The district participates through our local intermediate unit, BLaST IU #17 to complete Child Find activities on an annual basis. In addition, Sayre Area School District has developed policies in accordance with federal and state regulations and guidelines to ensure the provision of a free and appropriate public education to all school-age children, including those with disabilities. The District provides appropriate special education programs, related services, and early intervention programs that are:
- provided at no cost to parents
- provided under the authority of a school entity, directly by referral of by contact -individualized to meet the educational or early intervention needs of the child
- reasonably calculated to yield meaningful educational or early education benefits and progress -designed to conform to an Individual Education Program (IEP)
SASD has procedures in place to screen and identify students who have special needs. All students are screened at Kindergarten registration using assessment tools by trained professionals in the areas of hearing, vision, speech, and potential for learning. If a disability or area of concern is suspected, a referral for a complete evaluation or further assessment is discussed and presented to the parents of the student. Furthermore, if parents suspect their son/daughter has a disability, a request for a school evaluation can be made by the parent. Screening of children using immediately available resources and data such as health records, report cards, attendance reports, enrollment records, etc. are tools the District use to help identify children with special needs. Screening of children helps the District to determine which students need further assessment and which students may benefit from regular education interventions without the special education identification.
Identification and Evaluation Process:
Sayre Area School District has an evaluation process in place. The procedure for referring students is outlined so teachers were more familiar and comfortable with the procedure. If a teacher or staff has a concern about learning, emotional, or behavioral need which is impacting that student’s learning or functioning at school, the teacher should refer the student to the Supervisor of Special Education. The Supervisor of Special Education then collects important data, including parent and teacher input, and reviews this with building principals and a school psychologist to determine whether a complete evaluation is necessary. Supportive interventions and teaching strategies may be tried in the interim or in lieu of a complete evaluation. The district’s school psychologists conduct a complete evaluation with varied assessment tools and diagnostic instruments to determine special education eligibility.
The Sayre Area School District is devoted to preparing students for the transition to adult life. We provide a continuum of services to support students as they prepare for adult life. Our Career Development Council provides job shadowing, speakers, and career fairs to students with disabilities and nondisabled students. Our Career Counselor provides one-to-one support in preparing students with disabilities with resumes, job applications, and job hunting skills. We also have a Transition Council that includes representatives from local agencies who meet with students and their parents for the purpose of transition planning. The council includes representatives from the Office of Vocational Rehabilitation, Mental Health/ Mental Retardation, Futures Community Services, Northern Tier Career Center, Penn York Opportunities, and other agencies as needed (i.e., military recruiters, adult literacy coordinators, and medical assistance/social security representatives). The purpose of the council is to insure that both students and parents have the information required to make informed decisions about the services available to them after graduation.
In addition, we participate in a county-wide Transition Council so that our students may participate in a variety of services offered in our county. For example, our students participate in an “Experience Transition to College Program” that offers students an opportunity to acquire self- advocacy skills and a better understanding of how to access educational resources in college. Our students also participate in a “Transition Fair” that offers information to students about colleges, vocational training programs, and employment opportunities. We also provide services to students who have been struggling to find part time employment after school. We contract with local agencies to provide students with job coaching services. The job coaches assist the students with completing and submitting applications, shadowing various jobs, and participating in internships within local businesses.