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Clarification of the Transition from Regional CDS Site to Public School in Me Dept. Of Ed. Reg.101 (Maine Unified Special Education Regulations [MUSER])
ADMINISTRATIVE LETTER: 25
TO: Superintendents of Schools, Special Education Directors, CDS Regional Board Chairs, CDS Site Directors
The provision of Me. Dept. of Ed. Reg. 101 that addresses transition of a child from a regional CDS site to public school states:
This provision in the Maine Unified Special Education Regulations [MUSER] calls for a collaborative approach to ensure an effective transition from a regional CDS site to public school when the child is school age. This is a distinct change from the practices that had been in place prior to the adoption of the unified rule in August 2007. There has been a series of DOE trainings on the MUSER over the past year and a half, and this letter provides a further guidance on this issue of transition.
The IEP developed for the child to be in place from the transition meeting in the spring through the completion of the extended school year (ESY) services is not a separate document from the one to be implemented on the first day of public school. There should be only one IEP developed by CDS and the public school in the spring of the year the child will transition from CDS to the public school. The time frame for the IEP meeting and the development of the IEP is April 1st through June 15th. See www.maine.gov/education/edletrs/2009/adlet/025attach.rtf for the transition graphic. The regional CDS sites will contact the local SAUs and schedule transition meetings for children entering public school kindergarten in the fall. Prior to sending the advance written notice of the transition meeting, the CDS site and the public school will jointly determine who will be the members of the IEP Team.
The CDS staff, with input from providers and parents, will prepare information to share with the SAU such as:
The IEP should clearly differentiate the responsible parties and the services time frame for which each party is responsible. Each party is liable for the services that the IEP has articulated as that party’s respective responsibility. CDS is responsible for provision of and payment for the free appropriate public education [FAPE] services determined by the team through the end of the CDS school year, as well as any ESY services determined by the team as necessary. The public school is responsible for the FAPE services determined by the team to begin on the first day of the school year based on the public school’s calendar. There may be some specific transition goals for a child that will be a joint responsibility, such as, a visit to the public school classroom or a practice ride on the public school bus. CDS, on behalf of its contracted providers, must provide to the public school access to the child’s CDS programs in order for the public school to make informed decisions about future planning for the child.
While 2(a) above requires the CDS site to convene the meeting, it also requires the school administrative unit to facilitate the transition meeting held between April 1 and June 15th of the year that the child will enter public school kindergarten. Both the CDS site and the public school must have a representative at the meeting who is qualified and authorized to obligate the unit as required in the MUSER at VI.2.B(4). If the IEP Team does not reach consensus, the CDS representative authorizes the service(s) to be provided by CDS and the public school representative will authorize the service(s) to be provided by the public school. The parent has the right to request a due process hearing if there is a dispute about the determinations of the IEP Team.
If the team, including the parents, determines that there is not sufficient evaluative information to address all potential goal areas in the joint IEP, the need for any further evaluations will be determined by the transition IEP Team. If CDS needs an evaluation to complete their responsibilities, CDS is responsible for the payment. Otherwise the evaluation will be paid for by the receiving public school, which may use federal IDEA, Part B, Section 619 funds for this purpose. The public school will need to consider the 45 school day requirement, regarding the administration and completion of the evaluation. Please see section V.1.A(3)(a)(i) of the MUSER.
Samples of IEPs and Written Notices will be posted on the Department’s website located at www.maine.gov/education/forms/specservices.htm#pr .
If you have questions, please contact Debra Hannigan at 624-6660 or at firstname.lastname@example.org , if you prefer email.
Thank you for your cooperation in the transition of our youngest children into public school.
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