Student Support Services
Reading and Math Intervention
Regular education assessment data and teacher referral is used to determine which students would benefit most from reading and math intervention. Intervention programs are research-based and are part of Harwich ElementarySchool’s commitment to best teaching practices and as such are considered part of the regular education curriculum. Caregivers will receive communication that this intervention is occuring. Student progress is monitored through the Student Support Team (SST) on a regular basis.
The Guidance Staff provides support for students with social, behavioral and emotional needs that adversely impact their educational experience at school. HES guidance staff works with teachers, caregivers and students to teach respect, responsibility, compassion, integrity, and conflict resolution. The counselor also works with individual or small groups of children to facilitate friendships and to assist with school adjustment issues. At various times throughout the year, students may meet with guidance staff to discuss school-related issues. Caregiver notification is not required for these occasions as this support service is one aspect of the regular education program.
Students may also receive interventions from the guidance staff on a regular basis. These services are available to an individual or groups of students for social skills education and/or school adjustment issues and are a part of the Student Support Team. Caregivers will be notified but permission is not required. The guidance staff may serve as a liaison to agencies outside the school and can provide a list of resources to facilitate caregiver’s access to child and family welfare services.
The Principal and Assistant Principal serve as the school’s disciplinarians as needed and collaborate regularly with the school counselors and psychologists. Students may be referred to Guidance by the Principal/Assistant Principal or staff to resolve behavioral and socialization problems. Additionally, school counselors and psychologists are a resource to classroom teachers to help with the implementation of strategies to support students’ whose behavior or social difficulties are adversely affecting the classroom, recess/playground, cafeteria and/or the school as a whole.
The Monomoy Regional School District recognizes that from time to time circumstances may occur within the school community which constitute a crisis and require prompt and immediate action. A crisis is defined as a tragedy, disaster, or a dangerous situation occurring during or after school hours, which could profoundly impact students, staff and/or parents/ guardians. We have trained personnel available to attempt to prevent a crisis or to intervene when a crisis occurs. Support services are available from Guidance Counselors, School Psychologists, the School Nurse, and other trained faculty for dealing with any situation that could profoundly impact students, staff, and parents/ guardians. Anyone may make a referral through the Guidance Office. In order to assist school staff in identifying and helping students who may be in crisis, all students are encouraged to report to a teacher, school nurse, guidance counselors, or the Principal/Assistant Principals any student behavior which may be troubling such as talk of depression, suicide, or any other strange behavior. All student reports will be held in strict confidence.
The faculty and staff of the Monomoy Regional School District are mandated by law to promptly report any suspected case of child abuse or neglect. Under Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 119, Section 51A, a mandated reporter who has reasonable cause to believe that a child under the age of eighteen years is suffering physical or emotional injury resulting from abuse including sexual abuse, or from neglect, shall immediately report such condition to the Department of Children and Families (DCF). Mandated school reporters include teachers, educational administrators, psychologists, attendance officers, social workers, day care providers and healthcare professionals. Parents/ guardians or other individuals may also report suspected abuse/neglect to the DCF through the At-Risk Hotline: 800-792-5200.
Special Education Services
Special education, under federal and state mandates, provides services to children from the ages of 3 to 22 who have been diagnosed with certain disabilities that impact their learning. Monomoy Regional School District strives to provide high quality programs to meet the unique learning needs of all students. Special Education staff, along with highly trained teaching assistants, provide services primarily in the classroom setting. Some services are provided to students in a specialist’s classroom (speech and language room, the occupational therapy room, the special needs teacher’s classroom) if the Team deems it more conducive to meeting the student’s needs. Our primarily inclusive program is designed to allow special needs students to maximize their academic potential by providing access to the general education curriculum as mandated by the State Frameworks. Individual modifications, accommodations and specialized instruction within the classroom afford children with special learning needs the opportunity to demonstrate success and understanding of the general curriculum in the least restrictive environment. A coordinated team approach is carefully designed to deliver this service model in a manner that promotes self-esteem and peer acceptance of diverse learning styles. A team approach is used to coordinate services for students with individualized education plans. Consultations with the guidance counselor, physical therapist, occupational therapist, special education teacher, principal, classroom teacher and caregivers occur on a regular basis to develop and modify the program that best meets the needs of each student.
Caregivers, teachers or other concerned parties may make a referral for a special education evaluation if they suspect the child has a disability that impacts learning. A comprehensive evaluation will be conducted to determine if the student meets the eligibility criteria. Eligible students must have a diagnosed disability, and they must be failing to make effective progress in the classroom setting as a result of the disability and require specially designed instruction or special education. If you have concerns about your child’s development or believe that your child may be entitled to special education services, please contact your child’s teacher.
Student Support Team and Response To Intervention
The Student Support Team (SST) brings together the classroom teacher, Principal/Assistant Principal and school specialists to review student progress on an individual basis. Our SST Team meets regularly at the recommendation of teaching staff to plan, implement and monitor interventions to support student academic and social emotional needs. Student progress is monitored closely and updated plans are developed and monitored as needed.
Response to Intervention Team
Response to Intervention Team (RTI) is a general education resource that provides an immediate response to a classroom teacher’s concerns about a student. When a teacher observes that a child is experiencing academic or social difficulties, the team convenes to provide suggestions and an objective perspective on methods and approaches to assist and support the child. The team may consist of the principal, classroom teachers, the guidance counselor and often the reading specialist or special educators. RTI is an internal process that does not generate reports to caregivers, although your child’s teacher may tell you that s/he is seeking assistance from the RTI teams. Meeting notes are recorded, but are not entered into a child’s record.
504 Accommodation Plans
Section 504 is a federal statute that prohibits discrimination based upon a disability, among other provisions. A student may be considered disabled if s/he has a diagnosed emotional or physical impairment that substantially limits one or more of his or her major life activities. An Accommodation Plan may be designed for students who meet the criteria of a disabling impairment under section 504. The Coordination Officer for 504 Accommodation Plans at Harwich Elementary School is the principal or designee. The District-wide Section 504 Coordinator is the Director of Student Services.