Special Education Parent Advisory Council - Natick Public Schools


Special Education Parent Advisory Council - Natick Public Schools

Agenda• 7-7:15 Meet and Greet• 7:15-7:45 Meet the Team Introductions/Presentation• SEPAC Board• Dr. Peter Sanchioni• Mr. Timothy Luff• 7:45-8:45 Breakout Sessions• Informal snack and discuss sessions by grade span level• Feel free to join a group and have have an open discussionwith team members• 8:45-9:00 Final Thoughts/Wrap-Up

Changes in Structure• The positions of K-4 and 5-8 Special EducationCoordinators, K-8 Program Director, District Asst.Director, and HS Special Education DepartmentHead have been converted to three AssistantDirectors of Student Services• The Preschool Coordinator position has beenreplaced by a Preschool Principal• The new positions, in collaboration with buildingprincipals, will be supervisors for all things studentservices at each grade level

What is an AssistantDirector?• Responsible for implementation and oversight of StudentServices within their grade level buildings, includingevaluation and quality assurance• They will be working directly with Principals, DepartmentHeads, and Lead Providers to ensure services are providedwith integrity• Weekly meetings with Director to discuss all Student Serviceissues and disseminate information back to buildings• These are the “go to” staff regarding issues/questionsregarding student services• Responsible for building consistency in Programming K-12and building to building

What is the ETL?• Evaluation Team Leaders(ETL) chair TEAMmeetings—involving student evaluations• Collaborate with administration regardingassessment of district needs• Provide quality control of Individualized EducationPrograms within their buildings• Maintain compliance with all special educationtimelines and regulations—included scheduling ofmeetings, monitoring of student IEPs, and ensuringparental involvement is maximized

Who to contact when youneed assistance..Special EducatorGeneral EducatorEvaluation Team LeaderAssistant Director of Student ServicesPrincipalDirector of Student Services

Timothy LuffDirector of Student ServicesTim attended the Natick Public Schools through Middle School and was an active member of the Camp Arrowheadcommunity for more than 12 years. Tim has a Bachelors’ Degree in Special Education and Psychology from theUniversity of Maine at Farmington and a Masters degree in Educational Leadership from the University of SouthernMaine. Tim has been a special education teacher for grades K-3, 4-8, and 9-12, an Asst. Director of Special Services, andmost recently a Director of Special Services in Maine. Tim was recently honored by his colleagues with the SpecialEducation Administrator of the Year award for the State of Maine.

Paul TagliapietraAssistant Director of Student Services K-4Paul Tagliapietra began his career as an animator for Nick JR and then made the change to special education. He hasworked for the Natick Public Schools for the past 6 years at both the elementary level and preschool level. Paul spendshis free time with his family including his two nine month old boys.

Susan BalboniAssistant Director of Student Services 5-8Susan has a Bachelor's of Science in Mathematics and Elementary Education from Framingham State University, aMaster's of Special Education from Framingham State University, a Master's of Education in OrganizationalManagement from Endicott College. Susan has worked in the Natick Public Schools for 7 years. She started as a 5thgrade learning center teacher, then Team Chair followed by Special Ed department head. Last year she became theMiddle School Special Education Coordinator.

Lindsey McGovernAssistant Director of Student Services High SchoolLindsey comes to Natick from the Lexington Public Schools, where she was part of the specialeducation administration. She has taught special education and has worked as a specialeducation coordinator at Minuteman Career and Technical High School and as an EducationalSpecialist at the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. Lindsey holds anundergraduate degree from the University of Pennsylvania and two graduate degrees insecondary curriculum and instruction and educational leadership from Boston College.

MaryBeth KinkeadPreschool PrincipalMaryBeth began her teaching career in Natick at Johnson School in 1991 as a first grade teacher. Over the years she hastaught pre-K through 4th grade in Natick, American Samoa and on the Hopi Reservation in Arizona. She has herMaster's in Moderate Special Needs and since receiving her administrative licensure, she has served as a principal inHopkinton, Ashland, Wellesley and now she is thrilled to have returned to Natick in the role of Preschool Principal.

Hannah CrossEvaluation Team Leader-Ben Hem and JohnsonHannah holds a BFA (photography and small metals) from Massachusetts College of Art and Designand a Masters in Early Childhood and Special Education from Lesley University.Hannah has been in education for 16 years. She began teaching first grade at Lilja and is in her 11 thyear in Natick. She has also held the title of reading specialist and then learning center teacherbefore becoming an Evaluation Team Leader for the district.

Nevart MikaelianEvaluation Team Leader-Lilja and MemorialNevart has a Bachelor's Degree in Communication Disorders and Master's Degree in SpecialEducation from the University of New Hampshire. Nevart has worked as a Special EducationTeacher since 1998. She began teaching in Natick at Memorial School in 2003, as both LearningCenter teacher and Team Chairperson. She’s been an Evaluation Team Leader for three years.

Maria ReardonEvaluation Team Leader-BrownMaria is a school psychologist and mental health counselor by training and came to Natick this yearfrom the Lexington Public Schools. She is currently earning her doctorate in school psychology. Inher spare time, Maria enjoys yoga, art and spending time with her husband and children.

Diane HolmesEvaluation Team Leader-Kennedy and WilsonDiane has been in the Natick Public Schools for 18 years: 16 as a learning center teacher atmiddle/high school levels. She is currently in her 2nd year as Middle School Evaluation TeamLeader.She has been in the field for over 25 years, first receiving her education from State University Collegeof New York at Buffalo

Barbara Molinari-BatesEvaluation Team Leader-High SchoolBarbara has worked in a variety of capacities in special education for over twenty years. Most recently she has been inthe role of Evaluation Team Leader at Natick High School. She earned a Master of Education in Special Education fromFitchburg State University and a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education from Worcester State University.

Updates• Welcome Letter with Procedural Safeguards andpossible IEP TEAM meeting dates• IEPs will no longer be signed by parents at theTEAM meeting—Drafts will be provided for yourreview• Amendments to IEPs will be allowed withagreement from all IEP TEAM members• Coordinated Program Review process began lastyear and will be continued for this school year

Interview CommonThemes• Common Positive Themes• Staff and Culture are the greatest attributes of the NatickSchool System• Technology Push• Programming and Services• Common Needs• Need more consistency school to school for procedures, etc.• Need better Communication from Student Services Office• Common Expectations• Be present• Provide Feedback• Support

Student Service Goals• Improve communication• Staff/Staff; Parent/Staff; Administration/School• To practice “Complempathy”: a focus on compliance andempathy as we guide families through the specialeducation process• Professionalism in all areas of practice• Timeliness in responding to families’ questions andconcerns.• Professional development• Create video library for staff and parents for immediateaccess to important resources

Goals Cont.• Develop consistency in our practices and proceduresthroughout all levels• Research Inclusionary practices• Develop implementation plan, including professionaldevelopment needs and timeline.• Parents will feel as though they are an integral memberof the Team process• Develop a parent survey in collaboration with SEPACand measure progress throughout the year• Data will be collected and presented in the Spring

Final ThoughtsWe’re not here to be the gatekeepers….We’re here to open the doors, to work together with you, to dowhat’s best for kids…

What’s really going on intheir minds…

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