• Department of Exceptional Children (DEC)

  • Our Mission:

    The CCSD Department of Exceptional Children designs, delivers, and implements enhanced systems of supports that meet the unique needs of students with disabilities to ensure that all students have the knowledge, skills, and opportunities to be college and career-ready, independent, productive citizens. The Exceptional Children Department provides students, families, and schools with the supports and assistance to ensure success for every student.  

    Our Vision:

    (What) All students with disabilities will meet or exceed growth targets.

    (How) We will serve all students with disabilities in the least restrictive environments with rigorous learning programs built on evidence-based instructional practices implemented and facilitated by strong communities of practice within our district.

    We value

    • learning for all students with access to the educational environment and instruction
    • the belief that all students are general education students first
    • each student’s unique, individual needs and the development of individualized instructional programs to meet those needs
    • students, families, educators, and community as responsible stakeholders in teaching and learning
    • data-driven decision-making and critical thinking
    • building and maintaining positive, collaborative relationships, internally and externally, in order to meet our rigorous learning programs for all students
    • open, honest dialogue with transparent, responsive feedback

    Therefore, in CCSD, we believe all students must:

    • Have access to equal and appropriate educational opportunities in safe, orderly general education settings in schools as close to home as possible;
    • Be considered as general education students first;
    • Be welcomed as unique individuals and integrated into the school community; and,
    • Be provided high quality, rigorous and relevant instruction.

    Additionally, we believe Exceptional Children Services must:

    • Have strong collaborative leadership at all levels;
    • Assess all children with disabilities to identify their educational needs;
    • Be delivered by service providers that are knowledgeable in planning and implementing best practices and monitoring student progress;
    • Prepare students with disabilities to be life-long learners;
    • Be child-centered and individualized;
    • Build a positive, collaborative relationship with the community;
    • Support the families of our students with the necessary resources to ensure their children are successful; and,
    • Celebrate the diversity and uniqueness of our children and their families.

    How We Directly Support Schools

    • Facilitate training on legal policies, procedures, programs, and practices for the education of exceptional children   
    • Offer extra supports, shared resources, parent training, and community outreach for exceptional children and their families
    • Provide direct and explicit instructional assistance on research-based programs and strategies for teachers of exceptional children 

    Our Core Services

    • Implementation of policies and procedures that comply with legal standards to ensure individual student protections and advocacy for the needs of exceptional children
    • Development and implementation of evidence-based, high quality and effective education programs to improve outcomes for exceptional children 
    • Creation and strengthening of networks between schools, community partners, agencies, and other stakeholders that allow for strengthened partnerships with students and their families.