You are receiving this letter because your child is currently receiving Special Education and Related Services via an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) in the Warren Hills Regional School District. We are reaching out to share with you that there has been a modification of N.J.A.C. 6A:14 for Special Education, which was adopted by the State Board of Education and the Department of Education on April 1, 2020. This modification states: “During an extended public health-related school closure, Related Services to students with disabilities shall be provided through electronic communications, virtual, remote, or other online platforms, as appropriate and as required by the student’s IEP to the greatest extent possible”.
While the delivery of Related Services (Speech/Language, Counseling, Occupational Therapy (OT) and Physical Therapy (PT)) in this manner may not be ideal, it provides the ability for therapists to interact with students face to face via video conferencing. This allows students to continue to work on current goals and objectives and minimize any regression (loss of skills) that may occur during this extended school closure due to COVID-19.
It is important to note that the amount of these services may not be identical to the services your child is currently receiving at school (i.e., if your child is currently seen two times per week, they may receive services less than that, based on the arrangement between you and the therapist). Related Services would match your child’s current IEP services to the maximum extent possible.
The following would be needed to successfully provide services via virtual, remote, or other online platforms:
- Computer/laptop with internet service
- Quiet space to work with minimal distractions
- At the request of the related service provider, parent/caregiver present for the session
Please note: Some students will require direct contact from the parent during the session
For those who are unable to participate in this form of therapy, email or phone conferencing will be arranged.
Services will be provided in the following ways:
- Weekly activities via email to support your child’s IEP goals
- Weekly teletherapy sessions (online at a certain time on a specific day)
- Consult time to discuss how to support your child at home
Your child's service provider(s) will be in touch with you to finalize the schedule for your child’s related services. While parents are not typically participants in related service sessions, please note that the service provider may request you be present for some or all of the sessions to assist your child. The related services sessions will begin after the upcoming Spring Recess and attendance will be taken. Please note that recording of sessions is not permitted.
Thank you in advance for working with us to support your child’s needs. We look forward to working with our students again.
Supervisor of Special Education