Email from Howard County Public School System
The purpose of this email is to provide you with information about HCPSS’s effort to provide face-to-face support to small numbers of students in the coming weeks. HCPSS recognizes the significant learning challenges present for all students and families during this pandemic. To that end, HCPSS is surveying families and staff to determine which support programs will run in schools or in neighboring school clusters. You are receiving this email because one or more of your children are supported through special education services. Over the past several weeks, HCPSS has been working with community partners and advocacy groups to get additional feedback on developing plans for serving students through face-to-face delivery models. Each and every family whose child receives services is being surveyed, in order to provide the greatest flexibility in programming. It is important to note that, though parents/guardians of every student will be surveyed, health and safety guidelines coupled with staffing capacity may make it impossible to provide face-to-face services during this semester [or “in the near term”] to every student whose family expresses interest. Still, this is extremely important data to gather as we move from a fully virtual model to a hybrid or fully face-to-face model sometime in the future. For more information about the HCPSS Small Group Support Initiative, visit https://www.hcpss.org/2020-2021/small-groups/.
The HCPSS family interest survey is designed to provide a general overview of the small group initiative including a review of health and safety protocols. You will be asked to indicate how your child currently receives services. The first selection in the list “Resource Services” is designated for all students receiving special education services but who are not enrolled in specialized regional programs. Each other selection is a specialized regional program listed by name. The survey is customized to provide specific details based on your program selection. There is also a question that asks you to indicate your child’s transportation needs. Please take a few minutes to complete a separate survey for each child in your family who receives special education services https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSdzZj2PkFZChvXRdntrnvPFZieUYu8e-LQVt_gOK3MaoHTSVg/viewform. The deadline for submission is Wednesday, September 30.
Over the next two weeks, the HCPSS will be reviewing student and staff survey data to determine which programs and locations are viable and/or other steps we can take to provide services. Once the final slate of programs, services and other supports is approved, a general communication will be shared with all families. At that time, if your child’s program is indeed running, you will receive specific details and directions for program start time, transportation, health and safety protocols, and other important details.
We appreciate your attention to this request. Please stay tuned for more information about the status of our implementation efforts.
Mr. Bill Barnes, Chief Academic Officer
Division of Academics
Dr. Terri Savage, Executive Director of Special Education
Division of Academics