MSDE Technical Assistance Bulletin
On March 12, 2020, the State Superintendent of Schools closed Maryland schools for in-person student instruction and extracurricular activities in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Subsequent orders extended the physical closure through the end of the 2019-2020 school year. As Maryland begins recovery efforts for the re-opening of school buildings, the Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE) released a draft of the Maryland Together: Maryland’s Recovery Plan for Education (Recovery Plan) to help guide local school systems and public agencies (LSSs/PAs) in their planning. The MSDE Recovery Plan, aligned with the Governor’s Maryland Strong: Roadmap to Recovery, continues to be a fluid document, shaped by information as it becomes available and through ongoing stakeholder input and feedback. The MSDE Division of Early Intervention and Special Education Services (DEI/SES) recognizes that serving students with disabilities requires additional considerations to comply with the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA): including ensuring continued access to the general education curriculum,and an IEP designed/implemented to allow the student to make progress on their Individualized Education Program (IEP) goals through changing service delivery models as school re-open.
This bulletin provides decision-making guidance to support LSSs/PAs in addressing individual student needs arising from the transition(s) to different alternative service delivery models (e.g., virtual and/or distance learning, blended, or face-to-face instruction);determining compensatory education/recovery services, as appropriate, due to the COVID-19 pandemic;and documenting those decisions in local recovery efforts.