VDOE Special Education and Student Services (SESS) Reopening Frequently Asked Questions, Virginia Department of Education, VDOE
The purpose of this Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) document is to provide updated guidance for school divisions as they reopen schools for instruction during the 2020-2021 academic year. In this unprecedented situation, there are no “general rules,” other than the regulatory requirements, which can be applied to fit all of the individual situations and expectations. Special education has always been meant to address student-specific needs in the provision of a free appropriate public education (FAPE) and, as such, what is being done for a particular student in one local educational agency (LEA) may not be appropriate for a student in another LEA.In fact, the Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) has advised local school divisions to develop a plan that meets its own individual needs, so long as what is put in place conforms to what is regulatorily required. LEAs should prioritize the health and safety of students, staff, and communities. LEAs should identify and acknowledge service delivery limitations, as well as the need to make reasonable efforts to fully implement a student’s Individualized Education Program (IEP).