Appomattox County Public Schools are committed to providing all children with disabilities a broad spectrum of educational opportunities. The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) mandates that all students with disabilities be afforded a free and appropriate public education. Congress appropriates federal funding to states and local school divisions annually under the Part B Flow-Through Grant. This funding is based on a per pupil amount of students ages 2-21 with active Individualized Education Plans (IEP). Through the IEP, each student receives special education services designed to meet his or her individual needs.
Each student’s progress is reviewed at least yearly and the need for special services is reassessed at a minimum of every three years. Trained personnel in the various areas of special education provide services to children. The IEP team coordinates an educational plan among school personnel, parents, and the student involved. Instruction is often carried out both in the regular and special education classrooms.
Services are provided to the following areas as outlined by federal and state law: Autism, Deafness, Deaf-blindness, Development Delay, Emotional Disability, Hearing Impairment, Intellectual Disability, Multiple Disabilities, Orthopedic Impairment, Other Health Impairment, Specific Learning Disability, Speech-Language Impairment, Traumatic Brain Injury, and Visual impairment, including Blindness. (Click here to view services for students identified as hearing or visually impaired.)
Each school in Appomattox County follows required procedures for screening, evaluating, identifying and providing services to students with disabilities. A Child Study Committee serves as a referral source and resource team for students experiencing difficulty in the regular classroom. Any teacher, parent, or administrator may refer a child to the Child Study Team, seeking assistance and remediation strategies.
Various school personnel assess those children who are referred to the Special Education Eligibility Committee. These personnel include special education teachers, regular education teachers, nurses, psychologists, visiting teachers, and school administrators. Several component reports, including medical, sociological, educational, psychological, occupational therapy, physical therapy, speech and language, may be utilized during this process.
A School Social Worker is employed to coordinate services provided by outside agencies, such as the Community Services Board, The Department of Social Services, Alliance for Families and Children, and other mental health agencies. The School Social Worker coordinates home-bound services for any student who is temporarily out of school for medical reasons. She also assists in redirecting truant students and their families to increase attendance. She serves on the Special Education Eligibility Committee, conducting social histories of students referred for special education evaluations and services.
Special education teachers are continually involved in supplemental training and professional development activities. Emphasis is placed on keeping abreast of new and innovative teaching techniques and assistive technology to better serve children and youth with disabilities.