Special Education

Barbara Gunn, Director of Student Services
46 Federal Street, Brunswick ME 04011

Christine Schmidt, Special Education Consultant

Kathy Furrow, Administrative Assistant

Rebecca McKarns, Special Education Department Head
Brunswick High School – 207-319-1910

Sarah Hillery, Special Education Department Head
Brunswick Junior High School – 207-319-1930

Joyce Foley, Special Education Department Head
Harriet Beecher Stowe School & Coffin School
207-319-1960 & 207-319-1950

The Procedural Safeguards set forth in the Maine Unified Special Education Regulations are the rights that apply when children are in the referral process for special education; or already identified under special education; or whose parents believe should be identified under special education.

Maine Unified Special Education Regulations, Chapter 101, governs the provision of equal educational opportunities for all Maine students with disabilities between the ages of 5 and 20 enrolled in public schools. Each school unit must ensure that students with disabilities are provided a free appropriate public education (F.A.P.E.) in the least restrictive educational environment, per state regulations, as well as the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act of 2004 (IDEA).

The special education process for which school units are responsible has several components. In brief, the process includes a child find process to determine which students may have disabilities that would require referral to an Individualized Education Team (I.E.P. Team). A second phase includes more individualized evaluations of each referred student and a discussion of the evaluation and other data by the I.E.P. team composed of school staff and parents. Other person who have knowledge of the student may be invited to attend the I.E.P. team meeting at which it is determined:
A. Whether the student is a student with a disability in need of special education services; AND
B. What special education and supportive services are appropriate for the student’s education needs.
Once these determinations are made, the I.E.P. team will write an Individualized Education Program (I.E.P.) for the student.

The provision of a free appropriate public education and the placement of the student will be made according to the provisions of the I.E.P. The I.E.P. will be developed and placement will be made in accordance with the principle of the “least restrictive environment” (LRE).

The special education process affords special rights to students with disabilities and their parents through “due process” protections. A parent must be involved in the evaluation, identification, and development of the student’s Individualized Education Program and the placement of the student in a special education placement. If the parent does not agree with the proposed evaluation or refuses evaluation, identification, program or placement, the parent may request mediation, file a complaint or request a due process hearing.

The Brunswick School Department has a duty to locate, evaluate and identify any child residing in the District who qualifies for Special Education Services. Children eligible for special education include those children with disabilities who have autism, deaf-blindness, emotional disturbance, hearing impairment, intellectual disability, multiple disabilities, orthopedic impairment, other health impairment, specific learning disability, speech or language impairment, traumatic brain injury, visual impairment, or developmental delay and who, because of such impairment, need special education services. If you suspect your child has a disability and may need special education services, or if you would like additional information, please contact the Special Education Department Heads in your child’s school building, or call the Director of Student Services (see staff list above).




Comments are closed.