Special Education

Consistent with the requirement that each local educational agency and public school academy in Michigan is required to publicly post the process used to determine the existence of a Specific Learning Disability (SLD), the Plainwell Community Schools reports the following:

For grades Kindergarten through 5th grade, the Plainwell Public Schools has implemented a Response to Intervention process for literacy and math intervention.
For determination of a specific learning disability, a Pattern of Strengths and Weaknesses process is used for students in 6th grade through 12th grade for the skill area of Basic Reading and Math Calculation. This process is also used across all other areas of a specific learning disability (Kindergarten-12th grade) which includes: Oral Expression, Listening Comprehension, Written Expression, and Math Problem Solving.

It is noted that regardless of the process used, the Plainwell Community Schools must follow all of the regulatory requirements in the IDEA, the MARSE, and Michigan laws, policies and procedures for special education.

The Vision

Our Special Education staff will strive to help each student reach their learning potential through appropriate referral, assessment, placement, and instruction in the least restrictive environment.

Premises We Hold

The general education curriculum is the standard of achievement for all students.  All students can learn when the delivery of instruction matches their learning style. Special education students “belong” to both special education and general education staff. Helping students to meet their goals and objectives is a shared responsibility among staff, family and student. Special education teachers are available as an educational resource for staff and students in their assigned buildings. Special education should support students with challenges in their vocational and community pursuits as a preparation for adult life. Early intervention for students with learning needs will increase their chance for success in school.

Assistance to All Students

When a concern arises for any student in Plainwell Community Schools, each building has a team led by a school counselor. This Student Assistance Team (SAT) discusses the student and solutions to their needs. Interventions can be planned over time to help the student overcome his/her learning or emotional need. Follow-up meetings and assessment increase the student’s chance for success.
Over time, in the SAT process, if a student still is experiencing substantial difficulty, a Special Education or Section 504 evaluation process may be initiated. In such an evaluation, a district evaluation team, which may include teachers, a psychologist, a social worker, a speech teacher or other ancillary staff with parent input, plans an appropriate evaluation. As a result, a student may be eligible for a Special Education IEP or 504 Plan.

The Programs

Special education students in Plainwell Community Schools are eligible for services based on the extensive evaluation and development of an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) by their IEP Team, which includes the student and his/her parent(s). Based on recommendations of the IEP Team, the student receives special education in a classroom setting or a therapy setting such as speech, occupational therapy, physical therapy, school social work, among others.
The student receives a comprehensive education in a setting that promotes learning, based on his/her individual needs.The Plainwell Community Schools District has made a commitment to work cooperatively with parents, students, the community and county school programs. This collaboration ensures that our special education students reach their learning potential during their school careers.