Not that long ago, I sat down to lunch with the CEO of our company and a prominent attorney in Mississippi who provides legal counsel for almost every school district in the state. As we discussed a variety of educational themes in MS, one interesting topic came up regarding students and their placement into Special Services programs.
Special Education, commonly referred to as SPED, is part of federal legislation for Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). IDEA is aimed at providing specialized educational services that meet the individual needs of children who have been ruled to have specific physical or cognitive disabilities that interfere with their ability to learn. The topic discussed was not the merits, success or failure of this program, but rather the challenges that districts face when trying to be compliant with the guidelines (P-8, C-11) of the law.
We know that one specific hurdle that many districts face is communicating effectively with parents or guardians about placement and accommodations during the student's educational process. By law, districts are required to include the parents in conversations when there has been a change in the ruling or in the accommodations recommended by trained professional education staff. From a legal perspective, it is critical that districts be able to show documentation of their efforts to communicate, should any situation result in litigation, an occurrence that happens all too often. When communications cannot be established effectively, a district needs to be able to show that they have made repeated efforts to include the student contacts in this process.
We were initially discussing the legal ramifications of all this, but, of course, as people who are truly passionate about kids and learning, we ended up talking about learning outcomes, and what a huge difference it would make in the lives of students if district could have seamless communication between the school, teachers, and parents for ALL students. I thought about what a great selling point it would be if we could offer a communication tool like that to districts.
We now have that very solution.
Channel by SchoolStatus makes compliance with communications requirements, such as IDEA, not only easy to achieve but intuitive for every level of educator. Compliance requirements may differ per program, but documentation issues are valid for them all. Our product encourages one-to-one parental engagement and makes compliance readiness available, because we make it easy to facilitate, track and monitor communications between the school and home.
SchoolStatus was born from the idea that compliance issues, data management, and documentation should never hinder student success. Click here to learn more about how we streamline important processes to give educators back the time they need and deserve.