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Be Kind to Yourselves

Be Kind to Yourselves
Posted on 03/25/2020
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As we begin to plan for longer-term school closings, focus on your health and safety and that of your families. We will not be able to support our community if we are not taking steps to ensure our own health and safety.

1. Specialized Services Staff has worked to develop individualized schedules for the children to provide structure to the day. This is essential for all students and critical for children with disabilities. This follows the general education master schedules with modifications for specialized instructional services. We will be planning with our paras to provide additional assistance in Phase 2.

2. Parents should be flexible with the schedule based upon their child's responses. Parents and staff should not develop additional stresses when flexibility may be required.

3. Parents should stay connected to their child's teacher and service providers. Our staff is available to assist in the implementation of programs. We have a stellar staff of special education professionals who will assist families throughout the period of school closures. Parents may contact the special education supervisor, Stacey Heiligenthaler (heiligenthalers@norwalkps.org), Violet Reyes, bilingual Ombudsperson (reyesv@norwalkps.org) or Yvette Goorevitch ( goorevitchy@norwalkps.org) if they need supports after speaking to the case manager or related service providers. Social workers and school counselors have been providing on-going support to students and their families as needed.

4. We will focus our energies and special education resources on the essential high priority areas of communication, planning and providing opportunities for meaningful service delivery to the greatest extent possible.

5. On-line, Zoom and Facebook Live parent groups are being planned to begin next week. Let us know requested topics and we will plan accordingly.

6. Guidance will be forthcoming on issues related to compliance and waivers for requirements. Criteria to determine make up services upon re-opening of school will be forthcoming from Federal and State Departments. We have been advised that we do not need to schedule PPTs to change programs to distance learning plans at this time. For this day, we will focus our energies on what we can do, using our resources for communication, connection, planning and provision of continued special educational opportunities and service delivery to our students to the greatest extent possible.