Special Education

Winona Area Public Schools embraces its mission in providing a continuum of services to all students. To empower students of all ages to be life-long learners who demonstrate creative thinking, critical analysis and problem solving skills in an ever changing and challenging world.

The district offers special education services for eligible children from birth to age 21 who are residents of the district or attend a public or nonpublic school within the district. Special education is instruction, specially designed to meet the unique needs of a student with a disability. It is provided at no cost to the family.

Eligibility

The district provides special education support to eligible students in the following areas:

Special Education

  • Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)
  • Deaf/Hard of Hearing (DHH)
  • Developmental Adapted Physical Education (DAPE)
  • Developmental Cognitive Disabilities - Mild/Moderate (DCD-MM)
  • Developmental Cognitive Disabilities- Severe/Profound (DCD-SP)
  • Early Childhood Special Ed (ECSE)
  • Emotional/Behavior Disability (EBD)
  • Occupational/Physical Therapy: (OT/PT)
  • Other Health Disabilities (OHD)
  • Physically Impaired (PI)
  • Specific Learning Disability (SLD)
  • Speech/Language Impairments
  • Visually Impaired (VI)

Other

  • School Psychologist
  • School Social Worker
  • Student Health Services

If you suspect your child has a disability, or if you have questions about special education services, please contact your child's teacher, building principal, or the Special Education Office.

Early Childhood Special Education

Early Childhood Special Education (ECSE) services are designed for children from birth until kindergarten enrollment who have been identified with a delay in development. Evaluations and services are provided at no cost to the parents.

  • Early Intervention Services for children birth through age two are provided in their natural environments through the public school system. A variety of service providers which may include an early childhood special education teacher, physical therapist, occupational therapist or speech/language clinician may provide direct services or consult with your child's team based on the family and child's identified needs.
  • Preschool Special Education services for students age three to Kindergarten entrance are typically provided in early learning environments. Specialized services such as speech therapy, physical therapy, occupational therapy, developmental adaptive physical education (DAPE), early childhood special education, and busing are provided based on the student's needs within their learning environment.

If you have concerns about a child in either of these age group, please make a referral in through one of the available options listed. Someone from the district will contact you to follow up with your concerns.

If you would like more information about early childhood development or to make a referral through the Minnesota Help Me Grow system, visit the Help Me Grow website at http://helpmegrowmn.org/HMG/index.htm .

Community Transition Interagency Committee (CTIC)

Winona Area Public Schools works with community agencies to ensure appropriate supports and services are available to students preparing for transition from school to the community. They participate in a Community Transition Interagency Committee to address specific areas of focus for students and their families beginning at grade 9 or an equivalent age. Planning is done for:

  • Housing
  • Employment
  • Transportation
  • Recreation/Leisure
  • Post Secondary Education

Who may be on the committee? Members of the committee may include representatives from:

  • special education, vocational and regular education
  • community education
  • postsecondary education and training institutions
  • mental health
  • adults with disabilities who have received transition services if such persons are available
  • parents of youth with disabilities
  • local business or industry
  • rehabilitation services
  • county social services
  • health agencies
  • and additional public or private adult service providers as appropriate.

If you are interested in learning more about this committee or would like to attend meetings, please contact the Special Education Office for more information.

Special Education Advisory Council (SEAC)

In order to increase the involvement of parents of children with disabilities in district policy making and decision making, school districts must have a special education advisory council that is incorporated into the district's special education system plan. (MN Statute 125A.24)

Winona Area Public Schools have a parent led Special Education Advisory Council that meets regularly. If you are interested in learning more about this council or would like to attend meetings, please contact the Special Education Office for more information.

Winona Area Public Schools’ SEAC Mission:

  • To advocate for high quality educational programs for all learners and assure that the School Board and District Administration are informed of special education successes, issues, and concerns.
  • To increase the involvement and add the informed perspective of parents and families of children with disabilities in the making and implementation of District policies.
  • To fulfill the requirements of Minnesota Statute 125A.24.

Amy Adams

Director of Special Education
District Office

Ellen Brand

Administrative Assistant
District Office

Camielle Hughes

Special Education Coordinator
Goodview Elementary School, Jefferson Elementary School, Rollingstone Elementary School

Angie Lepsch

Special Education Coordinator, Early Childhood Special Education
Goodview Early Childhood

Sharon McGuire

Special Education Coordinator
Washington Kosciusko Elementary School, Madison Elementary School

Susan Ogren

Special Education Coordinator
Winona Middle School

Lori Ulrich

Special Education Coordinator
Winona Area Learning Center, Winona Senior High School
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