Cathy Kilcoyne, Director of Special Education
Special education services throughout the district address the needs of identified learners with disabilities between the ages of three (BrooklineBEEP.org) and twenty-two, who require specialized instruction to support access to the curriculum. A wide range of services is provided to meet the individual needs of students, from academic intervention to related services in areas such as speech therapy, occupational therapy and physical therapy. Availability of therapeutic services for students requiring special education intervention in the realm of social, emotional and adjustment areas is present at all schools and levels.
Staff works closely with families in assuring the services needed are identified and provided to students in accordance with applicable mandates. A strong and positive relationship exists between the district staff and the Special Education Parent Advisory Council to the benefit of the school system, students and families.
Strong collaboration with regular education staff is a concerted effort to provide services to students in the most inclusive manner which benefits all students within the class setting. Providing consultation, collaboration and professional development opportunities to both regular education and special education staff across the district is an active approach to further the joint efforts of all teachers to provide students with special education services in the most inclusive setting which is appropriate.
Programs and Services
Special education programs and services in Brookline are designed to meet the specific needs of students with disabilities in the least restrictive setting. Brookline offers several programs to meet the needs of students with disabilities which are described below. Related services are also provided and are listed following the program descriptions. The professional staff that delivers special education services are certified and trained to work with a wide range of students with specific disabilities. When the nature and/or severity of the student’s disability is such that a less restrictive environment with the use of supplementary aides and services would not meet the student’s needs consideration is given to district-wide programs and then to collaborative and out-of-district placements.
Through the IEP TEAM process students can receive services in any composite program designed individually and drawing from our comprehensive resources.
- To provide services for identified students with disabilities in compliance with state and federal mandates.
- To support the identification of students with disabilities and to determine eligibility and the need for specially designed instruction and/or related services.
- To provide a continuum of services and programs designed to meet the needs of identified students.
- To adjust and refine the implemented system of special education service management.
- To provide professional development opportunities and training to regular and special education staff regarding practices, compliances and regulatory matters.