The Special Education Compliance Group provides a variety of services to ensure that public school districts and charter schools are providing strong Special Education programs in full compliance with federal and state regulations.
- Do you need a trained facilitator for IEP meetings, someone who has completed Facilitated IEP training?
- Do you need a Special Monitor as a result of a Department of Education order?
- Are you a charter school seeking a mentor to improve Special Education services and ongoing compliance with Federal and State regulations?
- Do you need a presenter for in-service training?
- Do you need consultation to position your school for ongoing compliance with Federal and State regulations?
- Do you need assistance with navigating a state administrative complaint or with crafting corrective action from a state administrative complaint?
Below are a few common compliance areas faced by Special Education directors. Special Education Compliance Group offers services to assist you in any of these areas:
- Graduation requirements for students eligible for Special Education
- Prior Written Notices (PWN)
- Extended School Year (ESY) services
- Measurable IEP goals
- Special Education instruction vs. academic support and accommodations
- Revocation of consent for Special Education services
- Implementing Individualized Education Programs (IEP)
- Discipline of students eligible for Special Education
- Child Find
- Progress Reports
- Eligibility and Evaluation
Facilitated IEP Meetings
A Facilitated IEP meeting is one where the IEP is developed through a collaborative process, where the responsibilities for the meeting process and results are shared equally by meeting participants, and where decision-making is managed through the use of effective facilitation skills. Through the Facilitated IEP process, the IEP team reaches true consensus, relationships are enhanced and improved, communication is encouraged and valued, and the needs of the student take center stage. The IEP facilitator focuses on the meeting process, leaving the content decisions to the IEP team, therefore assuring that each team member’s concerns and ideas are heard and given equal consideration. A trained facilitator guides the IEP team toward its stated objectives, assists the team members in building understanding and agreement, and brings out the best in all team members. The Facilitated IEP process results in a more effective IEP by helping to resolve conflict and reconcile differences of opinion on the IEP team. The result is a stronger and more focused IEP that is more likely to be implemented according to the actual wishes of the IEP team.
If a district or charter has been ordered to secure the services of a Special Monitor to assist the school’s Special Education department, or if a school wishes to be proactive by consulting with a Special Monitor to review existing programs, service delivery, and Special Education procedures, the Special Education Compliance Group can provide a special monitor.
A Special Monitor works with the special education director on the following:
- Draft and review a written action plan
- Arrange and coordinate in-service training
- Recommend the most effective ways to meet the requirements of the corrective action order
- Develop an overall corrective action plan
- Recommend steps to ensure ongoing compliance
Whether a charter school is just opening or has been operating for some time, the Special Education Compliance Group can provide a Charter Mentor to assess your program and services, offer targeted recommendations, and guide the Special Education director toward ongoing compliance with Federal and State regulations. Visit Compliance Consultation for a partial list of questions that guide the consultation.
Special Education Consultant
By using easy-to-complete survey forms and an on-line assessment of knowledge of federal and state regulations, the Special Education Compliance Group can provide a Compliance Consultant to help schools quickly identify areas of weakness and vulnerability. Then, by working with school staff, we can target specific areas and recommend steps to take to strengthen Special Education programs and service delivery, to help ensure that relationships with parents remain strong, and to ensure ongoing compliance with Federal and State regulations.
Below are a number of challenging Special Education issues that our Compliance Consultant can address:
- Graduation requirements, particularly for students with intellectual disabilities and specific learning disabilities:
Does your school’s graduation plan align with State and Federal regulations? Have you developed a meaningful and comprehensive course of study parallel to the course of study for non-disabled students?
- Extended School Year (ESY): Is your staff over-providing ESY services to students who are actually not eligible?
- Prior Written Notice (PWN): Is your staff writing PWNs that are complete and clear so that the steps proposed/refused are clearly understood by all stake holders?
- Individualized Education Program (IEP): Are staff aware of the requirements governing the composition of an IEP team, when an IEP team must be reconvened, how an IEP can be revised, and what to do when a required or optional IEP team member is unavailable to attend a meeting?
- Revocation of Consent for Special Education Services: Does all written communication to parents who request revocation clearly outline the consequences of revocation?
- Continuing Eligibility: Does the school incorrectly retain students on the Special Education roster when they are no longer eligible for Special Education instruction and services?
- Special Education Instruction vs. Academic Support and Accommodations: Do staff understand the difference between these concepts/services, and is Special Education instruction actually being provided?
- Discipline: Do staff understand when and how to conduct manifestation determination meetings, who determines when there is a pattern of suspensions, who determines when and how services will be provided, and how to complete solid paperwork that clearly communicates?
- Child Find: Is the school meeting its affirmative duty under the regulations to identify and evaluate students who may be eligible to receive Special Education instruction and services?
- Intake Procedures: Is the school’s intake process robust so that all mandated services are provided in a timely manner?
- Goal Progress Reports: Do staff provide all required information when writing IEP goal progress reports?
- Educational Records: Does the school’s procedure comport with federal requirements?
In Service Training
The Special Education Compliance Group provides targeted in-service training for Special Education directors, coordinators, and instructional staff in a variety of areas, including:
- Graduation requirements and credits for students eligible for Special Education
- Measurable IEP Goals
- Prior Written Notice (PWN)
- Overview of Special Education
- Evaluation and eligibility
- Service delivery
- Effective Individualized Education Program (IEP) meetings
- Building collaborative relationships with parents
- Discipline for students eligible for Special Education
- Determining eligibility for Extended School Year (ESY)
- Special Education mandates
Corrective Action & Complaint Coach
State Administrative Complaints
If a district or charter receives a state administrative complaint alleging that Special Education regulations are not being followed, the Special Education Compliance Group can provide assistance to guide and advise the school during the process. If noncompliance is found and corrective action is ordered, we can assist with crafting the documents and establishing procedures to assure ongoing compliance.
Corrective Action Ordered by the Department of Education
If, as a result of a finding of noncompliance in a state administrative complaint, a district or charter is ordered to complete corrective action, we can assist in creating written action plans and advising school leaders about specific steps that can be taken to have tracking systems in place, clear procedures, and documentation that clearly communicates to parents, brings the Corrective Action Plan to a close, and ensures ongoing compliance with Federal and State regulations.