Our model at Grow Academy Shafter is unique for every student. Our full inclusion model allows mildly to severely disabled students to participate fully with their general education peers while providing a continuum of services. At Grow we implement Universal Design for Learning (UDL) principles within all learning environments to help meet the needs of all students. Co-teaching in all humanities classes is an added layer of support here for students attending Grow Academy Shafter.
Grow Academy Shafter provides instructional and related services for students who have disabilities, as defined by the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA.) The full inclusion program offered at Grow Academy Shafter allows students access to all general education curriculum and activities with support and services as needed on an individual basis. A child qualifies for special education services based on two criteria: (1) need, and (2) eligibility.
A child's "need" is determined by the degree to which the child's educational performance is below that of his/her grade-level peers. Eligibility is determined by whether or not, via an evaluation conducted by the school district, it can be determined that a child is handicapped as defined by IDEA. Many students may "need" services, but not all students "qualify" for services under the law. The following is how students qualify for special education services:
1. Before a student is evaluated for eligibility for special education services, the
school and the parent must try to remediate the academic, behavioral, and any
social/emotional problems and those attempts must be documented. This is most often accomplished through the Student Study Team (SST) process. This involves a meeting or series of meetings with the parent for the purpose of designing solutions for the student's areas of need. This may involve classroom/instructional accommodations and parent involvement, etc.
2. Students must qualify for special education services via a psycho-educational evaluation that shows that a student has one of the disabilities specified by federal (I DEA) and state law.
3. "Child Find", is a component of IDEA that requires states to identify, locate and evaluate all students with disabilities, age's birth to 21, who are in need of early intervention or special education services. Our District complies with this requirement via teacher and parent referral. If your student is too young to be enrolled in our Kindergarten Program, you may initiate the "Child Find" (also called Search and Serve) by calling the Kern County Superintendent of Schools at 661-636-4884.