Is Your Child Struggling?
What can you do if your child is struggling?
At Monument Academy we are committed to meeting the needs of all students whether at, above or below grade level. It is our intention to help ensure that each child reaches their full potential. Knowing students progress at different rates this information is provided as a resource to you. We are truly waiting to serve you. Here are some steps to take to help us better understand the needs of your child:
- Your first step is to ask for a meeting with the teacher. Discuss the areas of concern and seek solutions. The sooner you bring your concerns, the better for your child.
- If you see continued struggle from your child, you may request an appointment with the principal and the teacher.
As a result of progress monitoring, students who are struggling with phonemic awareness, phonics, and fluency are identified. Reading intervention is developed to meet individual child’s needs based on assessment results.
In the elementary school, we have special reading interventionists on staff. Their specific responsibilities are to assist those students who are struggling in reading. They use data to inform their instruction to provide Tier 3 individualized instruction which involves READ Act approved curriculum. We recognize that children learn differently and learn at different paces; therefore, we do our best to provide differentiated instruction for those students.
Monument Academy uses Multi-Tiered System of Supports (MTSS) to take a proactive approach in identifying students with academic and behavioral needs. MTSS is an instructional framework that includes universal screening of all students, multiple tiers of instruction and support services, and a body of evidence (BOE) to inform decisions at each tier of instruction. Universal screening is used on all students early in the school year. The goal in using early assessments and intervention for these students is to help identify which students need support to catch up to their peers.
Partnering with your child’s teacher is imperative to help support your child. If it is determined to have more team members involved, the classroom teacher will submit an MTSS referral form.
How do you start this process?
Discuss concerns with the classroom teacher. As always, you are free to contact the principal who can refer you to the aforementioned contacts.
What is Section 504?
Section 504 is a part of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 that prohibits discrimination based upon disability. Section 504 is an anti-discrimination, civil rights statute that requires the needs of students with disabilities to be met as adequately as the needs of the non-disabled.
Section 504 states that: “No otherwise qualified individual with a disability in the United States, as defined in section 706(8) of this title, shall, solely by reason of her or his disability, be excluded from the participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance…” [29 U.S.C. §794(a), 34 C.F.R. §104.4(a)].
Who is covered under Section 504?
To be covered under Section 504, a student must be “qualified ” (which roughly equates to being between 3 and 22 years of age, depending on the program, as well as state and federal law, and must have a disability) [34 C.F.R. §104.3(k)(2)].
Who is an “individual with a disability”?
As defined by federal law: “An individual with a disability means any person who: (i) has a mental or physical impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activity; (ii) has a record of such an impairment; or (iii) is regarded as having such an impairment” [34 C.F.R. §104.3(j)(1)].
What is “impairment” as used under the Section 504 definition?
Impairment as used in Section 504 may include any disability, long-term illness, or various disorders that “substantially” reduces or lessens a student’s ability to access learning in the educational setting because of learning-, behavior- or health-related condition. [“It should be emphasized that a physical or mental impairment does not constitute a disability for purposes of Section 504 unless its severity is such that it results in a substantial limitation of one or more major life activities” (Appendix A to Part 104, #3)].
Many students have conditions or disorders that are not readily apparent to others. They may include conditions such as specific learning disabilities, diabetes, epilepsy and allergies. Hidden disabilities such as low vision, poor hearing, heart disease or chronic illness may not be obvious, but if they substantially limit that child’s ability to receive an appropriate education as defined by Section 504, they may be considered to have “impairment” under Section 504 standards. As a result, these students, regardless of their intelligence, will be unable to fully demonstrate their ability or attain educational benefits equal to that of non-disabled students (The Civil Rights of Students with Hidden Disabilities under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973—Pamphlet). The definition does not set forth a list of specific diseases, conditions or disorders that constitute impairments because of the difficulty of ensuring the comprehensiveness of any such list. While the definition of a disabled person also includes specific limitations on what persons are classified as disabled under the regulations, it also specifies that only physical and mental impairments are included, thus “environmental, cultural and economic disadvantage are not in them covered” (Appendix A to Part 104, #3).
How Do You Start this Process?
Discuss concerns with the classroom teacher. This initial meeting is to discuss your specific concerns and provide direction on securing a meeting for eligibility. To know your rights, click: Student and Parents Rights Under Section 504.
“Gifted and talented children” mean those persons between the ages of five and twenty-one whose abilities, talents, and potential for accomplishment are so exceptional or developmentally advanced that they require special provisions to meet their educational programming needs. Children under five who are gifted may also be provided with early childhood special educational services. Gifted students include gifted students with disabilities (i.e. twice exceptional) and students with exceptional abilities or potential from all socio-economic and ethnic, cultural populations. Gifted students are capable of high performance, exceptional production, or exceptional learning behavior by virtue of any or a combination of these areas of giftedness:
- General or specific intellectual ability
- Specific academic aptitude
- Creative or productive thinking
- Leadership abilities
- Visual arts, performing arts, musical or psychomotor abilities
If you are seeking information on this program, please follow the link Gifted and Talented Program or contact Erin HastedEmail
Our ESS team includes:
- ESS Teachers
- Occupational Therapist
- Certified Occupational Therapist Assistant
- Social Worker
- Speech Language Pathologist
- Paraprofessional Specialists
You may always schedule an appointment with the principal to gain any additional information needed. To know your rights, click: Parent and Child Rights in Special Education – Procedural Safeguards