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Welcome!

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456f2f9b4afb1David Gough, Director of Special Education & Student Services.
David Gough, Director of Special Education & Student Services.

Welcome to the website of the Student Services Department of Holland Public Schools.

David Gough

Director

Contact David Gough by email or by phone at 616-494-2100     Fax:  616-393-7676 or 616-392-8225

Our  website has three purposes. First, to provide interested individuals with a detailed description of the programs and services offered to the students of Holland Public Schools including a complete program directory. Secondly, we hope to provide specific information about some of the unique and innovative features of our programs and services. Lastly, we want to make available some of the written materials we’ve produced to document our programs including various guidelines, manuals, etc.

For a Staff Directory, click here

Special Education Overview

Introduction
Students with (1) handicapping conditions and (2) in need of special education must be provided programs and services according to state and federal mandatory special education laws. While the federal law (P.L. 94-142, 1975) mandates services from age 3 through 21, Michigan law (P.A. 451, 1976) mandates services from birth through age 26. Local school districts are ultimately responsible for the provision of programs and services to resident students.
 

CHILD FIND OBLIGATION

Regulation/Rule
§ 300.111 Child Find (a) General. (1) The State must have in effect policies and procedures to ensure that—
(i) All children with disabilities residing in the State, including children with disabilities who are homeless children or are wards of the State, and children with disabilities attending private schools, regardless of the severity of their disability, and who are in need of special education and related services, are identified, located and evaluated.

Specific Learning Disability

Each local educational agency and public school academy in Michigan is required to publicly post the process used to determine the existence of a Specific Learning Disability (SLD)

Consistent with this requirement, Holland Public Schools reports the following:

For grades kindergarten through 5th grade, in the area of Basic Reading, Holland Public Schools is beginning the implementation of a Response to Scientific, Research-Based Intervention process for literacy intervention. 

For determination of a SLD, a Pattern of Strengths and Weaknesses (PSW) process is used for students in kindergarten through 12th grade for the skill area of Basic Reading. This process is also used across all other areas of SLD, kindergarten through 12th grade, which includes: Oral Expression, Listening Comprehension, Written Expression, Reading Comprehension, Reading Fluency, Math Calculation, and Math Problem Solving.

It is noted that regardless of the process used, all schools must follow all of the regulatory requirements in the IDEA, the MARSE, and Michigan laws, policies and procedures for special education.


What is a SLD?
A Specific Learning Disability is “a disorder in one or more of the basic psychological processes involved in understanding or in using language, spoken or written, that may manifest itself in the imperfect ability to listen, think, speak, read, write, spell, or do mathematical calculations, including conditions such as perceptual disabilities, brain injury, minimal brain dysfunction, dyslexia, and developmental aphasia that adversely affects a student’s educational performance. A SLD does not include learning problems that are primarily the result of visual, hearing, or motor disabilities; mental retardation; emotional disturbance; or of environmental, cultural, or economic disadvantage.” (34 CFR §300.8(c)(10)).

What is Response to Scientific, Research-Based Intervention Process?

Response to Scientific, Research-Based Intervention is a process to determine if a student has a SLD. This process involves the collection of data to determine the following:

  • The student does not achieve adequately for the student’s age or to meet State approved grade-level standards in one or more of the areas identified at 34 CFR §300.309(a)(1)(i) when provided with learning experiences and instruction appropriate for the student’s age or State-approved grade-level standards.
  • The student does not make sufficient progress to meet age or State-approved grade-level standards in one or more of the areas identified at 34 CFR §300.309(a)(1)(i) when using a process based on the student’s response to scientific, research-based intervention.

What is a PSW Process?

Pattern of Strengths and Weaknesses is a process that is used to determine if a student has a SLD. This process involves the collection of data to determine the following:

  • The student does not achieve adequately for the student’s age or to meet State approved grade-level standards in one or more of the areas identified at 34 CFR §300.309(a)(1)(i) when provided with learning experiences and instruction appropriate for the student’s age or State-approved grade-level standards.
  • The student exhibits a pattern of strengths and weaknesses in performance, achievement, or both, relative to age, State-approved grade-level standards, or intellectual development, that is determined by the Multi-disciplinary Evaluation Team (MET) to be relevant to the identification of a SLD, using appropriate assessments, consistent with the IDEA Evaluation Procedures and Additional Requirements for Evaluations and Reevaluations.

Source: Michigan Department of Education Office of Special Education and Early Intervention Services (2010). Michigan criteria for determining the existence of a specific learning disability. Lansing, MI: Author.

Holland Programs and Services
Holland Public Schools operates both “District” and “Center” programs and services. These are defined as follows: District: Those programs and services that serve primarily Holland Public Schools resident students. Students from other districts may attend on a tuition basis only. These programs and services are funded on an “added cost” basis. The additional costs (after subtracting membership from total costs) are reimbursed on a percentage basis through Act 18 (I.S.D.) and Section 52 (state) funds. Center: Those programs and services operated by Holland Public Schools to serve students from throughout the Ottawa Area Intermediate School District. These include programs and services for the Hearing Impaired (H.I.) for age three through grade twelve, and Severely Multiply Impaired (S.X.I.) for grades kindergarten through fifth. For 6th - 12th grade, the SXI program is located in Grand Haven.

 

Center Based Programs
 
Hearing Impaired (HI):
TC and Oral

 
Severely Multiply Impaired (SXI) Autism

 

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