A few years ago, the name of the Child Study Team Office was changed to the Special Services Department. This was done to encompass the many and diverse services offered through this office. Currently, all special education and related services are offered through our office. This includes Speech/Language Therapy, Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy and counseling for classified students. In addition, the services, accommodations, modifications and interventions made through the Intervention Referral Service and/or Section 504 officers are coordinated through the Special Services Department. We also handle Homeless issues and contacts for various community organizations.
Pitman's Child Study Team and Special Education Services
The Pitman Child Study Team consists of a Learning Consultant, a School Social Worker, a School Psychologist, a School Psychologist/Social Worker, an Occupational Therapist and a Physical Therapist. Also, the Speech/Language Specialists and our Social Worker/Counselors work in conjunction with the basic Child Study Team. The team has a number of responsibilities including, but not limited to: consultation, identification, diagnosis, classification and formulation of recommendations for remediation of learning and/or behavior problems. Team members also serve as Case Managers for classified students working closely with both general education and special education teachers to develop appropriate Individualized Education Programs (IEP). The Pitman Child Study Team provides services for students with disabilities from ages 3 to 21 in preschool, elementary, middle and high school programs.
The Child Study Team works collaboratively with the building level intervention team known as the Intervention and Referral Services Committee (I&RS). A child experiencing learning or behavioral difficulties in school is brought to the attention of the I&RS team through the building administrator. The I&RS referral process is a necessary prerequisite to a referral to the Child Study Team. When I&RS meetings are scheduled, a Child Study Team member may attend and/or consult with the team in order to develop strategies, which will assist students with various modifications, services and resources.
If interventions have been tried over a sufficient amount of time and documented to show their impact, the I&RS team may refer the student for evaluation. This request is communicated to the Child Study Team through the principal. The Child Study Team then must follow the statutory procedures stipulated in NJAC 6A:14 (this document, along with other important documents pertaining to Special Education, can be accessed through the Department of Education link found below).
If the Child Study Team recommends classification and the parent agrees, there are several types of special education services available within the district. Please see the program descriptions available on our web site.
Intervention & Referral Services Committee
The Pitman School District is committed to providing successful educational opportunities to all students. The district has established procedures to identify students with a need for special assistance. These procedures are available for all students in Kindergarten through Grade 12. Parents, teachers, administrators and/or service providers make referrals to this committee through the building principal. Our goal is to remove and/or lessen the obstacles that may be hindering student success. Interventions along with supporting documentation from I&RS committees are generally expected prior to referral to the Child Study Team.
It is the intent of the Pitman School District to ensure that students who are handicapped within the definition of Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 are identified, evaluated and provided with appropriate educational services. Students may be handicapped under this policy even though they do not require services pursuant to the Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA). Each building has been assigned a 504 Officer. The 504 Officer receives referrals from an adult who is knowledgeable about the student's situation. The I&RS team works with the 504 officer to review documentation and determine if the student meets criteria for 504 safeguards. A plan is written which assures accommodations necessary for the student to have opportunities commensurate with his/her peers. Our districts' 504 officers are:
Elementary - Mrs. Cassannda Wright, Middle School - Ms. Dawn Bell, High School - Mr.Shea Murray
Project Child Find
Project Child Find is a free referral service and public awareness campaign to assist in the identification of unserved/underserved youth with a delay or disability from birth through age twenty one. For more information open the following link:
New Jersey Project Child Find
Below are links to websites that may be of interest to you:
New Jersey Department of Education
New Jersey Center for Outreach and Services for the Autism Community
Learning Disabilities Association
Children and Adults with Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder
Building on our unique traditions, the mission of the Pitman School District, in partnership with families and our community, is to educate all students through exceptional learning to be discerning, ethical, confident citizens.