Special Education

Testing Accommodations: Guidance for Students & Families DOE June 2016


DOE Assistive Technology


Advocates for Children Start of School Q&A (Fall 2016)


Advocates for Children High School Graduation Options  


DOE Assistive Technology Reference Guide for Students with Disabilities

Dispute Resolutions Alternatives by Sinergia (July 2016)


Include NYC Early Intervention Tip Sheet ( June 2016) 

DOE: ASD Programs in Community Schools (Oct 2015)

Advocates for Children Kindergarten Admissions Guide (2015)

Advocates for Children Questions & Answers for Families of Students with Disabilities (Sept 2015)
AFC has updated our start-of-school fact sheet for families of students with disabilities, which covers concerns that typically come up at this time of year, such as:
What to do if a your child's school says they don't have the type of program called for on the Individualized Education Program (IEP);
What to do if your child's related services aren't in place; and
How to arrange for specialized transportation. 
The fact sheet is available in English and Spanish.  
Advocates for Children Fact Sheet About Literacy (Oct 2015) 

Sinergia Fact Sheet on Developing Annual Goals (Oct 2015)

AFC's Guide to Gifted & Talented Programs For Students with Disabilities (March 2015)

IDA:Dyslexia Handbook-What Every Family Should Know

NYC Public Schools with the ASD NEST Program


Related Services Information (Including Providers)

Resource Guide for Students with Hearing Impairments 

NYC Resource Guide for Families of Children with Disabilities

NYSED A Parent's Guide to Response to Intervention (June 2014)

US DOE Parent & Educator Guide to Section 504 (Dec 2016)


New State Guidance on  Health and Safety Precautions for Students with Disabilities with Elopement Behaviors (April 2014)
http://www.p12.nysed.gov/ specialed/publications/ elopement-rev414.htm 

Related Services Information:

Prior Written Notice: what it is and when it's used:

DOE Website Resources: Understanding Special Ed in NYC 

Autism Speaks Resource Guide

AutismNOW Transition Planning

UFT Parent Fact Sheet on Special Ed Reform May 2012

Advocates for Children  
Start of School Q&A For Families of Students with Disabilities 2014
Advocates for Children Kindergarten Admissions:A Guide for Families of Children Born in 2011

Advocates for Children:Turning 5 Guide Nov 2015

Advocates for Children:Kindergarten Placement for Students with IEPs 

Guide for Online Colleges & Disabilities:

Disability Etiquette 101 by Parenting Special Needs Magazine

New York Lawyers for the Public Interest (NYLPI)
Resources for parents of children with special needs: If you need assistance with a special education matter, you can call the New York Lawyers for the Public Interest (NYLPI) Mondays and Fridays from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. or Wednesdays from 1:30 to 5:30 p.m. at (212) 244-4664. For more information, visit the NYLPI website 
Consent for Medicaid Reimbursement Form (Oct 2015)
Parents of students with individualized education plans (IEPs) are asked to fill out the request for Consent for Medicaid Reimbursement form. The Medicaid Consent Form and the Anual Notification Letter can be printed out in all nine The New York City Department of Education (NYC DOE) languages for parents in your school to fill out and return to you. 

What is the purpose of the Medicaid consent form?
The NYC DOE can receive additional funding for some of the services that are provided to students with IEPs. In order for our schools to receive this funding, the NYC DOE needs a consent form signed by student’s parent or guardian that allows the NYC DOE to submit a reimbursement claim to Medicaid.Who signs the consent form?
The NYC DOE asks all parents and guardians of students with IEPs to sign the form, regardless of their Medicaid eligibility. The NYC DOE must provide students with the services on their IEP regardless if there is a signed consent form. Schools and related service providers are never made aware of a family’s Medicaid eligibility. 

How often does the form need to be signed?
A consent form only needs to be signed and returned once to the NYC DOE. The form will be valid for the current year and future school years.

How does the form get distributed and collected?
In prior school years the consent form was printed by schools and sent home with students for parents or guardians to sign and return to the school. The NYC DOE has expanded this practice and asks staff to print and collect the forms when a parent or guardian is on site. For example, if a student’s parent is at a school for an IEP meeting, we ask that a member of the IEP review team print the form from ATS, ask the parent to sign the form, and scan the signed form back into ATS.

Why does the form need to be printed from ATS?
When a student’s form is printed from ATS it prints with a bar code that allows for simple electronic storage of both the form and the parent’s response.

What if I do not have access to ATS?
If you do not have access to ATS, please work with your school secretary- they can access the MEDL screen in ATS to print out a customized student form. The school secretary can also access the RSEM screen to determine the current consent status of a student and if a form needs to be printed, signed, and collected.

Who should print the form and ask the parent/guardian to sign?
All staff that interact with the parents/guardians of students with IEPs are asked to assist in this process. This includes:

Parent Coordinators 
IEP Review Team Members
Principals and Assistant Principals  
Related Service Providers Collecting consent forms
As in past practice, the distribution and collection of the forms remains an item on the principals’ compliance checklist. School principals are responsible for having the forms collected and returned to the school, with a compliance checklist deadline of mid-December.

Questions Families Ask About the Medicaid Consent Form Will signing the form impact my family’s Medicaid benefits? Are there any costs to me or my family?
Signing the form will not impact a family’s Medicaid benefits. There is no cost to you or your family. There are no expenses, premiums, costs or co-payments. If your family receives Medicaid benefits, your coverage will not be canceled, the lifetime coverage in place will not decrease and services that your family receives will not be affected in any way by the accessing of Medicaid benefits. You will not risk the loss of eligibility for home and community based waivers, if any, that are based on your total health-related expenditures.

Will not signing this form impact my child’s services that are on the IEP?
The consent form has no impact on service provision to your child. The NYC DOE is obligated to provide the services on the IEP regardless of whether or not there is a signed Medicaid consent form. You will not be asked to sign up for or enroll in Medicaid for your child to receive the services on his/her IEP.

Can I change my mind after I have signed a consent form?
Yes. You can change your mind at any point. Contact your child’s school and ask that they print a new Medicaid consent form for your child. You can fill that new form out and return it to your child’s school.

My family is not Medicaid eligible- do I need to complete the form?
The NYC DOE asks all families of students with IEPs to complete this form, regardless of their Medicaid eligibility status. The form does not ask a family to identify their Medicaid eligibility status.

Change in NYS Regulations for Additional Parent Member at IEP Meetings (Nov 2013)  
Due to a change in New York State regulations, your school is no longer required to recruit an additional parent member for full-committee IEP meetings for school-age students, unless a student’s parent specifically requests the attendance of an additional parent member in writing at least 72 hours prior to the meeting.  An additional parent member is a member of an IEP Team who is recruited by your school for the purpose of supporting a student’s parent at a full-committee IEP meeting. To view the updated regulation, click here (see section 200.3(a)(1)(viii) on page 33).

ATHelp.org (formerly known as “The CogniTech Cafe”) is pleased to announce that our Free Assistive Technology Service for children and adults—will continue for a 9th year at the JCC in Manhattan thanks to the generous funding of the Omer Foundation. We now also offer Free Assistive Technology Trainings for professionals and groups.
Free Individual Support:
We are committed to providing free technological advice and support to individuals who experience communication, physical, visual, hearing, or learning challenges within classrooms, workplaces, or leisure settings, to thereby foster greater participation for them within their communities. Free Assistive Technology guidance is also provided to families and professionals who are directly supporting the individual in need.
Free Professional Support:
This year we will also be offering Free Assistive Technology Training to any professional or caregiver group, school, or organization that wishes to reserve time on Tuesdays between 3:30 - 7:30 at the JCC with us. Groups are limited to 12 individuals at one time. We can address most any topic in the Assistive Technology field regarding hardware, software, apps, cloud-based solutions, Universal Design for Learning (UDL), or even implementation strategies and problem-solving for individual/group user needs. You can even e-mail or call with requests for particular topics, or for assistance to determine what your training needs are and we will assist for free. 
To reserve a free appointment or arrange a free training please e-mail Mark Surabian at ATHelp@me.com or go to the Contact Us page online at ATHelp.org. We are unfortunately not available for walk-in services at any time. 
 Many thanks for your continued support, which has allowed us to serve over 1700 individuals for free.
Mark Surabian, Assistive Technology Consultant
athelp@me.com   917-586-8000
ATHelp.org's Free AT Services
@ The JCC in Manhattan 334 Amsterdam @ 76th street
(by appointment only)
ATHelp Website: www.ATHelp.org
JCC Website: www.jccmanhattan.org/specialneeds

 SAPDD Services to Asian Parents of the Developmentally Disabled
The Chinese-American Planning Council, Inc (CPC) Brooklyn Branch provides bilingual (Chinese) support services to developmentally disabled individuals and their families.
Individuals who exhibit a developmental disability before their 22nd birthday are eligible for the service.
4101-8 Avenue, Brooklyn 11232
718-492-0409 ext 302