Natasha Dunn, LEA Supervisor
The Watson Chapel School District's Special Education Department provides a variety of educational services to students in grades K-12, who have been identified as having a disability and requiring special education services. Special education is governed by federal and state law. Under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), Special Education is defined as: "Specially designed instruction, at no cost to parents, to meet the unique needs of a child with a disability."
Special education is in place to provide additional services, support, programs, specialized placements or environments to ensure that all students' educational needs are being met. Students qualifying for special education services have needs that will often require support that goes beyond what is normally offered or received in the regular classroom setting. A child suspected of needing special education support will usually be referred to the special education department. Parents, teachers, or both can make referrals for special education.
Watson Chapel School District offers a variety of least restrictive environments and services for students who qualify for special education services. The district utilizes Indirect Services, Resource Classroom Settings, and Self-Contained Classroom Settings. Some of the related services that we offer include Speech Therapy, Occupational Therapy, and Physical Therapy.
The Watson Chapel School District employs 12 certified special education teachers, 2 speech pathologists, 1 special education designee, and 8 paraprofessionals.
Child Find is an ongoing cooperative effort that involves state and local education agencies, parents, the community, professionals, related organizations, and private schools. IDEA requires all states to have a "comprehensive Child Find system" to assure that all children who are in need of early intervention or special education are located, identified, and referred. Watson Chapel conducts Child Find Activities throughout the year.