Every child is entitled to a public education regardless of disability. Children with disabilities may go without services because families are not fully aware of their options. If you know of a child, birth to age twenty-one, who is not receiving any education services or feel that your child may be in need of special education services, please contact your local school or call the Special Education Department at 205-342-2756.The identification, location and evaluation of students suspected of having a disability includes students attending private schools, students who are highly mobile, students who have been suspended or expelled from school, home-schooled students, students who have not graduated from high school with a regular high school diploma and those who may be in need of special education and related services even though they are advancing from grade to grade, and regardless of the severity of the disability.
Special education services are within the TCSS to serve students who have been identified as eligible for special education services. Students identified as eligible for special education services must meet the following two requirements:
· Federal and state eligibility requirements as having a disability; and,
· Need specially designed instruction.
The staff is dedicated and committed in supporting instructional outcomes for all students. The Special Education Department welcomes any comments and concerns. Please feel free to contact the Special Education Director, Dr. Gwen Hardnett at 205-342-2756 for more information or if you have any questions.Areas of Eligibility:AUTISM - A developmental disability that significantly affects verbal and nonverbal communication and social interaction evident before age three that adversely affects educational performance.
DEAF-BLINDNESS - A combination of both hearing and visual impairments causing severe communication and other developmental and educational needs.
DEVELOPMENTAL DELAY - A significant delay in one or more of the following areas may identify a child for this area of the disability on his or her third birthday:
1. Adaptive development
2. Cognitive development
3. Communication development
4. Social and emotional development
5. Physical development
EMOTIONAL DISABILITY - A disability in which one or more of the following characteristics are exhibited over a long period of time and to a marked degree, adversely affecting educational performance: An inability to learn which cannot be explained by intellectual, sensory or health factors;
1. An inability to build or maintain satisfactory interpersonal relationships;
2. Inappropriate type of behavior or feelings under normal circumstances;
3. A general pervasive mood of unhappiness or depression;
4. A tendency to develop physical symptoms or fears associated with personal or school problems.
HEARING IMPAIRMENT – An impairment in hearing, whether permanent or fluctuating, that adversely affects a child's educational performance. The term includes both deaf and hard of hearing.
INTELLECTUAL DISABILITY- Significantly below average general intellectual functioning existing along with deficits in adaptive behavior and manifested during the developmental period that adversely affects the child's educational performance.
MULTIPLE DISABILITIES - The combination of impairments such as mental retardation and blindness or mental retardation and orthopedic impairment which causes such severe educational needs that they cannot be accommodated in special education programs solely for one of the impairments. The term does not include fearfulness.ORTHOPEDIC IMPAIRMENT -A severe orthopedic impairment that adversely affects a child’s educational performance. The term includes impairments caused by a congenital anomaly, impairments caused by disease, and impairments from other causes.
SPECIFIC LEARNING DISABILITY - A disorder in one or more basic psychological process involved in understanding or in using language, spoken or written, which may manifest itself in an imperfect ability to listen, think, speak, read, write, spell, or to do mathematical calculations.
SPEECH AND LANGUAGE IMPAIRMENT - A communication disorder such as articulation, voice, language, or fluency, which adversely affects a child's educational performance.
TRAUMATIC BRAIN INJURY - An acquired injury to the brain caused by external physical force, resulting in total or partial functional disability or psychosocial impairment or both, that adversely affects educational performance.
VISUAL IMPAIRMENT - A visual impairment that, even with correction, adversely affects a child's educational performance.
PRESCHOOL SPECIAL EDUCATION - Children between the ages of three and six with any of the previously mentioned disabilities may qualify for preschool special education services.