Current Initiatives

Current Initiatives

IEP Online

This Intranet-based application program, which was implemented during the 2004-05 school year, helps special education staff members write Individual Education Programs (IEPs). IEP.Online is a communication tool that allows the people involved in a student’s educational program immediate access to important student information. Built-in compliance verifications guide users on federal and state due process requirements. In addition, the program imports data from the school system’s student information systems to offer real-time and accurate student demographic information. IEP.Online helps teachers construct timely and appropriate IEPs for Gwinnett County students.

Parent Mentors

The Parent Mentor Program is a joint venture between GCPS and the Georgia Department of Education. The program creates effective home-school partnerships that help students reach their full potential. The goal is to build a bridge between families and schools by developing understanding, respect, support, and the communication skills necessary to support a collaboration that focuses on student achievement.

Private School Child Find

Pursuant to the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEIA) of 2004, we are required to develop and initiate a system of locating and identifying every disabled private school student in Gwinnett County. After the identification of such students, the law requires us to develop an individualized service plan (ISP) for each disabled private school student, and spend a portion of our total proportionate share of federal funds on each such student for appropriate special education or related services. Home schooled children are considered in the same category and are also eligible for services under this provision of the law. Parentally-placed disabled children in private schools or home schooled disabled students are not entitled to a free appropriate public education; however, the district will offer at its expense services which are appropriate for each such student on an individual basis. Although in most instances speech services will be provided; the ISP team, including the parent, will determine the exact service to be provided. Services may be offered at the student’s private school or at one of our site-based facilities.

Gwinnett County schools hosted an informational meeting on November 28, 2005, wherein this subject was discussed and presented in detail. However, we invite the parents of any home-schooled or privately schooled disabled student between the ages of three and twenty two to contact our department at 678-301-7110 if you would like further information on this initiative.

Special Education Citizens Advisory Council

GCPS’ special education program seeks to continuously improve. Part of that effort is asking students, parents, and teachers how the program is meeting student needs. Federal law requires each state to have an advisory panel, of which 51 percent of the membership is made up of individuals with disabilities or parents of children with disabilities. Although not required, GCPS has brought this same concept to the local system level.

Gwinnett’s Special Education Citizen’s Advisory Council serves in an advisory capacity providing input on procedures, rules, and regulations, and ways to increase communication and parental involvement.

Special Education Curriculum and Research

In the area of curriculum research and development, the Department of Special Education and Psychological Services provides information and resources on best practices—methods, materials, interventions, and teaching strategies that make a difference for students.