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How will we support special education students with the proposed reduction of cluster supervisors?

Question#: 24

ANSWER:

On December 19, 2017, Dr. Jack R. Smith, superintendent of schools, shared Montgomery County Public Schools’ vision to expand and enhance the support provided to schools and offices.  Primary to the realization of this vision is the reorganization of the Office of School Support and Improvement (OSSI).  This reorganization will:

  • establish a cross-functional team of instructional specialists in OSSI to support a cluster of schools.  The team will include instructional specialists who specialize in special education.  These positions were previously in the budget in the Office of Special Education (OSE) and represent a transition of staffing from OSE, as referenced in 5-7 and 5-18 in the FY 2019 Recommended Operating Budget, to OSSI, as referenced in Chapters 2-4 and 2-7 in the FY 2019 Recommended Operating Budget
  • maximize the opportunity for the area associate superintendent and directors of learning, achievement, and administration to engage in learning-focused partnerships with school principals and support intentional efforts to establish principal networks across the district and strengthen vertical articulation within school clusters
  • enhance the ability to allocate resources and deploy central service supports to schools offering a strategic approach to meet the needs of students

The restructuring of this part of the MCPS central office will provide an opportunity to align our work, provide coordinated support to schools, and improve student achievement.  Staff members in OSE will continue to support students with disabilities and their families.  OSE supervisors and instructional specialists will continue to support the following programs and services:  Autism; Deaf and Hard of Hearing; Vision Impaired; Interdisciplinary Augmentative Communication Team; Speech and Language Program; Physically Disabled/High Incidence Accessible Technology; Preschool Programs/Child Find; Montgomery County Infants and Toddlers; Extensions; Social Emotional Support; Bridge; and Transition.  OSE staff members will develop and deliver learning opportunities designed to support central office and school-based staff members.  OSE staff members will collaborate with representatives from OSSI and the Office of Curriculum and Instructional Programs to meet the unique needs of students, families, and staff members. 

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