Special Education

Ensuring equitable learning opportunities to ensemble students with disabilities to make progress in the mastery of Minnesota Academic Standards and social-emotional learning continues to be the aim of IEP and 504 teams. The district plan in all three scenarios focuses on maximizing the effectiveness of specialized instruction and related services and minimizing COVID-19 infection risk through the application of CDC and MDH recommended safety measures.

To maximize effective instruction and minimize the risk of exposure to COVID-19, the District will monitor and adjust the movement of itinerant staff (staff who are assigned to provide services to students in more than one building) between multiple buildings, and provide instructional services from these staff in a variety of ways, including in-person, virtually, and consultatively.

The IEP team will review the specialized services and supports in the current Individual Education Program (IEP). They will also review the services and supports provided during this past Spring’s Distance learning, as documented in the Individuals Distance Learning Plan (IDLP), as well as the effect of that level of support and service. IEP teams will then ascertain individual needs and determine if the IEP should be amended or rewritten to reflect changes to services and supports through a Contingency Learning Plan Form.

In a hybrid model, students receiving federal setting III special education services as well as those in need of services/supports that can only be provided in-person on-site may be eligible to receive services in a school setting up to four days per week. The team should consider the following guiding questions when determining the need for additional time on-site:

  • Does the student have a Behavior Support Plan and how is that going to be implemented on-site and in the distance learning setting?
  • Does the student have support from a paraprofessional throughout the day? How is that implemented on-site and while distance learning?
  • While in the school setting, where are the majority of services provided? (i.e., general education classroom, resource room, self-contained classroom)
  • Does the student have goals for, and are they in need of support with Activities of Daily Living? (i.e., toileting, eating, mobility)
  • How was the student progressing their IEP goals, as recorded on their end of the year progress report?
  • How often did the student attend services while in distance learning?

Special education teachers and related service providers will continue to collaborate with general education teachers to provide accommodations and modifications for students with disabilities in both physical and virtual settings. Special education teachers will frequently communicate with families, general education teachers, and related service providers to ensure students’ needs are being met in both the physical and virtual settings.