•  

    Q: When will students receive their IEP minutes during the school closure?

    A: In Shoreline, the District Continuous Learning Plan does not include the provision of SDI to students remotely during the school closure. We are offering continuous home learning resources and activities for all students, including students eligible for special education. During the school closure, we are using such methods as printed learning materials, phone contact, email, technology-based virtual instruction, or a combination to meet student needs. OSPI guidance is clear that there is not an expectation that Individualized Education Program (IEP) services will be delivered exactly as the IEP states during the school closure.

    You will be contacted by your student’s IEP case manager after spring break to develop a Continuous Home Learning Plan, which will outline the continuous learning resources and activities specific to your student’s needs during the school closure. 



    Q: How will compensatory services be implemented?

    A: Per OSPI guidance, compensatory services will be determined after normal school operations resume and will be determined on a case-by-case basis. The extent of a student’s compensatory services, if needed, must be an individualized determination made by the IEP team once school resumes. Remember, FAPE is different right now due to the current circumstance of the pandemic and resulting school closure. We are offering continuous learning opportunities, materials and resources to all students during the school closure. This is an area we will continue to communicate about as we get closer to resuming school.

    For more information, please see OSPI Q & A 4.13.20

    A-10. Q. When normal school operations resume, will districts need to review every student who has a 504 plan or IEP to determine if compensatory services are needed? 

    A. Yes, districts will likely need to look at each individual student to determine whether compensatory services are needed. There is no exception to the requirement to provide FAPE to students with disabilities and if the district is providing general education services to students without disabilities, then it must also provide FAPE to students with disabilities. However, due to the exceptional circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic and resulting school facility closures, districts will likely need to determine whether and to what extent compensatory services are necessary when normal school operations resume in the event that the district is unable to provide appropriate IEP services during the school facility closure. The extent of a student’s compensatory services, if needed, must be an individualized determination made by the IEP team.  

    A-11. Q. What is the difference between compensatory services and extended school year (ESY)? 

    A. Compensatory services are to enable the student to make progress, ESY services are for maintaining skills. Compensatory services are determined after normal school operations resume and are determined on a case-by-case basis. Districts should examine the effect of the closure on the student’s progress toward their IEP goals. ESY is required if the student needs it as a result of regression and recoupment time, or if they are at a critical stage in learning, based on documented evidence. The need for ESY should be examined on a case-by-case basis for each student, as already required in IDEA. Districts should consider how to address current ESY needs of students whose IEP teams have already been identified the need in their IEPs and prepare to provide needed ESY services after the end of the 2019-20 school year.

    Q: On-site school based instruction- will this be offered to highly impacted special education students?

    A: Districts must prioritize staff and student safety, and that means educational services must be provided from a distance in most instances. As a last resort, on a case-by-case basis, OSPI states districts may consider whether on-site services are required in the event there is no other alternative to the service delivery and can be done so while in compliance with applicable social distancing directives, health guidelines and in accordance with current federal, state, and district guidelines and procedures.

    For more information, please see OSPI Q & A 4.13.20

    1-A Q. Is it true that the Governor’s school facility closure order allows school buildings to stay open to provide vital services to students with disabilities?

    A. The guidance from OSPI is consistent with the Governor’s proclamations, in that districts should identify ways to provide education services, including special education, safely for students, families, and educators. Districts must prioritize staff and student safety, and that means special education and related services must be provided from a distance in most instances. However, this does not mean school districts are not permitted to provide some in-person services to students with disabilities in a school facility as a last resort. In rare cases where districts determine that the use of school facilities to provide educational services is essential and necessary under a student’s IEP, the district may provide the services in a school building under the following conditions. First, facilities should only be used to provide direct services to individual students when there is no other alternative to the service delivery. Second, the specific services and use of the facility must be necessary and essential. Finally, school facilities are not to be used for providing direct services to groups of students, and any gatherings within school facilities must comply with applicable social distancing directives and health guidelines. Again, in-person services should be provided under limited, case-by-case circumstances, as it would be contrary to replace in-person education in school buildings with in-person special education services. Guidance from the U.S. Department of Education specifies that special education services may need to be delivered in alternate manners.

     

    Q: What is the expectation for Special Education families during this time? How involved should we be? 

    A: While district staff cannot replicate the experience in the classroom, we can provide content and learning experiences in different ways. Shifting to a remote learning system while in the midst of a public health crisis is a great challenge for all of us. Expect to hear from your student's providers after spring break regarding specific collaboration on supporting your student in accessing the home learning resources. Positive relationships and shared decision-making with families is critical - be open to partnering with your student’s teachers and providers on flexible ways to meet needs during this time.This will not look the same for every student and family— safety remains the priority. We understand this is a stressful time for many families and staff.

    OSPI has created a resource guide for families intended to help them understand the school’s role during closure.  Novel Coronavirus in K-12 Schools: A Parent Guide

     

    Q: What accommodations are automatically (or should be) happening?

    A: General education teachers and special education providers are creating online lessons, videos, paper packets, and resources that are accessible to a wide variety of students and situations.  In addition, special educators are continuing, to the extent possible, to collaborate with general education teachers and coaches to provide general accomodations and access for all students.  Connect with your student’s IEP case manager to discuss accommodations and modifications that may be helpful to your particular student with the home learning opportunities being provided.

    For more information, please see OSPI Q & A 4.13.20

    D-2 Q. If districts provide online resources for parents to access, should specific resources for students with disabilities be included?

    A. Yes, OSPI recommends that if the district is providing online resources for students and/or families, these resources should be provided in an equitable manner for parents of students with disabilities. This includes using inclusive language, providing a range of activities accessible in a variety of modalities and skill levels, and allowing parents and students flexibility in selection.

     

    Q: How will therapies and other individualized services, supports (paras, nurses) and aids on the IEP be provided? 

    A: A Continuous Home Learning Plan will be developed with providers and parents for each student after spring break, and learning resources and materials have been and will continue to be provided for every student in the district. There is not an expectation that IEP services would be delivered exactly as the IEP states, and providing supports such as a one to one paraeducator may not be needed at home or may not be feasible based on staffing configurations and safety requirements. Examples of behavioral supports that could be implemented in the home include coaching of parent/caregivers around interventions such as: “first, then choice boards,” activity schedules, functional communication strategies, implementation of reinforcement contingencies, etc.

    For more information, please see OSPI Q & A 4.13.20

    A-2 Q. How do districts provide services to students with significant behavioral difficulties who require a 1:1 paraeducator and/or a high level of behavioral support for the safety of themselves and others?

    A. There is no one way to provide services. Districts are encouraged to brainstorm ways to provide services to their students and how to individualize these services based on individual student need. As stated above, these services will look different based on safety needs, student need, parent engagement, staffing configurations, regional need, and district systems. Additionally, there is not an expectation that IEP services would be delivered exactly as the IEP states, and providing supports such as a one to one paraeducator may not be needed at home or may not be feasible based on staffing configurations and safety requirements. Districts should make decisions individually based on student needs, and the focus should be on supporting students and their parents/caregivers in engaging in systems that promote safe behaviors in the home and community. Schools and systems should leverage the behavioral expertise of their personnel to support interventions that meet the needs of their students and the new learning environment, and prioritize the immediate needs of their most impacted students. Behavioral supports at home will likely look very different than behavioral supports in schools, and parents/caregivers may need support on how to implement interventions and supports. Examples of behavioral supports that could be implemented in the home include parent/caregiver behavioral coaching, or coaching and support around interventions such as: “first, then choice boards,” activity schedules, functional communication strategies, implementation of reinforcement contingencies, etc.

     

    Do you have a different question or suggestion?  Submit additional questions or suggestions here.