s needs, while the pupil is in the regular classroom. The pupil’s teacher must provide the documentation. A special education evaluation team may waive this requirement when it determines the pupil’s need for the evaluation is urgent. This section may not be used to deny a pupil’s right to a special education evaluation.

MN Statue. 125.A.56(a)

Section 504

Section 504 Information
Eastern Carver County Schools is committed to providing a free and appropriate public education to all students. Students who have a diagnosed medical condition identified to be a disability may be eligible for certain protections under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990. Schools are required to provide access to education for all students and to make available reasonable accommodations to a child’s educational program or setting. If a student is eligible for protection under Section 504, a Section 504 Plan will be developed by the child’s team including parents, child (if appropriate) and other knowledgeable personnel. Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 is a civil rights law designed to eliminate discrimination on the basis of disability in any program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance. Section 504 guarantees certain rights to individuals with disabilities, including the right to full participation and access to a free and appropriate public education (FAPE) to all children regardless of the nature or severity of the disability. Specifically, 34 C.F.R.§104 states:“No otherwise qualified individual with a disability in the United States… shall, solely by reason of her or his disability, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.” Section 504 requires the provision of appropriate educational services; services that are designed to meet the individual needs of qualified students to the same extent that the needs of students without a disability are met. Essentially Section 504 was designed to “level the playing field,” to ensure full participation by individuals with disabilities. For more information contact Laura Pingry-Kile, Director of Specialized Education Services. Please see the documents below for additional information related to our process and procedures.