Academic rigor is a hallmark of the Spring Grove Area School District, and an achievement focus to help students thrive is the goal of all programs. Students in need of additional support receive assistance and attention. This may come in the form of Study Skills groups, individual action plans, an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) or a 504 Plan. Spring Grove Area School District is committed to helping students with special needs to achieve their potential and succeed in reaching their educational goals.
Spring Grove’s school psychologists provide testing to determine exceptionalities which require special education. They work together with Special Education Supervisors, Dr. Kerri Henry (K-6) and Mr. Ryan Lehman (7-12) and a Child Study Team (CST) or Multi-Tiered System of Support Team (MTSS) to develop strategies that meet the individual student’s learning objectives successfully. The students’ parents/guardians are considered vital members of this team, as well as a regular education teacher.
Even with an IEP in place, the District delivers special services in the regular education setting as much as possible. Students learn the general education curriculum with appropriate modifications, supports, adaptations, and services that are tailored to their needs. Spring Grove Area School District offers the following educational programs:
- Autistic Support, K-12+
- Emotional Support, K-12
- Learning Support, K-12
- Life Skills Support, K-12
- Job/Transition Support, 9-12
Spring Grove’s programs are often sought out by other Districts, who place their students with us.
Itinerant Services such as Speech/Language, Occupational Therapy, and Physical Therapy are provided by the District in partnership with the Lincoln Intermediate Unit 12.
Students with exceptional needs are placed in LIU classes with Spring Grove staff monitoring their IEPs and academic progress.
Further clarification and discussion of our programs are available by contacting the appropriate Special Education Supervisor.
A 504 Plan is a blueprint for how the school will support with an educational or health disability or challenge, who does not qualify for an Individualized Education Plan. The goal is to remove barriers to success and give the student equal access at school. These plans prevent discrimination and are covered under the civil rights law. 504 language includes “accommodations” such as extended time or the ability to leave the classroom for short breaks. 504 plans are renewable annually as needed. School counselors take the lead in evaluating the need for 504 plans and developing a plan that meets the student’s needs. Parents/Guardians and faculty are a vital part of this process as well.
Change in Age of Eligibility for Free and Appropriate Public Education
The Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) communicated an important policy change that will provide continued education services to special education students. This policy change will ensure students can access Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) as they are entitled under federal law.
Effective no later than September 5, 2023, all students entitled to FAPE and all of the rights and procedural safeguards under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and Chapter 14 of Title 22 of the Pennsylvania Code may remain enrolled in public school until they turn 22 years of age. This includes students who turned 21 and exited during or after the 2022-2023 school term.
IDEA requires states to make FAPE available to “all children with disabilities residing in the state between the ages of 3 and 21, inclusive.” In Pennsylvania, every child between the ages of six and 21 years is entitled to attend the public schools in their school district of residence until graduation from high school or the end of the school term in which a student reaches the age of 21 years, whichever occurs first. Based on these legal provisions, the commonwealth previously made FAPE available to students with disabilities until the end of the school term in which they reach their 21st birthday.
Over the past decade, states that have been providing public education through adult education programs to individuals between the ages of 21 and 22 have extended the age of eligibility for special education through age 21 to comply with section 1412(a)(1)(B) of IDEA. In Pennsylvania, adult education programs are made available to individuals between the ages of 21 and 22. See 24 P.S. § 6403. These programs receive public funding and are free to students, are under public direction and supervision, and provide secondary education. Therefore, PDE
has concluded that Pennsylvania’s adult education programs constitute public education for the purposes of section 1412(a)(1)(B) of IDEA, and Pennsylvania is required to make FAPE available to students with disabilities until their 22nd birthday. This change is effective no later than September 5, 2023.
PDE has revised its guidance pertaining to INDIVIDUALS WITH DISABLITIES EDUCATION ACT PART B POLICIES AND PROCEDURES UNDER 34 CFR §§ 300.101—300.176 as follows: IDEA PartB
The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania ensures that all children with disabilities ages 3 years through 21 years residing in Pennsylvania have the right to a FAPE, including children with disabilities who have been suspended or expelled from school. The commonwealth shall make FAPE available to a child with a disability eligible under IDEA until the student turns 22. Notwithstanding any other provision of law to the contrary, a child eligible under IDEA who attains the age of twenty-one (21) years may remain enrolled in their resident district free of charge until their 22nd birthday.
Frequently Asked Questions
Questions or Request for Assistance
Questions or requests for assistance should contact PDE at RA-PDESPECIALED@pa.gov.