The Special Services Department is a team of extraordinary professionals dedicated to providing excellence in education for all children. We recognize that all children develop and learn at different rates. While some children have few learning challenges, others may need assistance. When a child needs more support than can be provided by the classroom teacher, the district begins a process to determine what services are needed.
Child Identification Procedures
The district conducts Child Find activities for the purpose of locating, evaluating, and identifying students with a suspected disability who are residing within district boundaries. Child Find activities apply to children who are not currently receiving special education and related services. Parents having concerns about their child’s health, hearing, intellectual functioning, language, learning, movement, serious behavioral needs, speech, or vision can call the district’s special services department at 360-833-5570 to schedule an appointment.
Child Find events for 2016-17 will be held on:
- Sept. 14
- Oct. 12
- Jan. 4
- Feb. 15
- Mar. 22
- Apr. 19
- May. 10
Each school has a Building Intervention Team (BIT) that meets regularly to assess and monitor students’ learning needs. When a student needs more support than can be provided by the teacher, the BIT may refer a child for evaluation to determine if special education is appropriate.
Parents may also refer a child for special education evaluation. For information on how to refer your child, contact the Camas School District Special Services office at 360-833-5570.
If your child is referred for special education evaluation, you will receive a letter with the date and location of a meeting to decide if an evaluation is appropriate. Typically, it is decided at that meeting whether an evaluation is appropriate. In rare cases, a district could take up to 25 days to make a decision regarding evaluation. You will always be notified formally of the decision.
What if I do not want my child evaluated?
It is a parent’s right to refuse permission for evaluation. You may want to speak to your child’s teacher and principal regarding the reasons for referral.
Assessment of Students in Special Education
Information about how students in special education programs successfully participate in Washington’s assessment system is now located under the Assessment pages of the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction Web site. At http://www.k12.wa.us/assessment/altassess.aspx, use the left navigation bar to get an overview of the assessment options available to these students. You will also find:
- Information about the Washington Alternate Assessment System Portfolio
- Technical Reports of the Washington Alternate Assessment System
- Resources/Presentations regarding the Washington Alternate Assessment System
- For more information about the state’s Alternate Assessment program, please contact Judy Kraft, Alternate Assessment Specialist, at firstname.lastname@example.org or (360) 725-6089.
If the team determines that an evaluation is appropriate, you will receive a letter from the educational psychologist who will coordinate the assessment. That letter will ask you to attend a meeting to plan the evaluation. If you can’t attend the Evaluation Meeting on the scheduled date, please contact the educational psychologist at 360-833-5570 to arrange a different date or time.
Who is on the Evaluation team?
An evaluation team consists of you, the child’s general education teacher, a special education teacher qualified to teach your child, and a school psychologist. Other team members may include a speech and language pathologist, an occupational therapist, a physical therapist and others with knowledge about your child. You, as the parent, can include any team members you wish.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is my role as a parent in the referral process?
You are an essential part of the evaluation team and an equal participant in helping to make a decision for your child. We encourage you to become as involved and informed as possible. You know your child well, and the district values your input. You may bring any reports or information that you wish to have included in the evaluation. If you don’t feel comfortable speaking to the committee in English, speak with the educational psychologist about requesting an interpreter at the meeting.
Is my child invited to attend the Evaluation Team meeting?
A child may be included in an IEP meeting when the IEP team, including you, as the child’s parent, agrees the child should be involved. However, given the sensitive nature of some of the information presented, you may want to talk in advance with your school psychologist about how your child will be involved in the meeting. You should also talk with your child about what he/she should expect.
What information will be considered in the evaluation?
The Evaluation team will consider:• Teacher information• Related health information• Parent input• Formal assessments• Attendance information, past academic performance and any additional pertinent data
How does a child qualify for special education services?
To qualify for services, a child must meet criteria that have been established by Washington state and be in need of specially-designed instruction. Specially designed instruction can be defined as assistance that is tailored to your child’s needs and planned by a special education teacher.
If my child qualifies for special education services what happens next?
The district will establish an Individual Education Planning team for your child. The team will consist of your child’s classroom teacher, a special education teacher, related services representatives (if appropriate), a person knowledgeable about district programs and evaluation information. It may also include other persons with information about your child. With your help, the district will draft an individual education plan (IEP) for your child. The IEP will detail the special education services your child will receive for the next year and the place where services will be provided. You will be a part of the decisions that are made.
What types of services are provided by special education?
There is no single program for services. Some children who require a special education program remain in the regular classroom. They are provided with support such as program accommodations and assistance from special education staff. Some children need more intense services. There is no one way to deliver special education programs, and no one way to address a particular disability. The Camas School District offers a range of special education programs and services designed to meet a wide range of individual children’s needs.
What if I do not agree with the district?
IEP teams follow a formal process to protect the rights of parents and children. Your input is valued and essential to make the best possible decisions for your child’s education. If you would like information about your legal rights as a parent, please contact the special services and a copy of your rights will be sent to you, if you need assistance in understanding your rights as a parent, please contact the Director of Special Services at 360-833-5570.