The Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) is asking parents and/or guardians who have a a child in the Highland School District with an educational placement to attend a special forum set for Tuesday, April 14 at the district’s Administrative Center, 400 Broadway in Highland.
ISBE’s Division of Special Education Services is conducting the forum, which will start at 6:30 p.m. Parents are being asked to share their experiences with the process of determining the educational placement of their child. The purpose of the review is to investigate the district’s compliance with state and federal special education laws and regulations.
“This monitoring process additionally seeks to ensure that the district is following appropriate procedures in making educational placement decisions for students with disabilities,” Superintendent Mike Sutton said.
Highland was selected for a “focus monitoring” review based on data the district submitted to ISBE. Districts are selected for focused monitoring specifically on the percentage of students in the general education setting for 80 percent or more of the school day. Districts are placed in one of eight groups based on size and type of district (i.e. unit, high school, elementary). Districts within a group with the lowest percentage of students inside the general classroom 80 percent or more of the school day receive an on-site review.
Connie Heinz, an ISBE team leader, will lead the forum, along with a parent from the “focused monitoring” team, who has the experience of also being the parent of a child with a disability.
The meeting agenda will include an explanation of how the district is selected for focused monitoring by the ISBE and what the process includes, as well as a discussion on how the district collaborates with parents on determining the educational placement, the location where a student with a disability receives his/her education.
All information gathered during the forum is kept confidential, and those who contribute information remain anonymous.
ISBE has also requested that district staff and administrators not to attend the for forum.
“Opportunities are provided at the district and school levels for the staff and administration to contribute information to this process,” Sutton said.
Parents who are unable to attend the forum may also contribute to this process by completing a parent survey at www.surveymonkey.com/r/VZ5PYZZ.
If you require special accommodations to attend, contact Pamela Tyler, Highland’s director of special services, at 654-2106, ext. 1035, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.