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The vast majority of the information on this site is gleaned from web sites under the control of the Town of Brookline, the US Department of Education and the Commonwealth’s Department of Education and all the documents are in the public domain. Every attempt is made, both manually and automatically, to keep the information as up to date as possible.

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May Schools Disclose Information about Cases of COVID-19
Schools across the nation are working hard to keep students, teachers, and staff safe during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, many schools are wondering whether the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) allows them to disclose information about cases of COVID-19 to the community.…
Q&A on provision of IEP services from OSEP 09-28-2020
OSEP reminds SEAs and LEAs that no matter what primary instructional delivery approach is chosen, SEAs, LEAs, and individualized education program (IEP) Teams remain responsible for ensuring that a free appropriate public education (FAPE) is provided to all children with disabilities. If State and local decisions require schools to limit or not provide in-person instruction due to health and safety concerns, SEAs, LEAs, and IEP Teams are not relieved of their obligation to provide FAPE to each child with a disability under IDEA.…
covid19-sped-learning-plan
This template is intended to assist schools and districts in documenting changes in the way that special education services outlined in the student’s Individualized Education Program (“IEP”) will be delivered during periods of modified in-person, remote, or hybrid instruction during the 2020-2021 school year. This sample form is only intended for use during the period of the COVID-19 pandemic.…
SPED legal Invoices 2017-2020
Invoices from Stoneman, Chandler & Miller special education lawyers to the Public Schools of Brookline spanning 2017 - 2020.…
DESE Sped Directors Meeting 8-20-2020
General education recovery support, To address students’ needs and reorient them to learning, COVID-19 Compensatory Services (CCS) To remedy skill or knowledge loss or lack of effective progress because of the suspension of in-person education related to the pandemic New IEP services, To address new areas of disability-related need …
DESE Sped Directors Meeting 8-20-2020
General education recovery support, To address students’ needs and reorient them to learning, COVID-19 Compensatory Services (CCS) To remedy skill or knowledge loss or lack of effective progress because of the suspension of in-person education related to the pandemic New IEP services, To address new areas of disability-related need …
Coronavirus (COVID-19) Special Education Technical Assistance Advisory 2021-1: COVID-19 Compensatory Services and Recovery Support for Students with IEPs
With the unexpected suspension of in-person education due to the pandemic, schools and districts were not necessarily able to provide all special education instruction and services in the manner they were typically provided or described in students’ Individualized Education Programs (IEPs). Also, despite efforts by schools and districts to create and implement remote learning plans for students with disabilities, some students may not have been able to access special education and related services necessary to make effective progress on IEP goals…
2021-1-covid-compservices
With the unexpected suspension of in-person education due to the pandemic, schools and districts were not necessarily able to provide all special education instruction and services in the manner they were typically provided or described in students’ Individualized Education Programs (IEPs). Also, despite efforts by schools and districts to create and implement remote learning plans for students with disabilities, some students may not have been able to access special education and related services necessary to make effective progress on IEP goals…
MAC Covid-19 Chat - Fall School Re-Opening Students with Disabilities Newest Information, Questions, Concerns - 8/6/2020
Mass Advocates for Children Attorney Julia Landau talked about fall reopening of schools for students with disabilities, covering the newest information from the state and addressing your questions and concerns.…
FERPA Notice to Superintendents April 2020
The Department of Education (Department) is required to notify annually each State educational agency (SEA) and each Local Educational Agency (LEA) of its obligations, as a recipient of Department funds, under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and the Protection of Pupil Rights Amendment (PPRA). This attached letter serves as the cover letter to the Department’s annual notices to SEAs and LEAs.…
FERPA Notice to Chief State School Officers April 2020
This letter is meant to inform State Education Agencies about their responsibilities regarding federal privacy laws including FERPA and PPRA.…
Cover letter to the Department’s annual notices to SEAs and LEAs April 2020
The Department of Education (Department) is required to notify annually each State educational agency (SEA) and each local educational agency (LEA) of its obligations, as a recipient of Department funds, under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and the Protection of Pupil Rights Amendment (PPRA). This is the cover letter to the Department’s annual notices to SEAs and LEAs.…
PPRA Model General Notice of Rights
This document is a template notice for school districts notifying parents and eligible students (students over 18 years of age or attending a school beyond the high school level) to inform eligible students about their rights under the Protection of Pupil Rights Amendment (PPRA).…
FERPA Model Notification of Rights for Elementary & Secondary Schools
This document is a template notice for school districts notifying parents and eligible students (students over 18 years of age or attending a school beyond the high school level) about their rights under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).…
Letter to Agora Cyber Charter School 11.2.17
This is an SPPO investigation findings letter to Agora Cyber Charter School relating to FERPA requirements when contracting for online educational services and restrictions on the forced waiver of parental rights to access educational services.…
Response to School College Legal Services of CA Batanero
Letter to School & College Legal Services of California in regards to a question about whether FERPA permits a school district to disclose personally identifiable information (PII) from a student’s “health records, such as immunizations data,” to county or State health officials without parental consent.…
Letter to Wachter Regarding Surveillance Video of Multiple Students
Letter in response to an inquiry on FERPA regarding a request from a parent for a copy of a surveillance video of a hazing incident involving multiple students, and for copies of witness statements regarding the incident.…
ED_SPPO Letter to IHEs re 2020 Census_v_01292020
Letter on the applicability of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) to the disclosure by IHEs or postsecondary institutions of certain personally identifiable information (PII) from student education records to representatives of the U.S. Census Bureau (Bureau) in connection with the 2020 Census.…
FERPA and Virtual Learning during COVID-19
Webinar slides for "FERPA and Virtual Learning during the COVID-19" presentation. This webinar is intended to provide information on privacy best practices and insight into helpful resources available to the education community during this critical time of national emergency. We will address commonly asked questions related to the challenges of complying with student privacy laws like FERPA during this time and present a series of scenarios which highlight privacy best practices and considerations when adopting distance learning approaches.…
FERPA and Coronavirus Frequently Asked Questions
The purpose of this guidance is to answer questions that school officials may have had concerning the disclosure of personally identifiable information from students’ education records to outside entities when addressing the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19).…
Special Education Leaders' Meeting August 6, 2020
Welcome ... Compensatory Services Update ... DESE Special Education Updates ... Q&A …
Superintendent letter - August 5, 2020
Dear PSB Parents, Guardians, and Staff, Over the past few weeks, the planning team and I have presented the results from our reopening survey and outlined our preliminary recommendations for September. I want to take this opportunity to update you on what we have discussed, and share important dates and next steps that PSB will take leading up to our first day of school.…
DESE Guidance on Fall 2020 Special Education Services - July 9, 2020 (highlights SPED-PAC's)
This document supplements the Initial Fall Reopening Guidance by providing further information on supporting students with disabilities during the upcoming school year. It also provides necessary information in support of schools and districts, as they develop the portion of their reopening plans specifically related to special education. Schools and districts were unexpectedly required to rapidly transition to remote models of special education service delivery when in-person learning was suspended from mid-March 2020 until the end of the 2019-2020 school year. Now, with more planning time and an emphasis on returning to in-person services in the school year ahead, this document is designed to provide guidance on these critical points:…
On the Desktop – July 15 , 2020 Two-Step Process and Online Form/ Template for Fall Reopening Plans
Through this guidance, we required schools to create a plan that includes three models: 1) in-person learning with new safety requirements; 2) a hybrid of in-person and remote learning; and 3) remote learning. The attached document (download) provides an overview of the two-step process for district reopening plan submissions and the online form for preliminary plan summaries due July 31.…
2020 - 2021 - Reopening Update - School Committee Meeting - Aug 4, 2020
AGENDA: Health & Safety▸Facilities▸Schedules & Curriculum▸Extended Day▸High Needs Populations▸Next Steps/Questions…
2020 - 2021 - Reopening Update - School Committee Meeting - July 27, 2020
AGENDA: Background▸Health & Safety Update▸Potential Learning Models▸Community Feedback ▸Planning for High Needs Students▸Draft PSB recommendations ▸Next Steps …
On the Desktop – July 30, 2020 Student Learning Time Waiver Process
On July 27, 2020, to provide sufficient training and preparation time for educators and staff prior to the start of the new school year, I reduced the 180 day and student learning time requirements for the 2020-2021 school year to 170 days and 850 hours (for elementary schools) and 935 hours (for secondary schools), so long as districts begin providing instruction to students no later than September 16, 2020. If a district or school is unable to meet the September 16, 2020 requirement, it may apply for a waiver.…
On the Desktop – July 29, 2020 Career/Vocational Technical Education Reopening Guidelines
As the Commonwealth prepares for the fall reopening of schools, including resuming in-person instruction, we are issuing the attached guidance (download) to support the safe reopening of vocational technical schools and comprehensive schools offering vocational technical programs. The guidance includes appropriate measures to promote the safety of students, teachers, and staff. This guidance may also be used as a reference for other related programs, such as Innovation Pathways and Connecting Activities.…
Career/Vocational Technical Education Reopening Guidelines July 29, 2020
As the Commonwealth prepares for the fall reopening of schools, including resuming in-person instruction, we are issuing the following guidance to support the safe reopening of vocational technical schools and comprehensive schools offering vocational technical programs. The guidance includes appropriate safety measures to promote the safety of students, teachers, and staff. This guidance may also be used as a reference for other related programs, such as Innovation Pathways and Connecting Activities.…
On the Desktop – July 27, 2020 Additional Staff Training Days this Fall
I am announcing today that school districts will have 10 additional days at the start of the 2020-2021 school year to prepare for the reopening of schools. The full memorandum of understanding with the DESE, the Massachusetts Teachers’ Association, AFT-Massachusetts, and the Boston Teachers’ Union is attached.…
MOU Between DESE, MTA, AFT, MA,, and Boston Teachers Union
The Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE), the Massachusetts Teachers Association (MTA), the American Federation of Teachers (AFT-MA), and the Boston Teachers Union (BTU) are working together collaboratively to support a successful start to the new school year. DESE, MTA, AFT-MA and BTU recognize and agree that in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, providing additional time for our educators and staff to prepare prior to the start of instruction of students is important for a safe and successful fall reopening.…
Introduction to the Office of Civil Rights - OCR 101
Objectives for Today • Introduce OCR and describe OCR’s mission • Explain how OCR carries out its mission • Increase awareness about OCR and civil rights laws that protect students and others from discrimination…
Recommendations and Resources to Support the Social Emotional Well-being of Students, Staff, and Families August 3, 2020
The Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) is providing information to help districts and schools prioritize and support the social emotional well-being of students, staff, and families as they prepare for the new school year. This document includes a series of recommendations and sample resources to support planning and implementation.…
Adult and Community Learning Services Fall Reopening Guidance August 3, 2020
Let me start by thanking you for going above and beyond to meet the sudden and urgent needs of our adult students. I hope you have been able to take a well-deserved break this summer and recharge to plan a fall reopening unlike any before. On June 25, 2020, Commissioner Riley released the Initial Fall School Reopening Guidance and several other topical guidance documents have followed. In response to questions regarding how these resources apply to adult education programs, Adult and Community Learning Services (ACLS) has developed supplemental guidance for these programs.…
Supplemental Information for Science Courses and Laboratory Work for Fall 2020 August 3, 2020
Hands-on science and laboratory work experiences are an important part of the learning experience for all students. We strongly encourage schools and districts to continue providing these activities to students this fall. Adaptations to these courses, however, are necessary to support the safety of students and staff. Even though these activities require additional logistics, we are confident that they can and should continue this fall, as outlined in the following pages.…
July 30, 2020 Process to Request a Modification of Structured Learning Time Requirements
One of the approved amendments authorizes the Commissioner to modify the minimum school year (180 school days) and minimum structured learning time requirements (900 hours for elementary school students and 990 hours for secondary school students) under certain limited circumstances. 603 CMR 27.06(3). On July 27, 2020, to provide sufficient training and preparation time for educators and staff prior to the start of the new school year, the Commissioner reduced the 180 day and student learning time requirements for the 2020-2021 school year to 170 days and 850 hours (for elementary schools) and 935 hours (for secondary schools), so long as districts begin providing instruction to students no later than September 16, 2020. If a district or school is unable to meet the September 16, 2020 requirement, it may apply for a waiver…
RE: State Methods ofAdministration (MOA) Coordinators, the thoroughness of on-site reviews
State Methods of Administration (MOA) Coordinators have asked for clear guidance on how to document the thoroughness of on-site reviews when issuing to subrecipients the letters of findings that are then submitted as part of the state agencies' biennial reports to the Office for Civil Rights (OCR).…
colleague-201304-sp
Aunque en los últimos años se han presentado una notable cantidad de quejas ante la OCR por motivos de represalias, la OCR nunca antes ha publicado una guía sobre este importante tema. El propósito de esta carta es recordar a los distritos escolares, las instituciones de educación superior, y otros beneficiarios que la represalia es también una violación de la ley Federal.2En esta carta también aclaramos los principios básicos de la ley en cuanto a las represalias y describimos cómo la OCR aplica la ley.…
Updated Procedures for Preparing the Methods of Administration (MOA) Described in the Vocational/Career and Technical Education Guidelines
The U.S. Department of Education’s (Department’s) Office for Civil Rights (OCR) and Office of Career, Technical, and Adult Education (OCTAE) are pleased to jointly issue the attached updated Memorandum of Procedures (MOP) for State agencies responsible for the administration of career and technical education (CTE) to use in developing the “methods of administration and related procedures” they will follow in carrying out their civil rights obligations under the “Guidelines for Eliminating Discrimination and Denial of Services on the Basis of Race, Color, National Origin, Sex and Handicap in Vocational Education Programs”…
June 27, 2002, Letter to Illinois State Board of Education Director of Special Education Dr. Anthony E. Sims Topics: Individualized Education Programs (Also Re: Extened School Year (ESY))
If extended school year services are necessary in order to ensure that a child with a disability receives a free appropriate public education, the public agency must include such extended school year services in the child's IEP and must provide them at no cost to the parents.…
November 26, 2013, Letter to William J. Casey, Esq. Topic: Extened School Year (ESY)
July 19, 2013 OSEP Dear Colleague Letter on Education for Highly Mobile Children Topics: (Also Re: Extended School Year (ESY))
This letter addresses issues that have been raised regarding IDEA’s requirements for timely evaluations, including when a response to intervention (RTI) framework is used prior to completing evaluations of highly mobile children, and the provision of comparable services, which could include extended school year services, when a highly mobile child transfers into a new school district. …
June 22, 2012, Letter to Virginia Department of Education Assistant Superintendent H. Douglas Cox Topics: Discipline Procedures (Also Re: Extened School Year (ESY))
Timelines with respect to expedited due process hearings, especially during the summer. …
February 4, 2008, Letter to individual (personally identifiable information redacted) Topics: State Educational Agency General Supervisory Authority (Also Re: Extened School Year (ESY))
Th inclusion of short-term objectives in the individualized education program (IEP). Severe Discrepancy in the Identification of Children with Specific Learning Disabilities. …
February 4, 2003, Letter to West Virginia Advocate Susan Given Topics: Individualized Education Programs (Also Re: Extened School Year (ESY))
Clarificiacation on determining a student's eligibility for extended school year services. …
November 7, 2007, Letter to Mountain Plains Regional Resource Center Director Dr. John Copenhaver Topics: Personnel Qualifications (Also Re: Extened School Year (ESY))
The relationship of the requirements regarding highly qualified teachers to the provision of ESY services.…
Letter to Anonymous February 27, 2017 TOPIC: Individualized Education Programs—Postsecondary Goals
Letter clarifying IDEA, Part B requirement in 34 CFR §300.320(b), which requires that, beginning not later than the first individualized education program (IEP) to be in effect when the child turns 16, or younger if determined appropriate by the IEP Team, and updated annually.…
Letter to Anonymous March 3, 2016 TOPIC: IEP Development, Review and Revision, Placement, and Hearing Decisions
Letter responding to a series of four questions.…
Letter to DePaul University, College of Law Special Education Advocacy Clinical Instructor Deborah Pergament December 20, 2013 TOPIC: Individualized Education Programs
SECTION OF IDEA: Part B—Assistance for Education of All Children with Disabilities; Section 614—Evaluations, Eligibility Determinations, Individualized Education Programs, and Educational Placements…
Letter to Lisa Pugh January 18, 2017 TOPIC: Individualized Education Programs (Progress Reporting)
Letter providing guidance regarding the content of the progress reports required under 34 CFR §300.320(a)(3)(i)-(ii), and how progress reports can and should address a transition-aged child's progress on appropriate measurable postsecondary goals.…
Letter to Brian Carroll April 19, 2018 TOPIC: Individualized Education Programs (Preschool)
Letter regarding whether and/or how a school [could] unilaterally schedule five days['] worth of individualized education program (IEP) instruction and services for a preschool student when the school knows from the outset that a particular preschool student will not regularly attend school five days a week.…
Letter to Perry A. Zirkel May 10, 2018 TOPIC: Individualized Education Programs
Letter providing clarification on the requirements for evaluating a child suspected of having a specific learning disability (SLD) to determine whether the child is eligible to receive special education and related services under IDEA.…
Letter to Lawrence Siegel February 21, 2019 TOPIC: IEP Transfer Provisions
Letter responding to series of questions regarding a child with a disability who transfers to a new local educational agency (LEA) during the summer.…
District Resolution for Civil Rights complaint concerning retaliation - Training Material
The Public Schools of Brookline, specifically the Office of Student Services, was accused of retaliation via multiple complaints. The complaints were submitted to the Department of Education's Office of Civil Rights. The district can 'fix' the issue if they are aware they will be found in violation before a final determination. This training was part of that effort.…
OSS communication on final fall DESE guidance
On July 24th, the Commissioner of Elementary and Secondary Education, Jeff Riley, issued the final guidance for the Fall 2020 school reopening plans. The guidance itself, attached ​here​, is 17 pages long. We have therefore provided some highlights below, as well as some additional information about how Brookline is planning for reopening. Structured Learning Time and Learning Standards Student learning time requirements must be met from the beginning of the 2020-2021 school year, and will cover essential grade-level content in all areas within the Massachusetts curriculum frameworks. All students will be required to take the MCAS tests in spring 2021.…
Fall Reopening Facilities and Operations Guidance July 22, 2020
As a supplement to DESE’s Initial Fall School Reopening Guidance, we are providing districts and schools with this guidance on facilities and operations for reopening this fall.As stated in our Initial Fall Reopening Guidance, our goal is to promote the safe in-person return of as many students as possible in a school setting. For students and staff to return to school, schools and districts will need to prepare their facilities and adapt operating procedures to adhere to medically-advised health and safety requirements. Additionally, districts should follow federal, state,and local safety requirements applicable to school buildings.…
Fall Reopening Transportation Guidance July 22, 2020
This transportation guidance supplements DESE’s Initial Fall School Reopening Memo. The initial memo put forth the goal of the safe return of as many students as possible to in-person school settings–as in-person school is the best way to ensure student learning and continued social and emotional growth. The safe transportation of students to and from school is a critical part of achieving this goal. In developing this supplemental transportation guidance, the health and safety of students and transportation staff remain our top priorities. This guidance focuses on supporting districts to develop a transportation strategy that provides safe conditions for all students and staff traveling by bus, while also maximizing in-person learning:…
Individualized Education Program (IEP) Amendment -a1-a2
IEP amendment form used by IEP Team…
Extended Evaluation Form ee1-2
The Team found the student eligible for special education but recommended further assessment before developing a full IEP. The Team developed a partial IEP to be implemented during the extended evaluation period. Important Details from State Regulation — §603 CMR 28.05(2)(b): An extended evaluation should be used when evaluation information is inconclusive and should not be used to deny programs or services determined necessary by the Team. If the Team has determined eligibility and some necessary objectives and services, then the Team should write a partial IEP and, with parent acceptance, immediately implement the partial IEP while the extended evaluation is occurring. The evaluation may extend from one to eight school weeks but no longer than eight school weeks. The Team may meet at intervals during this period and should reconvene before the end of the evaluation period to develop a full IEP. The extended evaluation should not be used to allow extra time to complete required assessments and is not a placement…
A Guide To Chapter 688
A possible 688 referral should be discussed at the IEP Team meeting at least two years before the student is expected to graduate or turn 22, as part of transition planning. Ask the school to submit a 688 referral for your child. It must be signed by the parent, legal guardian, or by the young adult who is 18 or older. Request a copy of the form that is submitted.…
CHAPTER 688 GUIDELINES FOR REFERRAL
If it cannot be clearly determined which agency is appropriate, school districts should send the 688 referral and supporting documents to the Bureau of Transitional Planning.…
EVALUATION CONSENT FORM Attachment to N 1 n1a
TYPE OF ASSESSMENTS: A variety of assessment tools and strategies should be used to gather information that determines the educational needs of this student.…
Attendance Sheet Special Education Team Meeting n3a
Attendance Ssheet for an IEP Team meeting…
MEETING INVITATION n3
You are invited to a meeting to discuss the above-named student. Your participation is essential. The purpose and details of the meeting are printed below. Other invited participants are listed on the enclosed attendance form. It is your legal right to be present and to participate. Also, the school district values your input and hopes you will make every effort to attend this meeting. …
Notice of School District Refusal to Act n2
The school district has recently discussed this student with you. We now write to tell you of our intention not to act on a request. We have described our reasons for refusing on page two of this memo. As you know, special education regulations provide protection to you and your child. You will find specific information about your legal rights in the Notice of Procedural Safeguards,including sources that you may contact for help in understanding your rights. You should have received this brochure prior to the initial evaluation. If you would like another copy, please contact the school district staff. You should carefully review this brochure and the enclosed material.…
Notice of Proposed School District Action n1 aka PWN, Prior Written Notice
The school district has recently discussed this student and, with your input, has developed a proposal. We have described our actions and our reasons for these actions on page two of this memo. As you know, special education regulations provide protection to you and your child. You will find specific information about your legal rights within the Notice of Procedural Safeguards,including sources that you may contact for help in understanding your rights. This notice is enclosed for initial evaluations. …
Individualized Education Program IEP1-8 FORM
Parent and/or Student Concerns What concern(s) does the parent and/or student want to see addressed in this IEP to enhance the student's education? Student Strengths and Key Evaluation Results Summary What are the student’s educational strengths, interest areas, significant personal attributes and personal accomplishments? What is the student’s type of disability(ies), general education performance including MCAS/district test results, achievement towards goals and lack of expected progress, if any?Vision Statement: What is the vision for this student?Consider the next 1 to 5 year period when developing this statement. Beginning no later than age 14,the statement should be based on the student’s preferences and interest,and should include desired outcomes in adult living, post-secondary and working environments. …
Directions for Massachusetts IEP Notices
The directions found below should be read in conjunction with The IEP Process Guide and Directions for Massachusetts IEP Forms. School districts are recommended to personalize these suggested notices to fit the needs of their school districts; however, school districts must ensure that elements required by regulation are contained in their personalized notices. …
Directions for Massachusetts IEP Forms
The directions found below should be read in conjunction with The IEP Process Guide. All elements of these mandated forms must remain unchanged; however, school districts may change form design and may add elements. …
Annotated IEP Checklist ckl1-5
consider input from parents Parent participation. 20 U.S.C § 614 (d) (1) (B) (i) Student Strengths and Key Evaluation Summary — IEP 1 consider results of initial evaluation or most recent evaluation Initial evaluations. Reevaluation. IEP meetings. Development, review, and revision of IEP…
Quick Reference for IEP Forms and Notices - 2000, Jul 02, 2013
Quick Reference for IEP Forms and Notices Massachusetts Department of Education / April 2000 Eligibility/Initial & Reevaluation Determination (ED 1)Administrative Data Sheet (ADM 1)Extended Evaluation (EE 1 & 2)…
Progress Report on IEP
Current Performance Level: What can the student currently do? Measurable Annual Goal:What challenging, yet attainable, goal can we expect the student to meet by the end on this IEP period? How will we know that the student has reached this goal? Benchmarks/Objectives: What will the student need to do to complete this goal?…
Primary Disability/ Level of Need - PL3: 3 -21 year olds - pl3
Primary Disability / Level of Need – PL3: 3-21 year olds (For school district record keeping only)…
Educational Environment/ Placement - PL2: 6-21 year olds pl2-6-21
Educational Environment / Placement – PL2: 6-21 year olds (For school district record keeping only)…
Educational Environment / Placement – PL2: 3-5 year olds pl2-3-5
Educational Environment / Placement – PL2: 3-5 year olds (For school district record keeping only)…
Placement Consent Form - PL1: 6-21 year olds pl1-6-21
Placement Consent Form –PL1: 6-21 year olds Team Recommended Educational Placements Corresponding Placement The Team identified that IEP services are provided outside the general education classroom less than 21% of the time (80% inclusion)…
Placement Consent Form - PL1: 3-5 year olds pl1-3-5
Special Education Placement Consent Form -PL1: 3-5 year olds Team Recommended Special Educational Placements The Team identified that the majority of the IEP services will be provided in a program in the home for a child who is 3 to 5 years of age.…
Initial Fall School Reopening Guidance Jeffrey C. Riley Commissioner June 25, 2020
After weeks of discussion with many stakeholders, including our members of our Return-to-School Working Group, infectious disease physicians, pediatricians, and other public health experts; a thorough review of the medical literature; and evaluating what works best for our students, we want to start the school year with as many of our students as possible returning to in-person settings—safely. If the current positive public health metrics hold, we believe that when we follow critical health requirements, we can safely return to in-person school this fall with plans in place to protect all members of our educational community. Part of our responsibility as educators, administrators, and parents is to do all that we can to help our children in this difficult time. As we all know, there is no substitute for the attention and engagement that is only possible with in-person learning. We can mitigate the risks associated with COVID-19 for in-person school programs and prevent the significant consequences of keeping students out of school and isolated. It will take all of us working together to make this successful.…
COVID-19 School Closure Q&A: Summer Extended School Year (ESY) Services for Students with Disabilities
Schools will be providing ESY (summer services and programs) this year but due to COVID-19, ESY services will look different. •All students with ESY in their IEPs should receive services. Most students will continue to receive ESY services remotely at least part of time. Only high need students will receive in-person services and these services will be limited. •Schools should do everything they can to provide as many ESY services this summer as possible, including in-person services for high-need students, while following specific health and safety precautions. •High need students are: o Students with significant disabilities who have had substantial regression with remote learning;o Students who have multiple services in their IEP during the summer, such as applied behavior analysis; speech, occupational, and/or physical therapies; and academic instruction; o Students who will need more time to learn new health and safety procedures to keep themselves and others safe when schools re-open in the fall. …
Guidance for Courses Requiring Additional Safety Considerations for Fall 2020 July 24, 2020
As a supplement to DESE’s Initial Fall School Reopening Guidance (download), we are providing districts and schools with guidance for the following in-school classes which require additional safety considerations this fall: · Arts: Chorus, band, theater, dance, and visual arts · Physical education This document also provides guidance on shared equipment for these and other courses, including materials for art classes, computers, and, for younger students, toys like building blocks.…
Remote Learning Guidance for Fall 2020 Jeffrey C. Riley Commissioner July 24, 2020
The Department of Elementary and Secondary Education’s (DESE) Initial Fall School Reopening Guidance (download) outlines requirements and considerations for fall reopening plans with the goal of safely returning as many students as possible to in-person school settings to maximize learning and address students’ holistic needs. The Initial Fall School Reopening Guidance requires districts and schools to prepare a plan that includes three learning models: in-person learning with safety requirements, a hybrid model of in-person and remote learning, and a plan for full-time remote learning. Remote learning will be necessary for students who will not be attending school in-person, as part of a hybrid learning model, and in case changing COVID-19 conditions require a shift to full remote learning as determined by local and state leaders. The following guidance provides additional detail on remote learning expectations, program models districts may consider, and considerations for implementing various models.…
If You Think Your Child Needs In-Person Services this Summer COVID-19/ 2020 Sample Email to the School
If your child has Extended School Year (ESY) services in their IEP and you believe your child should be considered a “high need student” who needs in-person services this summer, you can use this sample e-mail to contact your child’s teacher, team leader, special education director, or other IEP team member. Once schools have put in place COVID-19 safety requirements, they should provide some in-person summer services for “high need students” with IEPs. These students will probably also receive some remote instruction. All other students with ESY in their IEPs will receive IEP services only remotely over the summer.…
OSEP Letter to Craig Haller 05-02-2019
regarding the Public Schools of Brookline’s policies concerning the membership of an individualized education program (IEP) Team and the criteria surrounding school administrators attending the meeting as non-contributing observers. You noted that the school district revised its Special Education – Standard Operational Procedural Manual to state, “Any person who is invited to the Team meeting by Brookline must be included on the invitation sheet. If a district’s administrator’s participation is required as a contributing member or not of the IEP Team, their name must be included on the meeting notification.” Given this language, you asked whether it is appropriate to invite an administrator to the IEP Team meeting with the intent or predetermined knowledge that the administrator will not be contributing to the IEP process (e.g., an observer). …
Brookline Schools Settlement Agreements with Families, Part 1
Parents who are negotiating an out of district placement need this information to make an informed decision. Special education settlement agreements, especially out of district placements, are costly. The public should be aware of how their money is being spent. Special education settlement agreements and out of district placement agreements may show weaknesses in programs. Parents of a district and parents considering moving into a district have the right to know how a district is serving a particular group of students. They may also show disparities that the parents of disabled students within a district should know about and have addressed by the administration. …
The Brookline SEPAC Bylaws 2017
The purpose of the Brookline SEPAC is to work for the understanding of, respect for, and support of all children with special needs in the Brookline Public Schools community. To that end, and pursuant to 603 CMR 28.07(4), the Brookline SEPAC shall:…
Department of Developmental Services (DDS) APPLICATION FOR ADULT ELIGIBILITY
If you have had prior experience with DMR or DDS, contact your Regional Eligibility Coordinator prior to completing this form.To apply for eligibility, please complete the application form, including all necessary signatures. Making an eligibility decision can be difficult, and documentation is necessary that demonstrates that the adult meets the eligibility criteria. Some items on the list may or may not apply to everyone. …
Massachusetts Parental Notice with One-Time Consent to Allow the School District to Access MassHealth (Medicaid) Benefits
In accordance with laws and regulations governing the Medicaid program,school systems mandated by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) to provide health-related services to their special education student populations are permitted to file claims for partial federal reimbursement…
Brookline Schools Settlement Agreements with Families, Part 2
Parents who are negotiating an out of district placement need this information to make an informed decision. Special education settlement agreements, especially out of district placements, are costly. The public should be aware of how their money is being spent. Special education settlement agreements and out of district placement agreements may show weaknesses in programs. Parents of a district and parents considering moving into a district have the right to know how a district is serving a particular group of students. They may also show disparities that the parents of disabled students within a district should know about and have addressed by the administration.…
FERPA and Virtual Learning Related Resources March 2020
As educators and students move to virtual learning during this time of social distancing due to COVID-19, the Student Privacy Policy Office (SPPO) has received questions about available resources on virtual learning and the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).FERPA is the federal law that protects the privacy of personally identifiable information (PII) in students’ education records. “Education records” are those records that are: (1) directly related to a student; and (2) maintained by an educational agency or institution or by a party acting for the agency or institution. FERPA provides parents and eligible students the right to access a student’s education records, the right to seek to have the records amended, and the right to protect the PII in students’ education records. (An “eligible student” is a student who has turned 18 or is attending college at any age.) Under FERPA, an educational agency or institution may not disclose PII from students’ education records, without consent, unless the disclosure meets an exception under FERPA. 20 U.S.C. 1232g; 34 C.F.R. Part 99.…
Andrew Bott resignation
It is after much reflection, careful thought, and consideration that I have made the decision to resign from my position as Superintendent of the Public Schools of Brookline.…
BROOKLINE Homes Based Services Parent Guidelines
The primary purpose of behavioral services is to teach parents and legal guardians (henceforth referred to as guardians)techniques on how to manage, communicate, and work with their child at home and in the community. Specifically, the strategies and techniques that will be addressed are designed to teach your child to function more independently in the home environment with activities of daily living, leisure skills, community skills, communication, and social interaction.Home-based services are intended to be a time-limited supplement to the school program where all of the educational goals are addressed on a continuing basis.…
Lumis-3-23-20
As we enter the second full week of closure, our schools and teachers will begin to provide regular learning opportunities for students and connect with them on a regular basis. We are following guidance from the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education that remote learning is not intended to replicate the work we normally do with students when school is in session. This means we are not introducing new curricula or grading assignments. Rather, our focus will be on providing opportunities that allow students to remain engaged in learning, continue to be connected to their teachers, and deepen their exposure to previously taught material.…
District Re-opening Plan
Initial Dynamic Planning Document for Discussion with the School Committee - from Fall River MA…
April 2014 ESE Strategic Plan, Jun 01, 2015
The Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (ESE) has set high standards and expectations for all students in the Commonwealth, and holds all accountable to those standards and expectations. However, while ESE may celebrate successes, we are aware of ongoing proficiency gaps and inequities. These give us a constant impetus to do better in eliminating all gaps and inequities on behalf of our nearly one million students.…
Guidebook for Inclusive Practice Job-Embedded PD Planning Guide
Job-embedded professional development refers to teacher learning grounded in day-to-day practices designed to enhance teachers’ content-specific instructional practices with the intent of improving overall student learning. In this model, PD is integrated into the workday, consisting of teachers assessing and finding solutions for authentic and immediate problems of practice. A recent national study found that less than half of surveyed teachers felt their professional development was tailored to their specific needs or development areas. ESE supports an approach to professional development that is systematic, on-going, and based on making measurable progress toward an ambitious standard for teaching and student learning.…
Amendments to 603 CMR 28.10, related to LEA Assignments, effective July 1, 2018
On March 27, 2018, the Massachusetts Board of Elementary and Secondary Education (the Board) adopted amendments to the Massachusetts Special Education Regulations at 603 CMR 28.10, pertaining to the assignment of school district responsibility for the special education services of students in foster care. The Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (“the Department” or “DESE”) must implement the amendments to 603 CMR 28.10, which are often referred to as the “LEA Assignment Regulations.”…
Guidebook for Inclusive Practice Quick Tips for Guidebook PD Activities
This resource, in conjunction with the Job-Embedded PD Planning Guide, may be helpful in using the tools of the Guidebook to design professional development activities. The ideas were generated by a small team of educators who used and reviewed the tools over the course of SY2015-16. The activities are broken into three categories: Individual Educator Activity; Group Educator Activity; Group Administrator Activity. Professional development planning teams should customize the activities to meet the needs of their districts.…
ESE Part III Guide to Rubrics and Model Rubrics for Superintendent, Administrator, and Teacher Appendix E: Role Specific Indicators, Nov 08, 2012
There are advantages and disadvantages to having a rubric that is highly specific to a role. A highly specific rubric provides clarity and specificity around what behaviors the educator should be engaging in and, consequently, the evaluator should be looking for. This has the potential to create more opportunities for meaningful feedback. There are disadvantages, however, for both the educator and the evaluator. A wide variety of distinct rubrics increases the number of rubrics that evaluators need to build expertise with in order to use reliably. Creating a large number of distinct rubrics also emphasizes differences among educators rather than commonalities, thus drawing lines between the work of different educators and impeding the ability of educators in different roles to create and pursue team goals. Finally—and in many ways, most importantly —the use of different rubrics diminishes the opportunity for educators to develop a common understanding of effective practice.…
ESE Part III Appendix D SISP Rubric, Feb 03, 2016
Guide to Specialized Instructional Support Personnel (SISP) Rubric Part III: Appendix D. ESE Model Rubric for Specialized Instructional Support March 2012 page i Rubrics – defined in the regulations as “scoring tool[s] that describe characteristics of practice or artifacts at different levels of performance” (603 CMR 35.02) – are a critical component of the Massachusetts educator evaluation framework and are required for every educator. Rubrics are designed to help educators and evaluators (1) develop a consistent, shared understanding of what proficient performance looks like in practice, (2) develop a common terminology and structure to organize evidence, and (3) make informed professional judgments about formative and summative performance ratings on each Standard and overall. This appendix contains the ESE Model “SISP” Rubric.…
Nearly a dozen Massachusetts districts faulted for asking parents to sign away special education rights
Now, the state says Granby and at least 10 other Massachusetts school districts, including Beverly, Malden, and Norfolk, violated state and federal special education laws by asking parents this spring to absolve school districts of key special education responsibilities, including, in some cases, the provision of vital services (such as speech therapy and one-on-one reading help), and, in others, the requirement to follow a strict timeline governing how quickly a child must be assessed for a disability and provided an instruction plan. The state is still investigating several other districts, including Braintree, Brookline, Hingham, and Framingham (one of them, Keefe Regional Technical School, denied issuing waivers).…
Special Education Leaders' Meeting July 23, 2020
Operate from confidence, not from fear​ ​ We're better together 02 DESE Special Education Updates On the Desktop 7/22/20 - Transportation Guidance Core Principles Masks - All staff and students on the bus, regardless of age, are required to wear masks at all times.  Exemptions for students due to medical and/or behavioral reasons – and associated protocols – are further described in the guidance.   Distance -   Students should be …
Special Education Leaders' Meeting, Jul 23, 2020
emphasized authentic family engagement with teachers and IEP liaisons contacting parents as soon as possible to discuss how a student’s IEP services will be delivered if different than described in the student’s IEP QUESTION: How can that discussion facilitate collection of information, and discussion of planning for necessary COVID-19 Compensatory Services, Recovery Support, or Additional IEP Services? What does that conversation look like? What will families need to know to be prepared for that conversation? …
Notice of Procedural Safeguards
Both State and federal laws contain rules that school districts must follow when deciding if a student is eligible for special education and, if so, what services the student will receive. These laws also provide detailed procedures for ensuring that the student receives a FAPE during the entire time he or she is eligible for special education. Special education is a highly complex and regulated area of education law. The detail in the law is intended to protect your student and to help ensure that he or she receives appropriate educational services. You can get additional help in understanding the special education process from your school guidance office, the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE), organizations for parents of students with disabilities, and private special education organizations. Information from these sources will help you work in partnership with your school district to make sure that your student receives appropriate educational services. The DESE publishes extensive information for parents and school districts on its Internet Websites. A Table of the DESE Websites is included at the end of this Notice.…
Protocols for responding to COVID-19 scenarios in school, on the bus, or in community settings
Protocols for responding to COVID-19 scenarios in school, on the bus, or in community settings July 17, 2020 Introduction and overview As a supplement to DESE’s Initial Fall School Reopening Guidance, we are providing districts and schools with additional information on protocols for responding to specific COVID-19 scenarios this fall. Protocols from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) related to this topic may be released in the coming weeks and this guidance may be updated accordingly.…
Q&A procedural safeguards-IDEA Part C-06-30-2020
Question and Answer (Q & A) document in response to inquiries concerning implementation of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) Part C procedural safeguards in the current COVID-19 environment.…
Q&A fiscal flexibilities IDEA Part B 06-26-2020
Question and Answer (Q & A) document in response to inquiries concerning flexibility in the implementation of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) Part B fiscal requirements in the current COVID-19 environment.…
Q&A dispute resolution procedures IDEA part C during Covid
Question and Answer (Q & A) document in response to inquiries concerning implementation of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) Part C dispute resolution procedures in the current COVID-19 environment.…
Q&A dispute resolution procedures IDEA part B during Covid
Question and Answer (Q & A) document in response to inquiries concerning implementation of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) Part B dispute resolution procedures in the current COVID-19 environment.…
2019 Determination Letters on State Implementation of IDEA
The 2004 Amendments to the IDEA require each State to develop a State Performance Plan (SPP) and Annual Performance Report (APR) that evaluates the State’s efforts to implement the requirements and purposes of the IDEA, and describes how the State will improve its implementation. …
Waiver Authority for the Period of Availability for Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) Part B Funds for Federal fiscal year (FFY) 2018
Under section 3511(b)(1)(B) of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act), Pub. L. No. 116-136 (March 27, 2020), the Secretary of Education is authorized to consider waivers to extend the period of availability for certain Federal funds. The CARES Act provides substantial relief to children and educators who have been profoundly affected by the Novel Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19).…
Guidance on dyslexia 10-2015
focus particularly on the unique educational needs of children with dyslexia, dyscalculia, and dysgraphia, which are conditions that could qualify a child as a child with a specific learning disability under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).…
disc-law
Laws regarding movement to an Alternative Educational Setting (AES)…
Discipline of Special Education Students Under IDEA 2004
This chart should be read in conjunction with discipline procedures in state law, M.G.L. c. 71, §§ 37H & 37H1/2, and district-wide and school-wide student codes of conduct.…
Significant Disproportionality in Special Education
The memorandum also describes the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education’s (DESE’s) plan for partnering with districts to address identified disproportionality by race and ethnicity in special education identification, placement, and discipline. This plan is aligned with our shared commitment to promote access and equity in special education for our most marginalized students.…
General Overview of Physical Restraint Requirements for Public Education Programs Including Revisions that Take Effect 1-1-2016
An overview of the regulatory requirements for the use of physical restraint, but does not iterate all of the detail in the regulations…
Special Education Program Plan Statement
Every Local Educational Agency (LEA) must maintain the documentation named in each element of the Special Education Program Plan Statement to demonstrate compliance with IDEA-2004 at the local level. Massachusetts will align the submission of the Special Education Program Plan Statement to the cohort model associated with the data collection activities for the State Performance Plans indicators…
Question and Answer Guide 603CMR Physical Restraints
QUESTION AND ANSWER GUIDE RELATED TO IMPLEMENTATION OF 603 CMR 46.00 THE REGULATIONS FOR THE PREVENTION OF PHYSICAL RESTRAINT AND REQUIREMENTS IF USED AND CONFORMING AMENDMENTS TO 603 CMR 18.00 PROGRAM AND SAFETY STANDARDS FOR APPROVED PUBLIC OR PRIVATE DAY AND RESIDENTIAL PROGRAMS.…
Guidance on FAPE 11-17-2015
To help make certain that children with disabilities are held to high expectations and have meaningful access to a State’s academic content standards, we write to clarify that an individualized education program (IEP) for an eligible child with a disability under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) must be aligned with the State’s academic content standards for the grade in which the child is enrolled.…
DESE Organization Chart - 2020
ORGANIZATIONAL CHART Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education January 2020…
DESE July 2020 Fall Reopening FAQ
Fall Reopening Frequently Asked Questions, as of July 10, 2020…
DESE 2020-0709 sped-directors
DESE July 2020 Guidance on Fall 2020 Special Education Services
This document supplements the Initial Fall Reopening Guidance by providing further information on supporting students with disabilities during the upcoming school year. It also provides necessary information in support of schools and districts, as they develop the portion of their reopening plans specifically related to special education.…
Brookline Salaries 2018
Salaries of all PSB employees for the year 2018 obtained from public sources.…
Brookline Salaries 2019
Salaries of all PSB employees for the year 2019 obtained from public sources.…
DESE July 9, 2020 Comprehensive Special Education Guidance for the 2020-21 School Year
This document complements the Initial Fall Reopening Guidance by providing further information on supporting students with disabilities during the upcoming school year. It also provides necessary information in support of schools and districts, as they develop the portion of their reopening plans specifically related to special education.…
$25m Grant for Remote Learning-Related Technology Needs and Health Safety Supply/PPE ordering process open
We are pleased to announce the Remote Learning Technology Essentials Grant.The grant was established to address remaining remote learning technology needs and to ensure that every student has adequate access to technology for use in remote learning environments during the 2020-2021 school year.…
July 1, 2020 Comprehensive Summer School Guidance
You will notice that the health and safety requirements described for summer largely adhere to the Initial Fall Reopening Guidance the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education released last week, with some exceptions.…
2020-0625fall-reopening-attachment
LEA Health Supply needs form - June 10, 2020
DESE recommended health supplies…
Fall Reopening Frequently Asked Questions, as of July 10, 2020
Department of Elementary & Secondary Education Fall Reopening Frequently Asked Questions, as of July 10, 2020…
Additional Guidance on Fall Reopening Plans (July 10, 2020)
I am requiring districts to submit one reopening plan that will address health and safety requirements and different student learning models—in-person, hybrid, and remote learning. The plan must also describe how special populations will be effectively served within each of the models. This reopening plan is due to DESE by Friday, July 31, and we will provide a template next week.…
July 9, 2020 Guidance on Fall 2020 Special Education Services
This document supplements the Initial Fall Reopening Guidance by providing further information on supporting students with disabilities during the upcoming school year. It also provides necessary information in support of schools and districts, as they develop the portion of their reopening plans specifically related to special education.…
Guidance on Summer 2020 Special Education Services (June 8, 2020)
This guidance addresses the first priority: students with disabilities, specifically those who receive summer services as a provision of their Individualized Education Programs (IEPs). These students’ IEPs may call for Extended School Year (ESY) services, summer programs, or, in the case of some students attending education collaboratives or approved special education schools,year-round services.…
Message about Summer 2020 Special Education Services (June 7, 2020)
addresses the first priority: students with disabilities, specifically those who receive summer services as a provision of their Individualized Education Programs (IEPs). These students’ IEPs may call for Extended School Year (ESY) services, summer programs, or, in the case of some students attending education collaboratives or approved special education schools, year-round services.…
Competitive Team Building Exercise with Commissioner Riley (June 5, 2020)
The Department is announcing an opportunity for approximately 300 high school students to join Commissioner Riley and Harvard professors Monica Higgins and Uche Amaechi inan online competitive and engaging team-building exercise. …
Required Safety Supplies for Re-Opening Schools (June 5, 2020)
With key health metrics continuing to improve in the Commonwealth and the Governor’s four-part overall economic reopening plan underway, the attached guidance document is focused on one important aspect of re-opening schools: key safety supplies.…
June 5, 2020Subject:Guidance on Required Safety Supplies for Re-Opening Schools
We are issuing this guidance on key safety supplies now so that districts can begin the ordering process for critical items that may be harder to procure and/or have longer potential delivery times. In this document, we provide specific information that will allow districts and schools to make these key safety purchases as soon as possible.…
Comprehensive Summer School Guidance (July 1, 2020)
The attached Comprehensive Summer School Guidance supplements the Initial Summer School Re-Opening Guidance and the Guidance about Summer 2020 Special Education Services,both released in June. In this document, you will find that the health and safety requirements described for summer largely adhere to the Initial Fall School Reopening Guidance I released last week, with some exceptions. The guidelines found in our reopening guidance are well supported by the medical field, including the American Academy of Pediatrics which released similar guidelines last week.…
June 25, 2020 Initial Fall School Reopening Guidance
Late last night, we shared a preview of our Initial Fall School Reopening Guidance with you, and I’m attaching the final June 25 version of this guidance to this email.The guidance can also be downloaded from our website. As a follow-up to this information, I invite you to join me for a conference call at 10:30 a.m. tomorrow, Friday, June 26. …
Opinion by Joseph G. Allen: Yes, kids should be going back to school in the fall, Jul 13, 2020
Joseph G. Allen is an assistant professor of exposure assessment science, director of the Healthy Buildings program at Harvard University’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health and co-author of “Healthy Buildings: How Indoor Spaces Drive Performance and Productivity.”I’ve spent more than 10 years as a forensic investigator of “sick buildings.” The stakes were often extraordinarily high: a hospital where four people had died and hundreds were at risk; a factory where workers were at risk of getting an irreversible respiratory disease called “Popcorn Lung”; a military base where housing was suspected in the deaths of 11 infants.…
Summer and Vacation Learning Program Grant Posted (June 19, 2020)
As a reminder, the purpose of this new, competitive, federally-funded grant is to help local school districts, vocational technical schools, and charter schools develop, expand, or enhance high-quality, in-person, remote, or hybrid learning programs for the summer of 2020 and/or school vacations during the 2020-21 school year. The grant can also be used to support the development and implementation of weekend learning programs that will take place during the 2020-21 school year.…
New SOA Plan Deadline (June 15, 2020)
Thank you for your continued efforts to serve students during the COVID-19 pandemic. Consistent with St. 2020, Ch. 56, § 9, I am extending the deadline for school districts and charter schools to submit Student Opportunity Act (SOA) plans. The new deadline is Tuesday, August 18, 2020.…
Summer and Vacation Learning Program Grant (June 11, 2020)
We are pleased to announce the Summer/Vacation Learning Program Grant. The purpose of this new,competitive,federally-funded grant is to help local school districts, vocational technical schools, and charter schools develop, expand, or enhance high-quality, in-person, remote, or hybrid learning programs for the summer of 2020 and/or school vacations during the 2020-21 school year.…
June 10, 2020 -- K-12 Health Supply/PPE Acquisition Support
In order to meet Massachusetts K-12 Health Safety Supply/PPE needs for the upcoming school year, DESE has engaged with OSD to work with our key statewide contract vendors to create a supply reserve that participating school districts can access and place initial and recurring PPE/safety supply orders. OSD plans to have each vendor develop a DESE/schools only web-based punchout catalog that allows a simple shopping experience with defined product choices and pricing. …
Acquisition Support for Safety Supplies (June 10, 2020)
As referenced in the June 5 Guidance on Required Safety Supplies for Re-Opening Schools(download),DESE is pleased to announce a state sponsored health safety supply/PPE ordering process. This support is made possible through the Operational Services Division (OSD), which has played a leading role in the Commonwealth’s acquisition of health safety supply/PPE to date for health care workers and first responders.…
CARES Act RFP Available (May 8, 2020)
The RFP will soon be posted at http://www.doe.mass.edu/grants/current.htmlfor the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund (ESSER Fund). This grant, authorized under section 18003 of the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act), provides districts with emergency relief funds to address the impact that COVID-19 has had and continues to have on elementary and secondary schools.…
May 7, 2020, Advanced Placement Testing Guidelines
A few of you have asked me whether you could make your school building available for high school students to take Advanced Placement (AP) tests in a socially distanced manner if those students do not have access to technology and a quiet testing place at home.After conferring with other state officials, I can share the following guidelines with you. …
April 24, 2020, Further Guidance on 2019-2020 School Year Requirements
Recognizing that local remote learning plans were still being developed during the first week of ordered school closures, every district is expected to go to at least its previously scheduled 185thday. However, if the district continued remote learning during vacation days on April 21-24, the district is expected to go until its previously scheduled 181stday. A reminder: districts can always decide to go longer.…
Payments for Contracted Services, March 27, 2020
In response to questions I have received about payments while schools are closed, I am writing to provide further recommendations to districts relating to: (1) tuition payments for resident students enrolled in certain public school programs; (2) tuition payments for out-of-district day or residential special education programs; (3) payments for contracted special education related service providers; and (4) outsourced operational services, such as school transportation. …
June 4, 2020 Attachment: Initial Summer School Re-Opening Guidance
As we begin preparations for the summer, it is important to provide context for the guidance we are releasing beginning this week. Please note that this guidance is for summer programming only and will be revisited as more public health data becomes known. We are issuing this short initial guidance document to help districts and schools begin summer planning efforts. We will release detailed guidance focused on special education summer programs no later than Tuesday, June 9 and comprehensive general guidance about summer programs within the next two weeks.…
Initial Guidance on Summer School (June 4, 2020)
Attached to this email is an initial summer school guidance document designed to help districts and schools begin planning for any possible in-person summer school programs they hope to hold. We will release detailed guidance focused on special education summer programs no later than Tuesday, June 9,and we plan to release comprehensive guidance aboutin-personsummer programs within two weeks.…
Help with P-EBT Card Use (June 3, 2020)
Families whose students qualify for free or reduced-price lunch started to receive P-EBT cards in the mail on Friday, May 29, and many are having trouble activating their card. Please share the following information from the Department of Transitional Assistance (DTA) with families:…
May 26, 2020, Update on Competency Determination Requirements For Class Of 2021-23
In light of the COVID-19 school closures this year, the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education voted today to modify the science and technology/engineering (STE)(download) part of the competency determination requirement for current high school freshmen, sophomores and juniors (members of the classes of 2021-23).Under this change, the competency determination in STE will be awarded upon demonstration that the student earned credit for a course in the relevant subject matter and demonstrated competency in one of the four tested disciplines (biology, chemistry, introductory physics, technology/engineering) during their high school career. The process and timeline for awarding the modified CD will be announced at a later date. …
Remote Learning Survey (May 13, 2020)
We are collecting information about remote learning plans from all districts, charter schools, vocational technical schools, approved special education schools, and collaborative across the Commonwealth. The purpose of this effort is to better understand the various approaches that districts and schools are taking to engage students in learning while school buildings are closed.…
Letter to Families and High School Guidance (May 8, 2020)
Thank you for all you continue to do to make remote learning work. Attached to this email are two documents that I hope you will find helpful. One is a letter to parents followed by a two-page School Connectedness document that can help explain the expectations around remote learning and describes where additional support is available in a variety of areas. We plan to post translated versions of the letter and School Connectedness document on the COVID-19 section of our website next week.…
High School Guidance, May 8, 2020
With school buildings closed through the end of the 2019-20 school year,helping students in the Class of 2020 graduate and proceed with their postsecondary plans is a critical priority. High schools should be sure to review the status of each senior to determine the extent to which the student has met both local and state requirements (the competency determination)for graduation.(Note: Updates on the competency determination requirement are below.)…
U.S. Department of Education, OCR, Case Processing Manual -- November 2018
The Case Processing Manual (CPM) provides OCR with the procedures to promptly and effectively investigate and resolve complaints, compliance reviews and directed investigations to ensure compliance with the civil rights laws and regulations enforced by OCR.…
Memo, Discrimination on the Basis of National Origin (05/25/1970)
This memorandum is to clarify D/HEW policy on issues concerning the responsibility of school districts to provide equal educational opportunity to national origin-minority group children of deficient in English language skills.…
Know Your Rights: Title VI and Religion, Jan 2017
The U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) enforces federal civil rights laws that prohibit schools, colleges, and universities from discriminating based on race, color, national origin, sex, disability, or age. These laws protect students who are or are perceived to be members of a religious group, such as Buddhists, Christians, Hindus, Jews, Muslims, and Sikhs, from discrimination on any of the bases described above.…
Combating Discrimination Against Jewish Students, Jan 2017
The U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) enforces Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 in public and federally funded schools at all educational levels. Title VI protects all students, including Jewish students, from discrimination based on race, color, and national origin (including language and actual or perceived shared ancestry or ethnic characteristics). Schools must take immediate and appropriate action to respond to complaints of discrimination, including harassment or bullying based on race, color, or national origin.…
Nondiscrimination in Federally Assisted Programs - Policy Interpretations, Aug 1978
The following four policy interpretations are issued by the Office for Civil Rights under the procedures announced in the FEDERAL REGISTER on May 1, 1978, 43 FR 18630. They interpret the Department's regulation issued under section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.…
Questions and Answers on Title IX and Single-Sex Elementary and Secondary Classes and Extracurricular Activities
Although Title IX prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in federally funded education programs and activities, regulations issued by the Department authorize schools to offer single-sex classes or extracurricular activities under certain circumstances. In order to ensure that schools subject to Title IX comply with the Department’s requirements if they choose to offer single-sex classes and extracurricular activities, OCR provides the following responses to questions that schools should consider when assessing their compliance with Title IX.…
U.S. Department of Education Civil Rights Data Collection (CRDC) User Guide
The CRDC collects data from a sample of school districts on key education and civil rights issues in our nation's public schools, including student enrollment and educational programs and services, disaggregated by race/ethnicity, sex, limited English proficiency and disability. The CRDC is a valuable source of information about access to educational opportunities in our Nation’s public schools that is used by the Department’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) and other Department offices, as well as policymakers, researchers and many others in the education community.…
Response -Steven Geoffrey Gieseler (signed by Margaret Spellings)
This letter is in response to your letter dated June 19,2007, containing the "Petition of the College Sports Council to Repeal, Amend, and Clarify Rules Applying Title IX to High School Athletics" (Petition). The Petition requests that the United States Department of Education (Department) take the following actions with regard to Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (Title IX), 20 US.c. §§ 1681 et seq.: (1) clarify that the Three-Part Test does not apply to high school athletics; (2) repeal or amend any rule, regulation, interpretation, or clarification applying the Three-Part Test to high school athletics; and (3) clarify the Department's guidance to high schools with regard to measuring athletic interests and abilities. …
Revised Sexual Harassment Guidance: Dear Colleague Letter, Jan 2006
The OCR in the US Department of Education is responsible for enforcing Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 and the implementation of regulations at 34 CFR Part 106 which prohibit sex discrimination in the education programs and activities operated by educational institutions that receive Federal financial assistance.…
Disability Rights Enforcement Highlights -- October 2012
The Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) protects the rights of persons with disabilities under two federal laws. One of these is Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, which prohibits discrimination based on dis-ability in programs and activities operated by recipients of federal funds. It states: “No otherwise qualified individual with a disability in the United States...shall, solely by reason of her or his disability, be excluded from the participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance...”…
Title VI and Title IX Religious Discrimination in Schools and Colleges
On this occasion, I would like to address the right of all students, including students of faith, to be free from discrimination in our schools and colleges under Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VI) and Title IX of the Education Amendments Act of 1972 (Title IX). The Office for Civil Rights (OCR) of the U.S. Department of Education (the Department) ensures compliance by recipients of the Department's financial assistance with federal laws prohibiting discrimination on the basis of race, national origin, sex, disability, or age, or in the access of certain patriotic organizations to school facilities. …
The Use of Race in Assigning Students to Elementary and Secondary Schools, Aug 2008
On behalf of the Office for Civil Rights (OCR)of the United States Department of Education, I write to explain ho w the Supreme Court's decision in Parents Involved in Community Schools v. Seattle School Dist. No. 1,127 S .Ct . 2738 (2007) (Parents Involved) , will guide OCR's assessment of whether a school district's use of race is consistent with Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 , 4 2 U.S.c.2000d (Title VI). OCR is responsible for enforcing Title VII, which pro hi b its discrimination based on race, color, or national origin by recipients of Federal financial assistance, including public elementary and secondary school districts.…
Questions & Answers on Racial Discrimination and School Discipline, Dec 2018
Under Title VI of the Civil Rights Act and its implementing regulations, no student shall, on the ground of race, color, or national origin (hereafter “race”), be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity of a recipient receiving federal financial assistance (hereafter “school”).1 This Q&A document provides information about how OCR assesses a school’s compliance with Title VI with respect to the administration of school discipline, and how a school may self-evaluate its compliance with Title VI with or without OCR’s involvement.…
Q&A on Campus Sexual Misconduct, Sep 2017
Under Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 and its implementing regulations, an institution that receives federal funds must ensure that no student suffers a deprivation of her or his access to educational opportunities on the basis of sex. The Department of Education intends to engage in rulemaking on the topic of schools’ Title IX responsibilities concerning complaints of sexual misconduct, including peer-on-peer sexual harassment and sexual violence. The Department will solicit input from stakeholders and the public during that rulemaking process. In the interim, these questions and answers—along with the Revised Sexual Harassment Guidance previously issued by the Office for Civil Rights—provide information about how OCR will assess a school’s compliance with Title IX.…
Questions and Answers: Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin (Fisher II), Sep 2016
On June 23, 2016, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its second decision in Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin(Fisher II). The Court followed long-standing precedent recognizing that colleges and universities have a compelling interest in ensuring student body diversity, and can take account of an individual applicant’s race as one of several factors in their admissions programs as long as the program is narrowly tailored to achieve that compelling interest.…
Dear Colleague Letter from Russlynn Ali, Assistant Secretary Office for Civil Rights
Intercollegiate Athletics Policy Clarification: The Three-Part Test - Part Three. With this letter the Department is withdrawing the "Additional Clarification of Intercollegiate Athletics Policy: Three Part Test - Part Three.…
Dear Colleague Letter, dated January 8, 2009
Clarifications on how Federal anti-discrimination laws and, in particular, Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VI), apply to school districts and State educational agencies who participate in the program authorized by Title I, Part A (Title I) of ESEA as reauthorized by the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 (NCLB).…
Dear Colleague Letterfrom Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights Stephanie Monroe (PDF), Sep 16, 2008
I am writing to provide technical assistance regarding your compliance with Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (Title fn,20 U.S.C. $$ 1681 et seq. Specifically, this letter provides clarifying information to help institutions determine which intercollegiate or interscholastic athletic activities can be counted for the purpose of Title IX compliance; it doesn't represent a change in OCR's policy under Title IX.…
Dear Colleague Letter from Assistant Secretary Stephanie Monroe (PDF), May 22, 2008
I am writing to clarify how Federal civil rights laws apply to local educational agencies (LEAs) that provide students the option to participate in Advanced Placement (AP) courses.' As you work to ensure that our Nation's students are academically prepared to compete successfully in the expanding global economy, it is advantageous for students to be exposed to, and complete, rigorous secondary school curriculum…
"Dear Colleague" Letter, Dec 21, 2018
The purpose of this letter is to inform you that the Department of Justice and the Department of Education are withdrawing the statements of policy and guidance reflected in the following documents: •Dear Colleague Letter on Nondiscriminatory Administration of School Discipline dated January 8, 2014; and •Overview of the Supportive School Discipline Initiative dated January 8, 2014.…
Dear Colleague Letter: xxxxxx (PDF), Jul 03, 2018
The purpose of this letter is to inform you that the Department of Justice and the Department of Education are withdrawing the following documents ...…
"Dear Colleague" Letter on Campus Sexual Misconduct, Sep 21, 2017
The purpose of this letter is to inform you that the Department of Education is withdrawing the statements of policy and guidance reflected in the following documents: •Dear Colleague Letter on Sexual Violence, issued by the Office for Civil Rights at the U.S. Department of Education, dated April 4, 2011. •Questions and Answers on Title IX and Sexual Violence, issued by the Office for Civil Rights at the U.S. Department of Education, dated April 29, 2014.…
Dear Colleague Letter from The Assistant Secretary (OCR) (PDF), Sep 29, 2014
Sixty years ago the Supreme Court famously declared in Brown v. Board of Education that education “is a right which must be made available to all on equal terms.”1 Today, I write to call your attention to disparities that persist in access to educational resources, and to help you address those disparities and comply with the legal obligation to provide students with equal access to these resources without regard to race, color, or national origin.* This letter builds on the prior work shared by the U.S. Department of Education on this critical topic.…
English Learners DCL (PDF), Jan 06, 2015
The Office for Civil Rights (OCR) at the U.S. Department of Education (ED) and the Civil Rights Division at the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) share authority for enforcing Title VI in the education context. DOJ is also responsible for enforcing the EEOA. (In the enclosed guidance, Title VI and the EEOA will be referred to as “the civil rights laws.”) In addition, ED administers the English Language Acquisition, Language Enhancement, and Academic Achievement Act, also known as Title III, Part A of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, as amended (ESEA) (Title III).…
Plyler Dear Colleague (PDF), May 06, 2014
Recently, we have become aware of student enrollment practices that may chill or discourage the participation, or lead to the exclusion, of students based on their or their parents’ or guardians’ actual or perceived citizenship or immigration status. These practices contravene Federal law. Both the United States Department of Justice and the United States Department of Education (Departments) write to remind you of the Federal obligation to provide equal educational opportunities to all children residing within your district and to offer our assistance in ensuring that you comply with the law. We are writing to update the previous Dear Colleague Letter on this subject that was issued on May 6, 2011, and to respond to inquiries the Departments received about the May 6 Letter. This letter replaces the May 6 Letter.…
Dear Colleague Letter, May 26, 2011
This FAQ is a follow-up to the Dear Colleague Letter (DCL) that we sent to college and university presidents on June 29, 2010, regarding the use of electronic book readers and other emerging technologies in educational settings. …
Dear Colleague Letter, May 26, 2011
As the use of emerging technologies in the classroom increases, schools at all levels must ensure equal access to the educational benefits and opportunities afforded by the technology and equal treatment in the use of the technology for all students, including students with disabilities. To assist you in this regard, I write to share the attached “Frequently Asked Questions About the June 29, 2010, Dear Colleague Letter” (FAQ), developed by the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR). This FAQ is a follow-up to a Dear Colleague Letter (DCL) that we sent to college and university presidents on June 29, 2010, regarding the use of electronic book readers and other emerging technologies in educational settings.…
Dear Colleague Letter on Transgender Students, Feb 23, 2017
The purpose of this guidance is to inform you that the Department of Justice and the Department of Education are withdrawing the statements of policy and guidance reflected in: •Letter to Emily Prince from James A. Ferg-Cadima, Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary for Policy, Office for Civil Rights at the Department of Education dated January 7, 2015; and•Dear Colleague Letter on Transgender Students jointly issued by the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice and the Department of Education dated May 13, 2016.These guidance documents take the position that the prohibitions on discrimination “on the basis of sex” in Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (Title IX), 20 U.S.C. § 1681 et seq., and its implementing regulations, see, e.g., 34 C.F.R. § 106.33, require access to sex-segregated facilities based on gender identity. …
"Dear Colleague" Letter on Gender Equity in Career and Technical Education, Jun 13, 2016
The Department’s Office of Career, Technical, and Adult Education (OCTAE) and Office for Civil Rights (OCR) join together in this letter to make clear to recipients that all students, regardless of their sex or gender, 2 must have equal access to the full range of CTE programs offered. 3 Ensuring equitable access to CTE by eliminating discriminatory practices and taking proactive steps to expand participation of students in fields where one sex is underrepresented4 can increase overall participation and success in high-growth fields, such as nursing, advanced manufacturing, information technology, computer science, and cyber security, for both men and women. This letter serves to support and inform recipients by clarifying the legal obligations to ensure equitable access to CTE programs, and by providing examples of issues that may raise concerns regarding compliance with these obligations.…
Voluntary Youth Service Organizations, Dec 14, 2015
The U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) has recently received questions from school districts and State educational agencies about outside organizations that provide single-sex programming to a school district’s students. I write to explain the circumstances under which a school district lawfully may work with such organizations and to address legal issues that may arise under Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (Title IX) and the Department’s Title IX regulations.…
Dear Colleague Letter on Title IX Coordinators, Apr 24, 2015
Your Title IX coordinator plays an essential role in helping you ensure that every person affected by the operations of your educational institution—including students, their parents or guardians,employees, and applicants for admission and employment—is aware of the legal rights Title IX affords and that your institution and its officials comply with their legal obligations under Title IX.…
Dear Colleague (PDF), May 05, 2014
We are writing to confirm that the decision of the United States Supreme Court issued on April 22, 2014 in Schuette v. Coalition to Defend Affirmative Action, et al., leaves intact the Court’s prior holdings recognizing that institutions of higher education and elementary and secondary schools may use all legally permissible methods to achieve their diversity goals. These include, absent any restrictions in state law, appropriately tailored programs that consider the race of individual applicants as one of several factors in an individualized process to achieve the educational benefits that flow from a diverse student body.…
Fact Sheet: Combating Discrimination Against Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander (AANHPI) and Muslim, Arab, Sikh, and South Asian (MASSA) Students - English (PDF), Jun 02, 2016
The U.S. Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division (CRT) and the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) enforce federal civil rights laws in public and federally funded schools at all educational levels. These laws protect all students,including Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander (AANHPI) and Muslim, Arab, Sikh, and South Asian (MASSA) students, from discrimination based on race, color, and national origin (including language and shared ethnic characteristics).…
PSB Bullying Incident Report Form
This form may be used for reporting bullying or retaliation. The Principal/Headmaster/Superintendent or his/her designee will investigate all reports of bullying and retaliation and will take prompt action to end the conduct and restore the target’s sense of safety…
Bullying Prevention and Intervention Plan 2020 FINAL
We recognize that certain students may be more vulnerable to become targets of bullying,harassment, or teasing based on actual or perceived characteristics, including race, color,religion, ancestry, national origin, sex, socioeconomic status, homelessness, academic status,gender identity or expression, physical appearance, pregnant or parenting status, sexual orientation, mental, physical, developmental or sensory disability, or by association with a person who has or is perceived to have one or more of these characteristics. …
Brookline Public Schools Demographic Study Report 200204
The data used for the forecasts come from a variety of sources. The Public Schools of Brookline provided enrollments by grade and attendance center for the school years 2016-2017 to 2019-2020. Birth and death data for the years 2000 through 2017 were obtained from the Massachusetts Department of Health. …
Frequently Asked Questions About Head Lice
As a school nurse, you’re likely to get a lot of questions from families facing a head lice infestation. Here are some questions and concerns that may come up, and information to help you respond to parents, teachers, and administrators.…
2017- 2018 Goals for School Committee -- Presented on 9_14_17
Quick Review The District’s Strengths and Challenges; 2017- 2018 Senior Leadership Goals …
Update to Families_FY21 Budget_1.6.20
On November 15, I communicated with all families about the challenges Brookline’s public schools will face as we build next year’s budget. In that email, I included a presentation that showed the difficult choices that have been made in recent years to balance our budget each year and provided information about the major drivers of the school budget. I also promised to provide updates to our PSB families as the process moved forward,which I am doing today. …
PSB_Bullying_Prevention_Policy_Voted_3.16.17
The Public Schools of Brookline (PSB), in partnership with parents, guardians, and the community, and in keeping with the PSB core value of respect for human differences, believes that a positive, safe, and civil environment in school is necessary for students to learn and achieve. Bullying disrupts a student’s ability to learn by preventing that student’s full engagement with his or her education. Moreover, bullying compromises a school’s ability to educate its students in a safe environment.…
PSB Remote Learning Parent Survey Results_District_5.22.20
Public Schools of Brookline Parent/Guardian Survey - May 2020 Parent/Guardian feedback on extended closure…
PSB PROCEDURAL GUIDELINES FOR THE ADMINISTRATION OF MEDICATIONS IN SCHOOL, Jan 2012
Essential medications will administered during the school day to students to ensure that they may attend school. All non-essential medications should be scheduled before or after the school day. Parent/guardian consent and original physician orders are required for the administration of all medications,prescription and non prescription.…
Memo from Superintendent, March 30, 2020
As the Public Schools of Brookline launched our remote learning plan last week, we continued to plan for a longer closure. Following the Governor’s announcement that schools are to remain closed until May 4, Commissioner of Education, Jeffrey Riley released new guidance to schools from the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) encouraging districts to plan for a more robust approach to student learning.…
Expectations of Appropriate Virtual Technical Use
The Public Schools of Brookline (PSB) are dedicated to providing engaging and effective remote learning opportunities for our students. Some of these remote learning opportunities will take place via virtual (online) platforms. As we begin to engage in virtual learning, we seek to clarify expectations around appropriate use of virtual technologies for educational opportunities.…
Special ​​Education ​​-​​ Standard​​ Operating ​​Procedure​​ Manual​: Referral, ​​Evaluation, ​​and​​ Placement​​ of​​ School-Age Students ​​with ​​Disabilities
The​​ purpose​​ of ​​this​​ operating​​ and​​ procedural​​ manual​​ is​​ to​​ provide ​​support ​​and ​​guidance ​​to ​​the management​​ and​​ staff ​​of​​ the ​​Public​​ Schools ​​of ​​Brookline.​​ Nothing​​ in​​ this ​​manual ​​is​​ intended ​​to create ​​nor​​ doevs​​it ​​create​​ any ​​enforceable​​ rights,​​ remedies,​​ entitlements​​ or​​ obligations.​​ The​​ Public Schools ​​of​​ Brookline​​ reserve​​ its ​​right ​​to ​​change​​ or ​​suspend​​ any ​​or​​ all​​ parts ​​of​​ this​​ manual​​ at​​ the district’s​​ discretion​​ to ​​ensure ​​full​​ compliance​​ with regulations ​​of​​ the ​​Massachusetts​​ Department of​​ Elementary​​ and​​ Secondary ​​Education ​​and ​​federal​​ guidelines ​​of​​ the ​​established​​ within ​​the reauthorization ​​of ​​Individuals​​ with ​​Disability​​ Education​​ Act ​​of ​​2004.…
Guidelines for the Mathematical Preparation of Elementary Teachers , Aug 26, 2015
These Guidelines highlight the breadth and depth of mathematics that teachers at the elementary level must not only be able to do, but understand and explain in many ways to students. The fact that the Guidelines do not extend beyond the mathematics covered by elementary schools should not be construed to mean that the mathematics preparation recommended herein will be easy—quite the contrary.…
History of Content and Learning Standards in Massachusetts - Aug 2015,
On June 18, 1993, the Massachusetts Education Reform Act was signed into law. This historic legislation created the framework for unprecedented improvements in student learning, teacher professionalism, school management, and equity of funding. Chapter 69, Section 1D specifically states:…
Educator Effectiveness Guidebook for Inclusive Practice, Jun 26, 2017
Inclusive practice and settings offer all students the opportunity to learn from one another in safe and supportive learning environments. We include all of our students so as not to set limits on any student. The Guidebook provides educators—both teachers and administrators—with user-friendly tools based on guiding principles from Universal Design for Learning, Social and Emotional Learning, and Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports to build and strengthen inclusive practice; suggestions for simplified and specific means of communication and collaboration with colleagues; and a framework for best inclusive practice that all educators and students deserve.…
EdServicesContracts
The Massachusetts Guide to Managing Diabetes in Schools, Apr 05, 2013
This guidance focuses on a team approach for addressing diabetes and provides information on how to manage this disease throughout the school day and in the school environment as well as school related activities. Also included is an introduction on diabetes, with tools to adequately inform and assist all members of the school team with strategies to help students gradually assume responsibility for their care.…
Building on 20 Year of Massachusetts Education Reform, Apr 22, 2015
The Massachusetts Education Reform Act of 1993 was the most dramatic change in generations in how the Commonwealth supported and oversaw the delivery of education services by local school districts, and it continued Massachusetts’ reputation for public education leadership that Horace Mann established in 1837. At its most basic level, the Act required the establishment of high standards that each student would be expected to meet, a statewide assessment system designed to measure progress towards that goal, and an accountability system to hold schools and districts responsible for progress in meeting the new standards.…
Managing Life Threatening Food Allergies In Schools, Oct 03, 2002
To assist schools in developing and implementing policies and comprehensive protocols for the care of students with life-threatening food allergies, the Mass Department of Ed led a task force to develop this publication.…
Collecting Stakeholder Feedback on Induction and Mentoring Programs, Apr 29, 2015
Collecting stakeholder feedback provides districts with meaningful data to support the continuation of induction and mentoring programs and drive program improvements. Districts are encouraged to incorporate feedback from a variety of stakeholders—mentors, mentees, school administrators, program partners (including educator preparation programs), and other staff associated with the induction and mentoring program. Districts will not submit stakeholder feedback to ESE; however, they may be asked to provide general information about how feedback was collected, patterns in the feedback, and actions taken as a result of feedback.…
Inclusive Practice Tool: Social and Emotional Learning, Aug 13, 2015
According to Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning, Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) is the process of developing students’ and adults’ social and emotional competencies—the knowledge, skills, attitudes, and behaviors that individuals need to make successful choices. CASEL identifies five social and emotional competencies, each of which is composed of multiple skills and abilities …
DESE IEP Process Guide and IEP Forms and Notices
We have designed this guide to be read and reviewed with its companion document, Forms and Notices We recommend a thorough reading of the IEP Process Guide before familiarizing yourself with the aforementioned companion document. IEP Forms and Notices, therefore, should be read following this guide. IEP Forms and Notices contains a quick reference sheet, form and notice directions and copies of the coded forms and coded notices. We believe that once you are familiar with the revised IEP process, you will more easily understand the use of the redesigned forms and notices.…
Classroom Teacher Rubric - August 2018
Rubrics –defined in the regulations as “scoring tool[s] that describe characteristics of practice or artifacts at different levels of performance” (603 CMR 35.02)–are a critical component of the Massachusetts educator evaluation framework and are required for every educator. Rubrics are designed to help educators and evaluators (1) develop a consistent, shared understanding of what proficient performance looks like in practice, (2)develop a common terminology and structure to organize evidence, and (3) make informed professional judgments about formative and summative performance ratings on each Standard and overall.…
Classroom Teacher Rubric „ August 2018 - appxc
This rubric describes teaching practice. It is intended to support the entire 5 step evaluation cycle for all teachers, including teachers of whole classrooms, small groups, individual students, or any combination of the above. The rubric is designed to be applicable to general education teachers from pre-K through Advanced Placement, as well as teachers with specialized classes or knowledge, including teachers of English Language Learners, and special education teachers; districts may also choose to use this rubric for educators in other roles such as specialists.…
District Level Administrator Rubric, Jul 17, 2019
This rubric describes administrative leadership practice at the district level. It is intended to be used throughout the 5 step evaluation cycle for the evaluation of the superintendent. This rubric can also be used by the superintendent for the evaluation of other district level administrators, such as assistant superintendents, directors of curriculum and instruction, school business administrators, and directors of special education.…
Dear Parent Letter from Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights Stephanie Monroe, Mar 14, 2007
To help raise awareness of issues and to share information about legal rights and responsibilities that will affect students with disabilities as they transition from high school to institutions of post secondary education. Institutions of post secondary education are responsible for providing disability-related services to students with disabilities.…
Fact Sheet: Addressing the Risk of Measles in Schools while Protecting the Civil Rights of Students with Disabilities, Mar 12, 2015
In addressing an outbreak of a vaccine-preventable disease like measles, school districts and school officials should be mindful of civil rights requirements and, in particular, must ensure that students who are medically unable to receive vaccines due to a disability are not discriminated against on the basis of disability.…
Implementing CDC’s Ebola Guidance for Schools while Protecting the Civil Rights of Students and Others
The risk of exposure to Ebola in the United States is exceedingly low. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued guidance for school districts and school administrators on actions school officials may implement, in close consultation with public health authorities, to further reduce the potential risk of any Ebola virus transmission in schools.More likely, school officials will face situations that involve the perceived risk of Ebola exposure and transmission in situations where an actual risk of Ebola exposure or transmission does not exist.…
Addressing the Risk of COVID-19 in Schools While Protecting the Civil Rights of Students
Compliance with CDC’s recommendations should not create civil rights concerns. Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 504) prohibits disability discrimination by schools receiving federal financial assistance. Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (Title II) prohibits disability discrimination by public entities, including schools. Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VI) prohibits race, color, and national origin discrimination by schools receiving federal funds.…
Frequently Asked Questions about the Rights of Students with Disabilities in Public Charter Schools under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, Dec 27, 2016
The Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS) is issuing this guidance to provide charter schools, States, State educational agencies (SEAs), local educational agencies (LEAs), other public agencies, parents, and other stakeholders with information regarding the rights of children with disabilities attending charter schools and their parents under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA or Act). Specifically, the guidance emphasizes that children with disabilities who attend public charter schools and their parents retain all rights and protections under Part B of IDEA just as they would if the children were enrolled in other public schools.…
Preventing the spread of 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV), Feb 05, 2020
The current outbreak of 2019 novel corona virus (2019-nCoV) was first identified in China but has now spread internationally, impacting an increasing number of countries. Sustained community spread is occurring in China. Limited person-to-person spread, most associated with close contact with a patient with confirmed 2019-nCoV, has been seen outside of China. No community spread of 2019-nCoV has been identified in the United States at this time.…
Supplemental Fact Sheet: Addressing the Risk of COVID-19 in Preschool, Elementary and Secondary Schools, Mar 21, 2020
At the outset, OCR and OSERS must address a serious misunderstanding that has recently circulated within the educational community. As school districts nationwide take necessary steps to protect the health and safety of their students, many are moving to virtual or online education (distance instruction). Some educators, however, have been reluctant to provide any distance instruction because they believe that federal disability law presents insurmountable barriers to remote education. This is simply not true. We remind schools they should not opt to close or decline to provide distance instruction, at the expense of students, to address matters pertaining to services for students with disabilities. Rather, school systems must make local decisions that take into consideration the health, safety, and well-being of all their students and staff.…
Stop the Spread of Germs (COVID-19), May 13, 2020 POSTER
QA Part B Procedural Safeguards. 06/30/2020, Jun 26, 2020
Question and Answer (Q & A) document in response to inquiries concerning implementation of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) Part B procedural safeguards in the current COVID-19 environment.…
QA Evaluation Timeline Part C. 07/06/2020, Jul 02, 2020
This Question and Answer (Q & A) document in response to inquiries concerning implementation of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) Part C evaluation and assessment timelines in the current COVID-19 environment.…
Background and Fast Facts - SPANISH, Jul 24, 2013
Carta a los estimados colegas: Los estudiantes con discapacidades en las actividades deportivas extracurriculares (25 de enero del 2013)Antecedentes y resumen informativo…
Dear Colleague Letter: Students with Disabilities in Extracurricular Athletics(January 25, 2013) Background and Fast Facts
On January 25, 2013,the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) released a Dear Colleague Letter (“Guidance”) clarifying the existing obligations of school districts to provide students with disabilities an equal opportunity to participate in extracurricular athletics.…
Questions and Answers on the ADA Amendments Act of 2008 for Students with Disabilities Attending Public Elementary and Secondary Schools, July 2011
The Office for Civil Rights (OCR) has determined that school officials would benefit from additional guidance concerning the effects of the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act of 2008 (Amendments Act) on public elementary and secondary programs.…
Joint Dear Colleague Letter, Dec 05, 2014
Although the overall number of youth involved in the juvenile justice system has been decreasing, there are still more than 60,000 young people in juvenile justice residential facilities in the United States on any given day.1 With the support of grants administered by the U.S. Department of Education (ED) and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), juvenile justice residential facilities provide educational services to hundreds of thousands of students over the course of each year.2The Departments are committed to working with juvenile justice residential facilities to ensure that all students have equal educational opportunities, while supporting these facilities in preparing these students for successful reentry into their communities, so that they are ready to return to their local schools and graduate, to continue or begin a post secondary program, or enter employment.…
DOE and DOJ Colleague Letter Spanish Translation, Nov 11, 2014
Departamento de Justicia de EE.UU.Departamento de Educación de EE.UU. Sección de Derechos CivilesOficina para Derechos CivilesOficina de Educación Especial yServicios de Rehabilitación12 de noviembre del 2014 Estimados colegas:Los estudiantes con discapacidades, al igual que todos los estudiantes, deben recibir la misma oportunidad de participar plenamente en nuestras escuelas públicas. Un aspecto crítico de la plena participación de los estudiantes es la buena comunicación entre ellos y la escuela. Por eso, incluimos con esta carta una extensa guía (hasta la fecha solo disponible en inglés) titulada“Preguntas y respuestas sobre la comunicación eficaz para los estudiantes con discapacidades auditivas, de visión y del habla en las escuelas públicas primarias y secundarias” (FAQ), donde se explican las responsabilidades que tienen las escuelas públicas de asegurar que la comunicación con los estudiantes con discapacidades auditivas, de visión, o del habla sea tan eficaz como la comunicación con todos los demás estudiantes. También incluimos el Resumen: Cómo facilitar la comunicación con los estudiantes con discapacidades auditivas, de visión o del habla (en español).…
DOE and DOJ Colleague Letter (PDF), Nov 12, 2014
We have enclosed a document, entitled “Frequently Asked Questions on Effective Communication for Students with Hearing,Vision,or Speech Disabilities in Public Elementary and Secondary Schools” (FAQs), which explains the responsibility of public schools to ensure that communication with students with hearing, vision, or speech disabilities is as effective as communication with all other students.…
Dear Colleague Letter (Spanish Translation) from The Assistant Secretary Catherine E. Lhamon (PDF), Oct 20, 2014
Aunque hay amplio consenso de que el acoso está mal y no debe ser tolerado en nuestras escuelas, la triste realidad es que la intimidación persiste y especialmente para los estudiantes con discapacidades.1En los últimos años, la Oficina para Derechos Civiles (OCR) del Departamento de Educación de EE.UU. (Departamento) ha recibido un número creciente de quejas sobre al acoso de los estudiantes con discapacidades y los efectos en su educación, incluido la educación especial y los servicios relacionados a que tienen derecho. Esta preocupante tendencia demuestra la importancia de los esfuerzos de la OCR de proteger los derechos de los estudiantes con discapacidades mediante la aplicación vigorosa de la Sección 504 de la Ley de Rehabilitación de 1973 (Sección 504) y el Título II de la Ley de Estadounidenses con Discapacidades de 1990 (Título II). También subraya la…
Dear Colleague Letter from The Assistant Secretary Catherine E. Lhamon (PDF), Oct 17, 2014
Today’s guidance follows a long history of guidance issued by the Department in this critical area of disability discrimination. In 2000, OCR and the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS) issued joint guidance informing schools that disability-based harassment may deny a student equal educational opportunities under Section 504 and Title II.2 The 2000 guidance also noted the responsibilities of schools under Section 504 and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) to ensure that students receive a free appropriate public education (FAPE), and alerted schools that harassment of a student based on disability may adversely impact the school’s provision of FAPE to the student.…
Know Your Rights: Students with ADHD, Jul 25, 2016
student has attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), the information below summarizes your rights and your school district’s legal obligations under a Federal civil rights law that prohibits disability discrimination called Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 504).…
DOE and DOJ DCL FAQs, Nov 12, 2014
Frequently Asked Questions on Effective Communication for Students with Hearing, Vision, or Speech Disabilities in Public Elementary and Secondary Schools Introduction Students with disabilities, like all students, must have the opportunity to fully participate in our public schools. A critical aspect of participation is communication with others. Three Federal laws–the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA)(Title II), and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 504 – address the obligations of public schools, including charter schools, to meet the communication needs of students with disabilities, but do so in different ways. Public schools must comply with all three laws, and while compliance with one will often result in compliance with all, sometimes it will not.…
Frequently Asked Questions about the Rights of Students with Disabilities in Public Charter Schools under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Dec 28, 2016
Frequently Asked Questions about the Rights of Students with Disabilities in Public Charter Schools under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973…
Fact Sheet: Preventing Racial Discrimination in Special Education, Dec 12, 2016
The letter provides a brief legal summary of Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VI), the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 504), and explains, through analysis and illustrative examples, the Title VI requirement that students of all races, colors, and national origins have…
DOE Colleague Letter Parent Fact Sheet Spanish Translation (PDF), Nov 11, 2014
Resumen: Cómo facilitar la comunicación con los estudiantes con discapacidades auditivas, de visión o del habla…
DOE Parent Fact Sheet, Nov 12, 2014
Meeting the Communication Needs of Students with Hearing, Vision, or Speech Disabilities Under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), schools must provide a student with a disability a free appropriate public education (FAPE) designed to provide meaningful educational benefit through an Individualized Education Program (IEP). Under Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act, schools must, without charge, ensure that communication with students with disabilities is as effective as communication with students without disabilities, giving primary consideration to students and parents in determining which auxiliary aids and services are necessary to provide such effective communication.…
Parent Fact Sheet, Oct 21, 2014
¿Que deben hacer las escuelas públicas cuando los estudiantes con discapacidades son acosados?…
Parent Fact Sheet - Bullying, Oct 21, 2014
What Are Public Schools Required to Do When Students with Disabilities Are Bullied?…
Fact Sheet: Restraint and Seclusion of Students with Disabilities, Dec 27, 2016
Fact Sheet: Restraint and Seclusion of Students with Disabilities The guidance letter and series of questions and answers, issued by the Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) on December 28, 2016, inform school districts how the use of restraint and seclusion may result in discrimination against students with disabilities in violation of Federal laws that prohibit disability discrimination, including Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 504).…
Know Your Rights: Students with Disabilities in Charter Schools
This document is designed to help parents, students, and the charter school community better understand the rights of students with disabilities under Federal disability-related laws.Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 504), which the Office for Civil Rights enforces, prohibits disability-based discrimination.The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), administered by the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services, provides Federal funds to States, and through them, local educational agencies, to assist in providing special education and related services to children with disabilities.…
Dear Colleague Letter from Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights Caherine E. Lhamon, May 14, 2014
Una de las áreas de más rápido crecimiento de la reforma escolar es la creación de escuelas públicas mediante un proceso chárter. Desde que primero aparecieron en la década de 1990, muchas escuelas chárter han proporcionado a los estudiantes la oportunidad de recibir una educación de alta calidad. En comunidades por todo el país, numerosas escuelas chárter han desarrollado entornos únicos de aprendizaje, fomentado el aprendizaje innovador, involucrado a los padres y otras partes interesadas, y han mejorado las oportunidades educativas para muchos estudiantes. El Departamento de Educación de EE.UU. (Departamento) apoya el establecimiento de escuelas públicas chárter de alta calidad para que todos los estudiantes puedan beneficiarse.…
Dear Colleague Letter from Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights Catherine E. Lhamon, May 14, 2014
One of the fastest-growing areas of school reform is the creation of public schools through a chartering process. Since first appearing in the early 1990s, many charter schools have provided students with additional meaningful opportunities to receive a high-quality education. In communities throughout the nation, numerous charter schools are developing unique learning environments, spurring innovation, engaging parents and other stakeholders, and improving educational opportunities for students. The U.S. Department of Education (Department) is committed to supporting the establishment of high-quality public charter schools from which all students can benefit.…
Joint Agency Letter to Health-Related Graduate Schools Regarding Hepatitis B Discrimination, Jun 12, 2013
We write on behalf of the Department of Justice, the Department of Health and Human Services, and the Department of Education to update you on the latest recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) regarding the participation of students with hepatitis B in medical, dental, nursing, and other health-related programs. We also take this opportunity to emphasize the importance of these recommendations, especially as they relate to your institution’s nondiscrimination obligations under the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA), Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 504), and Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VI).…
The basic principles of retaliation law and to describe OCR’s methods of enforcement
The purpose of this letter is to remind school districts, postsecondary institutions, and other recipients that retaliation is also a violation of Federal law. This letter seeks to clarify the basic principles of retaliation law and to describe OCR’s methods of enforcement.…
DCL from Acting Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights Seth Galanter., Jan 23, 2013
Extracurricular athletics—which include club, intramural, or interscholastic (e.g.,freshman, junior varsity, varsity) athletics at all education levels—are an important component of an overall education program. The United States Government Accountability Office (GAO) published a report that underscored that access to, and participation in, extracurricular athletic opportunities provide important health and social benefits to all students, particularly those with disabilities. These benefits can include socialization, improved teamwork and leadership skills, and fitness. Unfortunately, the GAO found that students with disabilities are not being afforded an equal opportunity to participate in extracurricular athletics in public elementary and secondary schools.…
OCR has prepared the attached “Questions and Answers on the ADA Amendments Act of 2008 for Students with Disabilities Attending Public Elementary and Secondary Schools”
Pursuant to a delegation by the U.S. Attorney General, OCR shares in the enforcement of Title II of the ADA (Title II). 28 C.F.R. § 35.190(b)(2). Title II prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability by public entities, including public elementary, secondary, and postsecondary schools, regardless of whether they receive Federal financial assistance. Title II requires that qualified individuals with disabilities, including students, parents, and other program participants, are not excluded from or denied the benefits of services, programs, or activities of a public entity, or otherwise subjected to discrimination by a public entity, by reason of disability.…
"Dear Colleague" letter from Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, Russlynn Ali, Oct 25, 2010
Some school anti‐bullying policies already may list classes or traits on which bases bullying or harassment is specifically prohibited. Indeed, many schools have adopted anti‐bullying policies that go beyond prohibiting bullying on the basis of traits expressly protected by the federal civil rights laws enforced by OCR — race, color, national origin, sex, and disability — to include such bases as sexual orientation and religion. While this letter concerns your legal obligations under the laws enforced by OCR, other federal, state, and local laws impose additional obligations on schools.…
Dear Colleague or University President: Electronic Book Readers, Jul 09, 2010
We write to express concern on the part of the Department of Justice and the Department of Education that colleges and universities are using electronic book readers that are not accessible to students who are blind or have low vision and to seek your help in ensuring that this emerging technology is used in classroom settings in a manner that is permissible under federal law. A serious problem with some of these devices is that they lack an accessible text­to-speech function.…
OCR Dear Colleague Letter: Report Cards and Transcripts for Students with Disabilities, dated October 17, 2008, Oct 14, 2008
I am writing to you to address some issues concerning report cards and transcripts for students with disabilities attending public elementary and secondary schools. Through this letter and the enclosed Questions and Answers document, I am clarifying how federal laws apply to statements on report cards and transcripts when these statements identify students as students with disabilities…
As the ADA celebrates its 18th anniversary, OCR takes a moment to reflect specifically on the issues concerning college-age students with disabilities
As we celebrate the 18th anniversary of the enactment of the landmark legislation the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). 42 U.S.c.§§ 12101 et seq., on July 26, 2008,we reflect upon accomplishments made towards providing educational opportunities freeform disability discrimination. The ADA applies in many aspects of American life including elementary, secondary and postsecondary education.…
Dear Colleague Letter: Access by Students with Disabilities to Accelerated Programs, Dec 03, 2007
I am writing to advise you of an issue involving students with disabilities seeking enrollment in challenging academic programs, such as Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate Classes or programs (accelerated programs). Specifically, it has been reported that some schools and school districts have refused to allow qualified students with disabilities to participate in such programs…
Dear Colleague letter from Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights Stephanie Monroe, Mar 14, 2007
Increasingly, after completing high school, students with disabilities continue their education at institutions such as two- and four-year colleges and universities and at vocational and career schools. Data from the Department of Education's most recent National Postsecondary Student Aid Study indicated that, in thc 2003-04 academic year, more than 2 million postsecondary students reported having some type of disability.…
Dear Colleague Letter: Preventing Racial Discrimination in Special Education, Dec 12, 2016
This guidance also addresses the interplay of Title VI obligations with the requirements of the following Federal disability laws: Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 504) and Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (Title II) (both as amended);2 and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).3 This guidance focuses specifically on the subset of students who need special education services as part of the free appropriate public education (FAPE) to which they are entitled, as well as students inappropriately identified as needing those services.…
Limits that Federal civil rights laws enforced by the Office for Civil Rights impose on the use of restraint and seclusion by public elementary and secondary school districts, Dec 2016
In broad terms, restraint of a student means restricting the student’s ability to move his or her torso, arms, legs or head freely, and seclusion of a student is confining a student alone in a room or area that he or she is not permitted to leave (see detailed definition below in the accompanying questions and answers). OCR’s Civil Rights Data Collection (CRDC), which includes self-reported data on 99 percent of the public school districts in the nation, indicates that schools restrain and seclude students with disabilities at higher rates than students without disabilities…
Dear Colleague Letter on the Rights of Children with Disabilities in Public Charter Schools, Dec 28, 2016
Students with disabilities who are enrolled in public charter schools, like students with disabilities enrolled in other public elementary or secondary schools, have important rights under two Federal laws, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 504) and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). Similarly, students with disabilities who seek to enroll in public charter schools or traditional public schools have important rights secured by these two laws.…
Dear Colleague Letter and Resource Guide on Students with ADHD, Jul 25, 2016
I write this letter to clarify and provide guidance on the Federal obligations of school districts that receive Federal financial assistance from the U.S. Department of Education (the Department) to students with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)1 under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 504) and the Department’s implementing regulations.2 This Federal law prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability and requires school districts to provide an equal educational opportunity to students with disabilities.…
What you should know about COVID-19 , Jun 02, 2020
What you should know about COVID-19 to protect yourself and others…
Parent and Educator Resource Guide to Section 504 in Public Elementary and Secondary Schools, Dec 2016
The attached resource guide reminds all educational institutions receiving Federal financial assistance from the Department that they must vigilantly work to ensure compliance with Section 504 and other Federal laws that protect students with disabilities. We intend this resource guide to also help parents of students with disabilities understand the obligations imposed under Section 504.In particular, the resource guide summarizes key requirements of Section 504, and aims to increase understanding of these requirements for both parents and members of the school community alike. …
Electronic Book Reader Dear Colleague Letter, Jun 23, 2010
Electronic book readers, or e-book readers, are handheld devices that allow users to read digital books and other materials by displaying content on screens(often referred to as “e-ink technology”). Though features vary, e-book readers can hold a digital library of books, provide access to online content like newspapers and magazines, allow the user to highlight passages, look up word definitions, and link to reference materials.…
Joint "Dear Colleague" Letter to Chief State School Officers, Jun 02, 2005
Diabetes is one of the most common chronic diseases in school-aged children, affecting about 206,000 young people in 2002. The most common form of diabetes in youths is type 1 diabetes, formerly called juvenile diabetes. About one in every 400 to 500 children and adolescents has type 1 diabetes. Along with the epidemic of overweight and obese children, more and more children and teens are now being diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, formerly called adult onset diabetes—even though the disease is usually diagnosed in adults over age 40.…
ASSURANCE OF COMPLIANCE - CIVIL RIGHTS CERTIFICATE, Jan 26, 2015
TITLE VI OF THE CIVIL RIGHTS ACT OF 1964, TITLE IX OF THE EDUCATION AMENDMENTS OF 1972,SECTION 504 OF THE REHABILITATION ACT OF 1973, THE AGE DISCRIMINATION ACT OF 1975, AND THE BOY SCOUTS OF AMERICA EQUAL ACCESS ACT OF 2001…
Dear Colleague Letter from Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, dated January 13, 2009, Jan 09, 2009
Second Request -- Obligation To Submit Assurance Compliance Civil Rights Certificate to the U.S. Department of Education On July 21,2006, I wrote to you to inform of the new requirement submitted the United States Department of Education (Department), Office for Civil Rights (OCR) assurance that you will comply with the requirements of the Boy Scouts of America Equal Access Act (Boy Scouts Act) ,20 U.S.c.7905 , 34 C.F .R. Part108, and with other federal civil rights statutes enforced by OCR.II asked that you provide your assurance to OCR by September 8, 2006. As of this date,however, w e have no record of receiving your signed assurance.…
Questions and Answers for Postsecondary Institutions Regarding the COVID-19 National Emergency, May 12, 2020
UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION OFFICE FOR CIVIL RIGHTS May 2020 Questions and Answers for Postsecondary Institutions Regarding the COVID-19 National Emergency In response to inquiries received by the Department, the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) issues the following technical assistance document to assist postsecondary institutions with meeting their obligations under Federal civil rights laws during this difficult and unprecedented time. OCR will continue to update this document as needed throughout the crisis.…
PSB Frequently Asked Questions for Special Education
Who should I contact if I have a question about my child's services?You should contact your child’s liaison. If you are not sure who your liaison is pleasecontact your building Educational Team Facilitator (ETF).…
On the Desktop: Comprehensive Summer School Guidance (July 1, 2020), Jul 10, 2020
The attached Comprehensive Summer School Guidance(download)supplements the Initial Summer School Re-Opening Guidance(download) and the Guidance about Summer 2020 Special Education Services(download),both released in June. In this document, you will find that the health and safety requirements described for summer largely adhere to the Initial Fall school Reopening Guidance(download) I released last week, with some exceptions…
On the Desktop July 9, 2020 Attachment memo: Special-ed-comp-guidance, Jul 10, 2020
School districts must provide a free and appropriate public education (FAPE) consistent with the need to protect the health and safety of students with disabilities and those individuals providing education, specialized instruction, and related services to these students. Students with disabilities, particularly preschool-age students and those with significant and complex needs, should be prioritized for receiving in-person instruction during the 2020-2021 school year. These students should receive as much in-person instruction as is feasible within the health and safety parameters in effect at each particular time.…
On the Desktop: Comprehensive Special Education Guidance for the 2020-21 School Year (July 9, 2020)
The attached Comprehensive Special Education Guidance for the 2020-21 School Year(download)supplements the Initial Fall School Reopening Guidance(download),released on June 25. The Initial Fall Reopening Guidance asks schools and districts to prioritize and begin planning for in-person instruction, while simultaneously preparing blueprints for both remote learning and a hybrid school model (a combination of in-person and remote learning), should local conditions change this school year…
On the Desktop: Remote Learning Technology Essentials Grant and Purchasing PPE (July 6, 2020)
We are pleased to announce the Remote Learning Technology Essentials Grant.The grantwas established to address remaining remote learning technology needs and to ensure that every student has adequate access to technology for use in remote learning environments during the 2020-2021 school year.The Remote Learning Technology Essentials grant isa competitive grant program that invitesLEAs to apply for funding to address device and internet gaps for students. A total of $25m will be available for disbursement to match expenses LEAs plan to commit/expend by the beginning of the school year.…
Comprehensive Summer School Guidance, July 1, 2020
This Comprehensive Summer School Guidance document is intended to supportdistricts and schools with their ongoing preparation and planning for summer schoolservices.Following DESE’s guidelines, districts and schools should make reasonable efforts to establish in-person summer services in order to meet the educational needs of students while adhering to health and safety standards. A district or school that cannot meet these standards in the short term should consider remote learning as an option until they are well-positioned to transition to in-person instruction.…
On the Desktop: Acquisition Support for Safety Supplies (June 10, 2020), Jul 10, 2020
As referenced in the June 5 Guidance on Required Safety Supplies for Re-Opening Schools(download),DESE is pleased to announce a state sponsored health safety supply/PPE ordering process. This support is made possible through the Operational Services Division (OSD), which has played a leading role in the Commonwealth’s acquisition of health safety supply/PPE to date for health care workers and first responders.…
Guidance on Summer 2020 Special Education Services (June 8, 2020), Jul 10, 2020
This guidance addresses the first priority: students with disabilities, specifically those who receive summer services as a provision of their Individualized Education Programs (IEPs). These students’ IEPs may call for Extended School Year (ESY) services, summer programs, or, in the case of some students attending education collaboratives or approved special education schools,year-round services.…
On the Desktop: Message about Summer 2020 Special Education Services (June 7, 2020)
The attached memo supplements the Initial Summer School Re-Opening Guidance(download) that I sent on June 4, 2020. The guidance(download) attached to this email addresses the first priority: students with disabilities, specifically those who receive summer services as a provision of their Individualized Education Programs (IEPs). These students’ IEPs may call for Extended School Year (ESY) services, summer programs, or, in the case of some students attending education collaboratives or approved special education schools, year-round services…
On the Desktop: Competitive Team Building Exercise with Commissioner Riley (June 5, 2020)
The Department is announcing an opportunity for approximately 300 high school students to join Commissioner Riley and Harvard professors Monica Higgins and Uche Amaechi inan online competitive and engaging team-building exercise.…
On the Desktop: Required Safety Supplies for Re-Opening Schools (June 5, 2020)
We are issuing this guidance on key safety supplies now so that districts can begin the ordering process for critical items that may be harder to procure and/or have longer potential delivery times. The document provides specific information that will allow districts and schools to make these key safety purchases as soon as possible, and we also detail the support that DESE and partner state agencies can provide to assist you with your acquisition work.…
Guidance on Required Safety Supplies for Re-Opening Schools, Jul 10, 2020
This is another piece of school re-opening guidance that we are continuing to issue on a rolling basis. As you know, yesterday evening,we released initial guidance for summer programs. More comprehensive guidance on special education programs will come early next week. And final summer school guidance as well as initial guidance on fall re-opening will be released in the coming weeks.We are issuing this guidance on key safety supplies now so that districts can begin the ordering process for critical items that may be harder to procure and/or have longer potential delivery times. In this document, we provide specific information that will allow districts and schools to make these key safety purchases as soon as possible.…
On the Desktop June 4, 2020 Attachment: Initial Summer School Re-Opening Guidance, Jul 10, 2020
As we begin preparations for the summer, it is important to provide context for the guidance we are releasing beginning this week. Please note that this guidance is for summer programming only and will be revisited as more public health data becomes known. We are issuing this short initial guidance document to help districts and schools begin summer planning efforts. We will release detailed guidance focused on special education summer programs no later than Tuesday, June 9and comprehensive general guidance about summer programs within the next two weeks.…
On the Desktop: Initial Guidance on Summer School (June 4, 2020)
Attached to this email is an initial summer school guidance document designed to help districts and schools begin planning for any possible in-person summer school programs they hope to hold. We will release detailed guidance focused on special education summer programs no later than Tuesday, June 9,and we plan to release comprehensive guidance about in-person summer programs within two weeks.…
On the Desktop: Help with P-EBT Card Use (June 3, 2020)
Families whose students qualify for free or reduced-price lunch started to receive P-EBT cards in the mail on Friday, May 29, and many are having trouble activating their card. Please share the following information from the Department of Transitional Assistance (DTA) with families:…
for web On the Desktop 6 25 20 Initial Fall School Reopening Guidance, Jul 10, 2020
Late last night, we shared a preview of our Initial Fall School Reopening Guidance with you, and I’m attaching the final June 25 version of this guidance to this email.The guidance can also be downloaded from our website. As a follow-up to this information, I invite you to join me for a conference call at 10:30 a.m. tomorrow, Friday, June 26. The call-in information is as follows…
Mass Chapter of American Academy of Pediatrics Endorsement, Jun 24, 2020
The MCAAP and the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education share the goal of bringing most students in the Commonwealth back to in-person learning this fall while minimizing the risk to them, the school staff, and their families. We are quite pleased with the recommendations and happy to endorse these guidelines…
Opinion by Joseph G. Allen: Yes, kids should be going back to school in the fall, Jul 10, 2020
Joseph G. Allen is an assistant professor of exposure assessment science, director of the Healthy Buildings program at Harvard University’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health and co-author of “Healthy Buildings: How Indoor Spaces Drive Performance and Productivity.”I’ve spent more than 10 years as a forensic investigator of “sick buildings.” The stakes were often extraordinarily high: a hospital where four people had died and hundreds were at risk; a factory where workers were at risk of getting an irreversible respiratory disease called “Popcorn Lung”; a military base where housing was suspected in the deaths of 11 infants…
On the Desktop: Summer and Vacation Learning Program Grant Posted (June 19, 2020)
I am writing to follow up on the June 11 On the Desktop message(download) I sent you about the Summer And Vacation Learning Program Grant. The grant has now been posted at http://www.doe.mass.edu/grants/2021/114-333/.Proposals are due by 5:00 p.m. on Thursday, July 2, and submission instructions are included at the above link.…
On the Desktop: New SOA Plan Deadline (June 15, 2020)
Thank you for your continued efforts to serve students during the COVID-19 pandemic. Consistent with St. 2020, Ch. 56, § 9, I am extending the deadline for school districts and charter schools to submit Student Opportunity Act (SOA) plans.…
On the Desktop: Summer and Vacation Learning Program Grant (June 11, 2020)
We are pleased to announce the Summer/Vacation Learning Program Grant. The purpose of this new,competitive,federally-funded grant is to help local school districts, vocational technical schools, and charter schools develop, expand, or enhance high-quality, in-person, remote, or hybrid learning programs for the summer of 2020 and/or school vacations during the 2020-21 school year. The grant can also be used to support the development and implementation of weekend learning programs that will take place during the 2020-21 school year.…
K-12 Health Supply-PPE Acquistion Program FINAL, Jul 10, 2020
As referenced in the June 5th Guidance on Required Safety Supplies for Re-Opening Schools, the Department is pleased to announce a state sponsored Health Safety Supply/PPE ordering process. This support is made possible through the MA Operational Services Division (OSD), which has played a leading role in the Commonwealth’s acquisition of Health Safety Supply/PPE to date for health care workers and first responders.The Department’s issuance of the federal Elementary and Secondary School Education Relief Fund (ESSER), http://www.doe.mass.edu/federalgrants/esser/, provides districts with access to grants to fund the cost of supplies…
On the Desktop: Remote Learning Survey (May 13, 2020), Jul 10, 2020
Please take a few minutes to help us understand the current state of remote learning in the Commonwealth And your evolving needs by filling out the following survey by Friday,May 22:https://www.surveygizmo.com/s3/5595059/Spring-2020-Remote-Learning-Survey. We are collecting information about remote learning plans from all districts, charter schools, vocational technical schools, approved special education schools, and collaborative across the Commonwealth. The purpose of this effort is to better understand the various approaches that districts and schools are taking to engage students in learning while school buildings are closed.…
chool Connectedness Family Letter, May 11, 2020
The Department has helped schools respond through four phases of work. 1.The first phase began in mid-March, when schools were required to close for three weeks. The Department focused on student safety, nutrition, and other basic needs. Meeting these needs continue to be top priorities. 2.The second phase started in late March, when schools were required to close through early May. The Department provided initial guidance to schools (on March 24) and a letter to families (on March 30) along with a list of educational resources for remote learning. 3.We are currently in the third phase. We now know that schools will be closed through the end of the school year (late June for most schools). Because of this, we released updated guidance on remote learning(download) on April 24 to help schools strengthen local efforts. 4.We are also thinking ahead to the fourth phase, when students and staff will eventually re-enter school buildings. We are working with school leaders, and health and safety experts to plan and prepare for this.…
On the Desktop: Letter to Families and High School Guidance (May 8, 2020)
One is a letter to parents followed by a two-page School Connectedness document that can help explain the expectations around remote learning and describes where additional support is available in a variety of areas. We plan to post translated versions of the letter and School Connectedness document on the COVID-19 section of our website next week.…
High School Guidance, May 8, 2020, Jul 10, 2020
This memo is specific to the needs of high schools and their students; for more comprehensive educational guidance, please see DESE’s COVID-19 page.Students in the Class of 2020 With school buildings closed through the end of the 2019-20 school year,helping students in the Class of 2020 graduate and proceed with their postsecondary plans is a critical priority. High schools should be sure to review the status of each senior to determine the extent to which the student has met both local and state requirements (the competency determination)for graduation.(Note: Updates on the competency determination requirement are below.)…
On the Desktop: CARES Act RFP Available (May 8, 2020), Jul 10, 2020
The RFP will soon be posted at http://www.doe.mass.edu/grants/current.html for the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund (ESSER Fund). This grant, authorized under section 18003 of the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act), provides districts with emergency relief funds to address the impact that COVID-19 has had and continues to have on elementary and secondary schools.…
On the Deskto: AP Testing Guidelines (May 7, 2020)
A few of you have asked me whether you could make your school building available for high school students to take Advanced Placement (AP) tests in a socially distanced manner of those students do not have access to technology and a quiet testing place at home.…
On the Desktop: Update on CD Requirements for Classes of 2021-23 (May 26, 2020)
In light of the COVID-19 school closures this year, the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education voted today to modify the science and technology/engineering (STE)(download) part of the competency determination requirement for current high school freshmen, sophomores and juniors (members of the classes of 2021-23).Under this change, the competency determination in STE will be awarded upon demonstration that the student earned credit for a course in the relevant subject matter and demonstrated competency in one of the four tested disciplines (biology, chemistry, introductory physics, technology/engineering) during their high school career.…
On the Desktop: Upcoming Grant for Summer and Vacation Programs (May 22, 2020)
Please be advised that we will release information and an application for a multi-million dollar grant to support educational summer and/or school vacation programming for students next week.The grant program is designed to support the creation, expansion, or enhancement of programming for summer 2020 or over vacations during the 2020-21 school year.…
On the Desktop: High School Graduation Guidelines (May 21, 2020)
High school graduations are an important ceremony in the lives of the graduate and their loved ones. High school graduation ceremonies should proceed with the following schedule and guidelines:•Ceremonies held between now and July 18 should be held virtually or in extremely limited other circumstances following safety protocols(e.g., car parades). •Ceremonies held beginning July 19 may take place OUTSIDE under the following standards and assuming the public health data supports the continued opening of our state.…
On the Desktop: Return to School Working Group (May 14, 2020)
We are announcing the creation of the Return to School Working Group to inform our decision-making and guidance.…
On the Desktop:Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer (P-EBT), April 14, 2020
The Families First Coronavirus Response Act of 2020 includes a provision called “Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer,” or P-EBT. That Section allows states to issue benefits to families with children who are eligible for free or reduced-price school meals and who would have received them if not for the school closures associated with COVID-19.…
On the Desktop: Tips for Safe Videoconferencing, April 13 2020
As we work to pull together resources on student data privacy and security in connection with remote learning, we wanted to let you know that the Attorney General’s Office recently released a memo on video conferencing safety. The memo has broad guidelines for any videoconferencing platform and specific recommendations about Zoom.…
On the Desktop: Legislation on MCAS, SOA, Regional Budgets, April 10 2020
Earlier today, Governor Baker signed legislation that addresses many concerns municipalities and school districts might have because of the state of emergency related to COVID-19, including this year’s MCAS testing and the competency determination, the deadline for Student Opportunity Act plans, and the process for regional school districts to approve their annual budget.…
On the Desktop 4/3/2020: April Vacation
We have received questions about whether school districts should keep their planned April school vacation week this year (the week of Patriots’Day, April 20) or use that week to continue the remote learning plan they have put in place. This is a local decision.Each school committee or public school board of trustees establishes the school year schedule for its schools, consistent with state standards outlined in the Student Learning Time regulations. …
On the Desktop 4/1/2020: Extension of Deadlines for Non-Resident Ch 74 Admissions, Jul 10, 2020
I understand that the current state of emergency is making it difficult for some students to complete the non-resident Chapter 74 vocational technical admissions process by the dates set out in our regulations (603 CMR 4.03(6)(b)2). In fairness to these students, I am using my authority to waive the deadlines for this process in the vocational technical education regulations for good cause. Accordingly, the relevant dates will be as follows…
On the Desktop: Update on Competency Determination Requirements for Class of 2020, April 29, 2020
The Board of Elementary and Secondary Education voted yesterday to temporarily modify the competency determination requirement for current high school seniors during the COVID-19 emergency. Under this change, seniors who have not passed one or more of the high school MCAS tests will be able to earn the competency determination through successful completion of a relevant high school course.…
On the Desktop: FEMA Disaster Reimbursement, April 27, 2020
In connection with the COVID-19 pandemic, the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) is hosting applicant briefing webinars on applying for and receiving federal funds under the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s Public Assistance Program.The program makes federal funding available for eligible disaster-related emergency protective measures.…
On the Desktop: Updated Remote Learning Guidance, April 24, 2020
Itbuilds on the initial guidance released on March 26,with a deeper focus on two areas: • Further defining the recommended elements of a quality remote learning program, including a focus on teaching the content standards most critical for student success in the next grade level, and • Encouraging districts to move all students towards successful engagement in remote learning, with a focus on addressing fundamental needs.…
On the Desktop: School Year Requirements, April 24, 2020
Recognizing that local remote learning plans were still being developed during the first week of ordered school closures, every district is expected to go to at least its previously scheduled 185thday. However, if the district continued remote learning during vacation days on April 21-24, the district is expected to go until its previously scheduled 181stday. A reminder: districts can always decide to go longer.…
On the Desktop: Schools to Remain Closed Through End of School Year, April 21, 2020
Earlier today, Governor Baker announced that public and private schools (not including residential special education schools) will stay closed through the end of the school year. This is a necessary step to keep everyone as healthy as possible. Remote learning is even more important now,and we will issue additional guidance to public schools later this week.…
On the Desktop: Special Ed Tuition Guidance from OSD, April 17 2020
Please see the attached guidance from the Operational Services Division (OSD). The message reiterates what we communicated in our March 27, 2020 On the Desktop message(download). As a reminder, if special education services are being provided, the districts should be paying for them. Tuition payments based upon OSD rates are eligible for circuit breaker reimbursement.…
On the Desktop: Suspending K12 Operations (March 15, 2020)
Given the evolving data regarding cases of COVID-19,and out of an abundance of caution for the health and safety of children and school staff, the Governor has ordered a three-week suspension of school operations for educational purposes at all public and private elementary and secondary (K-12) school sin the Commonwealth (not including residential and day schools for special needs students), beginning Tuesday, March 17 and continuing until Tuesday, April 7. The suspension of educational programming will not necessarily affect the availability of school buildings for the provision of food or other essential non-educational services. As we approach April 6, we will provide additional guidance.…
On the Desktop: Coronavirus Guidance from Conference Call (March 13, 2020)
Coronavirus cases seem,at this time,to be isolated geographically,and in fact,we are hearing that many schools are not experiencing any issues. That,however,does not mean that the virus will not accelerate to other areas of the state,if it hasn’t already. At this time,the administration is not asking for a statewide closure,but that could change in the future as circumstances change.In that context, I would like to provide some updated guidance…
On the Desktop: Coronavirus Updates on 180-Day Requirement and More (March 10, 2020)
180 Day Requirement:In light of concerns about possible school closings for public health reasons,I have updated DESE’s guidance about the requirement for 180 days of school to provide relief to districts. (Note: The Department will continue to revisit this guidance if the situation warrants it.):All days lost to health, weather, or safety emergencies between the first day of the school year and March 15 must be made up by rescheduling full school days to ensure a 180-day school year.…
On the Desktop: Coronavirus update and conference call with DESE and DPH (March 5, 2020)
To provide you with answers and the most up-to-date guidance, we will host a conference call for superintendents with DPH at 1:00 p.m. on Friday, March 6. In the meantime, Public Health Commissioner Dr. Monica Bharel and I would like to share the following guidance with you…
On the Desktop: USDA Reimbursements for All Districts, Online AP Tutoring Available (March 30, 2020)
First, we learned on Sunday that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has approved DESE’s request to waive the requirement that school meal sites must be located in areas where at least 50 percent of school lunch program participants are eligible for free and reduced-price meals. Therefore, all school districts that are distributing meals during school closures related to COVID-19 and are focusing the distribution of these meals to children and teens in need of them are now eligible for USDA reimbursement. Further details will be released later this week. Secondly, the College Board is offering free,virtual classes for Advanced Placement (AP) students in addition to at-home AP testing.…
DESE letter to families related to the coronavirus and school closings, March 30, 2020
I am writing to you today to inform you about the steps we are taking to support students while schools are closed.Your school and district leaders and teachers will be in touch with you as additional information becomes available. For now, the following may be helpful:•Remote Learning:I understand that nothing can replace the in-person interaction and learning experience of being in school. All The students and educators with whom I have spoken with sorely miss learning in person as part of a community. While we do not expect remote learning to replicate the traditional school day, schools will use remote learning tools and instructional materials to develop and provide students with appropriately structured and supported ways to keep learning.…
On the Desktop: Payments for Contracted Services, March 27, 2020
In response to questions I have received about payments while schools are closed, I am writing to provide further recommendations to districts relating to: (1) tuition payments for resident students enrolled in certain public school programs; (2) tuition payments for out-of-district day or residential special education programs; (3) payments for contracted special education related service providers; and (4) outsourced operational services, such as school transportation. …
On the Desktop: Professional Licensure Extensions (March 21, 2020)
Governor Baker has issued an executive order extending license for certain licensed professionals, including licensed educators. The order states that a license that is “in good standing” as of March 18, 2020,and that has expired or will expire during the state of emergency, is now extended and will remain valid until 90 days after the end of the state of emergency. …
On the Desktop: Payments to Hourly Employees (March 20, 2020)
In response to questions I have received from school superintendents, I am strongly recommending that school districts pay their hourly employees during the current emergency school closure. Like all of us, these employees need to follow public health directives and take care of themselves and their families. While they do so, school districts could ask them to continue their learning by reading educational articles, books, taking an online class or performing other tasks that could be a benefit to the school districts.…
On the Desktop: Update for Private Schools (March 19, 2020)
Thank you for joining the conference call on the evening of Sunday, March 15 following Governor Baker’s decision to close all schools until April 6.We continue to work on developing resources for teachers and students to help learning continue while school is closed. In particular, we are working with public broadcaster WGBH and its partner station WGBY to provide distance learning resources for students, families, and educators. With WGBH and WGBY, we are also exploring additional televised educational programming.…
Rights of Youth Regarding Education Records
Prepared by the Mental Health Legal Advisors Committee June 2012 May parents access their child’s school records?Parents have a right to view any academic, scholastic or other records that a school keeps,regardless of the age of their child. In addition, schools must allow students aged 18 or older to access their own records.…
Rights of Youth in Institutional Settings to Special Education
What rights to special education services do youth in institutional settings have?Youth in institutional settings operated by the Departments of Mental Health, Public Health,Youth Services, and the County Houses of Correction must receive special education services ifeligible.1Special education services in facilities run by these agencies are provided by SpecialEducation in Institutionalized Settings (SEIS), a division of DESE. However, the school districtin which the student’s parents or guardian reside still has programmatic responsibility for thestudent. In accordance with state and federal law, students in institutional settings have the samerights for referral, evaluation, and the provision of special education as students in publicschools.…
Rights of Special Education Youth Regarding Exclusion
DETERMINING IF A STUDENT, BEING DISCIPLINED, IS PROTECTED BY SPECIAL EDUCATION LAW What protections does a student eligible for special education services have regarding school exclusion? The federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) gives a student found eligible for special education services a right to a free appropriate public education (FAPE) in the least restrictive environment. …
Rights of Regarding Termination and Suspension from Public or Private Special Education Schools
This pamphlet describes rights deriving from state regulations that govern public and private special education schools in Massachusetts. These rights are in addition to other rights regarding school exclusion that a student has, such as rights deriving from the IDEA and state school discipline law. What are a student’s rights regarding the termination of services at public or private special education schools?There may be no termination of a student, even in emergency circumstances, until the enrolling public school district is informed and assumes responsibility for the student (i.e. finds an alternative placement).…
Restraint in Massachusetts Residential School Programs
The Massachusetts Department of Early Education and Care (DEEC) regulates the use of restraint in DEEC licensed group care programs.1 Group care programs include (but are not limited to) programs serving teen parents under age 16; transition to independent living programs; private residential schools that provide special services to children with special needs in which children with special needs constitute 30% or more of the school’s population; and group residences or group homes.…
Restraint in Massachusetts Public Schools
WHAT RIGHTS DOES THIS FLIER COVER? The Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) regulates public schools in their use of restraint.1 This flier describes these rules. WHO DO THESE REGULATIONS APPLY TO? These regulations apply to all Massachusetts public school districts, charter schools, virtual schools, collaborative education programs, and to the school day of special education schools approved by DESE under 603 CMR 28.09 (Public or Private Day and Residential Special Education School Programs).…
Language Access Rights
Under the law, parents with children in special education services should receive free language accommodations through their child’s school.12 Communication between parents and the school should be simple and in words that are easy to understand.3 Information about any program, service, or activity should be available in both English and the language used at home.45The School Needs Your Permission A parent must give their permission or consent in writing before a school can test their child or put the child in a special education program.6 A parent must be told of these activities in their native language.7 When the parent understands the situation, they should agree to the school’s decision in writing before the school may test their child or put them in a special education program.…
Time-out in Massachusetts Public Schools
The Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) regulates Massachusetts public schools in their use of time-out.1 This flier describes the requirements regarding time-out. WHO DO THESE REGULATIONS APPLY TO? These regulations apply to all Massachusetts public school districts, charter schools, virtual schools, collaborative education programs, and to the school day of special education schools approved by DESE under 603 CMR 28.09 (Public or Private Day and Residential Special Education School Programs)…
Rights Regarding School Discipline
This pamphlet describes the rights of youth attending public preschool, elementary, and secondary schools and programs in Massachusetts, including charter and virtual schools. What do I do if my child is acting out in school? If your child is acting out in school, try to find out why. Seek help from guidance counselors, school social workers, or teachers. If you think your child may be acting out because of an untreated physical, mental, or emotional disability, think about asking the school district for a special education evaluation. It is also helpful to be familiar with the school district’s policies on school discipline.…
Rights Regarding Prosecution for Misconduct as School
How do I protect my child from criminal prosecution for conduct at school? It is important for students involved in prosecutions for misconduct at school to obtain legal counsel. Families who can afford to hire a lawyer should hire one as soon as possible, even before the arraignment. If a family is found to be indigent and unable to afford counsel, the court should appoint a lawyer. Courts will most likely assess a fee for a court-appointed lawyer, which can be paid off by the time the case ends.…
Rights of Youth With Disabilities Regarding Transportation To School
s the school required to provide transportation to all students? School districts that provide transportation to students without disabilities must make the same transportation services available to students with disabilities.1 If the school does not provide transportation to students without disabilities, the student’s Individualized Education Program (IEP) team must determine whether the student should receive special transportation.2Who is entitled to special transportation services? Children with disabilities are entitled to special education and related services.3 One such “related service” is transportation.4 The student’s IEP team must analyze “whether the student requires transportation because of his or her disability in order to benefit from special education.”…
Rights of Youth With Disabilities Regarding MCAS
What are the rights of students with IEPs with respect to the MCAS?IEP Teams must ensure that students with disabilities have the resources necessary to pass the Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System (MCAS). A student’s IEP should annually determine how the student will participate in the MCAS. Students with disabilities might take the standard MCAS, the standard MCAS with accommodations, or the MCAS-Alt. All students must meet MCAS passing requirements in order to receive a high school diploma, so it is crucial that the IEP Team determine how the student will best prepare for and pass the MCAS.…
Rights of Youth with Autism Regarding Special Education
Autism is a developmental disability rooted in a neurological disorder. Autism affects development in the areas of social interaction and communication skills. Autism is one of three recognized disorders in the autism spectrum; the others are Asperger’s Disorder (diagnosed when the individual lacks delays in cognitive development and language), and Pervasive Developmental Disorder-Not Otherwise Specified (PDD-NOS) (diagnosed when the full set of criteria for autism or Asperger’s are not met). Federal regulation has defined autism…
Rights of Youth Regarding Special Education Eligibility
Special education eligibility decisions are made following an evaluation of the child. What happens after the evaluation of the need for special education services is complete? The district then convenes a group of qualified professional and the parent. This group is called a team. The team asks three questions…
Rights of Youth Regarding Special Education Disputes
How can parents and schools resolve disputes regarding anything other than IEP and special education services?Several avenues exist for parents to resolve disputes with school districts regarding disabled students, such as bringing the dispute to the attention of the local public school officials, using the DESE Problem Resolution System, or asking that a neutral mediator be appointed.…
Rights of Youth Regarding Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) and Socio-Emotional Learning (SEL)
What are tools schools can use to develop self-regulation?Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) and Socio-Emotional Learning (SEL)are two approaches to improving student behavior and academic achievement in schools. Schools Use these tools to help students self-regulate their emotions and behaviors.PBIS is sometimes known simply as Positive Behavioral Supports (PBS), or even SWPBS(School-Wide Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports). PBIS is a comprehensive, long-term approach that aims to promote positive student behavior and students’ quality of life. The Aim of PBIS is to address issues in the student’s environment and overall situation that might lead to problem behavior, rather than reactively disciplining problem behavior as it occurs.2Schools using PBIS set expectations for behavior and employ positive strategies to teach and reinforce positive behaviors.…
Rights of Youth Regarding IEPs
What is an Individualized Education Program (IEP)? An IEP is a plan of services to be provided by a school district to a student found eligible to receive special education services. Who develops the IEP? An IEP should be developed by the IEP team, a group which includes: …
Rights of Youth Regarding Functional Behavior Assessments
When can a student get a Functional Behavior Assessment?A Functional Behavior Assessment (FBA) is a test that school districts must conduct under certain circumstances as part of the process of developing an IEP. An FBA pinpoints the cause,or “function” of a student’s problematic behavior and aims to remedy it with an appropriate intervention addressing the underlying cause. If evaluators believe that behavior is an issue for a child, they should concretely define the problem behavior and conduct an FBA to determine causes for and solutions to the behavior. However, student access to FBAs varies because each school district may interpret the guidelines for conducting FBAs differently, and some schools may opt to conduct them less frequently than others.…
Rights of Youth Regarding Extended Year Special Education Services
When is a special education student entitled to extended year services? Schools must provide extended year services (ESY) if it can be shown that there is a need for these services in order for the child to be provided with a free and appropriate education.1 The IEP TEAM must review the need for ESY at least once each year, and record its decision in the IEP. What factors should be considered in determining the need for extended year services? The primary factors that will be considered are whether or not a student will experience regression or a loss of skills over the summer, and whether or not the student will have substantial difficulty regaining these skills if summer programming is not provided. In addition, courts have set out other criteria for a team to consider when deciding about ESY. And, even if the student does not have a history of substantial regression over prior summer breaks, a student may still qualify for ESY if other conditions exist.…
The Education Surrogate Parent Program
What is the education surrogate parent program of the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education?Children in the care or custody of the Department of Children and Families (DCF) may be able to access an educational surrogate parent (ESP) who will make decisions related to the child’s special education needs when the child’s parents are unable or unavailable to do so. Whether or not the child is eligible for an ESP depends on the reason why the child is in DCF custody – for example, all children in DCF custody for protective reasons are entitled to an ESP, but children in care or custody for child related issues as distinct from parental issues are likely not to be appointed an ESP.2If a child is in need of and eligible for an ESP, a DCF worker should refer the child to the ESP Program.3If a child is in foster care, DCF will usually request that the Program Appoint a child’s foster parent as his ESP.…
YOUR RIGHTS REGARDING SERVICE ANIMALS, EMOTIONAL SUPPORT ANIMALS, AND THERAPY ANIMALS IN MASSACHUSETTS
There are different categories of animals that help people with disabilities in their daily life. The rights regarding these animals vary depending on the category. This flyer discusses three categories of animals: service animals; emotional support animals; and therapy animals. …
Rights Under Special Education Law Regarding Classroom Observation
What is a parent’s right to observe classes? Parents have the right to observe any program(s) proposed for their child if the child is identified as eligible for special education services. Who else has this right?This right extends to parent-designated independent evaluators and educational consultants. May schools place limits on the right to observe a child in class? State law limits the restrictions or conditions that schools may put on the ability of parents, evaluators or consultants to observe a child in class. The purpose of this law is to ensure that parents can participate fully and effectively in determining the child's appropriate educational program.…
Rights of Youth Regarding Special Education Transition Planning
What rights do special education students have regarding transition planning?The federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEA-2004) requires special education students receive transition planning at age 16 or younger. However, Massachusetts law requires that transition planning begin at age 14.…
Rights of Youth Regarding Special Education Referral
Who can make a referral of a student for special education services? Any person who is concerned that a child may have a disability or is having difficulty developing in school may refer a student for an initial evaluation. A parent may initiate a request for an initial evaluation to determine if a child is a “child with a disability.” 20 U.S.C. 1414(a)(1)(B); 34 CFR 300.301(b); 603 CMR 28.04(1). If the person who refers a child is not the child’s parents, the school district needs to get consent for the evaluation from the child’s parents first. May a school district refuse to conduct an evaluation for a referred student?…
Rights of Youth Regarding Special Education Placement
How do I advocate for accommodations and services in the regular classroom setting?Massachusetts regulations state that a school must provide education within the least restrictive environment, which means that schools are required to integrate the special education students into the mainstream school environment as much as possible. Maintaining special education students in the regular classroom setting is known as “inclusion.” An alternative to full inclusion is partial inclusion where a student receives some services in the regular classroom setting and is pulled out to receive some specialized services in another setting. The appropriate balance of regular classroom and specialized services will depend on the student.…
Rights of Youth Regarding Special Education Evaluations
What happens during the assessment and evaluation process? Parents should be actively involved in the process through which a child is evaluated for the need for special education services. Evaluations should assess a child in all areas of his suspected disability and be based on the child’s needs. The child should be evaluated in multiple ways. Evaluations should consist of formal and informal assessments, as well as information provided by parents, observation, samples of the child’s work, an interview with the child about his abilities, and a full review of the child’s record. If a specific learning disability is suspected, evaluators must take further steps. At least one member of the IEP team must observe the child’s classroom academic performance.…
Educating Youth With Trauma Histories
How should one educate children with trauma?Children with trauma histories can face more difficulties learning, forming relationships and succeeding in school. However, teachers cannot always easily identify traumatized children,which can make it difficult to provide extra attention if needed. Schools should strive to create a trauma-sensitive environment to benefit all children – those with trauma histories and those who learn alongside them.1A strategy for trauma-sensitive schools should include these guiding principles:…
DDS Eligibility
This pamphlet addresses Massachusetts Department of Developmental Services eligibility for adults and children. GENERAL ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA FOR ADULTS To be an eligible adult, the person must be: age 18 or older; and domiciled in Massachusetts. The person also must meet one of the following two criteria: 1.intellectual disability –this is the traditional form of eligibility and the definition isin DDS regulation. 2.developmental disability –this is a new basis for eligibility for people with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD),Prader-Willi syndrome or Smith-Magenis Syndrome And the criteria are in a recently passed statute.…
Chapter 688 Process
What is Chapter 688? Chapter 688 is a Massachusetts law enacted in 1983 to address the needs of young adults with disabilities as they end their public school education. Chapter 688 provides a two-year planning process at graduation from high school or at the time when special education services end, whichever comes first. Since special education services can continue until age 22, the process is sometimes called the “Turning 22” process.…
Autism Resources
THE AUTISM OMNIBUS LAW (2014) The 2014 Autism Omnibus Law addresses many issues faced by those with autism and other intellectual disabilities. MassHealth now covers medically necessary treatments (including Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) therapies and Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) devices for children with ASD under the age of 21. The Department of Developmental Services (DDS) has…
After School Programming for Youth with Disabilities
How can a student access out of school time programming? School districts are required to provide whatever services are necessary for special education students to access the general curriculum. These services include providing instruction or services outside of regular school hours. Special education students also have a right to participate in extracurricular activities; such activities should be included in a student’s IEP…
Access to MA Rehabilitation Commission Services
INTRODUCTION TO THE MASSACHUSETTS REHABILITATION COMMISSION What is the Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission?The Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission (MRC) is a state agency that operates programs for persons with disabilities. MRC’s mandate is to assist eligible individuals with disabilities,regardless of age, nature of disability or functional ability, to maximize quality of life and self-sufficiency in the community. To do so, MRC works to help people live and work independently.MRC serves people with all types of disabilities except those who are blind.…
Access of Youth to Behavioral Health Services
As a result of a recent lawsuit, Medicaid-eligible Massachusetts youth can now access behavioral health services through a new initiative in Massachusetts called the Children’s Behavioral Health Initiative (CBHI):http://www.mass.gov/eohhs/gov/commissions-and-initiatives/cbhi/. One goal of the initiative is to have the providers of these new services and schools work together to best serve youth.What is the Rosie D.lawsuit?…
Rights of MA Youth with Autism Regarding Special Education
What is autism? Autism is a developmental disability rooted in a neurological disorder. Autism affects development in the areas of social interaction and communication skills. Autism is one of three recognized disorders in the autism spectrum; the others are Asperger’s Disorder (diagnosed when the individual lacks delays in cognitive development and language), and Pervasive Developmental Disorder-Not Otherwise Specified (PDD-NOS) (diagnosed when the full set of criteria for autism or Asperger’s are not met).…
Rights of Homeless Youth to Education
What is the McKinney Vento Act? The McKinney Vento Act is a federal law that guarantees homeless children or youth (age 3-22) equal rights to education. How does McKinney Vento define homelessness? Children who do not have a fixed, regular and adequate nighttime residence are defined as homeless under the Act, and are thus eligible for services. This term includes children who are staying in motels,hotels, trailer parks, campgrounds, or who are sharing the housing of other persons due to economic hardship or loss of housing. It also includes children living in emergency or transitional shelters, cars,parks, public spaces, abandoned buildings, substandard housing, bus or train stations, or any place that is meant to be a place to sleep. Finally, homeless children and youths are also those who are abandoned in hospitals or are awaiting foster care placement.…
Rights of Foster Children to Education
What must the state do for foster children with respect to education?The Fostering Connections to Success and Increasing Adoptions Act of 2008 features provisions that aim to improve education stability for children in foster care. Child welfare agencies must now provide a plan to ensure the educational stability of children while they are in foster care. Specifically, the child’s foster care placement must consider the geographical proximity of the placement to the child’s school. State child welfare agencies should coordinate with local educational agencies to ensure the child stays in his current school. The state child welfare agency must also consider the appropriateness of the child’s current educational setting. If they determine that staying in the current school is not in the child’s best interest, they should make plans to immediately enroll the child in a more appropriate setting and to transfer his records promptly…
Restraint in MA Residential School Programs
The Massachusetts Department of Early Education and Care (DEEC) regulates the use of restraint in DEEC licensed group care programs. Group care programs include (but are not limited to) programs serving teen parents under age 16; transition to independent living programs; private residential schools that provide special services to children with special needs in which children with special needs constitute 30% or more of the school’s population; and group residences or group homes. This pamphlet describes these rules.…
Mental Health Resources Available in Schools
Do schools have mental health clinicians?Massachusetts schools usually have a mental health support staff available for all students.This can include guidance counselors, adjustment counselors, and school psychologists. The typeof staff available might vary between school districts. Most school districts have websites that list the staff at the schools, and it is likely that you can find out what personnel are available by going to your school’s website.…
Educational Services Available to Youth With Disabilities
What kind of educational services are available under the law for youth with disabilities? Section 504 and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) are both federal laws that can help secure a range of services for children with special education needs. It is important to know the differences between them when pursuing special education services.…
Brookline_Non-compliant_Findings
Brookline Non-compliant Findings Page 1 Run by: Spadafora, Jonathan (EDU)03/20/2020 11:28:24 Eastern Daylight Time PRS Complaints, Findings …
PRS-PSB-Intake-Findings
the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (Department) received a written statement of concern from…
Policy Manual School Website 4.30.20
THE PUBLIC SCHOOLS OF BROOKLINE BROOKLINE, MASSACHUSETTS POLICY MANUAL…
The SPEDPAC Bylaws
The mission of SPEDPAC is to empower stakeholders as advocates and partners in improving special education in Brookline by creating a participatory, judgement-free and action-oriented environment for connection, communication, education and advocacy.…