NHS Special Education Overview
The North Hampton School District offers a full range of opportunities, programs, and services to meet the unique needs of children with disabilities in the least restrictive educational setting. North Hampton School District ensures that every child with a disability has full access to the general curriculum with accommodations and modifications as delineated in the IEP including the provision of non-academic and extra-curricular services. The IEP team includes parents/guardians, classroom teacher, special education case manager, an LEA for the district, and any other person who might have knowledge of the student and can be invited by either the family or the district.
North Hampton School maintains a CHILD FIND Program. The purpose of this program is to locate, identify and evaluate any student who may have an educational disability and is in need of special education and related services. Any student who resides in North Hampton and is age 3 through grade 8 who is suspected or known to have an educational disability, has an opportunity to be referred for evaluation.
SAU 21 Criteria for Special Education Evaluations
The State and Federal special education laws require that the Districts of SAU 21 evaluate children with disabilities who are in need of special education and related services. The district usually evaluates children upon referral for special education and reevaluates educationally disabled children at least once every three years or when conditions warrant a reevaluation.
The Districts of SAU 21 are committed to ensuring that each child's IEP team bases its decision on high quality, reliable and educationally sound special education evaluations.
As a result, the district has established the following list of criteria for all special education evaluations. These criteria consequently apply to all evaluations conducted by school district personnel, all evaluations the district asks outside contractors to conduct and all independent evaluations parents expect the school district to review, consider, and/or fund.
Unique circumstances may justify deviation from these criteria. If a parent or district staff member is made aware of such unique circumstances, they should immediately inform the student's case manager or the district's special education director.
1. The evaluation must comply with the relevant provisions of the State and Federal special education laws, including 34 C.F.R. 300.301-300.311 and NH Code of Administrative Rules Ed 1107.
2. The evaluation must be conducted in New Hampshire, by an evaluator whose principal office located in New Hampshire, unless there is no qualified evaluator in New Hampshire.
3. The evaluator must hold a valid license from the State of New Hampshire in the field related to the known or suspected disability. The evaluator must have extensive training and experience in evaluation in the area(s) of concern and be able to interpret the instructional implications of the evaluations results. In instances where no "applicable license" exits, the district must be satisfied that the evaluator has extensive training and experience related to the known or suspected disability.
4. The cost of the evaluation shall not exceed the usual and customary rate for such evaluations.
5. The school district will not pay for the evaluation until it receives the evaluator's report.
6. The evaluator must review relevant educational records.
7. Unless otherwise determined by the child's IEP team, the evaluator must either: (a) observe the child in one or more educational settings; or (b) make at least one contact with the child's general education teacher for the purpose of determining how the child is progressing in the general curriculum. In addition, the evaluators are encouraged to make additional contacts with other involved general and special education teachers and related service providers.
8. The evaluator must be permitted to directly communicate and share information with members of the IEP team, the district's special education director, and the director's designees. The evaluator must also release the assessments and results, including any parent and teacher questionnaires, to members of the IEP team, the district's special education director, and the director's designees.
9. The district shall be entitled to inspect and obtain copies of the evaluator's records, including any records created by third parties. However, for purposes of the federal Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), 20 U.S.C. 1232g(a)(4)(B)(i), records will not be deemed accessible to any school personnel other than the evaluator, unless and until the district exercises its right to inspect or obtain copies of those records from the evaluator.