Department of Special Services

Meeting the unique needs of students and their families.

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The mission of the Department of Special Services is to provide a planned program of instructional, psychological, social, and related services to help schools meet the unique needs of identified students and their families. The department provides a network of support to staff, students, and families that eliminates obstacles, facilitates instruction, and enables students to succeed as individuals within the learning environment. Through instructional leadership, curriculum development, program evaluation, staff development, and support for alternative, special education, and student services programs, the department ensures that all program areas in schools are fully supported and able to comply with fiscal, legal, and personnel requirements.

Areas of Responsibility

The department is organized into the following four offices of responsibility to provide effective and efficient services to FCPS employees, parents, and the community:

Intervention and Prevention Services

The Office of Intervention and Prevention Services (IPS) promotes the mental health and wellness of all students to advance their healthy development and readiness to learn. With a focus on the whole child, IPS develops and implements the following:

  • Prevention systems and strategies to create safe and supportive school environments for all students.
  • Trauma-sensitive practices to identify and support students experiencing mental health and wellness challenges.
  • Intervention and postvention protocols to respond to mental health and wellness crises.

IPS is responsible for School Psychology Services, Social Work Services, Student Safety and Wellness, Social and Emotional Learning, and Multi-Tiered System of Supports

Operations & Strategic Planning

The Office of Operations and Strategic Planning ensures that Department of Special Services programs and special education students are adequately supported in their fiscal, data, and information requirements. Operations and Strategic Planning services include data management, financial management, web development, and school health services.

Special Education Instruction

The Office of Special Education Instruction directs and supports the development, implementation, operation, and evaluation of preK–12 educational programs, curricula, and services that meet the unique needs of students with disabilities. The office plans and provides professional development for staff and administrators and provides instructional leadership and supervision, coordination, and evaluation of early childhood, elementary, secondary, career and transition programs and services.

Special Education Procedural Support

The Office of Special Education Procedural Support provides guidance to staff, families, and students in areas related to the implementation of and compliance with the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, as amended. Personnel serve as intermediaries and resources to internal and external programs to facilitate the implementation of federal, state, and local regulations supporting students who have a disability or are suspected of having a disability.