Programs for Students with Special Needs

In compliance with state and federal law, notice is hereby given by the Parkland School District that it conducts ongoing identification activities as a part of its school program for the purpose of identifying students who may be in need of special education and related services. If your child is identified by the district as possibly in need of such services, you will be notified of applicable procedures. Individualized services and programs are available for children who are determined to need specially designed instruction due to the following conditions:

Autism; Deaf-blindness; Deafness; Emotional disturbance; Hearing impairment; Mental retardation; Multiple disabilities; Orthopedic impairment; Other health impairment; Specific learning disability; Speech or language impairment; Traumatic brain injury; Visual impairment; Mentally gifted.

If you believe that your school age child may be in need of special education services and related programs, screening and evaluation processes designed to assess the needs of the child and his/her eligibility are available to you at no cost, upon written request. Early intervention services are available for young children (age 3 to school age.) You may request screening and evaluation at any time, whether or not your child is enrolled in the district’s public school program. Requests for evaluation and screening should be made in writing to the Director of Student Services, 1210 Springhouse Road, Allentown, PA 18104.

In compliance with state and federal law, the Parkland School District will provide to each protected handicapped student without discrimination or cost to the student or family, those related aids, services or accommodations which are needed to provide equal opportunity to participate in and obtain the benefits of the school program and extracurricular activities to the maximum extent appropriate to the student’s abilities. In order to qualify as a protected handicapped student, the child must be of school age with a physical or mental disability, which substantially limits or prohibits participation in or access to an aspect of the school program. These services and protections for “protected handicapped students” are distinct from those applicable to all eligible or exceptional students enrolled (or seeking enrollment) in special education programs.

All information gathered about your child is subject to the confidentiality provisions contained in federal and state law. The district has policies and procedures in effect governing the collection, maintenance, destruction and disclosure to third parties of this information. The records of each student with an exceptionality (special education) are reviewed at the end of each school year. Information the district no longer deems necessary to provide appropriate programming is discarded. Parents may claim discarded records by contacting the director of student services (610-351-5555) prior to June 1 each school year. For information about those policies and procedures, about rights of confidentiality and access to educational records, as well as for further information on rights of parents and children, provision of services, evaluation and screening, you may contact in writing the Director of Student Services, 1210 Springhouse Road, Allentown, PA 18104, or any building principal.

 Child Find

The school district engages in numerous public awareness activities to alert residents about procedures for accessing special education programs. Public awareness activities are included in the district activities calendar, the district newsletter, the newspaper (2 times per year), TV, and radio announcements. In addition, flyers and brochures are given to each of the non-public schools within Parkland School District borders. The district also sends a letter to each family in non-public schools, making them aware of their ability to access evaluations for special education.

Accommodations for the Disabled

All ten district schools provide accessibility for the disabled. Parents of a disabled child should contact the director of student services, 610-351-5555, for inquiries regarding appropriate placement of their child. Disabled adults who wish to visit or utilize school facilities should contact the appropriate building principal for information. General questions regarding the accessibility of school facilities for disabled persons should be directed to the office of the assistant superintendent, at 610-351-5505.

Protected Handicapped

In compliance with state and federal law, the Parkland School District will provide to each protected handicapped student, without discrimination or cost to the student or family, those related aids, services or accommodations which are needed to provide equal opportunity to participate in and obtain the benefits of the school program and co- and non-curricular activities to the maximum extent appropriate to the student’s abilities. To qualify as a protected handicapped student, the child must be of school age with a physical or mental disability, which substantially limits or prohibits participation in or access to some aspect of the school program.
These services for “protected handicapped students” are distinct from those applicable to all eligible or exceptional students enrolled (or seeking enrollment) in special education programs.
For further information on the evaluation procedures and provision of services to protected handicapped students, contact the director of student services at 610-351-5555.

Notification of Rights Under the Protection of Pupil Rights Amendment (PPRA)

PPRA affords parents certain rights regarding our conduct of surveys, collection and use of information for marketing purposes, and certain physical exams. These include the rights to:
Consent before students are required to submit to a survey that concerns one or more of the following protected areas (“protected information survey”) if the survey is funded in whole or in part by a program of the U.S. Department of Education (ED):
-Political affiliations or beliefs of the student or student’s parent
-Mental or psychological problems of the student or student’s family
-Sex behavior or attitudes
-Illegal, anti-social, self-incriminating, or demeaning behavior
-Critical appraisals of others with whom respondents have close family relationships
-Legally recognized privileged relationships, such as with lawyers, doctors or ministers
-Religious practices, affiliations or beliefs of the student or parents
-income, other than as required by law to determine program eligibility

Receive notice and an opportunity to opt a student out of:
-Any other protected information survey, regardless of funding
-Any non-emergency, invasive physical exam or screening required as a condition of attendance, administered by the school or its agent, and not necessary to protect the immediate health and safety of a student, except for hearing, vision or scoliosis screenings, or any physical exam or screening permitted or required under State law
-Activities involving collection, disclosure or use of personal information obtained from students for marketing or to sell or otherwise distribute the information to others

Inspect, upon request and before administration or use:
-Protected information surveys or students
-Instruments used to collect personal information from students for any of the above marketing, sales or other distribution purposes
-Instructional material used as part of the educational curriculum
These rights transfer from the parents to a student who is 18 years old or an emancipated minor under State law.
Parkland School district will develop policies, in consultation with parents, regarding these rights, as well as arrangements to protect student privacy in the administration of protected information surveys and the collection, disclosure, or use of personal information for marketing, sales, or other distribution purposes. Parkland School District will directly notify parents of these policies at least annually at the start of each school year and after any substantive changes. Parkland School District will also directly notify, such as through U.S. Mail or email, parents of students who are scheduled to participate in the specific activities or surveys noted below and will provide an opportunity for the parent to opt his or her child out of participation of the specific activity or survey. Parkland School District will make this notification to parents at the beginning of the school year if the District has identified the specific or approximate dates of the activities or surveys at that time. For surveys and activities scheduled after the school year starts, parents will be provided reasonable notification of the planned activities and surveys listed below and be provided an opportunity to opt their child out of such activities and surveys. Following is a list of the specific activities and surveys covered under this requirement:
-Collection, disclosure, or use of personal information for marketing, sales or other distribution.
-Administration of any protected information survey not funded in whole or in part by ED.
-Any non-emergency, invasive physical examination or screening as described above.
Parents who believe their rights have been violated may file a complaint with:
Family Policy Compliance Office
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, D.C. 20202-5901