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SPECIAL PROGRAMS

  • LP Special Programs

Leadership Team


Billye Trader
Executive Director, 
Special Programs 

Julia Walton
Secretary to the Executive Director 

Jennifer Upshaw
Director,  Special Programs

Jessica Sanchez
PEIMS/SERS Clerk

Special Programs in La Porte ISD

Aiding Students With Learning Difficulties or Who Need Special Education, Section 504 Services

For those students who are having difficulty in the regular classroom, all school districts and open enrollment charter schools must consider tutorial, compensatory, and other academic or behavior support services that are available to all students, including a process based on Response to Intervention (RtI). The implementation of RtI has the potential to have a positive impact on the ability of districts and charter schools to meet the needs of all struggling students.

If your child is experiencing learning difficulties, you may contact your child's teacher, the campus counselor, the campus administrators, or the Special Programs department to learn about the school’s overall general education referral or screening system for support services. This system links students to a variety of support options, including making a referral for a special education evaluation or for a Section 504 evaluation to determine if the student needs specific aids, accommodations, or services.  A parent may request an evaluation for special education or Section 504 services at any time. 

  • ABC Child Find Screenings

    Purpose of the ABC Child Find Screening:
    The purpose of the ABC Child Find screening is to provide a basic skills screening for young children to determine if there are any significant developmental delays and suspicion of a possible disability.  Your child will be screened in the following areas:

    • Hearing
    • Vision
    • Fine / Gross Motor Skills
    • Cognitive / Academic skills
    • Language / Speech

    Who is eligible?

    • Children ages 3-6 who are not currently enrolled in La Porte ISD are eligible to attend this screening. The screening is free.

    Who can refer a child for this screening?

    • Parents can call Jessica Sanchez at 281-604-7028 to schedule an appointment. Reservations are required.

    Who conducts the screening tests?

    • Educational Diagnostician
    • Physical Therapist
    • Occupational Therapist
    • Speech-Language Pathologist
    • Behavior Specialist

    What happens at the screening?

    • Each child goes through several 'stations' where the child is screened for each of the developmental areas listed above. The screening takes approximately an hour and a half

    For more information, contact:
    Jennifer Upshaw, Director of Special Programs
    281-604-7029

  • Inclusion Support

    • Offered in designated core academic areas and consists of a special education teacher and/or paraprofessional consulting with the general education teacher to assist in the implementation of individualized education programs and/or instructional accommodations within the general education classroom and TEKS curriculum.

    Resource

    • Resource is a pullout service deliver model offered in the student’s specific area of education need. Student placed in resource are working on specific education al goals and objectives developed by the ARD/IEP committee based upon the student’s individual needs. Usually student who require this intervention are unable to successfully participate in the general education curriculum at grade level without significant support due to severe learning difficulties. Resource intervention allows these students to progress through the curriculum at their own level with specialized instruction.

    Early Childhood Special Education (ECSE) Services (formerly PPCD)

    • Early Childhood Special Education (ECSE) refers to the services provided by La Porte ISD, not to the place where they are provided.  Eligible children may receive ECSE  services a variety of settings. Some children ages 3 through 5 with qualifying disabilities require intense intervention in a self-contained classroom with a smaller staff/student ration to focus on the areas of communication, academic readiness, self-help, gross and fine motor, and/or social skills. This class often referred to as PPCD provides daily instruction by a special education teacher. Students may participate inclusively in Pre-K or Kindergarten classrooms, depending on what is appropriate for each child.

    FOCUS

    • Focus On Communication and Understanding of Skills (Academic, Behavior and Social). Formerly known as Life Skills – Program which provides services for students with significant disabilities who require a functional curriculum in a primarily self-contained setting. However, it is vital to maximize opportunities for inclusion (specials/electives, lunch, assemblies, etc.).

    SAIL

    • Social, Academic and Interpersonal Learning (formerly SILC) – Program which provides services for students with Autism Spectrum disorders or significant social communication difficulties. These students may fully participate in inclusive settings, or may be self-contained for portions of the school day.

    BSP

    • Behavior Support Program using principles of PASS (Positive Approach to Student Success); students MUST have a Behavior Intervention Plan (which has been implemented with fidelity). These students may fully participate in inclusive settings, or may be self-contained for portions of the school day.
  • The Texas Education Code (TEC) §38.003 defines dyslexia in the following way:

    (1) Dyslexia means a disorder of constitutional origin manifested by a difficulty in learning to read, write, or spell, despite conventional instruction, adequate intelligence, and sociocultural opportunity.

    (2) Related disorders includes disorders similar to or related to dyslexia such as developmental auditory imperception, dysphasia, specific developmental dyslexia, developmental dysgraphia, and developmental spelling disability.  

    The current definition from the International Dyslexia Association states the following:

    Dyslexia is a specific learning disability that is neurological in origin. It is characterized by difficulties with accurate and/or fluent word recognition and by poor spelling and decoding abilities. These difficulties typically result from a deficit in the phonological component of language that is often unexpected in relation to other cognitive abilities and the provision of effective classroom instruction. Secondary consequences may include problems in reading comprehension and reduced reading experience that can impede growth of vocabulary and background knowledge.

    (Adopted by the International Dyslexia Association Board of Directors, Nov. 12, 2002)

    The primary difficulties of a student identified as having dyslexia occur in phonemic awareness and manipulation, single-word decoding, reading fluency, and spelling. Secondary consequences of dyslexia may include difficulties in reading comprehension and/or written expression. These difficulties are unexpected for the student’s age, educational level, or cognitive abilities. Additionally, there is often a family history of similar difficulties.

    The following are the primary reading/spelling characteristics of dyslexia:

    • Difficulty reading real words in isolation
    • Difficulty accurately decoding nonsense words
    • Slow, inaccurate, or labored oral reading (lack of reading fluency)
    • Difficulty with learning to spell

    The reading/spelling characteristics are the result of difficulty with the following:

    • The development of phonological awareness, including segmenting, blending, and manipulating sounds in words
    • Learning the names of letters and their associated sounds
    • Phonological memory (holding information about sounds and words in memory)
    • Rapid naming of familiar objects, colors, or letters of the alphabet

    Secondary consequences of dyslexia may include the following:

    • Variable difficulty with aspects of reading comprehension
    • Variable difficulty with aspects of written composition
    • A limited amount of time spent in reading activities
  • A food allergy is an abnormal response to a food, triggered by the body’s immune system. Symptoms of a food induced allergic reaction may range from mild to severe and may become life-threatening. Reactions vary with each person and each exposure to a food allergen and the severity of an allergic reaction is not predictable. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported an 18 percent increase in food allergies among school-aged children from 1997 to 2007. Current estimates state that between 1 in 13 and 1 in 25 children are now affected with 40 percent reporting a history of severe reaction. There is no cure for food allergies. Strict avoidance of food allergens and early recognition and management of allergic reactions are important measures to prevent serious health consequences.

    With the increasing prevalence of food allergies in the past two decades, care of students with life-threatening allergies has become a major issue for school personnel. School personnel should be ready to effectively manage students with known food allergies and should also be prepared to recognize symptoms of an allergic reaction in both diagnosed and undiagnosed students in order to respond to the student’s emergency needs. Caring for children with diagnosed food allergies at-risk for anaphylaxis in the school setting requires a collaborative partnership with the students, parents, healthcare providers and school staff. Therefore, La Porte ISD has adopted and administers a Food Allergy Management Plan policy for the care of students with diagnosed food allergy at risk for anaphylaxis. (Adapted from Guidelines for the Care of Students with Food Allergies At-Risk for Anaphylaxis to Implement Senate Bill 27, 2012)

  • Texas public schools are responsible for providing equal educational opportunities for each school-age child within their local district.  The LPISD Homebound Program is one means of providing a continuation of educational instruction for pupils who, because of serious illnesses, accidents, or other justifiable conditions, are unable to attend a regular or special education classroom. 

    Homebound Options

    Full-Time Homebound - The student's medical condition is so severe that the student is confined to the home or hospital bedside for a minimum of four consecutive weeks.

    Intermittent Homebound - The student is able to attend school periodically but is expected to be confined at the home or hospital bedside for a minimum of  20 school days throughout the school year.  Intermittent homebound services may also be used as a transition back into  full-time school attendance as appropriate.

    Homebound instruction is designed to help those students unable to attend school due to a medical condition and is a cooperative process between the school, the home, and your child's physician.  If you and your physician feel your son or daughter may need homebound instructional services, please contact your child's school counselor to begin the evaluation process.

    Please keep in mind these important points about the La Porte ISD Homebound Program:

    Services

    1. The student may be served in their home or at the hospital if the hospital is within the boundaries of the La Porte Independent School District.

    2. If the student is confined to a hospital outside of LPISD boundaries, the parent should contact the hospital to inquire what educational services are available.

    3. The student's General Educational Homebound committee or  ARD/IEP committee for students with disabilities will determine what services will be provided. If you believe these services need to be changed,  please contact the homebound teacher assigned to your child or your child's counselor.

    Instruction

    1. In most cases, for students receiving General Education Homebound instruction, all of the classes that the student is enrolled in will be covered in Homebound.  For students receiving special education services, the ARD committee for students with disabilities will determine the scope of instructional services.

    2. Please keep in mind that curriculum for Advanced Placement or other advanced classes and some CTE electives, are difficult to implement through the homebound setting.  In some cases, the student's homebound committee may recommend a change in schedule to better fit the needs of the student during homebound instruction.  Dual credit courses taken outside of LPISD (such as San Jacinto College) will not be covered in homebound instruction.

    Parent Responsibilities Before Instruction Begins

    1. Contact the student's counselor to request Homebound Instruction.
    2. Complete "Parent Request for Homebound Placement" form obtained from the counselor.
    3. Complete "Authorization For Release of Confidential Information"  form obtained from the counselor.

    4. Have physician complete "Homebound Needs Assessment, Physician’s Referral to Homebound" form.

    5. Once the above forms have been successfully completed and returned to the counselor, a Homebound Intake meeting or ARD/IEP meeting will be scheduled to include the parent, counselor, homebound instructor, and classroom teacher to determine the student's eligibility to the program.

    Parent Responsibilities for Instruction in the Home

    1. Prepare and have ready an area in the home that is conducive to learning (safe, smoke-free, quiet, clean, comfortable, and relatively private).  At the homebound teacher's discretion, the session may be terminated if safety is determined to be an issue.

    2. Keep all pets on a leash or enclosed in a separate area before the homebound teacher arrives and until he/she leaves.

    3. Ensure that an adult, 18 years or older, is in the home during homebound services.  Any adult in the home must refrain from the use of alcohol, tobacco, or illegal substances during homebound services.

    4. Monitor the student's independent work assignments (homework) and provide assistance as needed.  Encourage your child to stay current with all assignments.

    5. Notify the homebound teacher as soon as possible when a session is to be canceled to prevent the teacher from making an unnecessary trip.

    6. Notify the homebound teacher if there is any contagious illness such as flu, chicken pox, etc., in the home, whether it is the student or other family member.  This includes fevers of 101 degrees or above, vomiting, diarrhea, or strep infections.  In such cases, the homebound teacher will be unable to meet with the student, but may be able to deliver work for the student to complete.

    7. Provide a note within three days of when the parent/student is unable to schedule homebound services or cancels a scheduled session, indicating the dates and reason for absence.

    8. For students on Intermittent Homebound, contact the homebound teacher when the student is out of school and will miss two or more days. Homebound services will then be scheduled.

    9. During homebound services, the student should be confined to the home and therefore will not be allowed to participate in extracurricular activities or work outside the home.

    Attendance

    1. Homebound services are to be scheduled during regular school hours and school calendar days.

    2. Students served at home earn eligible days present based on the number of hours the student is served at home by the homebound program each week.  Each hour of homebound instruction equals one day of attendance credit; four or more hours of instruction in a week is equal to five days of attendance during a five day week and four days of attendance in a four day week. Students receive a minimum of four hours of homebound instruction per week.

    3. If a student/parent does not schedule homebound services or cancels a scheduled session, the student will be reported absent according to TEA attendance guidelines and district procedures as outlined in the student handbook.

    4. Students are expected to return to their campus at the date determined by the GEH or ARD/IEP Committee for students with disabilities unless new medical information is obtained and an additional GEH or ARD/IEP meeting is held.

    We hope you find the LPISD homebound program beneficial for your child. Please contact the Homebound Instruction Department or your child's counselor if you have any further questions or concerns.  

    • Homebound Instructor:  Nancy Ojeda, General/Special Education  
    • LPISD Homebound Department Office Phone:  281-604-6936
    • Texas Transition and Employment Guide

    Secondary Transition

    The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act of 2004 (IDEA 2004) defines Secondary Transition or “transition services” 34 CFR §300.43 as a coordinated set of activities for a student with a disability that:

    • Is designed to be within a results-oriented process, that is focused on improving the academic and functional achievement of the student with a disability to facilitate the student’s movement from school to post-school activities, including postsecondary education, vocational education, integrated employment (including supported employment); continuing and adult education, adult services, independent living, or community participation;
    • Is based on the individual student’s needs, taking into account the student’s strengths, preferences, and interests; and
    • Includes instruction, related services, community experiences, the development of employment and other post-school adult living objectives, and, if appropriate, acquisition of daily living skills and functional vocational evaluation.

    For additional information, please contact Jennifer Lopez, Special Education Vocational Supervisor, at 281-604-7859.

    ADDITIONAL RESOURCES

    • The purpose of the website is to provide viewers with knowledge of the secondary transition process to facilitate student progress toward attainment of their post-secondary goals.  On this site you will find resources for students, parents, educators and agency resources, including a Transition and Employment Guide.
    • Created by parents, for parents... This website is a project of the Texas Education Agency and is committed to providing accurate and consistent information to parents & families of students with disabilities. 
    • The Texas Workforce Commission's Vocational Rehabilitation program helps people with disabilities prepare for, find or retain employment and helps youth and students prepare for post-secondary opportunities.  The program also helps businesses and employers recruit, retain and accommodate employees with disabilities.
      • Vocational Rehabilitation
    • This website is especially for families and parents of children with disabilities or special healthcare needs and is designed to offer support, inspiration, resources, and links to services available.

    This website is especially for families and parents of children with disabilities or special healthcare needs and is designed to offer support, inspiration, resources, and links to services available.

    DOWNLOADABLE RESOURCES

SPEDTex: The Texas Special Education Information Center

This center provides resources to stakeholders across the state of Texas. Their purpose is to optimize information and respond with technical assistance in a succinct and useful format that is user friendly, culturally responsive, and accessible to all individuals. SPEDTex provides supportive state-wide leadership that promotes collaboration, meaningful communication and participation in the development and delivery of services to children with disabilities.