Special Education & Early Childhood Services

Special Education and Early Childhood Education Department



Special Education and Early Childhood Education Quicklinks
Programs and Services - General
Programs and Services - Specific
Section 504
Helpful Resources
Early Childhood
Great Start Readiness Program
Kindergarten

Programs and Services - General

Port Huron Schools offers a full continuum of programs and services to eligible students. Eligibility is based on meeting specific criteria for one or more disabilities and a determination of whether or not special education is necessary for the child to benefit from the educational program. Despite the law requiring a student to have a disability label, the label does not determine the individual programs, services or placement for the student. Programs and/or services are offered for students with the following fourteen areas:

Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD)
Otherwise Health Impaired (OHI)
Early Childhood Developmental Delayed (ECDD)
Speech and Language Impaired (SLI)
Deaf and Hard of Hearing (DHH)
Visually Impaired (VI)
Emotionally Impaired (EI)
Severely Multiply Impaired (SXI)
Severely Mentally Impaired (SMI)
Mild Cognitive Impairment (MICI)
Moderate Cognitive Impairment (MOCI)
Traumatic Brain Impairment (TBI)
Physical Impairment (PI)
Learning Disabled (LD)

Port Huron Schools provides services in the least restrictive environment (LRE). Whenever possible the student will attend their neighborhood school and be educated in the general education classroom with his or her peers. Special education services are provided through various programs such as self-contained, resource room, co-taught and teacher consultant programs throughout the district. Only when necessary to meet a student’s unique educational needs and goals will consideration be given to providing services in other locations.

Following a comprehensive evaluation, a student’s individual education planning team will recommend how and where to best meet the student’s special needs. With consideration of federal guidelines and state requirements, specific learning disability eligibility is evaluated using pattern of strengths and weaknesses. 'Pattern of strengths and weaknesses' method is based on both assessment and review of achievement scores and performance in a variety of academic areas, with documentation of a pattern of strengths in one or more areas as compared to other areas where the student demonstrates a pattern of significant academic weaknesses. These recommendations may include one or more specialized instruction programs or related services.

In cooperation with the St. Clair County Regional Education Service Agency (SCC RESA) programs for students with disabilities are available for our students at the Woodlands Developmental Center.

Programs and Services - Specific

The following is a list of special education programs and services that The Department of Special Education and Early Childhood Services provides:

Early Childhood Program – a half-day program for developmentally delayed 3-5 year olds
Resource Room Programs – K-12, available in all schools
Self-Contained Classrooms – K-12
Programs for students with behavioral and emotional difficulties are available upon IEP team determination of need
Adaptive Technology – equipment and systems used to improve the functional capabilities of our students with disabilities
Diagnostics and Evaluation
Social Work
Teacher Consultant Services
Homebound – for students who will be out of school 10 days or more due to illness or injury

Ancillary Services – including:
Physical Therapy
Occupational Therapy
Visually Impaired
Hearing Impaired
Orientation & Mobility
Speech/Language Services

Resource Room Programs

Elementary and Secondary Resource is a support system for children that are in need of regular instructors with modified studies and/or accommodations in order to be successful. Resource Room (RR) teachers have training in specific techniques to accommodate individual learning needs. Students in the program spend the majority of the school day in general education classrooms.

Self-Contained Classrooms

Services/programs are available upon determination to meet the student's needs. This decision is made by the Individual Educational Planning (IEP) Committee. For additional information about services, please contact our department at 810-984-3101.

Section 504

Who is a Student With a Disability?

A student has a disability under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 504) and is entitled to a free, appropriate education, if he or she has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities. Some major life activities include, but are not limited to:

Walking
Learning
Concentrating
Working
Seeing
Hearing
Speaking
Breathing
Performing Manual Tasks
Major bodily functions
Caring for one's self (such as most bodily systems)

Section 504 also protects two other types of students from disability-related discrimination and harassment, even though they are not entitled to a free, appropriate public education. These are students who have a record of having a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities or are regarded as having such impairment.

Free Appropriate Public Education

Under Section 504, students with disabilities are entitled to a free, appropriate public education, regardless of the nature or severity of their disability. Appropriate education is the provision of regular or special education and related aids and services that are designed to meet the individual educational needs of a student with a disability as adequately as the needs of the students without disabilities are met.

How to Request a Section 504 Evaluation and/or Section 504 Policies and Procedures

If you believe your child may have a disability, you can request that the District evaluate your child. Evaluation request forms can be obtained by contacting your child's Building Principal.

You can also obtain the District's Section 504 procedural safeguards below, or by contacting Britt Pionk, Co-Director, 810-984-3101 ext. 4039, bpionk@phasd.us.

Section 504 Procedural Safeguards
Section 504 Manual
Section 504 Grievance Procedure

Building Principals:

Please contact your building administrator for additional information and/or contacts.


Helpful Resources


Parent Information

Procedural Safeguards for Special Education
Parent Handbook

The following are various web resources that can provide you with additional information: 

St. Clair County

St. Clair County RESA
Arc of St. Clair County
St. Clair County Community Mental Health (CMH)

Blue Water Center for Independent Living (CIL)
Goodwill Industries
     
Community Enterprises of St. Clair County

State

Michigan Department of Education
Michigan Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP)
Bureau of Services for Blind Persons (BSBP)

Federal
 

US Department of Education
Information on Federal Special Education Law 

Mediation Services 

Michigan Special Education Mediation Program (MSEMP) 



Early Childhood

Port Huron Schools Early Childhood Special Education program provides services to preschool students suspected of a developmental delay between the ages of 0 and 5. Our goal is to assist and provide supports for students to meet their individualized educational plans.

The staff encourages parents and families to be involved in the education of their child. Early Childhood Special Education teachers, Speech/Language Pathologists, Occupational Therapists and Physical Therapists provide instruction and therapy.

Infants and toddlers attend the program located at Garfield Elementary School. Sessions for this age are by appointment only and parent/guardians are included in these sessions.

There are two sites available for children between the ages of 3 and 5. Children are placed in or close to his/her neighborhood school. Transportation is provided. Children attend school half days (either AM or PM), five days a week. Students 3 years of age and those that will turn 4 during the school year will attend the AM session. Students that are 4 or will be turning 5 during the school year will attend the PM session.

Philosophy
The Early Childhood Special Education program adopts the philosophy that every child is unique with an individual pattern of growth and development. The program goals, curriculum and materials are developmentally appropriate and geared to differing abilities. The program provides a safe and nurturing environment, which promotes and integrates the physical, cognitive, social, emotional, communication, and self-help areas of development through classroom activities.

Early Childhood Assessment Clinic

Children may be referred by parents or health care professionals who suspect a developmental delay in the area(s) of social or physical development, cognitive development or speech and language development. This service is offered at no cost to parents living within the Port Huron Area School District.

If you suspect your child has a developmental delay, please contact Tracee Blake at 810-984-3101 ext. 4066 to discuss your concerns.

Parent Information - Websites

Early On - St. Clair County RESA
Early On - Michigan

Early Childhood Special Education Programs

The Early Childhood Special Education Programs service children 3–5 years of age who have an identified developmental disability or health disability. The focus of these programs is to provide a highly structured learning and play environment to allow the children to develop to the fullest potential.

There are eight half-day sessions operating in two of the District's elementary school buildings. If you have a child who might be eligible for this program, contact Tracee Blake at 810-984-3101 ext. 4066.


Great Start Readiness Program

GSRP is Michigan's state-funded preschool program for four-year-old children with factors that may place them at risk of educational failure. The program is administered by the Michigan Department of Education (MDE). For the Fall 2017-2018 year, children must be 4 years of age on or before September 1, 2017. 

The goal of the program is to encourage the development of children and prepare them for successful entry into Kindergarten using developmentally appropriate practices in a play-based curriculum. 

Video - See What the Great Start Readiness Program Has to Offer

Please use the form below if you are filling out the GSRP Application for the 2017-2018 school year

An application for the 2017-2018 program can be printed below. Please contact (810) 984-3101 ext. 4066 if you would like an application mailed to you. 

2017-2018 GSRP Application Fillable Form

Proof of Income MUST be submitted WITH the application. Proof of Income includes: 2016 Federal Tax Form, 2016 W2's, Current DHS Cash Statement, Current SSI Statement or previous 12 months of paycheck stubs. If more than one apply, all documentation must be provided. If no income, you must submit documentation from DHS regarding your situation, or documentation from a shelter or if living with relatives: a letter stating you and your child live with them and are not responsible for any living expenses such as rent, utilities, etc. 

If eligible, you will need to provide the following documents before your child can be placed in a program: 

ORIGINAL Birth Certificate of child
Immunization Records
2 Proofs of Residency = (utility bills, voters registration, U.S. mail, etc)
Verification Of Income = (2016 Federal Tax Form OR 2016 W2's OR 12 months of paycheck stubs, DHS Cash Documentation if applicable, SSI Documentation if applicable, Child Support Documentation if applicable, and any other income sources).

Kindergarten Information for the 2017 - 2018 School Year

 K Round Up
Click video to play

Any parent who wishes to enroll their child in Kindergarten at any Port Huron Schools building is welcome to attend.

Kindergarten Welcome Book

2017-2018 Kindergarten Enrollment Packet - Click on the link, fill out the information electronically (except for signature), print and then bring with you to the school your child will be attending.

*Please click here for Schools of Choice information.*

Please call the school your child will be attending to schedule a day that you can go in and enroll your child.

Your Neighborhood Schools:

Cleveland  2801 Vanness  984-6500
Crull  2615 Hancock  984-6504
Garfield  1221 Garfield  984-6509
Indian Woods  4975 W. Water  984-6515
Keewahdin  4801 Lakeshore  984-6517
Kimball  5801 Griswold  984-6519
Michigamme  2855 Michigan  984-6523
Roosevelt  1112 20th  984-6525
Thomas Edison  3559 Pollina  984-6507
Woodrow  834 Chestnut  984-6530

The State of Michigan has changed the age requirement for enrolling your child into Kindergarten. Children need to be five years of age on or before September 1st of the current school year in order to attend Kindergarten for the current school year. There is a link directly below titled "New Kindergarten Age Information" that details the age changes. If you feel your child is ready for kindergarten and he/she turns five from September 1 - December 1, of the current school year inquire about a possible waiver option. This is strictly for children who turn 5 September 1 - December 1, of the current school year only.

You will need to bring the following with you to enroll your child:

Original Birth Certificate
Two Proofs of Residency 
Vaccination Records (Immunizations)

Vision and Hearing
Public Health Code Act 368 of 1978, Section 9307, states that " a parent, guardian, or person in loco parentis applying to have a child registered for the first time in a kindergarten or first grade in a school in this state, shall present to school officials, at the time of registration or no later than the first day of school, a certificate of hearing and vision testing or screening, or statements of exception under Section 9311." The local health department offers this screening at no cost to families and children. The Revised School Code (Act 451 of 1976, Section 380.177) requires that children entering kindergarten present a statement to school officials confirming that they have received the Michigan Department of Community Health Vision Screening, or medical/osteopathic physician, indicating that a child's eyes have been examined at least once after age three and before initial school entry.

Vision and Hearing Screening Required for School Entry:
Vision and Hearing Screening Appointment Dates

The links below should help with any questions you may have. If you have additional questions, please call (810) 984-3101 ext. 4066. 

New Kindergarten Information
Enrollment Requirements
Application for Building Preference Request

Website Resources:
Birth Certificate Ordering Information
Transportation Website
Transition to Kindergarten Parent Guide (MDE)