Special Education FAQs

  • How will my child’s IEP be implemented as we open in the fall?

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    We will continue to hold annual IEP meetings for all students in which annual IEPs come due. While we are in either Phase 2 (Hybrid) or Phase 3 (Virtual), the IEP team will create and issue a COVID-19 Individualized Special Education Plan. These plans will be similar to the COVID plans that were followed at the end of the 2019-2020 school year, but now will provide for supports/instruction that will occur during the in-person time that each student will be afforded according to their IEP team and their educational level (Elementary (K-5) and Secondary (6-12). Upon fully reopening our buildings and all students returning in-person, the COVID-19 ISEP/HSP will be discontinued and the IEP fully implemented (Phase 1).

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  • What if I do not feel comfortable sending my child to school for ‘in-person’ instruction?

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    Every family will have the opportunity to choose what is best for their child based on the COVID crisis.  If a family chooses the virtual model, the COVID-19 ISEP/HSP will outline the supports and services to be provided.  This will be outlined in the Phase 3 section of the document.

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  • When will I receive information regarding my child’s proposed COVID-19 Individualized Plan?

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    The RTSD Health and Safety and re-opening plan was just finalized and approved during the early morning hours of July 29.  Our special education teachers have received instructions on how to write these plans and they are currently being drafted.  You will receive a questionnaire to provide input and information regarding supports that worked while we were virtual during the last closure.  Although the teachers are out on summer break, we will be working to find time now for them (or another special education team member) to draft these plans. The COVID-19 ISEP/HSP will be sent via email to all families once they have been completed.

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  • What if we change our minds regarding our choice of instruction during the fall semester?

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    We understand that these are difficult decisions for families to make.  We would ask that you work with your child’s team to provide advance notice before shifting to a different instructional model.  Our team will work quickly as possible to adjust the COVID-19 ISEP/HSP according to your selection and will revise as deemed necessary. The planning for these changes (depending on your student’s needs) could take 7-10 days, or longer, to fully implement. We appreciate your understanding and prior notice before changing course with your child’s instructional plan.

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  • How will my child’s related services and therapies be delivered in the Hybrid model?

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    If your child attends in person for ½ day or every other day (depending on level) we will work to schedule for ‘in-person’ session(s) to the best of our ability.  However, if this is not possible the related services will be provided virtually. Your assigned therapist will work directly with you and your child’s school based team to schedule these services.

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  • How will RTSD respond to parents’ concerns regarding compensatory education?

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    he Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) issued guidance regarding what they have termed "COVID-19 Compensatory Services (CCS)" as outlined on their website which can be found by clicking here. The Special Education Department is reviewing the guidance and, in consultation with individualized education program (IEP) teams, will make an individualized determination whether, and to what extent, additional services may be needed as a result of the extended school closure. Parents are critical members of IEP teams and will be included in this decision-making process.

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  • Is my child required to wear a mask at all times? Is a face shield sufficient?

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    As outlined in the RTSD Health and Safety Plan and in accordance with the Governor’s mandate for all students, ages 2 and up, to wear a face mask, we will be working with all students to support the wearing of a mask. Exceptions are outlined in the RTSD Health and Safety Plan as well as the Governor’s order, including for medical reasons and a child’s disability. The anticipated exception for a child’s disability should be communicated directly to the assigned case manager so they can address this within their educational plan. All staff will be working directly with students to support the teaching and learning of this new social skill.  Face shield options are also outlined in the RTSD Health and Safety Plan.

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  • How will Evaluations and Reevaluations be completed if we move between phases?

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    When our students are with us (in-person) we will schedule for them to be assessed as needed by the psychologists.  However, there may be instances where we would request that the students come in during the times that they are not in-person to be assessed by our psychologist.  Our psychologists will work directly with you and your child’s team to ensure that we are able to appropriately complete the evaluations.  During our current closure we have set up testing rooms at the administration building with access to plexiglass screens, face shield, and disinfectant wipes/hand sanitizer.  If needed (and able) we can continue to provide these services for our families/students.

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  • What will my child’s transportation look like for our opening in September?

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    The Special Education and Transportation departments are working closely together to coordinate transportation for all students who require it.  Guidelines for transportation are outlined in the RTSD Health and Safety Plan which is located on the RTSD website. Please communicate additional concerns or requests related to transportation to your assigned case manager or the transportation department directly. 

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