Areas Served

  • Special Education Services Overview

    Wayne County Schools offers services in the following areas as outlined by the Georgia State Department of Education.

    Autism

    http://www.gadoe.org/Curriculum-Instruction-and-Assessment/Special-Education-Services/Pages/Autism.aspx

    • Comprehensive evaluation required to include the following:
    • Formal assessment of IQ
    • Adaptive behavior
    • Educational evaluation
    • Communication (verbal/nonverbal, prosody, and pragmatics)
    • Behavioral, including social interactions
    • Developmental history
    • Five characteristics of Autism:
    • Differences in developmental rates and sequences
    • Difficulty interacting with people and participating in events
    • Deficits in communication
    • Over- or under-react to sensory stimuli
    • Restricted or unusual repertoire of activities and interests 

    Deaf/blind

    http://www.gadoe.org/Curriculum-Instruction-and-Assessment/Special-Education-Services/Pages/Deaf-Blind.aspx

    • Concomitant Hearing and Visual impairment that causes severe communication and educational needs that cannot be accommodated in programs solely for children with deafness or blindness
    • Current optometric or ophthalmological examination and audiological evaluations required
    • Written Audiological evaluation should include dates, results of evaluation, and recommendations for classroom environmental modifications

    Deaf/Hard of Hearing (formerly Hearing Impaired)

    http://www.gadoe.org/Curriculum-Instruction-and-Assessment/Special-Education-Services/Pages/Deaf-and-Hard-of-Hearing.aspx 

    • Absence of measurable hearing such that
    • primary sensory input for communication is other than auditory OR
    • the ability to communicate is adversely affected, even though the child usually relies on listening for communication
    • Requires the following reports or evaluations for initial placements:
    • Audiological
    • Otological
    • Comprehensive evaluation
    • Academic/achievement levels
    • Receptive/expressive language abilities
    • Social and emotional adjustment
    • Classroom observational data
    • Psychological evaluation
    • Unilateral hearing loss may be considered if academic or communicative deficits secondary to loss are documented
    • Hearing loss may be permanent or fluctuating 

    Emotional Behavioral Disorder

    http://www.gadoe.org/Curriculum-Instruction-and-Assessment/Special-Education-Services/Pages/Emotional-and-Behavioral-Disorder.aspx

    Exhibits one or more of the following characteristics of sufficient duration, frequency, and intensity that interferes significantly with educational performance to the degree special education is necessary: 

    • Inability to build or maintain satisfactory interpersonal relationships
    • Inability to learn that is not explained by intellectual, sensory, or health factors
    • Consistent or chronic inappropriate behavior or feelings under normal circumstances
    • Displayed pervasive mood of unhappiness or depression
    • Displayed tendency to develop physical symptoms, pains, or unreasonable fears associated with personal or school problems
    • Required Documentation:
    • Comprehensive prior extension of services including counseling, modifications of the regular program, or alternative placement
    • Data-based progress monitoring of the results of the interventions
    • Psychological and educational evaluations
    • Report of behavioral observations over a significant period of time
    • Social history, including interventions offered outside the school
    • Written analysis of the duration, frequency, and intensity of one or more of the five characteristics of EBD

    Possible exclusions: (in addition to those listed on page 1)-----Visual, hearing, or motor disabilities, Intellectual disabilities

    Social Maladjustment
    Does not automatically make a child eligible.  Classroom behavior problems and social problems do not indicate automatic eligibility for placement. 

    Intellectual Disability (Mild)

    http://www.gadoe.org/Curriculum-Instruction-and-Assessment/Special-Education-Services/Pages/Intellectual-Disabilities.aspx

    Intellectual functioning based on multiple sources of information documenting IQ scores between approximately 55 and 70 (use range of scores +/- one standard error of measurement for interpretation) 

    • Consider impact of communication, motor, and/or sensory deficits
    • Significant limitations in child’s effectiveness in meeting standards of maturation, learning, personal, independence, or social responsibility
    • Adaptive behavior
    • two measures required, one must be formal (i.e., standardized instrument such as the ABAS-II or Vineland-II)
    • formal measure from someone at the school and informal assessment from someone outside the school, such as a parent
    • a composite score that is two standard deviations below the mean OR a score that is at least two standard deviations below the mean in one of three areas:
      • conceptual,
      • social, or
      • practical OR
    • Deficits in intellectual functioning and adaptive behavior existed prior to age 18
    • Classroom observation demonstrating child’s inability to progress in a typical, age appropriate manner, considering cultural, medical, and educational history
    • Possible Exclusions (in addition to those listed on page 1)
    • Visual, hearing, or motor disability
    • Emotional disturbances

    Intellectual Disability (Moderate, Severe, Profound)

    http://www.gadoe.org/Curriculum-Instruction-and-Assessment/Special-Education-Services/Pages/Intellectual-Disabilities.aspx

    Intellectual functioning based on multiple sources of information documenting IQ scores between approximately 40 and 55 (Moderate); approximately 25 and 40 (Severe); and below approximately 25 (Profound) [use range of scores +/- one standard error of measurement for interpretation] 

    • Consider impact of communication, motor, and/or sensory deficits
    • Significant limitations in child’s effectiveness in meeting standards of maturation, learning, personal, independence, or social responsibility
    • Adaptive behavior
    • two measures required, one must be formal (i.e., standardized instrument such as the ABAS-II or Vineland-II)
    • formal measure from someone at the school and informal assessment from someone outside the school, such as a parent
    • a composite score that is two standard deviations below the mean OR a score that is at least two standard deviations below the mean in one of three areas:
      • conceptual,
      • social, or
      • practical OR
    • Deficits in intellectual functioning and adaptive behavior existed prior to age 18
    • Classroom observation demonstrating child’s inability to progress in a typical, age appropriate manner, considering cultural, medical, and educational history
    • Possible Exclusions (in addition to those listed on page 1)
      • Visual, hearing, or motor disability
      • Emotional disturbances

    Orthopedic Impairment 

    http://www.gadoe.org/Curriculum-Instruction-and-Assessment/Special-Education-Services/Pages/Orthopedic-Impairment.aspx 

    • Impairment may be due to
      • Congenital abnormalities
      • Disease
      • Other causes resulting in contractures
    • Secondary disabilities may be present
    • For initials, current medical report indicating diagnosis and prognosis
    • Comprehensive educational assessment documenting adverse affects of OI on child’s educational performance by documenting deficits in at least one of the following:
    • Pre-academic/academic functioning
    • Social/emotional development
    • Adaptive behavior
    •  Motor development
    • Communication abilities
    • Psychological evaluation required when significant deficits are present in cognitive/academic functioning

    Exclusions (in addition to those on page 1) 

    • IQ must fall above approximately 55 
    • IQ no lower than criteria expected for MID services.

    Other Health Impairment

    http://www.gadoe.org/Curriculum-Instruction-and-Assessment/Special-Education-Services/Pages/Other-Health-Impairment.aspx 

    • Chronic or acute health problems that limits in strength, vitality, or alertness (i.e., ADHD, diabetes, asthma, etc.)
    • Deficits in pre-academic or academic functioning, adaptive behavior, social/emotional development, motor or communication skills as a result of the health impairment
    • Current (less than one year old) medical report required for initials
    • Possible Exclusions (in addition to those on page 1)
      • Visual, hearing, or motor disability
      • Intellectual disabilities
      • Emotional disturbances 

    Significant Developmental Delay 

    http://www.gadoe.org/Curriculum-Instruction-and-Assessment/Special-Education-Services/Pages/Significant-Developmental-Delay.aspx 

    • Standard scores fall two standard deviations below the mean in one of these areas: adaptive development, cognition, communication, motor skills, or emotional development OR
    • Standard scores fall 1.5 standard deviations below the mean in at least two of these areas: adaptive development, cognition, communication, motor skills, or emotional development
    • Applies to ages 3 through 9 only
      • Reevaluate no later than the school year in which the child turns 9
    • Must be placed by age 7
    • Exclusions beginning at Kindergarten (in addition to those on page 1)
      • Visual, hearing, or motor disability
      • Emotional disturbance

    Specific Learning Disability 

    http://www.gadoe.org/Curriculum-Instruction-and-Assessment/Special-Education-Services/Pages/Specific-Learning-Disability.aspx 

    Eligibility team members must include:

    • Special education teacher (highly qualified & certified)
    • Regular Education teacher
    • Individual qualified to conduct diagnostic assessments
    • Parent 

    Deficits in basic psychological processes (e.g., attending, discrimination/perception, organization, short-term memory, long-term memory, conceptualization/reasoning, executive functioning, processing speed, and phonological).

    Child exhibits a pattern of strengths and weaknesses in performance, achievement, or both, relative to age, State-approved grade level standards, and intellectual development.

    Progress monitoring over a period of 12 weeks (or for the length of time recommended by the instructional strategy used) that shows the child is not expected to make progress toward the benchmark

    Current analyzed classroom work samples

    Classroom observation (by a group member responsible for determining SLD)

    Teacher Report required reflecting child’s academic performance and behavior in area(s) of underachievement

    Two current assessments (e.g., CRCT & ThinkGate) required to document area(s) of underachievement

    Underachievement in at least one of the following areas:

    • Oral expression
    • Listening Comprehension
    • Written Expression
    • Basic Reading skills
    • Reading Comprehension
    • Reading Fluency
    • Mathematical Calculation
    • Mathematical Problem Solving

    Exclusions (in addition to those on page 1)

    • SLD does not apply to children who have learning problems that are primarily the result of sensory impairments, motor or intellectual disabilities, or emotional or behavioral disorders
    • Children whose classroom performance shows evidence of pervasive weaknesses that do not reflect a pattern of strengths and weaknesses

    Speech-Language Impairment 

    http://www.gadoe.org/Curriculum-Instruction-and-Assessment/Special-Education-Services/Pages/Speech-Language-Impairment.aspx 

    • Impairment in one of the following areas:
      • Articulation
      • Fluency
      • Voice
      • Language
    • Evaluation must be sufficient to identify all of the child’s special education and related services needs, regardless of the reason for referral
    • Documentation of adverse affect on educational performance
    • Nonverbal/verbally-limited, children with autism, and those with sensory or motor impairments
    • Eligibility determined by team members who have expertise in the appropriate area(s) through a functional assessment
    • Medical evaluation required for voice/resonance impairment
    • Exclusions
      • Rule out environmental, cultural, or economic disadvantage as primary factors causing impairment
      • Inconsistent, situational, or developmentally appropriate speech/language difficulties
      • Refer to link above and the Ware County Speech-Language Handbook for more information 

    Traumatic Brain Injury 

    http://www.gadoe.org/Curriculum-Instruction-and-Assessment/Special-Education-Services/Pages/Traumatic-Brain-Injury.aspx 

    • Deficits in cognitive, social, or motor skills due to acquired brain injury that adversely impact educational performance
    • Verification of TBI through:
    • Medical records OR
    • Other source, such as social services, medical bills, etc.
    • Summary of pre-injury functioning
    • Evaluation addresses impact of TBI on following areas:
      • Cognitive
      • Social/Behavioral
      • Physical/Motor

    Visual Impairment and Blindness

    http://www.gadoe.org/Curriculum-Instruction-and-Assessment/Special-Education-Services/Pages/Visual-Impairment-and-Blindness.aspx

    • Current examination from an eye specialist (or from neurologist if child has blindness due to cortical vision impairment)
    • Comprehensive educational evaluation
      • Cognitive levels
      • Academic achievement
      • Reading ability
      • Educational assessments related to vision must be completed by appropriately certified teacher
    • Functional vision assessment rather than low vision evaluation may be used for children who
    • Are under the age of 8 or
    • Have a severe cognitive and/or physical disability
      • Additional information
    • Low vision evaluation needs to be completed by age 10 unless student has severe cognitive and/or physical disability
    • Low vision evaluation may not be available within 60-day timeline in these cases, continue with eligibility decision and document date of upcoming evaluation
    • Update eligibility, and possibly the IEP, after receiving the vision report (must occur within 120 days of Consent to Evaluate)

    Braille instruction

    • Evaluate the child to determine the need for braille
    • Evaluation should review present and future needs for braille
    • If braille is determined to be a need then in the IEP
    • Document results of evaluation
    • Explain how braille will be implemented and integrated
    • Provide date braille instruction will begin and end, including the frequency and duration of each instructional session
    • Expected level of competency in braille & measures used to determine competency
    • If braille is determined NOT to be a need, then in the IEP
      •  Provide a statement indicating that braille instruction will not be needed in order for the child to read and write effectively