Special Education

Schalmont’s belief in placing students in programs that are in the least restrictive environment is consistent with New York State Education Department (NYSED) regulations. This means that a student with disabilities is provided with special education and services to the maximum extent appropriate with other students who do not have disabilities and as close as possible to the student’s home.

Special education services are available to any student with a mental, physical or emotional impairment that affects his or her educational performance. For school-age children, this may include autism, deafness, deaf-blindness, emotional disturbance, hearing impairment, learning disability, intellectual disability, multiple disabilities, orthopedic impairment, other health impairment, speech or language impairment, traumatic brain injury, or visual impairment (including blindness).

The Individual with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) establishes a prominent and active role for parents and teachers in planning and implementing educational programs for students with disabilities. Parents work hand-in-hand with their child’s teachers and other district staff to formulate their child’s IEP.

District Plan for Special Education

The Schalmont Central School District is committed to providing a quality education for all students. The Special Education Department offers a continuum of services that afford students access to the general education curriculum in accordance with their own individual capabilities. Programs are designed so students may receive the highest quality of services within the general education setting, among age appropriate peers, to the greatest degree possible.

Read the plan for Special Education [PDF].

Special Education Glossary/Concepts

Special Education

Special education is specially designed individualized or group instruction or special services or programs provided to a student with a disability (SWD) as determined by the Committee on Special Education (CSE).

Individualized Education Program

Individualized education program (IEP) means a written statement, developed, reviewed and revised in accordance with section 200.4 of the Regulations of the Commissioner, for purposes of meeting the unique educational needs of a student with a disability.

Least Restrictive Environment

Least restrictive environment (LRE) means that placement of students with disabilities in special classes, separate schools or other removal from the regular educational environment occurs only when the nature or severity of the disability is such that even with the use of supplementary aids and services, education cannot be satisfactorily achieved. The placement of an individual student with a disability in the least restrictive environment shall:

  • Provide the special education needed by the student;
  • Provide for education of the student to the maximum extent appropriate to the needs of the student with other students who do not have disabilities; and
  • Be as close as possible to the student’s home.

Student with a Disability

Student with a disability means a student with a disability as defined in section 4401(1) of Education Law, who has not attained the age of 21 prior to September 1 and who is entitled to attend public schools pursuant to section 3202 of the Education Law and who, because of mental, physical or emotional reasons, has been identified as having a disability and who requires special services and programs approved by the department.

The 13 categories of eligibility are:

  • Autism
  • Deafness
  • Deaf-blindness
  • Emotional disturbance
  • Hearing impairment
  • Learning disability
  • Intellectual disability
  • Multiple disabilities
  • Orthopedic impairment
  • Other health-impairment
  • Speech or language impairment
  • Traumatic brain injury
  • Visual impairment including blindness

Continuum of Services

Students with disabilities shall be provided special education in the least restrictive environment, as defined in section 200.1 (cc) of the commissioner’s regulations. To enable students with disabilities to be educated with nondisabled students to the maximum extent appropriate, specially designed instruction and supplementary services may be provided in the regular class. Such services may include, but are not limited to, consultant teacher services and other group or individual supplemental or direct special education instruction.

Free and Appropriate Public Education (FAPE)

The term “free appropriate public education” means special education and related services that:

  • Have been provided at public expense, under public supervision and direction, and without charge;
  • Meet the standards of the State educational agency;
  • Include an appropriate preschool, elementary, or secondary school education in the State involved; and
  • Are provided in conformity with the individualized education program.

Individuals with Disability Education Act (IDEA)

The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) is the federal law that secures special education services for children with disabilities from birth until high school graduation (up to age 21).

Section 504

Section 504 is a civil rights law that prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities. Section 504 ensures that a student with a disability has equal access to an education (a FAPE). After a student is determined for eligible for supports under Section 504, a multidisciplinary team creates an Accommodation Plan to support his or her needs.

Special Education Resources