Special Education

What Special Education IS

Special Education is specially designed instruction to meet the educational needs of an identified individual with exceptional needs.

Per California Special Education Code: Article 1.56303: “A pupil shall be referred for special educational instruction and services only after the resources of the regular education program have been considered and, where appropriate, utilized.”

The specially designed instruction should:

  1.  Be based on assessment results.
  2.  Be individually determined and implemented.
  3.  Be based on learning rates (rate of acquisition/retention); learning styles;learning modalities; and cultural/ethnic/linguisti considerationsd. Be  outcome oriented.
  4.  Be linked to the curriculum strategies of the regular classroom.
  5.  Be monitored regularly and modified if necessary.

What Special Education is NOT

  1. The solution to all under-achievement.
  2. A remedial program.
  3. Just small group instruction.
  4. Separate from the general program system.
  5. A place…to put behavior problem students.
  6. A place…to put substance exposed students.
  7. The placement for students with disabilities unless…(there is a need for a specially designated instructional program and the student will benefit from special education).

Excerpts from Pat Campbell’s address to Policy & Planning Committee State Board of Education 10-10-93. Sprague Associates 1991.

Mission Statement

The mission of the Special Education department is to provide our school community with the skills needed to maximize the learning of all students, in an inclusive environment, through leadership and mentoring, for the benefit of our diverse society.

Making a Difference

starfish.pngWhile walking along a beach after a particularly high tide, a man noticed a boy picking up starfish after starfish and throwing them back into the sea. When he neared the youngster, he asked, “What are you doing?”

“These starfish will die if they don’t get back into the water,” the boy replied as he hurriedly continued his work.”

“There are thousands of starfish on this beach,” the man said. “Nothing you can do can possibly make a difference.”The boy held out the starfish he had just picked up. “It makes a difference to this one,” he said and threw it into the ocean.