SPECIAL EDUCATION Resources
Students with special needs may need additional support. Clinton Elementary School works with students and their families to identify individual student needs and, where appropriate, implement supports and accommodations to assist the students accessing learning in the least restrictive environment. These individualized plans are often referred to as “504 accomodation” plans or Individualized Education Programs (IEPs).
If you believe your child may need additional support you should talk to your child’s teacher or Clinton’s administration to begin the discussion. Informational resources are also available through the following:
- SOMSD Special Education Contact: (973) 762-5600 x1145
- Clinton PTA Liaison: Ava Padmore (firstname.lastname@example.org)
- The Special Education Resource Packet gives full details of the process starting from requesting a referral to the child study team, to developing an initial Individualized Education Plan (IEP), to ongoing implementation and adjustments to the IEP. This edition of the Guide is the product of collaborative efforts between parents/guardians of students with special needs, represented by the South Orange-Maplewood Special Education Parent Advisory Committee (SEPAC), and the South Orange-Maplewood School District’s Department of Special Services.
Special Education Parent Advisory Committee
United with the district and its commitment to excellence for all our children, SOMA SEPAC will work for the understanding of, respect for, and support of Students With Special Needs who receive special education services in the South Orange-Maplewood School District. To that end, SOMA SEPAC will:
- Provide a forum to share and discuss matters and interest for parents of students with special needs
- Provide direct input to the BOE and district administration on policies, programs and practices that impact support for students with special needs and their parents
- Advocate for the continual improvement of the district’s special education programs
For more information and a schedule of monthly meetings, visit: https://sepacsoma.org/
As of the 2018-19 school year, SEPAC is combined with the Special Education PTO, which provides parents with tools and information to work collaboratively with the school district, and to be more effective advocates for their children. The PTO helps families network with other families and share information about special education concerns, successes, resources, and to navigate special education. The group supports ongoing professional development of district staff and teachers, and encourages comprehensive, thoughtful inclusion of differently-abled children in the SOMSD community.
Intervention and Referral Services
The Intervention Committee provides assistance to teachers, support staff, administrators, and parents in developing preventive interventions to successfully accommodate the diverse learning and behavioral needs of students who are experiencing difficulties in their classes. It is led by our Assistant Principal, and is composed of general and special education teachers, reading and math specialists, an Academic Intervention Teacher and the building social worker. The team collaborates with the student’s teachers and parents to develop an action plan that will support the specific needs of the student.
By its nature, intervention is a process. Often, action plans are revisited and modified. In most cases, a successful action plan, which is created and shaped over a period of time, leads to the student’s academic and behavioral success. In some cases, the Intervention Committee may feel that referring the student to the Child Study Team is necessary. Even in these cases, the prior period of intervention is valuable. Action Plans will illustrate that a referral is appropriate and it will help inform the Child Study Team about strategies that have or have not been successful for the student. It is important that the intervention process is not seen as merely a waiting process or a “red tape” step for special education, but rather as a means to support teachers in meeting the needs of all students.