Services are provided to all students including private school students in the four districts who are eligible for special education and gifted services between the ages of 3-21.
The cooperative has a staff of approximately 86 certified staff which includes Special Education Teachers, School Psychologists, Speech/Language Pathologists, Certified Occupational Therapist, Certified Physical Therapist, Vision Consultant, Behavior Disorder Consultant and Assistive Technology Specialist. The Cooperative also employs approximately 100 paraeducators.
The cooperative also:
- Sponsors Helping Hands, a student-run business.
- Partners with High Plains Mental Health to provide special services for students placed at Westside School.
- Provides work study student experiences for special education students.
- Has an Autism Support Team.
- Provides a Transition Program.
- Collaborates with Head Start and other community based preschools to provide necessary Early Childhood services to identified children age 3-5.
- Provides a professional library for staff and parents that can be checked out.
Visit the Kansas State Department of Education Student Support Services website http://www.ksde.org for more information including Federal Guidelines, Parent Rights, contacts and other helpful information.
The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), Public Law 105-17, was reauthorized by Congress and signed into law by President Clinton on June 6, 1997. This legislation basically amended the 1990 IDEA that was the cornerstone of federally mandated services for disabled students. Special education categorical areas include autism, deaf-blindness, deafness, hearing impairment, mental retardation, multiple disabilities, orthopedic impairment, other health impairment, emotional disturbance, specific learning disability, speech or language impairment, traumatic brain injury, visual impairment and blindness, early childhood disabilities and gifted.
The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act provides for a free, appropriate public education for all disabled students. The foundation of IDEA is its requirement that schools develop an Individualized Education Program (IEP) for each disabled student. The IEP requirement combines the evaluation of disabled students with the achievement of specific goals. These goals are typically set by the student’s parents, school administrators and regular and special education teachers working together.
The Hays West Central Kansas Special Education Cooperative will continue to provide special education programs and services to all exceptional children during the 2007-2008 school year. USD 489 will remain as the sponsoring district with USD 388, Ellis; USD 395, LaCrosse; and USD 432, Victoria serving as cooperating districts.
The purpose of the Hays West Central Kansas Special Education Cooperative is to identify all students in the four cooperating districts who are eligible for and need special education services. Special programs and services are then provided to assist these students in reaching their potential. All these services must meet the requirements and specifications stated in federal and state statues and further clarified in the Kansas Special Education Process Handbook. Additionally, the Hays West Central Kansas Special Education Cooperative must make assurances in the provision of these services. These assurances include confidentiality of student records, provision of students’ and parents’ due process rights, nondiscriminatory and multi-disciplinary evaluations and provision of services in the least restrictive environment or most normal setting to the maximum extent appropriate.
If anyone believes that a child may qualify for and need any of these services, please contact any building administrator in any of the four districts or Mark Hauptman, Assistant Superintendent for Special Services, Hays West Central Kansas Special Education Cooperative, 323 West 12th Street, Hays, KS 67601 (785-623-2400) firstname.lastname@example.org.