Newsletters 2019-20 Focus: Back to school - Page 6

Early childhood services Children from birth though age five who have special needs may be eligible for service through the Anoka-Hennepin Early Childhood Special Education (ECSE) programs. Students may meet criteria in any of the 13 disability areas. All school districts in the state have been mandated to offer educational service to preschool age children (birth to age five) who demonstrate a significant delay in their devel- opment. Children who appear to be having difficulty in the areas of development such as communication, cognition, fine or gross motor, or social-emotional and adaptive skills may be eligible for services. Eligibility is determined through an evaluation process that determines the range of the child’s skills. If the child is found eligible, an individual education plan would be developed with family input. Services birth through age two: Children below the age of three typically receive serv- ices in their home or child care setting from a teacher, speech clinician, or an occupational or physical therapist. An Individual Family Service Plan (IFSP) is developed from the eval- uation results and input from the child’s family. Frequency and the amount of service vary based on the child’s needs and the family schedule. Services age three through age five: For children over the age of three, a special educa- tional classroom setting or community preschool program is frequently recommended. Parent support: Parent support groups and parent training groups are offered to families in the Anoka-Hennepin School District. Partici- pation is voluntary. These groups offer parents and families the opportunity to meet other families with special needs children and discuss issues that are important or unique to their child’s development. Contact information Help Me Grow (birth to age five referral) 1-866-693-4769 Anoka-Hennepin ECSE office 763-433-4800 Preschool openings still available for four-year-olds Anoka-Hennepin schools and Community Education offer preschool at schools and sites across the district. Many classes are free, and transportation and meals are provided for eligi- ble families. Open houses are scheduled before preschool begins. Visit or call 763-506-1500 to learn more. 6 Special education Kindergarten through age 21 services Special education services are provided for students from birth to age 21 who have been evaluated and determined as meeting one of the 13 disability categories identified by federal law: • Developmental delays (birth to age seven). • Autism spectrum disorders. • Blind/visually impaired. • Deaf-blind. • Deaf/hard of hearing. • Developmental cognitive disabilities mild-moderate. • Developmental cognitive disabilities moderate-severe. • Emotional or behavioral disorders. • Other health disabilities. • Physically impaired. • Specific learning disabilities. • Speech or language impairments. • Traumatic brain injury. The district offers a full continuum of services for students identified as meeting special education criteria. An Individual Education Planning (IEP) meeting is held following a special education evaluation. District staff work with the student’s parents/family to determine what goals and objectives are appropriate to meet the child’s needs. The team determines what specialized instruction is required and what related services might be appropriate. Students who are identified as having special education needs will receive instruction from a special education teacher. Some students may require additional support in the area of motor, speech/language, vision or hearing needs. While the goal is to have students taught in their neighbor- hood school, it is not always appropriate based on a student's individual needs. Students with specific needs may be placed in a program that best addresses her/his needs. Academic, functional, and behavioral needs addressed in these programs can vary, and can operate in conjunction with general education, with increased mainstreaming as the goal. Some students demonstrate needs that surpass what can be offered at a traditional school/site, and may be serviced at River Trail Learning Center, which is a special education site. School Handbook The handbook covers the basics from school to activities to homework. The remainder, and majority of the handbook, covers key policies approved by the School Board showing how the district handles matters of conduct and discipline consistently and fairly. Digital copies of the publication are cur- rently available under “Policy Handbook” on the district’s Document Center website at Please contact your child’s school if you have any questions on the content in the handbook.