• Federal and state laws emphasize the importance of parents/guardians as key decision makers in the educational process. Child Study Team personnel share many common skills such as child advocacy, understanding of school functioning, knowledge and implementation of special education law, case management, transition planning, inservice training, research, and community collaboration. However, each discipline approaches the intervention and eligibility process from a different perspective based on the training and skills of each profession.

    Therefore, it is imperative that parents/guardians be provided with a clear delineation of Child Study Team roles and functions:

    The Learning Disabilities Teacher-Consultant (LDT-C) functions in the school environment as an educational diagnostician, instructional programmer and Child Study Team member. The LDT-C is required to be dually certified as a teacher. The requirement of classroom teaching experience offers a multi-dimensional relevance to the assessment and implementation processes. Learning Disability Teacher-Consultants use their understanding of classroom functioning, effective teaching and adaptive instruction to help students maximize their learning potential and provide practical assistance to their teachers. Services provided include teacher/student consultation, preventative pre-referral intervention, assessment, coordination of services, and program development. The LDT-C must also effectively communicate with parents/guardians, teachers and administrators. An educational assessment shall be the responsibility of a learning disabilities teacher-consultant employed by the district board of education. The assessment should include both standardized and functional assessments, review of the student’s work samples and the student’s records, classroom observations, interviews of teacher and other relevant parties, evaluation and analysis of the student’s academic performance and learning characteristics.

    School Psychologists are specialists with training and expertise in psychology as it is applied to education. They use their training and skills to collaborate with parents/guardians, educators, and other professionals to ensure that every child learns in a safe and supportive environment. School Psychologists use their understanding of school organization and effective learning to help students realize their academic and social potentials. They tailor their services to the particular needs of each child and each situation. School Psychologists are trained to assess and counsel students with behavioral, emotional, and educational concerns through consultation, prevention, intervention, crisis management, evaluation, and program development. A psychological assessment shall be the responsibility of a School Psychologist employed by the district Board of Education. The psychological assessment should include standardized and functional appraisals of a student’s current cognitive, intellectual, adaptive, social, emotional and behavioral status in the context of his/her environments. The assessment should include consultation with parents, educators, and relevant professionals; a student interview; and observation of the student in other than a testing situation.

    School Social Workers provide unique services to students and their families, helping the students attain maximum benefits from their educational programs. The School Social Worker's knowledge of social, emotional, cultural and economic differences among children and families enable them to be the link between school, family and community. As a member of the educational team, School Social Workers promote and support students' academic and social/emotional well-being. Through sound school social work practice, the School Social Worker is able to enhance the full educational and individual potential of all students and eliminate barriers to learning by being pro-active within the academic community and providing early intervention, prevention, consultation, counseling, crisis management, and support services. A social assessment shall be the responsibility of a school social worker employed by the district board of education. The social assessment shall include observation of the student and communication with the student's parent(s)/guardian(s). It shall also include an evaluation of the student's adaptive social functioning and emotional development and of the family, social, and cultural factors which influence the student's learning and behavior in the educational setting.

    Speech-Language Specialists are experts in all areas of communication who make assessments, analyses and classifications of students' communication competencies and characteristics. As a member of the educational team, the Speech Language Specialist participates in the planning of educational programs for children with communication disorders. Speech Language Specialists plan, prepare and deliver treatment programs for children with speech and language deficiencies. They also serve as resource persons in the area of speech and language development and disorders to classroom teachers, parents, administrators and the child study team. A speech and language assessment shall be the responsibility of a Speech Correctionist or Speech-Language Specialist employed by the district Board of Education. The assessment shall include observations of the student in other than a testing session, consultation with the classroom teacher, communication with the parent(s)/guardian(s), and an evaluation and analysis of speech and language development.

    Name: Jaime Leszczynski

    : Child Study Team Secretary
    Phone: (609) 978-5700 x1077
    Email: jleszczynski@staffordschools.org