511 Harrington Highway | Eden, NC | 336.627-2600

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Exceptional Children - General Information

 

The Rockingham County Schools (RCS) has extensive programs to meet the needs of students with disabilities.  On April 1, 2014  RCS was serving 2,084 students ages 3-21 who were identified as having special needs.  About 12.5% of school age students are identified.  Services for students with disabilities range from minor classroom and/or therapy supports to extensive full time programs.  Services are based on Individualized Education Plans (IEP) which are developed jointly by parents and school staff at least annually and outline needed services as well as any accommodations and/or modifications required in the general education class and for testing.  All students are expected to progress in the general curriculum and all students must be included in any state evaluations used for student or school accountability purposes. You may access at breakdown of this information per school HERE and HERE for a breakdown of the number of students identified within each disability category.

 

Services are provided by over 200 staff including special education teachers, special education teacher assistants, speech pathologists and assistants, psychologists, an audiologist, occupational and physical therapists and therapy assistants, an adapted physical education teacher, interpreter, as well as curriculum coordinator, lead staff; hearing, vision, and autism consultants and secretaries.

 

Students receive services in a variety of settings. RCS has model inclusive practices and provides observation sites and training for North Carolina. Inclusion is based on the belief that all students belong to the same system and that all students benefit from a unified, team approach to education.

Although we have many inclusion programs, we also have traditional pullout and self-contained classes at some schools. A few students receive individualized alternative instruction or homebound services. Students are bussed when necessary in order to receive an appropriate education program.

RCS has partnered with the state through a special federal school improvement grant to provide a model algebra and prealgebra program to students with disabilities in inclusive classrooms; all students in these classes will benefit from this model program, teacher training, special textbooks and materials, and regular in-class consultative services.
 
In addition, RCS has community based instructional services for specific high school students with disabilities where they can learn job skills directly in community sites and work towards a High School Certificate or a High School Diploma through the Occupational Course of Study.
 
All students in RCS who have identified disabilities receive free and appropriate public education in the least restrictive environment. Each student who qualifies for Exceptional Children’s services receives an Individualized Education Plan that is specifically tailored to their areas of need. This provides important information for individuals who work with and teach that student.
 
If parents suspect that their child may have a disability, they are encouraged to discuss their concerns with the child’s teacher(s). They may also request consideration for referral for evaluation from their principal or counselor or they may call the special education department at central office (336-627-2709). For preschool students, parents with concerns should call the special education department at central office directly.
 

Inclusion

Special Education Law requires that the first consideration for placement of students is the least restrictive environment (LRE). Thus the first consideration for any student with special needs is placement in the general education classroom or, for a preschool student, in a natural preschool setting. RCS’s commitment to inclusive practices means that we work hard to team with general education to provide the supports and instruction needed to maintain students in the general education or natural environments as much as possible.
 
Inclusion means students with and without disabilities working side by side. As opposed to mainstreaming where students are placed back into general education classes without support, inclusion involves the addition of special education and related services to the general program whereby students with and without disabilities benefit from the resultant team of educators.
 

Eligibility For Special Services

The Public Schools of North Carolina, Exceptional Children Division provides local units with detailed procedures for the delivery of special education services. These rules and regulations are detailed in  Polices Governing Programs And Services For Children With Disabilities, Department of Public Instruction, November 2007 edition amended June 2010. Services are provided under the following categorical designations:
 

Autistic

Multihandicapped

 

Behaviorally Emotionally Disabled

Orthopedically Impaired

 

Deaf/Blind

Other Health Impaired

 

Developmentally Delayed

Specific Learning Disabled

Hearing Impaired

Speech/Language Impaired

Intellectually Disabled - Mild

Traumatic Brain Injured

Intellectually Disabled - Moderate

Visually Impaired

Intellectually Disabled - Severe


 
 
 
Rockingham CountySpecial Education Directory
Administrative Team and Specialized Assignments for Special Education Services
 

The main contact number for special education services is 336-627-2709. Feel free to call the main number for any questions or information. Following is a detailed listing of special education contacts.

Area

Name

Number

Email Address 

 

 

 

 

Adapted Physical Education

Lelsie Mauney

634-6361

   lmauney@rock.k12.nc.us

Audiology

Debbie Lassiter

623-6521

   dlassiter@rock.k12.nc.us

Autism Advisor /Self Contained

Carolyn Goodwin

951-2710

   cgoodwin@rock.k12.nc.us

Behavioral Support

Janet Winn

634-3209

   jwinn@rock.k12.nc.us

Program Lead/Compliance   

Rhonda Brown

616-0073

Curriculum Coordinator & SD

Kristi Harris

627-2661

   kharris@rock.k12.nc.us

Executive Director

Cindy Corcoran

627-2715

   ccorcoran@rock.k12.nc.us

Visually Impaired

Andrea Finney-Ratliff

349-5370

   afinney-ratliff@rock.k12.nc.us

Elementary Advisor

Nancy Bernier

951-2710

   nbernier@rock.k12.nc.us

Headcount and Data

Becky Garrison

627-2708

   bgarrison@rock.k12.nc.us

504 Coordinator

Jill Bullock

427-3266

   jbullock@rock.k12.nc.us

Out Reach Program

Janet Winn

623-9791

   jwinn@rock.k12.nc.us

Occupational Therapy

Lisa Corum

634-3209

   lcorum@rock.k12.nc.us

Middle School Advisor

Amy Dowdle

616-0073

   adowdle@rock.k12.nc.us

Physical Therapy

Katherine Davis

634-3209

   kdavis4@rock.k12.nc.us

Psychology Lead PBIS/Crisis Coordinator

Stephanie Austin

348-2929

   saustin@rock.k12.nc.us

Preschool Coordinator

Amy Rose 

616-0263 

   arose@rock.k12.nc.us

Program Coordinator

Pam Watkins

627-2669

   pwatkins@rock.k12.nc.us

Day Treatment Director

Terry Aiken
634-3209   taiken@rock.k12.nc.us

Speech/Language Lead- School Age

Debbie Lassiter

623-6521

   dlassiter@rock.k12.nc.us

State Testing for EC

 Kristi Harris

627-2661

   kharris@rock.k12.nc.us

Transportation

Pam Watkins

627-2669

   pwatkins@rock.k12.nc.us

Program Lead/Home School                          Amy Wilson                            548-2168              awilson2@rock.k12.nc.us

Student Services Support Lead                         Holly Williamson                    634-3209             hwilliamson2@rock.k12.nc
 
Special Education Resources
Special thanks to Guilford County Schools for sharing their research for this link.
 
North Carolina Dept. of Public Instruction – EC
General Website for all State EC contacts, information, and publications


Special Education Reference for Regulations, Policies and Procedures
Includes all relevant laws and procedures, well indexed, has search feature

Policies Governing Programs and Services for Children With Disabilities
The October 13 Edition of Procedures

Autism
 
Autism Society of America
National resource

Autism Society
North Carolina resource

Chapters and Support Groups
Local resource

TEACCH
Evaluation, training, and educational resource
 
 
Behavior
 
 
 
Cognitive Impairments
 
 
 
Learning Disabilities
 

Additional Sites of Interest for Parents and Professionals

 
 
Brain Injuries
 
Medicaid Billing
Parents whose children receive services from the Exceptional Children's Department of Rockingham County should know that IDEA 2004 [Title I B 612a12A(i) requires that school systems access Medicaid funds for funding services from state or local educational resources. Under the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), a parent's permission is required for the school district to release information about their child. This permission releases information needed in order to bill the North Carolina Medicaid program for services provided through the child's individualized education plan (IEP).  Whether or not a parent gives permission to release this information will not affect their child's special education programs. Effective March 18, 2013, the U.S. Department of Education through the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services determined that the frequency requirement for obtaining parental consent to bill Medicaid should be revised to request a one time written consent from a parent before accessing a student's Medicaid benefits. Parents are entitled to have a copy of any information that is released to the Medicaid program and can revoke their permission at any time.
 
 
Preschool Resources for Children with Disabilities
Children with Disabilities: Children with disabilities from birth to 3 years old are identified through the Children’s Developmental Services Agency. On their third birthday children with disabilities become the responsibility of the Rockingham County Schools. We work with a community collaborative committee to ensure a smooth transition to school programs. Children are served in home, child care, or center based programs based on an Individual Education Program (IEP) in order that they receive free, appropriate public education including special education services as well as any needed educational therapies.  For more information this Q & A Form  can be accessed.  You can also go to the Office of Early Learning - North Carolina at http://www.earlylearning.nc.gov/index.asp
 
More at Four: Children who are at risk may be determined eligible for More at Four services through the Rockingham County Partnership for Children (336-342-9676). These students are served at identified day care sites throughout the county or are served in school preschool classrooms. Students receive a rich curriculum helping them to become good learners and to be ready for school. 
 
For a better understanding of the Preschool Programs offered by Rockingham County Schools, you may click on this brochure:  RCS Preschool Brochure 2012
 

For more information, please call the school's Central Office at 336-627-2709 or the Partnership at 336 342-9676.

 
 
State Improvement Grants
Math: Through a grant awarded to Rockingham County Schools by the State Improvement Project, we pilot best practices in mathematics and implement and demonstrate these practices. We also provide math foundations to staff throughout the district.  For more information, contact Mary Doggett at BTWLC (634-3209 x232).
 

Reading: Rockingham County Schools also has received a grant through the State Improvement Project to implement research proven reading programs. Our staff members have extensive training in reading foundations to serve all of the students in Rockingham County. Both the SRA Corrective and Wilson Reading programs are being implemented with success. In addition, staff from across the county have been trained in Reading Foundations. For more information, contact Kristi Harris at 627-2661.

 
Occupational Therapy
Occupational therapists lead the process in development, implementation, and coordination of the occupational therapy program. Screening, evaluation, educational program and transition planning, therapeutic intervention, and exit planning is provided 
for students identified with disabilities that interfere with their ability to perform daily life activities or participate in necessary or desired occupations. Professional judgment and clinical knowledge are used to develop individualized programming based on occupational performance deficits in the areas of personal care, student role, interaction skills, process skills, play, community integration/work, and 
graphic communication. Occupational therapist regularly collaborates with other disciplines and services at departmental and system levels.  Please click here for the RCS OT Brochure for more information. 
 
 
 CIPP (Continuous Improvement Performance Plan)
The Continuous Improvement Performance Plan is a system of collecting and analyzing data concerning outcomes for students with disabilities for the purpose of improving results. The stated primary focus of these monitoring activities is on improving education results and functional outcomes for all students with disabilities.
 
We are delighted that for the 2008-09 data submitted, we met requirements.  We received feedback from the State as follows:  “ Your LEA is to be commended for meeting the requirements on the data that were submitted for the areas addressed for this determination.” 
 
For a copy of our report including data as submitted, please see RCS CIPP Plan 2013
 

For further information, questions or comments contact:
               Cindy A. Corcoran, Ed. D.,  Executive Director of Exceptional Programs
               Rockingham County Schools
               511 Harrington Highway
               Eden, North Carolina  27288
               Phone 336-627-2715
               E-mail:
ccorcoran@rock.k12.nc.us
               

 

Last Modified Yesterday at 2:32 PM