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October 29, 2009 Meeting Notes

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Represented in attendance:

4 – OKDHS/DDSD

7 – Parent, Family member or Self advocate

1 – Agency

1 – Public School

2 – Oklahoma State Department of Education

Agency/Organizations represented: Center for Learning & Leadership/UCEDD, Oklahoma Infant Transition Program, OASIS, Apex, Duncan/Comanche School District, and Noble School District

Status of the Waiting List – Jim Nicholson

As of 10/19/09 there are 5150 on the Waiting List

Waiting Time:

964 < 1 year

1020 – 1 to 2 years

1073 – 2 to 3 years

2093 > 3 years

April 26, 2004 is the date of the application that is up when funding becomes available.

A Few Words From the Director – Howard Hendrick

Director Hendrick discussed the funding shortfall that is affecting the state, thus affecting OKDHS.  He said as of this time, they have not cut any direct support to individuals receiving Waivered services and there are no plans to make this kind of cut. He did say they have had to make some adjustments to other programs serving individuals with developmental disabilities, though. He was asked if he felt the Family Support Subsidy Payment would be the affected the state’s current budget difficulties, and he said, not at this time.  He said that by the next meeting, he should have a better idea of affect the current state revenue has on OKDHS’ programs.

High School Graduation for Students with Developmental Disabilities – Amy Daugherty and Anita Eccard, State Department of Education, Special Education Services

Ms. Daugherty began by explaining that there is no state policy to graduate students at any specific time. She added that schools are monitored in their graduation performance but not specific to those on IEP’s. She said that if a school falls below the state “drop out” rate, which would include students on IEP’s who graduation date is pushed back for need, then that school is given a notice of needed improvement. She referred to this as “graduating in a timely manner”.  She said all districts are monitored by a data profile for graduation and this is where the information is collected regarding students graduating in a timely manner.  There is no difference in this data for those on IEP’s and those in traditional class settings.

Ms. Daugherty continued by saying that the state requires all students to pass a test to graduate and those students with the most severe disabilities will need to pass the portfolio assessment before graduation.  She said if these students do not pass this portfolio assessment they can not graduate and they will need to do this assessment until passage which will allow them to graduate.

Both Ms. Daugherty and Ms. Eccard encouraged families to utilize the IEP team to the fullest.  They both mentioned the need for the team to decide at what rate the student would be able to meet each class requirement. The example given was that some students learn at a slower rate, thus they may require more time to achieve their full year credit, meaning they progress about half of what is typical for students. Again, they encouraged families to invite all who know the student and their abilities and strengths to be members on the IEP team.

Also, mentioned from the representatives of the State Dept. of Education was that our state has moved the requirement for IEP transition from 14 years old back to 16 years old. There was some discussion of this change due to the fact some parents didn’t know there had been a change of this magnitude.

Ms. Daugherty did say that nowhere in IDEA does it say that a student must go to school until they are 21 years old. This decision is left up to the IEP team.

Lastly, a parent asked if Oklahoma has different types of diplomas for students in Special Education and those in traditional education classes.  Ms. Daugherty said, no not at this time.  All students graduating from an Oklahoma Public School will receive the same diploma as the next.

Schedule Next Meeting

January 28, 2010 at 2:00

It was mentioned that there could be a possibility to have a teleconference for the next meeting, but arrangements have not been completed as of yet.