ANNUAL PUBLIC NOTICE OF SPECIAL EDUCATION SERVICES AND PROGRAMS, SERVICES FOR PROTECTED HANDICAPPED STUDENTS, AND SERVICES FOR GIFTED STUDENTS
In compliance with state and federal law, notice is hereby given by the East Penn School District (EPSD) that it conducts ongoing identification activities as a part of its school program for the purpose of identifying students who may be in need of special education supports and services (PA Code Chapter 14), services via section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (PA Code Chapter 15), and/or gifted education services (PA Code Chapter 16).
Special Education Services:
If your child is identified by the district as possibly in need of such services, you will be notified of applicable procedures. Individualized services and programs are available for children who are determined to need specially designed instruction due to the following conditions:
Autism; Deaf-blindness; Deafness; Emotional disturbance; Hearing impairment; Intellectual disability; Multiple disabilities; Orthopedic impairment; Other health impairment; Specific learning disability; Speech or language impairment; Traumatic brain injury; Visual impairment.
Section 504/Chapter 15 Services:
East Penn School District will provide each protected handicapped student, without discrimination or cost to the student or family, those related aids, services or accommodations which are needed to provide equal opportunity to participate in and obtain the benefits of the school program and co- and non-curricular activities to the maximum extent appropriate to the student’s abilities. In order to qualify as a protected handicapped student, the child must be of school age with a physical or mental disability which substantially limits or prohibits participation in or access to an aspect of the school program.
These services and protections for “protected handicapped students” are distinct from those applicable to all eligible or exceptional students enrolled (or seeking enrollment) in special education programs.
While gifted is not included as one of the disabilities categories under the IDEA 2004, the Pennsylvania State Board of Education’s regulations as set forth in Chapter 16, Special Education for Gifted Students, provide that gifted students are considered to be children with exceptionalities and are in need of specially designed instruction.
If you believe that your school age child may be in need of special education services and related programs, Section 504/Chapter 15 services, Chapter 16 services, screening, and evaluation processes are available to you at no cost, upon written request. Whether or not your child is enrolled in the district’s public school program.
School entities cannot proceed with an evaluation, or with the initial provision of special education, Section 504/Chapter 15, Chapter 16, and related services, without the written consent of the parents. For additional information related to consent, please refer to the Procedural Safeguards Notice which can be found at the PaTTAN website, www.Pattan.net
Requests for school-age evaluation and screening should be made in writing to the Director of Special Education, 800 Pine Street, Emmaus, PA 18049
Preschool Services and Programs
Children age three through the age of admission to first grade are eligible for Early Intervention services if they have developmental delays and, as a result, need Special Education and related services. A child is considered to have a developmental delay when one of the following exists: (i) The child’s score, on a developmental assessment device, on an assessment instrument which yields a score in months, indicates that the child is delayed by 25% of the child’s chronological age in one or more developmental areas; or (ii) The child is delayed in one or more of the developmental areas, as documented by test performance of 1.5 standard deviations below the mean on standardized tests. Developmental areas include cognitive, communicative, physical, social/emotional and self-help.
Parents of young children with concerns about their child’s seeing, hearing, learning, talking, moving about, manipulating objects, understanding, showing emotions, getting along with others, playing with toys, taking care of himself/herself, should contact the Carbon Lehigh Intermediate Unit – Project Connect at (610) 769-4111. Project Connect can provide information to parents about evaluations, programs, therapy, parent supports, and referral to community agencies at no cost to the parent.
Potential Signs of Developmental Delays
For a list of general “warning signs” of possible delay, please refer to following documents.