Serving students with disabilities and special needs, as well as their families
2021-22 Special Education parent presentation
Special Services Department
The Special Services Department is comprised of three specific areas that support students: Special Education, 504, and Health Services. The focus of the department is to provide students with disabilities or health-related challenges the tools and resources to benefit from their educational program.
Special education is not a “place:” rather, it is a set of services. The district’s goal is to partner with families regarding the individual needs of children. The Individual with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) is the federal legislation that helps guide school teams and families in the qualification of students and the development of Individualized Education Programs (IEP). LWSD has a continuum of services to meet the needs of our diverse student population.
PTSA Special Education Group
2021-22 Special Education Chair: Muusa Liinpaa, email@example.com
The Lake Washington PTSA Special Education Group (formerly Special Needs Group) is made up of Lake Washington School District community members whose students receive special services (IEPs) and accommodations (504s) as well as interested staff and students. The group meets every school month except for December and June. We hear from speakers, have an extensive lending library, learn about resources in the community, network with other parents and keep updated on district and PTSA issues affecting children with disabilities. Visit the LWPTSA Special Education Group page.
Procedural Safeguards: Parent and Student Rights
The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) requires schools to provide parents/guardians of students who are eligible or referred for special education with a full explanation of their rights. School districts must provide a copy of the Procedural Safeguards (Español) at least once each school year, or when the parent/guardian or others, including the district, request that a student be evaluated to determine eligibility for special education services; the first time you file a citizen complaint in a school year; the first time you request a due process hearing in a school year; when a decision is made to remove a student for more than 10 school days in a year as part of a disciplinary action and that removal constitutes a change of placement; or upon request.
Section 504 Services
Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (“Section 504”) is a federal civil rights law. It is designed to eliminate disability discrimination in programs and activities that receive federal funds. Since all public school districts receive federal funds, all public school districts must comply with Section 504. Under Section 504, denying a disabled student a free appropriate public education (“FAPE”) is disability discrimination.
Health services in LWSD are designed to ensure schools have the resources and systems to provide students with the health-related care needed to access school. Duties of Health Services include medication management, health care collaboration, monitoring of life-threatening emergency care plans, and general oversight of student medical related needs.
Programs and Services
The Lake Washington School District offers a continuum of service and placement options for students qualified for Special Education. The district’s goal is for children to be educated in their neighborhood school and in the general education setting to the greatest extent possible. The district believes there is inherent benefit for qualified and non-qualified students to learn with their community peers. At times students are placed in programs that may not be located at their neighborhood school.