Office of the Child Study Team

E-News for 4/10/2018

March is National Autism Awareness Month
Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a complex developmental disability; signs typically appear during early childhood and affect a person’s ability to communicate and interact with others. ASD is defined by a certain set of behaviors and is a “spectrum condition” that affects individuals differently and to varying degrees. There is no known single cause of autism, but increased awareness and early diagnosis/intervention and access to appropriate services/supports lead to significantly improved outcomes. For more information about Autism Awareness Month, please visit the Autism Society website.

Special Education Data Report 2017
At the February 22 BOE meeting, Dr. Gino Priolo, Director of Special Education, presented snapshots of data and trends in special education. Some highlights included:
Language Arts PARCC testing: 9 point increase since 2014 of students with special needs meeting or exceeding proficiency
Math PARCC testing: 10 point increase since 2014 of students with special needs meeting or exceeding proficiency
Haddonfield students with special needs outperform their peers in the same District Factor Group (district’s similar in socioeconomic status with Haddonfield) in both Language Arts and Mathematics.

Click here for the BOE PowerPoint Presentation.

Parent Ambassador Program – still time to get involved!
The overall goal of the Parent Ambassador Program is to create a parent to parent network of support to help families of students with special needs during school transitions (e.g. elementary to middle and middle to high school).

An information session has been scheduled on Wednesday, April 25 from 10-11 at Central/Middle School. If you are interested in attending, please complete this form – attending the information session in no way obliges you to formally participate in the program.

NJDOE Parent Special Education Survey Data Results
In the spring of 2017, the NJDOE sent out parent survey data to parents of students with special needs in Haddonfield and in other districts (different districts are selected annually). Here are some of the areas where Haddonfield excelled:

Discussion of accommodations and modifications at IEP Meeting
Teacher availability
Parents are considered an equal partner with teachers and other professionals
Written information I receive is written in an understandable way
Teachers treat parents as team members
Parents feel included in the decision-making process
Variety of ways for parents to communicate with teachers

Here are some of the areas for growth:
Offering special assistance (child-care) to participate in IEP meeting
Provide parents information about outside organizations that offer supports
Training for parents regarding special education issues

For more detailed information, please view the presentation from March’s SEAC meeting.

Follow Haddonfield’s CST on Twitter!
Follow or visit at https://twitter.com/hsdcst . This will help keep you up to date on the latest school district special education news and also news about special education programs and services from around the area. Here are some of the tweets you are missing:

Special Education Advisory Committee (SEAC)
The SEAC meeting scheduled for April 19 has been cancelled. The next meeting is May 17. For more information about Haddonfield’s SEAC, please visit here.


Annual Review Season is Here!
As a reminder, all invitations for Annual Review meetings are sent via e-mail at least 30 days prior to the meeting. Please make every effort to attend your scheduled time. Availability of faculty and meeting space can make rescheduling very challenging, though we know emergencies may arise that will require a rescheduled date. In these events, please provide us with ample notice. Most all of the e-mail invites will come from Francine Silverman, [email protected].

Haddonfield’s CST is Here to Help!
If you have any questions regarding your child’s IEP or special education programming, please be sure to contact your Case Manager immediately. If you are unsure of your student’s Case Manager, simply check the first page of the IEP, which lists his/her name in the Student/Guardian section of the document.

Haddonfield’s Child Study Team office is located in Haddonfield Memorial High School. However, our Case Managers are often out in the schools; therefore, e-mail is the most efficient means of communication and access. E-mail addresses are as follows:

Ms. Anna Anthony: [email protected]
Ms. Jan Zubak: [email protected]
Ms. Terry Hildebrandt: [email protected]
Ms. AnnMarie Pousatis: [email protected]
Ms. Michele Scott: [email protected]
Dr. Jerry Hellman: [email protected]

If you are ever having difficulty contacting any member of the CST, you can always reach out to Child Study Team Secretaries Karen Nipps( [email protected]) or Francine Silverman ([email protected]), or you may contact the office by phone at 856-429-3960, ext. 112.

Please note that the majority of correspondences from the Child Study Team will come via email; all meetings are scheduling by Secretary Francine Silverman at [email protected].

Haddonfield’s Director of Special Education, Dr. Gino Priolo, can best be reached by e-mail at [email protected].

All contact information for teachers of special education and related service personnel can be found on the website of your school.

NJ’s Parental Rights in Special Education
This helpful document can be accessed here.