Special education services are provided in the least restrictive environment. Most students are served in their neighborhood school. Students participate in the general education environment to the maximum extent appropriate, based upon their individual needs. The IEP team, including school staff and parents, determine the most effective service or combination of services, including:
- Consultation or indirect services: Students with mild need may be served through regularly scheduled collaborative planning and problem-solving between general and special educators. Consultative services are provided to staff rather than directly to students.
- Special education support in the general education setting: Students receive special education services in the general education setting. Collaboration occurs between the general education and special education staff to design accommodations and/or modifications needed by the student.
- Special education services in a special education setting: Students are pulled out of the general education environment to receive specially designed instruction from special education staff.
- Center-based or host programs: The programs provide highly structured and highly individualized programs for students with moderate to significant disabilities. These programs are located in certain locations within the Tonganoxie and Basehor-Linwood School Districts. If the IEP team decides that a student will best be served in a center-based program located in a building that is not the student’s neighborhood school, transportation will be provided at no cost.
- Out-of-district placements: Student with significant needs that cannot be met in the student’s neighborhood school or in a center-based program may receive services in programs outside of the Tonganoxie and Basehor-Linwood School Districts. Out-of-district placements are determined by the student’s IEP team in consultation with the Director of Special Education and/or Special Education Coordinator. Transportation is provided at no cost.
What is different about a center-based program?
- Services are highly specialized.
- Students from both Tonganoxie and Basehor-Linwood come to a particular location that serves their needs most appropriately.
- Student to staff ratio is usually smaller.
- The staff may have specialized training.
- The setting may have specialized equipment or structure to meet a student’s needs.
When is a center-based program considered?
- For a small number of students, the neighborhood school does not provide the least restrictive environment and a center-based program may be considered.
- There is a specific process used to make these determinations.
When more than one center-based program may be appropriate, how are decisions made?
- The least restrictive environment is always considered first.
- Staff from the center-based programs being considered may conduct observations of the student in their current setting and analyze the strengths and weaknesses of each program under consideration.
- The input of the parent is considered.
- Other considerations include:
- Current number of students in each program
- Neighborhood school of the student
- The needs of the student may be so significant to override other concerns (such as access to a restroom or seclusion room)
- When two or more programs may service the needs of a student, the decision is made by administration (principals, special education coordinators, the director of special education, and/or superintendents)
When are out-of-district placements considered?
- For a very small number of students, the center-based programs offered by the TBLSEC in the Tonganoxie and Basehor-Linwood School Districts are not able to meet the significant needs of a student.
- In order for the student to continue to make progress, a highly specialized program outside of the Tonganoxie and Basehor-Linwood School Districts is needed.