Special Education in NYC
All students with disabilities who require special education services have Individualized Education Programs (IEPs). The IEP contains information about your child's interests, strengths, needs, goals, and educational program. It is a legal document that describes how the DOE will provide your child:
A Free and Appropriate Public Education (FAPE)
In the Least Restrictive Environment (LRE).
Continuum of Services
There is an array of services available to support your child in his or her least restrictive environment. There must be a clear justification anytime a student is removed from the general education setting.
Here is a list of the service recommendations that the Individualized Education Program (IEP) team may consider for your child:
Your child will be educated in the same classroom as non-disabled peers.
General Education with Related Services
Your child will be educated in the same classroom as non-disabled peers. He or she will receive Related Services, such as physical therapy or counseling, in the classroom or in a separate location:
General Education with Special Education Teacher Support Services
Your child will be educated in the same classroom as non-disabled peers. He or she will receive direct or indirect Special Education Teacher Support Services (SETSS) from a special education teacher. Your child's IEP may recommend:
A combination of the two
A special education teacher provides specially designed instruction part-time to a group of up to eight children. This may be in the general education classroom or somewhere else in the school.
A special education teacher works with the general education classroom teacher to:
Adjust the learning environment
Modify instruction to meet students’ needs
Integrated Co-Teaching Services (full or part-time)
Classrooms with Integrated Co-Teaching (ICT) services include students with IEPs and students without IEPs. No more than 12 (or 40 percent) of the students in the class can have IEPs.
There are two teachers—a general education teacher and a special education teacher. The teachers work together to adapt materials and modify instruction to make sure the entire class can participate.
Special Class Services (full or part-time)
Special Class (SC) services are provided in a self-contained classroom. All of the children in the class have IEPs with needs that cannot be met in a general education classroom. They are taught by special education teachers who provide specialized instruction.
In elementary, special classes have up to 12 students. The students in the class are within a three-year age range and have similar educational needs.
You can visit the DOE's Special Education in NYC website to find out more information.