Special Services

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Special Services

Special Services Address: 24936 Fir Grove Lane, Building B, Elmira, OR
Phone: 541-935-7733 Fax: 541-935-0613

Welcome to the Fern Ridge School District Special Services office!  We supervise Special Education Programs.  If you have any questions, please call me at 541-935-7733, ext. 2 or email at bbrands@fernridge.k12.or.us.

Early childhood CARES (EC Cares) can help your baby or preschooler with:
• Speech and language skills
• Behavior and social skills
• Moving and playing
• Learning and understanding

They offer free developmental screening and services for babies and preschoolers:
• No insurance required
• Lane County children from birth to kindergarten
• Anyone can make a referral

It’s free!

Contact them at:
541-346-2578
800-925-8694
Florence: 541-997-1513

Welcome to Early Childhood CARES

Hot meals are available in the Elmira High School cafeteria each weekday from 11:00-12:30.

The district has added four additional pick-up sites throughout the community for families to get sack lunches each weekday from 12:00-12:30.

The meals will be picked up and delivered by our bus/transportation staff to the following locations:

– Noti Market Parking Lot
– DS Mart/Farm Store Parking Lot
– Fern Ridge Child Development Center parking lot, located at 25391 Jeans Rd.
– 5th & Woodland Ave. in Veneta

All you need to do is show up at one of these locations between 12:00 and 12:30, give a last name, and you will receive both a breakfast and lunch sack lunch for any child 0-18. A REMINDER THAT ALL MEALS ARE FREE.

Announcement Regarding “2020-21” School Year

The first day of school for the Fern Ridge School District will be Tuesday, September 15th. A variety of learning formats will be in place as students begin the “2020-21” school year. Learning formats that are available are dependent on state and county COVID-19 metrics.

Grades K-3 will begin the “20-21” school year with in-person instruction. Students will be an A/B day schedule with students attending two days a week. Students will receive instruction in the building either Tuesday/Thursday or Wednesday/Friday.

Grades 4 – 12 will begin the school year in Comprehensive Distance Learning (CDL). In this format Fern Ridge School District Students will be taught online. Instruction will be provided by FRSD teachers.

For families in all grades K – 12 the FRSD OPTIONS Program is available. This program will be fully online with some teacher support.

Some students will have the opportunity for limited in-person instruction based on educational, relational, curricular, instructional, and/or assessment need. FRSD special education teachers and case managers will be reviewing IEP’s and spring data to make this determination. Case managers will be contacting parents/guardians to discuss how your child’s IEP will be implemented. Limited in-person instruction will begin September 22 for those that qualify.

Other Special Education Information:
• The special education referral process will resume at the school building level.
• Last spring’s school closure impacted all students, several weeks of high quality instruction may be necessary before a team can assess a student with validity.
• Under limited in-person instruction we are now able to conduct on site assessments
• Students who have pending referrals will be reviewed to make sure the team has the appropriate data to move forward.
• All timelines are in effect, including initial assessment, annual review, and three-year eligibility assessment/review.
• Students who have difficulty wearing a mask will not be denied access to curriculum. For some an accommodation may be necessary, for others staff will work on skill acquisition.
• Students with special circumstances who cannot attend school in-person will have individual meetings with their IEP teams to determine the appropriate services and service delivery.

Fern Ridge School District
April 3, 2020
Special Education Services Guidance During COVID-19 Closure

Students with a Disability Receiving Individualized Education Program (IEP Services)
Districts will begin providing the provisions of FAPE (Free and Appropriate Public Education) on April 13. Case managers will be contacting families to discuss the districts extended School Closure Guidance Plan and what supports are needed for students eligible for special education services. Communication between case managers and parents/families/caregivers will be very important to the success a student experiences.

Providing SDI (Specially Designed Instruction)
Providing SDI means adapting, as appropriate to the needs of each student, the content, methodology or delivery of instruction. At this time of Extended School Closure the general curriculum becomes the district’s Extended school Closure Guidance Plan.

Must the District conduct an IEP for each student?
No, case managers will not need to hold an IEP team meeting for every student. For some students, school placement could be considered, but the general education move to Distance Learning Plans does not require a change in placement for a student with an IEP. If we are able to implement the IEP as written with minor changes (such as changes to the minutes and how services are being delivered), case managers will document with a Prior Written Notice (PWN)

The extended School Closure and Conducting IEP’s
IEP’s being held during the closure will be done so remotely. This could be via the phone or through video conferencing.

How will Case Managers Obtain Signatures?
In many cases case managers will email parents to obtain a signature. An email may look like the following:
Please let this email serve as my signature for attendance/participation/consent to initial provision of services. I verify that I _______ parent/guardian of _______ attended/participated by ___________ (phone or virtual meeting) in the IEP/Eligibility meeting for my student on _____ (date).

IEP’s and Dates of Services
At this point we do not know when a return to school will occur. IEP’s must include the projected date for the beginning of special education and related services. Projected means proposed so there is flexibility. A projected start date could be written, “This service is projected to start on the first day school resumes and children are in attendance at school for instructional purposes.”

March 30, 2020

Dear FRSD Families:

As I’m sure you’re already aware, on March 17 Governor Kate Brown ordered the closure of all public schools in the state of Oregon in an attempt to slow the spread of COVID-19. As of now the date for schools to re-open is April 28. Obviously the next few weeks will determine whether or not schools will be open, or if the closure date will be extended.

I understand that these are unprecedented and for many, difficult times. This could especially be causing anxiety for our students and families that have children on IEP’s and 504’s. On Monday and Tuesday teachers will be calling parents to discuss the FRSD plan for providing supplemental education during the next four weeks. During this time teachers will be posting online resources and be sending home packets for your child to work on if this is something you would like. Special education teachers will be working to individualize resources for students that require a different level of material then what is being provided by general education teachers. Teachers will also be working to schedule upcoming IEP’s and re-schedule IEP’s that were not held due to the school closure. At this time all meetings will need to be held virtually or as a phone conference call.

As these times are unprecedented, mandates and requirements imposed by COVID-19 are prone to change and be updated frequently. As we receive clarification regarding educational services in Oregon we will do our best to keep you informed of these and how they will impact our FRSD students.

Brian Brands
Fern Ridge School District
Director of Special Education

The Oregon Senate passed legislation that mandated that effective July 1, 2018, all Kindergarten and First Grade students must be screened for Dyslexia.  Additionally, if a student enrolls in Kindergarten or First Grade in Oregon mid-year, screening must occur no later than 30 school days following enrollment.

The screening tool that Fern Ridge School District is using is EasyCBM.  We have been using EasyCBM for a number of years to assist us with data gathering for students.  We have two staff members that have been trained in identifying dyslexia and they are working diligently to assure we are in compliance with this senate bill.

For further information, here is a PDF of the OAR’s that guide this process:  Amended OARS Universal Screening Dyslexia 06.21.18

Districts must take responsibility for ensuring that the Special Education Report Cards reach the parents of each student with an IEP enrolled in Oregon public schools.  Here is a link to the most recent Special Education Report Card:

The Oregon Department of Education recently release “Brain Building Oregon.”  It is a resource for parents with pre-K students.  I hope you find it useful:  http://www.brainbuildingoregon.com/