Provisions of Services to Children with Disabilities | Policy 7610

The Board of Education affirms its responsibility as defined in Federal and State law and regulations to provide appropriate educational programs and services for educationally disabled students between the ages of three and twenty-one years (prior to September 1) who reside within the district. (Education Law Section 3202 and Chapter 243 of the laws of 1989). In meeting this intent the Board is charged with assuring that the following processes and concepts are carried out:

(a) Preschool Responsibilities of the Board of Education

In the calendar year in which a preschool child becomes three years of age, he/she shall be first eligible for preschool programs and services on January 2nd of such calendar year, if the child’s birthday falls before July 1st; otherwise, a child shall be first eligible on July 1st of such calendar year, unless the child who, as of his or her third birthday, is already receiving services pursuant to Section 236 of the Family Court Act.

A child remains eligible for preschool programs and services through the month of August of the year in which the child first becomes eligible to attend school if the child is severely disabled, meets the requirements for 12 month programming and 12 month programming is recommended on the child’s Individualized Education Program (IEP).

A child must be classified as having an educationally disabling condition in accordance with the conditions specified in Part 200 of the Regulations of the Commissioner of Education. This does not represent any change for three and four year old pupils, since these classifications were required under the court order process.

(b) Census and Register of Children with Disabilities

The school district must conduct a census for the purpose of locating and identifying all children with handicapping conditions who reside in the district and who are entitled to attend public school during each next school year. A register of such children is required to be maintained and revised biannually by the district’s Business Administration. The census should have available the statistical data needed to determine the status of pupils and the level of service necessary to address the student’s individualized needs. The data for this registry is to be reported to the chairperson of the CSE by September 15 of each school year and should be organized in the following manner:

– The pupil’s parents’ names, address(es), and the dominant language of the pupil’s home.
– The pupil’s disabling condition.
– The dates of referral, evaluations, recommendations of the CSE, actual placement, and annual program review data.

(c) Referral, Evaluation, Notice and Consent

The first step toward the provision of appropriate services is the referral of a child who is suspected of having a disabling condition to the CSE. A number of individuals may make this referral, including:

– The parent or guardian of the child,
– A professional staff member of the district,
– A physician,
– A judicial officer,
– The commissioner or designee of a public agency with responsibility for the welfare, health or education of children,
– The pupil, of over 18 or an emancipated minor, for purposes of referring oneself.

A standardized form for acceptance of a referral to the CSE shall be developed. After receipt of a written referral the CSE will conduct a comprehensive evaluation of the child including already known information as well as additional data collected through a variety of assessment tests and techniques.

Before initiating evaluation procedures, however, the CSE must first notify the parent that it intends to evaluate the child. In its notice to the parent, the CSE must describe the evaluation and indicate what it will do with the resulting information. If the proposed evaluation is for a pupil not previously referred to or classified by the CSE, then the CSE must also obtain written parental consent before the evaluation is conducted.

The parent must be given the opportunity to contribute evaluative material for consideration by the Committee on Special Education and to discuss the Committee’s findings and recommendations before they are submitted to the Board for final action. If it becomes known that no parent is available to represent the child, the CSE may find that there is need for a surrogate parent. If so, the Board must appoint a surrogate in accordance with the Regulations of the Commissioner.

Independent Educational Evaluations

Parents of children with disabilities have the right under Federal and State regulations to obtain an independent educational evaluation (IEE) at public expense under certain conditions. Regulatory standards are outlined in New York State Regulations of the Commissioner of Education Part 200.5(g). Additionally, the Federal Regulations (34 Code of Federal Regulations [CFR] 300.502) specify requirements for an independent evaluation.

A parent is entitled to only one IEE at public expense each time the District conducts an evaluation with which the parent disagrees.

Administrative regulations on independent evaluations will be developed in order to explain the rights of parents and the responsibilities of school districts with regard to independent evaluations, and also to avoid any misunderstandings.

(d) Individualized Education Plan (IEP)

The Board of Education, under State Law directs the Committee on Special Education to develop an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) for each pupil found to be in need of special education. An IEP is a document that outlines a plan for providing an educational program based on the unique needs of the child. Regulations require that the CSE determines if a student has a disabling condition and qualifies for special education services. As noted above, this determination is made following a comprehensive evaluation of the student. That same evaluation will form the basis for the CSE recommendations to the Board regarding the student’s program and placement. Both the evaluation and the recommendations for program constitute the framework of the IEP, and must include the following components in addition to other requirements mandated in law and regulation:

– The present levels of educational performance including the individual needs of the pupil according to the levels of academic, social, and physical development and the management needs of the pupil;
– The classification identifying the disabling condition;
– Annual goals that are consistent with the pupil’s needs and abilities as well as specific objectives which are to be addressed through programming;
– The recommended program, the class size if appropriate, and the extent to which the pupil – will participate in regular education including occupational education and physical education or adaptive physical education when appropriate;
– The projected date for initiation of special education and related services, the amount of time per day the student will receive such services, and the projected date of the review of the student’s need for such services;
– A description of any specialized equipment and adaptive devices needed for the pupil to benefit from education;
– A list of those testing modifications to be used consistently by the pupil in the recommended educational program;
– The recommended placement where the pupil will receive such services;
– A statement of short term objectives consistent with each of the annual goals for the pupil;
– Appropriate objective criteria and evaluation procedures and schedules for determining, at least on an annual basis, whether the instructional objectives are being achieved;
– The site where the pupil is currently receiving an educational program;
– If the pupil is not receiving an appropriate – public education, a statement of the reason shall be entered in the register.

(e) Annual Review

The Board of Education delegates the responsibility of annual review of Individualized Educational Plans to the Committee on Special Education. The process of reviewing the IEP occurs on two levels:

– Evaluating the progress of the child in regard to attainment of instructional objectives, assessed on an ongoing basis by teacher(s), parents and other appropriate personnel throughout the year,
– Evaluating the progress of the child in regard to appropriate program placement for next year.

Based on the review, recommendations are developed by the CSE with the parent prior to sending them to the Board. This review must be conducted at least annually, or in the event that the program no longer appears to be appropriate to meet the student’s needs and ability levels, for all children receiving special education.

(f) Participation in School District Programs

The Board of Education assures that children with disabilities residing in the District shall have the opportunity to participate in School District programs, including extracurricular programs and activities, which are available to all other pupils enrolled in the public schools of the District. Parents/legal guardians of students placed in out-of-District programs shall receive timely notice of such District programs and activities.

(g) Appropriate Space

The Board of Education supports a system of services offered in the least restrictive environment for children with disabilities which includes:

1) Allocation of appropriate space within the District for special education programs that meet the needs of students with disabilities;
2) Assurance that appropriate space will be available to meet the needs of resident students with disabilities who attend special education programs provided by BOCES.

(h) Program Accessibility

Fonda-Fultonville’s policy is to make its programs accessible to all its students, including those with physical disabilities. Accordingly, a full and complete barrier-free elementary program will be available. At the Middle School and High School, the Board of Education intends that all key facilities be as available to students with disabilities as they are to non-disabled students. Any or all of the following methods will be used to ensure such accessibility.

1) Alteration of existing facilities.
2) Reassignment of classes or other services to accessible parts of the building.
3) Assignment of aides to assist students with disabilities.

The District official responsible for coordination of activities relating to compliance with Section 504 is the Superintendent of Schools. This official shall provide information, including complaint procedures, to any person who feels his or her rights under Section 504 have been violated by the District or its officials.

(i) Discipline of Students with Disabilities

Should a student with a disability infringe upon the established rules of the schools, disciplinary action shall be in accordance with procedures set forth in the District’s School Conduct and Discipline Code and in conjunction with the administration of the Committee on Special Education.

(j) Credential Options

The Board of Education is committed to ensuring that students with disabilities are provided appropriate opportunities to earn a high school diploma in accordance with the provisions of Section 100.5 of the Commissioner’s Regulations. However, when necessary, the District may award local certificates and high school individualized education program diplomas to students with disabilities.

(k) Parent Involvement

The Board of Education recognizes the rights of the parent to be fully informed of all information relevant to the identification or change in identification, evaluation and educational placement of a disabled child.

All due process procedures for parents and children in the State Regulations shall be observed by the School District.

Surrogate Parents

In the event that no parent or guardian for a child with a disability can be identified or after reasonable efforts, the whereabouts of the parent or guardian cannot be determined, or the child with a disability is a ward of the state, the Board shall assign an individual to act as a surrogate for the parents or guardians. The person selected as a surrogate shall have no interest that conflicts with the interest of the child he/she represents, and shall have knowledge and skills that insure adequate representation of the child.

It is the duty of the School District to determine whether a child needs a surrogate parent and to assign a surrogate parent in the manner permitted under New York State Law.

(l) District Plans

The Board of Education shall see that written plans are prepared by November 1, 1988, and by November 1st every second year thereafter. Plans should be in accordance with new Part 200.2 (c) of the Regulations of the Commissioner of Education.

(m) CSE and CPSE

The Board of Education shall annually appoint a Committee on Special Education and appropriate members of the Committee on Preschool Special Education in accordance with the provisions of the Education Law, Sections 4402 and 4410.

Equal Educational Opportunities

It is the policy of this District that each student attending its public schools shall have equal educational opportunities and will not be excluded or prevented from participating in or having admittance to the educational courses, programs or activities; school services; and extracurricular events on the basis of race, color, creed, national origin, political affiliation, sex, age, marital status or disability.

Administration shall establish grievance procedures that provide for the prompt and equitable resolution of complaints pertaining to discrimination on the basis of race, color, creed, national origin, political affiliation, sex, age, marital status or disability.

Revised 11/22/99
Revised 02/25/02
Revised 10/26/09

1. Referral
– Received by Building Administrator – Informs Committee on Special Education (CSE) Chairperson immediately.
– Received by CSE Chairperson – Informs building administrator with five (5) business days.
– Committee notifies parent immediately.
(a) Requests consent for evaluation.
(b) Provides prior written notice; describe action (e.g., evaluation).
(c) Provides procedural safeguards notice.
(d) Provides sources for parents to obtain assistance in understanding the process.
(e) Provides Parent’s Guide.
– Committee continues its duties and functions unless a withdrawal of the referral is made.
– Withdrawal of Referral
(a) By parent and referring person.
– Agreement in writing which specifies alternatives to resolve learning difficulties and provides opportunity for follow-up conference.
– Copy of agreement provided to parent and referring party and placed in student’s record.
(b) Building administrator may request meeting with parent/student within ten (10) business days of receipt of referral.
– Referring person attends.
– Agreement in writing that describes alternatives and proposed duration of alternative program.
– Copy of agreement to CSE, students record, referring person (if from school), parents.

2. Evaluation
– Committee obtains parental consent for evaluation with thirty (30) business days of request for consent.
(a) If parent does not provide consent, offer mediation or initiate an impartial hearing in order to pursue the evaluation.
– Committee arranges for a full and individual evaluation.
– Committee provides notice to parent of meeting to review evaluation results [must be received by parent five (5) days prior to the meeting].
(a) Include procedural safeguards notice.

3. Recommendation
– Committee, including the parent and, if appropriate, the student, meets to review evaluation information to determine eligibility for special education and, if appropriate, develop an Individualized Education Program (IEP).
(a) Committee considers evaluation information including attempts to remediate prior to referral to special education, including supplementary aids and services or reasons why no attempts were made.
– Committee determines student INELIGIBLE for special education:
(a) Committee provides notice to the parent of recommendation. Provides parent with procedural safeguards notice and a copy of the evaluation report and the documentation of determination of eligibility.
(b) Committee provides parents with the procedural safeguards notice.
(c) Committee provides recommendation to the building administrator for consideration of educationally related support services to address student’s needs.
(d) Committee provides recommendation to the Board of Education.
-Committee determines student ELIGIBLE for special education:
(a) Committee develops a written recommendation (IEP).
(b) Committee documents least restrictive environment considerations.
(c) Committee documents special considerations for students whose behavior impedes learning, students who are deaf or hard-of-hearing, students who are blind or visually impaired, students with limited English proficiency, students who need assistive technology devices or services.
(d) Committee provides notice to parent which includes:
-Recommendation including options considered and a rationale for rejecting those options not selected.
-A copy of the evaluation report and the documentation of determination of eligibility.
-Procedural safeguards notice.
-Requests parental consent for initial placement(including, if appropriate, initial recommendation for twelve month programs and services).
(e) Committee provides notice to the Board of Education.

4. Arrange For Receipt of Recommended Services
– Parent(s) give written consent for initial placement.
(a) If no consent, District must offer mediation or initiate an impartial hearing within thirty (30) business days of notice of recommendation.
– Board of Education reviews recommendation,
(a) Arranges for services/placement within sixty (60) business days* of the receipt of consent to evaluate; provides notice to the parent, including procedural safeguards notice.
(b) If the Board of Education disagrees with the Committee recommendation, the Board may remand the recommendation back to the Committee for reconsideration and provides notice to the parent.
* If the recommendation is for placement in an approved in-state or out-of-state private school, the Board of Education shall arrange for such programs and services within thirty (30) business days of the Board’s receipt of the recommendation of the Committee.
(c) The Board of Education may establish a second Committee to develop a new recommendation for the student.
– If the Board disagrees with the recommendation of the second Committee, the Board may remand the recommendation back to the second Committee for additional reviews.
– Board of Education must accept the recommendation of the second Committee once the Board authorizes a second Committee to make a new recommendation.
– In all cases, Board of Education must arrange for programs and services within sixty (60) business days* of receipt of consent to evaluate.

5. Review IEP
– Committee periodically, but not less than annually, reviews student’s IEP and other information pertaining to the student’s performance.
– Committee provides notice to parent of meeting purpose; provides procedural safeguards notice.
– Committee considers educational progress and achievement (including reevaluations, parent information and lack of progress).
– Committee considers student’s ability to participate in regular education (least restrictive environment options considered and reasons rejected).
– Committee makes recommendations for program modifications.
– Committee makes recommendations for transition services related to courses of study (for students age 14 and updated annually); makes recommendations for transition services (students age 15 and younger if appropriate).
– Committee provides notice to parent of recommendation.
– Committee provides notice to Board of Education.
– Board of Education reviews recommendation,
(a) Arranges for services/placement within sixty (60) business days* of the receipt of referral for review; provides notice to the parent, including procedural safeguards notice.
(b) If the Board of Education disagrees with the Committee recommendation, the Board may remand the recommendation back to the Committee for reconsideration and provides notice to the parent.
(c) The Board of Education may establish a second Committee to develop a new recommendation for the student.
– If the Board disagrees with the recommendation of the second Committee, the Board may remand the recommendation back to the second Committee for additional reviews.
– Board of Education must accept the recommendation of the second Committee once the Board authorizes a second Committee to make a new recommendation.
– In all cases, Board of Education must arrange for programs and services within sixty (60) business days* of receipt of consent to evaluate.

6. Reevaluation
– At least every three (3) years, the Committee must arrange for an appropriate reevaluation of a student with a disability to determine the student’s individual needs, educational progress and achievement, the student’s ability to participate in instructional programs in regular education, and the student’s continuing eligibility for special education.
– Committee and other qualified professionals determine whether new tests or assessments need to be conducted as part of a reevaluation.
– Committee provides notice to the parent; including procedural safeguards notice.
(a) Notifies parent whether new tests or assessments to be conducted as part of the reevaluation.
(b) Requests consent for new tests or assessments to be conducted as part of the reevaluation.
* If the recommendation is for placement in an approved in-state or out-of-state private school, the Board of Education shall arrange for such programs and services within thirty (30) business days of the Board’s receipt of the recommendation of the Committee.
– Informs parents of their right to request a new test or assessment as part of the reevaluation to determine whether their child continues to be a child with a disability.
(c) If parent does not respond to request for consent within thirty (30) business days and District has documented appropriate attempts to obtain consent, the new tests or assessments may be conducted.
(d) If parent refuses consent, District must resolve the matter through a mediation agreement or an impartial hearing before conducting the new test or assessment as part of the reevaluation.
– Committee provides notice to parent of reevaluation meeting at least five (5) business days prior to the meeting; includes procedural safeguards notice.
– Committee conducts reevaluation meeting to review existing and, if appropriate, new tests or assessments.
– Committee makes recommendation.
– Committee provides notice of recommendation to parent and Board of Education.
– Board of Education reviews recommendation.
(a) Arranges for services/placement within sixty (60) business days* of the receipt of referral for review, provides notice to the parent, including procedural safeguards notice.
(b) If the Board of Education disagrees with the Committee recommendation, the Board may remand the recommendation back to the Committee for reconsideration and provides notice to the parent.
* If the recommendation is for placement in an approved in-state or out-of-state private school, the Board of Education shall arrange for such programs and services within thirty (30) business days of the Board’ s receipt of the recommendation of the Committee.
c) The Board of Education may establish a second Committee to develop a new recommendation for the student.
– If the Board disagrees with the recommendation of the second Committee, the Board may remand the recommendation back to the second Committee for additional reviews.
– Board of Education must accept the recommendation of the second Committee once the Board authorizes a second Committee to make a new recommendation.
– In all cases, Board of Education must arrange for programs and services within sixty (60) business days* of receipt of consent to evaluate.
*If the recommendation is for placement in an approved in-state or out-of-state private school, the Board of Education shall arrange for such programs and services within thirty (30) business days of the Board’s receipt of the recommendation of the Committee.