SPECIAL EDUCATION PROGRAMS
The Forest Municipal School District provides programming in compliance with the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act [IDEA] to students who are eligible for special education and related services. The District undertakes to identify and locate every student who is eligible for such services and who resides within its jurisdiction. For more information on identification and services contact the Exceptional Services Director, ShaTerria Warren, at 601-469-3250 Ext. 1014. The District reserves the right to minimize class size in an effort to provide the best quality education to students within our district.
Students with disabilities will be given the option of working toward a special education certificate, occupational diploma, or regular diploma upon entering the special education programs. The special education certificate and occupational diploma will be presented without special mention during the regular graduation exercises. The certificate and occupational diploma is not equivalent to a regular high school diploma.
Graduation options will be fully explained to parents and students, when appropriate, in each Individualized Educational Plan [IEP] meeting. The determination of receiving a certificate, occupational diploma, or regular high school diploma is made by the IEP Committee prior to the student entering the ninth grade. This determination may be revised at any time prior to graduation.
Students who choose to work toward a regular diploma must complete all Carnegie unit requirements of the regular program as described in the policy of the Forest Municipal Board of Education. Those who choose the special education certificate option must complete the same number of units as required by the regular diploma, but these units will be taken from the special education curriculum and/or the regular education curriculum as determined by the Individualized Educational Plan [IEP]. In order to receive an occupational diploma, 70% of all the objectives as outlined by the Mississippi Department of Education Office of Special Education must be met.
A special education student must meet all requirements for graduation by or before age 21 in order to receive a diploma or certificate. Services will be terminated at the close of the school year in which the student’s 21st birthday occurs.
CHILD FIND PUBLICITY CAMPAIGN AND DISTRICT CONFIDENTIALITY LETTER
The Forest Municipal School District is participating in an ongoing statewide effort to identify, locate, and evaluate children, birth though the age of twenty-one, who have a physical, mental, communicative and/or emotional disability. Early identification of children in need of special education experiences is most important to each child. Furthermore, this information gathered from contacts with parents and other agencies will be used to help determine present and future program needs as progress is made toward the goal of providing a free appropriate public education to all children with a disability.
Information which could identify an individual child will be maintained by this agency and will be provide to other agencies only in accord with the Family Rights and Privacy Act and EHA-B. As a parent, you are guaranteed the right to inspect any such information about your child and to challenge its accuracy. Access to this information is forbidden to any unauthorized person without informed consent.
Please contact ShaTerria Warren, Child Find Contact Person for the Forest Municipal School District, if you know any children who may have a disability by calling 601-469-3250 Ext. 1014 or writing her at the following address: Forest Municipal School District, 325 Cleveland Street, Forest, MS 39074.
The Child Find Person implements child identification, location, and evaluation of children birth through twenty-one who have disabilities, regardless of the severity of their disability, and who are in need of special education and/or related services. The Child Find Person works with the local Head Starts, Human Services, Health Agencies, as well as local education agencies, physicians, and other individuals to identify and locate children out of school and in school who may be in need of special education services.
Once a referral is made, it is the responsibility of the Child Find Contact Person to insure that the Referral-to Placement Procedures are followed. The Child find Contact Person works with the Local Survey Committee at each school to implement these procedures. The following activities briefly describe the procedures. As a part of Child Study, parents are invited to attend a Local Survey Committee Meeting to review a child's educational record and performance and determine a need for an evaluation. Prior to an evaluation, copies of the Parent Information Pamphlet and Procedural Safeguards are given to the parents. District personnel explain these copies to the parents and insure that they understand the Procedural Safeguards. This process will be reviewed at each parent meeting. After parental consent for testing is obtained, a nondiscriminatory evaluation is conducted. Students are evaluated in all areas related to the suspected disability by qualified personnel. Parents are invited to attend the Eligibility Determination Conference by the Multidisciplinary Evaluation/Eligibility Team to determine if a disability exists. If the child meets eligibility criteria for special education services and/or related services, an Individualized Education Program is developed and the parents are invited to attend the meting. Parents must sign permission for placement before a child can receive services. Parents, teachers, and students participate in the process. All students receiving special education services are reassessed at least once a year and reevaluated at least once every three years.
It is the goal of the Forest Municipal School District to provide a free appropriate public education to all children with disabilities through age twenty-one.