May 2021 Special Education Newsletter

Texas Education Agency

May 2021

Special Education Newsletter

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Special Education Guidance and Professional Development is Available for Summer 2021!

  • TEA offers training videos, guidance documents, operating procedures and answers to special education frequently asked questions on the Recent TEA Guidance website. This is just one way to give your special education team training before the ‘21-‘22 school year starts. 
  • Don't forget about the wonderful opportunities available from the special education technical assistance networks. Find evidence-based resources, such as asynchronous courses, recorded webinars, guidebooks, instructional videos, and various tools and templates, on a variety of specialized topics on any one of TEA's Statewide Technical Assistance Networks websites. A sample of what you will find is located in the Department News section of this newsletter. 

Development activities are ongoing for new and redeveloped certification exams, including the Special Education EC-6, 6-12 . There are upcoming opportunities in 2021 for Texas educators to participate in virtual exam development committees. Visit our recruitment website for information about the development process and how to get involved. Please also share this information with your colleagues and alumni and encourage them to apply now to participate in these and future exam development activities. 

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 Upcoming Dates

Self-Assessment deadline for LEAs has been extended to June 1, 2021. More information can be found HERE

Per HB548, LEA TSDS Data Stewards must submit data on language acquisition of children, ages 0-8, who are deaf, hard of hearing, or deafblind by June 24, 2021. More information can be found HERE

Supplemental Special Education Services (SSES) application window closes June 30, 2021. Apply HERE

Department News

Child Find Duty - Everyone's Responsibility

This professional development session is a free self-paced online course that is intended to provide participants with a fundamental understanding of the definition and purpose of child find and requirements for Local Education Agencies (LEAs). The training will provide an overview of child find, outline the key child find populations, and define LEA responsibilities, including: written board policies and special education operating procedures; public awareness programs; coordination activities with other agencies; notification to families; targeted outreach to primary referral sources; special education referral procedures, including screenings; maintenance and reporting of accurate data, and professional development and training for staff.

Register Now

Reevaluations: From REED to Evaluation

A reevaluation must occur at least once every 3 years, unless the parent and LEA agree that it is unnecessary. A Review of Existing Evaluation Data (REED) is part of any reevaluation and is a process to identify what, if any, additional data is needed to determine eligibility and/or programming. Participants will examine regulations related to reevaluations, review the process for conducting a REED, and determine best practices of a comprehensive reevaluation. The recording of the live webinar presented on May 20th will be posted by the end of May.

View Recording Here

Building an Authentic Academic Response

A very small population of students with significant cognitive disabilities may not yet exhibit an authentic academic response. The purpose of this free, self-paced online training, worth 4 continuing education credits, is to give educators the information and tools to work towards building an authentic academic response with those students. Within this course, the educator will:

  • Be able to create a thorough present levels of academic achievement and functional performance (PLAAFP) statement for students with No Authentic Academic Response
  • Be able to write standards-based individualized education program (IEP) goals and implement data collection methods for students with No Authentic Academic Response
  • Be able to shape an intentional response for students with No Authentic Academic Response
  • Be able to identify best practices for working with students with No Authentic Academic Response
  • Be able to recognize Authentic Academic Responses  

Register Now

DHH Guidance Documents

The following documents were created by the Texas Sensory Support Network to provide guidance for Deaf/Hard of Hearing (DHH) students:

  • Communication Assessment: This guidance document will assist the assessment team as they gather data to determine a student’s communication needs.
  • Considering Least Restrictive Environment when Determining Placement: This guidance document describes components that needs to be considered before an admission, review, and dismissal (ARD) committee can determine placement for DHH students.
  • Eligibility for Special Education: This guidance document provides information about determining the presence of DHH disability and educational need.

Find Out More

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