Special Education

Welcome to the Silver Lake Regional and Union #31 Special Ed Department website. Our department has been working to deliver Special Education services to the students in our district in a coordinated way. As part of our effort to provide information regarding resources for you to use we have listed several links to documents that describe both how the laws and regulations in the Commonwealth are written and how these laws affect the delivery of Special Education services. Take a look through the site!

Massachusetts DOE Family Engagement Survey

Each year, the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (ESE) surveys families of students with an IEP in selected school districts to determine how well your child's school is communicating with you and promoting your engagement in your child's education. The web-based survey will be open from October 1, 2017 - June 30, 2018.

You can complete the survey online or using a mobile device here.

You can also complete a paper survey and mail it in to the DOE or bring it in and we will mail it for you. Ask your child's teacher if you need help accessing and completing the survey.

Your participation in this survey will help your school district to improve family engagement for all students.

Special Education: A Definition

Special education is defined as educational programs and assignments including, special classes and programs or services designed to develop the educational potential of children with disabilities including, but not limited to, educational placements of children by school committees, the departments of public health, mental health, mental retardation, youth services and social services in accordance with the provisions of this chapter and the regulations set forth by the board of education.

General education is the door to learning through which all students are expected to enter; it should be the goal of every school district to make the general education environment the appropriate placement for all students.

Special education should not be a separate program, but rather should be one aspect of a continuum of supportive services and programs that are provided to ensure that the general education environment is a responsive environment. This philosophy is commonly referred to as "inclusion." Silver Lake supports this philosophy.

Working together, general and special educators can provide professional support to each other to address student learning. Schools can provide a rich curriculum; instructional practices and varied programs of services geared to individual needs; including opportunities for strong family involvement and awareness of the educational services in the school. In this way special education becomes one of the many supportive programs that is available within the general education environment.