Special Education Support

The Special Education Department is invested in ensuring that students who receive special education services have access to their education during Distance Learning.  Special education staff have been involved at all junctures of professional development and planning of the DJUSD Distance Learning plan.  Our focus has been on the full and deliberate inclusion of all students.  Furthermore, Professional Development for all teachers prior to Distance Learning  included training for Universal Design for Learning (UDL), an approach to curriculum design that makes learning accessible to all students regardless of their unique needs and strengths. 

Special education teachers and related service providers will continue to support the individual needs of students on their caseloads and continue to work towards the goals described in each student’s Individualized Education Plan (IEP). 

Frequently Asked Questions

How will my student who receives special education services be supported during Distance Learning?

Your child's case manager will be in regular contact with you and your student to ensure that your child is appropriately supported and has access to the curriculum.

How will initial assessments for special education services be conducted/completed during Distance Learning?

Assessments for initial IEPs are currently suspended.  Initial special education assessments will be completed after the shelter in place and social distancing orders have been lifted.

How will assessments for triennial IEPs be conducted/completed during Distance Learning?

Assessments for triennial IEPs are currently suspended.  Triennial assessments will be completed after the shelter in place and social distancing orders have been lifted.  When the IEP team feels it is appropriate, a review of records can be used to complete the triennial assessment.

How will annual and transition IEP meetings be held?

Annual and Transition IEP Meetings will be held virtually through video conferencing software. 

How will the special education teacher and staff work with my student?

  • Your student’s teacher will organize individualized and small group virtual meetings with students; that time can be used to help with general education and continue working on IEP goals.  Special Education staff is already working with your students general education teacher to find times that will not conflict with class time. Special Education teachers are working with general education teachers on instructional goals, designing lesson plans and finding resources that will work for all learners.
  • Accommodations will still be in place; if your student needs extra time, shorter readings, etc. we will work to keep those in place. If your students’ accommodation is a challenge through distance learning, your case manager will call to discuss some options.
  • Related service providers, like speech therapists, mental health clinicians and occupational therapists, will maintain ongoing contact with their students and families.  They will work with you on how to continue their services.

How often can my student expect to work with Special Education staff?

  • Teachers will provide specialized academic instruction (SAI) for students on their caseload through small group and individual support that aligns with general education direct instruction weekly. 
  • Teachers will hold office hours for at least an hour each week to answer questions and support our students.
  • Teachers will collaborate and direct paraeducators on how to support students (including being in class with them to hear instructions and content).

Will my student still get help from their paraeducator?

  • Paraeducators will be assigned to review classroom assignments and lesson videos in the Google Classrooms for the core classes of the students they work with.
  • Paraeducators will continue to assist in progress monitoring and make contact with assigned students. 
  • Paraeducators will participate in virtual Study Skills classes and/or direct instruction special education lessons.
  • Paraeducators will be in office hours to support students.

What if my student was being supported by a school psychologist?

  • Our psychologists are completing any initial or annual reports they started (as long as they were able to complete assessments prior to school closure)
  • School psychologists will continue to conduct virtual counseling sessions if that is part of your student’s IEP.
  • School psychologists will be present at  virtual IEP meetings.