Howard County SECAC Notes
November 18, 2020 General Meeting 7:00pm-9:00pm
Zoom Virtual Meeting
ORDER OF BUSINESS
- Call to Order - 7:04pm
- Welcome and Introductions
- Purpose and Vision
The Howard County Special Education Citizens Advisory Committee (SECAC) advises the school system on the needs of students with disabilities. We collaborate with other community disability advocacy groups to improve special education and the lives of our students in Howard County, MD.
- Guest Randy Patterson, Jr - MSEA Education Support Professional of the Year, para at SFES. 2020 Bright Minds Foundation grant recipient for his Boys on a New Direction.
- Phi Beta Sigma
- Boys on a New Direction program - Safe environment for young male students to develop social skills, value education and experience diversity.
- Mascot at SFES, Bobby the Bobcat.
- Use his voice to change education and advocate.
- Board member of HCEA.
- Wrightslaw books. “Special Education Law” and “From Emotions to Advocacy” are available for parents. Choose 1 book and email us to reserve your copy.
- As always, keep an eye on our website as we update it when we receive new information! View News and Advocacy https://howardcountysecac.com/news-and-advocacy
- Wrightslaw Website https://www.wrightslaw.com/info/covid.data.progress.htm
- SECAC Board Updates
- Zoom registration will be counted as meeting attendance.
- Policy Committees
- 6010 Changes to Attendance Area - Stephanie M.
- Added 504 and IEP exceptions into policy.
- Basically started from scratch.
- Implementation changed to adjust timeline, add more community input, allow community to be able to compare plans easier.
- Board action in May.
- 5200 Transportation - Dianne H.
- Last updated in 2005.
- Updated distance to bus stop may be .5 miles.
- Certain areas of the county are tough to access (cul de sacs, country roads, apartments, etc…).
- Board action March-May
- 5220 is more related to special education students transportation than 5200.
- 9260 Student Search and Seizure - Supreet A.
- Suggestion to add special education note in all policies.
- Got some pushback from policy committee that it’s implied, staff is trained, etc…
- Student name is flagged as someone with an IEP but may not be in enough time to get the correct personnel.
- At minimum a special education teacher should involved with questioning a special education student.
- Maybe we should talk to DSE about this.
- Good timing because Vicky C requested a work session on mental health with community partners. Date coming soon.
- Increasing school psychologists. HCPSS is not at the ratios recommended by the National Association of School Psychologists.
- Will make sure SECAC is a panelist.
- School admins aren’t trained on how to question children. Could do training with HCPD.
- Train folks to work with trauma in students with disabilities. It could look different than neurotypical students. “Manifestation process” is a legal process that should come before suspensions.
- OBRC (Wendy Balda)
- New Director of Equity under Leadership Team to work directly with school administrations.
- SESAC (Wendy Balda)
- Focus is on secondary transition. SECAC members are welcome to give Wendy input on this.
- 1-1 Advocacy
- SECAC firstname.lastname@example.org
- One on one support.
- Look over IEP, 504, IFSP
- HCPSS Family Support and Resource Center: FSRC@hcpss.org
- Can connect families with community organizations as well as help with IEPs and IFSPs.
- The Parents Place of Maryland www.ppmd.org/contact
Board of Education Introductions and Updates
Vicky Cutroneo (BOE liaison)
Asked for reading agenda item on Dec 22nd meeting.
Ready to Read Act, screener, reading program.
Public hearing on 2021-2022 academic calendar Dec 22nd as well.
Virtual through Q3. Will have more small groups and in person supports.
$6 million in CARES Act funding from county. Some will be used for small groups.
Unsure how it will be spent.
Chromebook update at tomorrow’s BOE meeting in COVID update.
Department of Special Education Introductions and Updates
Small groups suspended due to COVID metrics. Will review again on Dec 3rd.
Continuing to plan for Stage 2 and Stage 3 students.
Dec 7th-11th is inclusive schools week. Families invited to speak at BOE public forum during the week.
Maryland Developmental Disabilities Council grant, working with Arc of MD, to have self-advocates speak to schools. Developing a video to incorporate into the SEL lessons for ES. During the month of Dec highlighting disability acceptance.
Questions from group:
Students that were in small groups are returning to virtual schedule they had prior to small groups. Check with case mgr for questions.
Evaluations - Emily Kinsler. Being done at Assessment Center. ~200 assessments have been done. Deciding what things can be done virtually. Watching the metrics closely. Backlog is 400-600. Many students require more than one assessment. Doing backlog and certain certains so they don’t fall further behind.
December 16th - Compensatory/recovery services presentation Missy Alexander from Parent's Place of MD.
December 16, January 20, February 17, March 17, April 21, May 19, June 16. Location subject to change, pending school closure.
Adjournment - 8:06pm.