Special Education Services in an Inclusive Environment
Special education services for students with an Individualized Education Program (IEP) are provided within the general education setting. The individualized needs of the student are addressed through a continuum of service delivered within this setting. A qualified special educator called a Learning Support Coach (LSC) is assigned to provide support to the student in classes organized by grade level or content area. The LSC is present in classes to provide the accommodations and monitor student progress toward IEP goals, reinforce instruction, teach executive functioning skills/self-determination, provide small group/individual instruction and collaborate with the general education teacher on how to best meet the needs of the student within the inclusive classroom. Students are given the advantages of the rigor of the general education classroom while being providing scaffolded supports. The expectation is that students will meet all district and state graduation requirements towards earning a diploma and career certificate.
SPECIALIZED TRANSITON TO EMPLOYMENT PATHWAY (STEP)
The STEP program at Delcastle Technical High School is designed for students who are eligible to participate in Delaware’s Alternate Assessment. Most students in this program are working toward a Diploma of Alternate Achievement Standards. The academic programs include instruction in English Language Arts, Mathematics, Science and Social Studies. The academic program is designed to reflect individual student needs and expectations in communication skills, self-determination, social skills and self-advocacy. The program promotes life skills, and Independence and Vocational Skills, that enable students to successfully transition into their post-secondary goals. Students also have opportunities to generalize their learning within the neighboring community by means of our Community Based Instruction program. The STEP Program focuses heavily on employability skills. All students participate daily in vocational training in the Production and Imagining career area, that models real-life work. This career program offers students opportunities to learn and apply all the principles of employability skills that are common throughout all the vocational programs offered in our district.
Following the completion of the STEP program, students continue training on post-secondary goals through the district’s Transition to Adult Life program. The program is a division of Service Source exclusively for NCCVT students aged 18-21. Students continue to receive individualized, comprehensive job readiness training through intensive paid and unpaid job exploration, community integration and work adjustment activities. Based on our employment training program and the commitment of our staff, our district is proud of its very high rate of placing students in competitive employment upon completion of the program at age 21.
The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEAL) 1997, reauthorized 2004, is a law that provides for the delivery of transition services for students with an IEP or 504 plan. This law requires districts to provide a coordinated set of activities to give students the tools to adjust to adult life after high school. Being a vocational/technical school district, transition activities drive our programs in order to prepare students to be ready for career and/or college. These experiences include career exploration classes, career and technical education classes and a cooperative employment program. Additionally, students have access to a District Transition Coordinator who makes transition resources available to students and assists them with their individual transition goals and application to state agencies for support services they are entitled to upon graduation.
STATE AGENCY SUPPORT
Transition services include student access to agency support services. Students with an IEP or 504 plan are given assistance in making application for eligibility to obtain Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR) services. DVR is sponsored by the Department of Labor and provides assistance with anything that leads to employment, including funding for education/training programs, apprenticeship, job placement. In junior and senior year services begin through the development of a transition plan during regular consultations with a DVR counselor. Students are also made aware of additional state agency services they may be eligible for based upon their needs, i.e. Division of Developmental Disabilities Services (DDDS); Division of Services for Aging and Adults with Physical Disabilities (DSAAPD); Pathways to Employment.
SCHOOL PSYCHOLOGY SERVICES
Psychological services are provided to help our student population succeed academically, socially, behaviorally and emotionally. Each psychologist is highly trained in psychology and education, assessment, intervention, consultation and school law. Our School Psychologists are DE certified professionals who complete psychoeducational evaluations in order to assess eligibility for special education services and Section 504 Accommodation Plans. Evaluations completed by the School Psychologists are comprehensive and utilize a multi-modal assessment process which includes an array of data sources. Our School Psychologists consult with Learning Support Coaches, parents, building administrators, and school based teams to create positive outcomes for students with diverse needs.
Emotional and Mental Health well-being is an important ingredient for students to be able to gain the most out of their high school experience. All adolescents experience ups and downs as they progress into adulthood; however, for students who require emotional/mental health support, school psychologists and school counselors are available to help navigate students toward healthy next steps. Wellness Centers also provide counseling and therapy services, available at Howard, Hodgson and Delcastle.
A majority of students classified with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) participate in the general education program at all schools, and others participate in the STEP Program at Delcastle. Some students may participate in a hybrid of these programs that allows students to continue to earn high school credits until age 21. Many students with ASD receive related services such as counseling and/or speech services. Teachers, both special and general, are aware of the accommodations that may be necessary to guide students toward successful next steps in to the post-secondary world. District transition counselor partners with students to help identify the student’s strengths, leading toward independence. Please feel free to contact the school special education team leader to discuss the specific model of support services for students in the inclusive environment.
SPEECH AND LANGUAGE SUPPORT
The New Castle County Vocational-Technical School District speech-language pathologists provide assessment and treatment for a variety of speech and language concerns including articulation, auditory processing, receptive/expressive language, fluency, voice, and pragmatic/social language. Based on student needs and IEP team input, individual sessions, group sessions, and/or consultation with teachers/staff may be implemented for service delivery.
A variety of related services are available based on student need. Typical related services include: Occupational/Physical Therapy, Speech/Language services, counseling/social skills training, orientation/mobility training, visual impairment and hearing impairment support. (For PT, a doctor’s note is required prior to an evaluation occurring. This doctor’s note should request that the therapist evaluate the student for school PT. The therapy is focused on school activities, not to be confused with overall therapeutic support).
The English as a Second Language (ESL) program at NCCVT is committed to providing support and services to students who qualify as English Learners (ELs). NCCVT schools provide the necessary language development support for all students who qualify. All ELs receive this support to increase their English language proficiency while simultaneously accessing the general education curriculum. Services are provided in a “push in, pull out” method according to the support required.
At times it is necessary for students to be out of school for a period of time that extends beyond 2 consecutive weeks. It is important to note that Homebound is meant to be short term for a determined period of time; it is not intended to replace the classroom experience. In order for Homebound services to be arranged, parents are required to contact their student’s school counselor. The counselor will contact the parent to review Homebound details. A medical/mental health expert must provide a letter that specifies they ‘require’ (not ‘recommend’) the student to be out of school. The letter must include an expected date of return to school, or a date for when a re-evaluation will occur to determine the date to return to school.
|David Jezyk||Supervisor of Special Educationfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Kimberly Damiani||Special Services Secretaryemail@example.com|
|Lynn Williams||District Transition Coordinatorfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Sharon Horrocks||District Spec Ed Compliance Coordinatoremail@example.com|
|Nancy Jarowski||District Speech Therapistfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Amanda Riley||District Speech Therapist||571-5400
|Loren Pearson||District Psychologistemail@example.com|
|Lisa Cave||STEP Program Team Leaderfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Jennifer Lyman||Delcastle Team Leaderemail@example.com|
|Ellen Flanagan||Delcastle School Psychologistfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Alison Burroughs||Hodgson Team Leaderemail@example.com|
|Linda Cylc||Hodgson School Psychologistfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Tristan Spates||Howard Team Leaderemail@example.com|
|Diana Kwacz||Howard/STEP Program Psychologistfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Andrea Green||St. Georges Team Leaderemail@example.com|
|Tenika Jean-Paul||St. Georges School Psychologistfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Andrew Hudson||ESL Instructoremail@example.com|