School Age Students K-12
Referral and Eligibility
If a student is suspected of having a disability he/she will be referred to the school IEP team and the Special Education process will begin. This process will determine if a student meets the eligibility criteria for one of 13 Federal disabilities and if special education and related services is needed. Refer to Special Education Overview/Process on the website.
Services for Students K-12
Special Education and related services are provided to ensure that students with disabilities ages 5-21 achieve academic success to the maximum extent possible with non-disabled peers in the general education classroom. A continuum of services is provided in comprehensive schools, specialty sites regional programs and developmental centers which allow students to receive identified services within their home school or in a school as close to their home community as possible.
Resource Support Staff
Special Education Resource Teachers (SERT) are assigned to a specific feeder system to support the delivery of special education services at the school level. They work very closely with special educators and instructional staff to provide guidance in delivering quality services for students. The SERT works with schools and families to resolve differences, train instructional staff in specific strategies and initiatives, advise administration regarding services and compliance, act as a liaison between the schools and central office staff, and act as a general special education consultant to schools.
Least Restrictive Environment Specialist works with schools to assure that students with special needs are receiving their instruction within the general education classroom to the greatest extent possible. The specialist assists teachers and instructional assistants in accessing training that is needed to best support their students. Remaining informed about best practices, research based interventions and instructional strategies are an important facet of the LRE Specialist’s responsibilities. If the student’s home school cannot successfully serve a student, the LRE Specialist works with families to assure that appropriate placements are determined to meet student needs.
Behavior Specialists support school staff in serving students with emotional disabilities and related issues. The specialists and their technicians work diligently with schools to provide strategies and techniques to successfully educate challenging students in their home school. In addition, they work closely with the instructional staff in the self-contained ED regional classrooms and specialized programs to assure that best practices, instructional technology and exposure to the voluntary state curriculum are in place. They strive to make certain that all students benefit from their education regardless of their emotional challenges.
Program Specialists provide support to schools who work with students with Autism, Intellectual Disability and Multiple Disabilities. A behavior support technician provides follow up and direct assistance to school teams and students. The Program Specialist and technician work diligently with schools to provide successful strategies and techniques in order to educate students with low incidence disabilities in their home school. In addition, they work closely with the instructional staff in the self-contained Autism and Alternate Curriculum Class (ACC) classrooms to assure that best practices, instructional technology and exposure to the voluntary state curriculum are in place. They strive to make certain that all students benefit from their education regardless of their academic or behavioral challenges.
Literacy Specialists provide support to all schools. They work closely with the related content offices.
A Transition Specialist assists middle and high schools in developing meaningful and student driven transition plans for students age 14 and up. Transition services for students moving into the 8th grade are critical to transition to adult life. This specialist works very closely with 5 transition facilitators and their job coaches as well as technicians in preparing and supporting enclave training and supported employment within the community. The Transition Specialist also supports the Anne Arundel Community College program which serves students with significant disabilities on the college campus.
Instructional Support Specialists assist in managing grant activities, reporting data, supporting programming such as Extended School Year (ESY) and facilitating the development of professional activites for teachers and school leadership teams. All are intended to provide support and resources to increase student achievement through specialized instruction (SI).