Return to School - Supports for Students with Disabilities

Our plan for distance learning supports for students with disabilities.

Special Education Newsletter

News provided by the Department of Special Services providing updated information, tips and ideas to support families as you prepare for the return to school.

In an effort to ensure that all students with disabilities are provided with the structures and supports necessary to successfully access instruction through full-time online instruction, the offices of Special Education Instruction and Procedural Support have developed a reopening plan that emphasizes the importance of:

  • Explicit expectations for synchronous and asynchronous instruction
  • Increased professional development for FCPS staff and parents
  • Specialized instruction for students based on IEP goals
  • Student access to instructional materials and learning tools
  • Convening meetings for special education processes (local screening committee, 504 plans, reevaluation, eligibility, IEP, staffings, parent conferences)

Early Childhood Curriculum

Early Childhood Special Education services and supports are offered on a continuum.  Some students access services and supports as part of a resource model.  Other students are part of our class-based model or our preschool autism classroom (PAC) model.  As we look at the instructional day for our preschoolers across this continuum, you will notice in the sample schedules below that we were intentional around providing time each day for students to connect with their teacher and their peers as well as time to support social emotional learning and social skills development.  There is also dedicated time built into each model for virtual, or synchronous small group and/or individual instruction.  Asynchronous activities will be provided to students each week for all of our preschoolers, and teachers will be reaching out to parents to schedule individual coaching sessions.

Early Childhood Sample Schedules

Class-based

Time Activity
9:00-9:30 Morning Meeting (Synchronous Learning):  Community building of in-person and at-home students, inclusion of SEL & Digital Citizenship activities
9:30-10:20 Individual Student Intervention: 2 individualized student intervention/parent coaching virtual sessions
10:30-11:00 Social Emotional Group Lesson (Synchronous Learning): Group social emotional lesson using Second Step Early Learning
11:00-11:30 Office Hours
11:30-12:00 Lunch
12:00-1:00 Individual Student Intervention: 2 individualized student intervention/parent coaching virtual sessions. This time has been set aside also for Dual Enrolled PreK students to access special education.
1:00-2:00 Early Childhood Resource Student Visit: Individualized instruction/parent coaching with assigned early childhood resource student
2:00-3:00 Intervention Block: Extra intervention for students who require additional support, This time has been set aside also for Dual Enrolled PreK students to access special education.
3:00-4:30 Planning Time: Planning time and meetings

Resource

Time Activity
9:00-9:30 Morning Meeting (Synchronous Learning):  Community building of in-person and at-home students, inclusion of SEL & Digital Citizenship activities
9:30-10:20 Individual Student Intervention: 2 individualized student intervention/parent coaching virtual sessions
10:30-11:00 Individual Student Intervention: 1 individualized student intervention/parent coaching virtual sessions
11:00-11:30 Office Hours
11:30-12:00 Lunch
12:00-1:00 Individual Student Intervention: 2 individualized student intervention/parent coaching virtual sessions. This time has been set aside also for Dual Enrolled PreK students to access special education.
1:00-2:00 Individual Student Intervention: 2 individualized student intervention/parent coaching virtual sessions
2:00-3:00 Intervention Block: Extra intervention for students who require additional support, This time has been set aside also for Dual Enrolled PreK students to access special education.
3:00-4:30 Planning Time: Planning time and meetings

Preschool Autism Class (PAC)

Time Activity
9:15-9:45 Morning Meeting Activity (Synchronous Learning): 
Greeting, Book, Movement
Targets Embedded into Activities: Matching, Nonverbal Imitation and   Object Manipulation, Receptive Instructions/labels, Expressive Tacting (Label) / Instructions, Manding (Requesting), and Intraverbals (Conversation skills)
9:45-10:15 Break: Family Movement and Play Time
10:15-11:15 Small Group Activity (Synchronous Learning): 
3 Groups—Students Working on IEP Goals
Targets Embedded into Activities: Matching, Nonverbal Imitation and Object Manipulation, Receptive Instructions/labels, Expressive Tacting (Label) / Instructions, Manding (Requesting), and Intraverbals (Conversation skills)
11:15-11:45 Intervention Block (as needed) (Synchronous Learning):
3 students
Matching, Imitation; Gross Motor, Imitation: Object Manipulation, Manding (requesting) 
11:45-12:15 Lunch
12:15-12:45 Office Hour: Scheduled with Individual Parents - 2 20-minute Coaching Sessions With Lesson Plan on Learning Opportunities in the Home Environment
12:45-3:45 Parent Coaching: 2 20-minute sessions per week

Adapted Curriculum

Daily instructional schedules for students accessing an adapted curriculum are aligned with the sample schedules that have been provided to schools for all students.  Students who are accessing an adapted curriculum should participate in as much of the instructional day as they are able.

At the elementary level, students will begin with a morning meeting.  During this time, students will work on building community, social emotional wellness, and preparing for the day. After morning meeting, students will participate in instructional blocks.  Students will also have access to their specials during the day.  At the secondary level, students will follow the same block schedule as all other students within their school with adjustments to their schedule provided as needed.  All students will have access to five asynchronous learning activities per week.  These supplemental activities are meant to be available for use when students are not participating in synchronous instruction.  We recognize the importance of parent / teacher communication during virtual instruction outside of the direct instruction time.  

Adapted Curriculum Sample Schedules

Elementary (Enhanced Autism, ID, IDS)

Time Group A Activity Group B Activity
9:10-9:40 Morning Meeting Morning Meeting
9:40-10:00 Break / Student Choice Time (SCT) Break / Student Choice Time (SCT)
10:00-10:30 Language Arts Break / SCT
10:30-11:00 Break / SCT Language Arts
11:00-11:30 Special Special
11:30-12:30 Lunch / SCT Lunch / SCT
12:30-1:00 Math Break / SCT
1:00-1:30 Break / SCT Math
1:30-2:00 Specialized Instruction/ Asynchronous work Specialized Instruction/ Asynchronous work
2:00-2:30 Science / Social Studies Science / Social Studies
2:30-3:00 Specialized Instruction/ Asynchronous work Specialized Instruction/ Asynchronous work
3:00-3:55 SCT SCT

Activity Descriptions

  • Morning Meeting: Community building, inclusion of SEL & digital citizenship activities, & skills included in IEP
  • Language Arts: Focus: SOL/ASOL and skills addressed in IEP; specialized instruction programs; some students may spend this time in general education setting; integration of science/social studies content when appropriate.
  • Math: Focus:SOL/ASOL and skills addressed in IEP; specialized instruction programs; some students may spend this time in the general education setting.
  • Science / Social Studies: Focus: SOL/ASOL and skills addressed in IEP
  • Specialized Instruction/ Asynchronous work: Student complete activity posted by teacher, read a book,or listen to a story. Select students will have specialized instruction scheduled during this time.
     

Secondary (Autism, ID, IDS)

"A" Day Online

Time Group A Activity Group B Activity
Period 1 - 8:10-8:50 Language Arts Break
Period 1 - 8:55-9:35 Break  Language Arts
Period 3- 9:45-10:25 RAM Time RAM Time
10:30-11:50 Break / Lunch Break / Lunch
Period 5 - 12:00-12:40 Math Break
Period 5 - 12:45-1:25 Break Math
Period 7- 1:35-2:15 Social Studies Social Studies
Period 7 - 2:20-3:00 Specialized Instruction/Asynchronous Work Specialized Instruction/Asynchronous Work

Activity Descriptions

  • Specialized Instruction/ Asynchronous work: Student complete activity posted by teacher, read a book,or listen to a story. Select students will have intervention scheduled during this time.

"B" Day Online

Time Group A Activity Group B Activity
Period 2 - 8:10-8:50 Science Break
Period 2 - 8:55-9:35 Break  Science
Period 4 - 9:45-10:25 Health and PE Health and PE
10:30-11:50 Break / Lunch Break / Lunch
Period 6 - 12:00-12:40 Elective Break
Period 6 - 12:45-1:25 Break Elective: Life Skills
Period 8- 1:35-2:15 Specialized Instruction Break
Period 8 - 2:20-3:00 Break Specialized Instruction

General Curriculum

For students with disabilities who are accessing the general curriculum, it is expected that they will remain in core instruction as much as possible throughout their instructional day.  This core instruction may occur in a variety of settings, such as a self-contained special education class or a general education class.  Special education support may be provided during this time as required by each student.  For example, many of our twice exceptional learners may receive direct support within the general education classroom or in a small group setting.  As with all students, students with disabilities who are accessing the general curriculum will have access to asynchronous learning activities posted each week. 
 
For elementary students, a specialized instruction block has been built into the day for all students. This time may look different for students based on their needs. For example, students with dyslexia may receive instruction utilizing a specialized reading program during this time.  Some students may also receive specialized instruction during this time block for shorter periods of time, such as a student who needs direct support with executive functioning skills, social skills, or other IEP goal areas. Schools at the secondary level can adjust schedules so that students with disabilities who require access to specialized instructional programs can participate in those programs on a daily basis, Tuesday through Friday.

Nontraditional School Programs

(Achievement, Integrity and Maturity, Alternative High Schools, Alternative Learning Centers, Fairfax County Adult High School, and Interagency Alternative School programs)

The Nontraditional School Programs will continue to be an alternative option for students who may need a smaller school environment to thrive. Each Nontraditional School Program is developing schedules that best meet the learning needs of the students for whom they serve including students who are administratively placed by the Fairfax County School Board.

Public Day and Career Center Programs

Fairfax County Public Schools has a number of Public Day Schools and Career Center Programs that serve students with disabilities. These programs will continue to be an alternative options for students during the 2020-2021 school year.  The principals of these programs have worked hard to develop comprehensive instructional programming for the students who attend their programs and they have developed daily schedules that will best meet the needs of the students whom they serve.

  • Key Center and Kilmer Center
    Daily instruction will include morning meeting, specialized instruction to address IEP goals, academic time to address aligned standards of learning, targeted intervention, specials, adapted physical education, related services, and guided screen breaks. 
  • Burke School
    Daily instruction will include morning meeting, literacy and math instruction, science and social studies, specials, social emotional learning lessons, specialized instruction to address IEP goals, and screen breaks. 
  • Cedar Lane School and Quander Road School
    Daily instruction will include advisory period (social emotional wellness, connecting), academic courses, electives, specialized instruction to address IEP goals, and targeted intervention (math, reading, writing, social skills).
  • Davis Career Center and Pulley Career Center
    Daily instruction will include class rotations (Living Skills, Social Skills (for Employment), Workplace Readiness Skills and Career Exploration), homeroom time, social emotional learning activities, targeted interventions, and asynchronous activities. 

Homebound and Home-based Instruction

  • Homebound Instruction
    • Homebound instruction will be available for FCPS students if remote learning provided for students is not practicable and there is a demonstrated medical need that meets eligibility requirements outlined in Regulation 2140 R2140. 
    • As FCPS will begin the school year with virtual instruction, the provision of homebound instruction will also be delivered remotely or through virtual means. 
  • Home-based Instruction
    • Home-based services are instructional services that are delivered in the home setting (or other agreed upon setting) in accordance with the student’s Individualized Education Program (IEP).  
    • Home-based instruction may be provided to students who are removed from the attending school by the division for disciplinary action or other reasons, or if an IEP team determines that the student will not be able to access the virtual instruction even with accommodations.
    • As FCPS will begin the school year with virtual instruction, the provision of home-based instruction will also be delivered through the virtual environment.  

Multi-Agency Services

Multi-Agency Services is responsible for the identification of private special education schools for students who, through the Individualized Education Program (IEP) team process, are determined to be in need of such placements.

  • Each private special education facility is independently making a school opening decision.
  • FCPS will provide transportation for students as each private day school returns to in-person instruction.

Procedural Support

Referral to Eligibility

  • Schools will resume weekly local screening meetings (LSC) in order to fulfil the child find requirements for both special education and 504.
  • Evaluations will be conducted via both virtual and face to face methods, as appropriate, and guidance will be provided on how school-based staff can safely conduct evaluations.
  • Schools have lists of pending evaluations and will work chronologically to reduce the backlog of cases.
  • Meetings will continue to be held via Blackboard Collaborate Ultra (BBCU), Google Meet or teleconference.
  • Reevaluations are conducted with existing data, where possible.

Individualized Education Programs (IEP)

  • Temporary Learning Plans are discontinued. Teams will amend IEPs.
  • An IEP Guidance document for the return to school has been developed with principal input for school-based staff.
  • Case managers will review students’ IEPs to determine if services can be delivered within the virtual schedule.
  • School staff and parents will convene an IEP meeting if the goals, accommodations, or services need to be amended due to the virtual learning environment.
  • If appropriate, some IEP changes may be conducted with an addendum without a meeting.
  • Case managers will provide parents with a prior written notice that will outline the IEP proposal for the virtual instruction for their child.

Section 504 Plans

  • School Based Coordinators will ensure that the 504 plans of their students can be implemented in the virtual learning environment.
  • If adjustments are needed, 504 case managers will schedule Section 504 plan meetings using either Blackboard Collaborate Ultra (BBCU), Google Meet, or teleconference so that all teachers are aware of the required accommodations.

COVID-19 Recovery Services

  • FCPS Guidance Document for IEP Teams for COVID Recovery Services
  • VDOE Guidance document posted on July 28th.
  • Consideration for recovery services should occur after students have participated in instruction during the first 9 weeks of school.
  • Teachers should be informally assessing gaps or regression that may qualify a student for COVID-19 Recovery Services.
  • Considerations for compensatory or recovery services is discussed within the IEP process.

Special Education Return to School - Virtual Individualized Education Program (IEP) Information for Parents

Translations of the Confidentiality Notice: 
Amharic | Arabic | Chinese | Farsi | Korean | Spanish | Urdu | Vietnamese

Where to Go with Questions

As we embark on distance learning, students and caregivers will have questions and issues that arise that they have not experienced before. The table below provides some of the most common types of issues or questions that may be anticipated and indicates who to contact for help. Email is the best way to reach staff during distance learning.

For questions about Contact
Specific course, assignment, or learning resource Teacher
Supports or accommodations Special education case manager or 504 School Based Coordinator
Supports or accommodations for English learners ESOL teacher
Problem with an FCPS-issued laptop Teacher will submit support ticket for student
Personal or social emotional concern School Psychologist or School Social Worker
Other issue related to distance learning Principal or assistant principal
Help to resolve concerns, problems, complaints, and other student-related issues Office of the Family and Student Ombudsman (ombudsman@fcps.edu)
Special education procedural supports, due process and eligibility, and multi-agency services Office of Special Education Procedural Support
Special education instructional supports, behavior intervention, related services, assistive technology, and career and transition services Office of Special Education Instruction

Roles and Responsibilities: Special Education

Find out the roles and responsibilities for school personnel within each level of instructional programming involved in distance learning for students with disabilities.
View Roles and Responsibilities

Return to School FAQs: Special Education

Answers to common questions about Child Find, evaluations, reevaluations, eligibility, IEPs, 504 Plans, and special education instruction.
View Special Education FAQs

Return to School

We will begin the 2020-21 school year with virtual learning for all students. The online school year will begin, as scheduled, September 8.
View FCPS Return to School Information

Learning at Home: Supports for Families

Getting started and finding support for returning to school.
View Additional Support for Families