How we improve special needs education

Every student deserves the education they need to succeed in the world. Children with exceptional learning abilities enjoy expanded opportunities that the board has added in recent years. So too, have children with special education needs enjoyed changes the district has implemented.
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Montville, NJ – Every student deserves the education they need to succeed in the world.  Children with exceptional learning abilities enjoy expanded opportunities that the board has added in recent years.  So too, have children with special education needs enjoyed changes the district has implemented.

Montville Township Schools is always looking to provide our special education students with the best education in the least restrictive environment.  To that end we employ talented and highly qualified teachers and administrators.  In her tenure, our former Director of Special Services created a number of programs that allowed the district to bring back some special needs students, or simply never send them out of district.  

The multilevel Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) program is a good example.  The ABA program was created as a pre-school program to provide early intervention strategies for students with autism.  As the preschoolers progressed to elementary school, the program expanded with them.  

Once at Lazar and the high school, the Autism Collaborative Centers of Excellence (ACCE) program was created to accommodate the needs of these older students.  The ACCE program provides direct instruction of practical academic and vocational skills that prepares our students and young adults for their post-graduation transition into the community.

The district also created the Structured Integrated Learning (SIL) program at Lazar and the high school for academically capable students, but who struggle with social, emotional, or motivational issues.  This program not only allowed us to bring students back to district, but to generate revenue by accepting out of district students on a tuition basis.

As with our regular academic programs, we regularly assess our special needs program.  A few years ago we hired an outside consultant to conduct an external review of the district’s special education programs and procedures and to provide feedback on opportunities for improvement.  The consultant concluded we were already providing the best education possible in the least restrictive environment and recommended only minor changes.

Our opponents appear uninformed about our programs.  Maybe they believe our special needs curriculum is like systems they are used to working in.  But the fact remains, we are proud of our special education programs and can assure parents the district is always seeking to provide an outstanding academic and supportive experience for our special needs students.

Grau, Cortellino, Modrak have proven leadership, vision, and commitment to keep ALL of our students achieving.

 

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