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Proposed Changes to NC Policies—Comment Period

The North Carolina Department of Public Instruction, Exceptional Children Division, is proposing changes to the Policies Governing Services for Children with Disabilites.  The comment period is from November 23, 2009 through January 21, 2010, with a public hearing on Wednesday, December 16.  Most of the changes seem to align NC Policies with federal law, but some make corrections based on North Carolina legal changes.  Here are some highlights:

      Specifies definition of autism spectrum disorders (Austic Disorder, Atypical Autism (Pervasive Developmental Disorder-Not Otherwise Specified), Asperger’s Disorder, Rett’s Disorder, Childhood Disintegrative Disorder or all Pervasive Developmental Disorders).

      Eliminates adapted PE teachers as being able to conduct motor evaluations (only PT or OT proposed)

      Adds augmentative communications and pragmatics as areas for speech-language/communication evaluations

    Clarifies lack of liability for LEA if parents revoke consent for provision of special education and related services

     Rewrites section on specific learning disability (screenings, criteria, changes in tiered process)

     Does not recognize a non-attorney representing a party at due process hearings

     Permits reallocation of funds from one LEA to another (if the LEA is providing FAPE and does not need the funds)

     Adds language to include 5 year olds who are not eligible for kindergarten to be covered under Part B (due to change in date of kindergarten eligibility)

Don’t forget to contact DPI if you have questions or concerns—they’re asking for input, so we should definitely respond!

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