Instruction » Special Education

Special Education

Welcome to the Manchester-Shortsville Special Education Department

Our special education services provide for the individual needs of the student including academic, social, physical and management needs, in the least restrictive environment as possible.

If you have questions related to Special Education at Red Jacket Schools,

please direct them to Karen Hall, 585-289-3478.


Coordinator of Special Services: 

Karen Hall



Special Services Administrative Assistant:

Lisa Clark



School Psychologists: 

Elise Wardhaugh   (PreK-5)           


Jodi Roberts  (6-12) 



HS Special Education Teachers:  585-289-3966

Amy Baker

Deirdre Coon

Anthony Gay

Thomas Walsh



Middle School Special Education Teachers: 585-289-3967

Kim Eichorn

Barbara D’Aiutolo

Brooke Swarthout



Elementary Special Education Teachers: 585-289-9647

Emily Deporter-Brodman

Mike Casella

Missy Smith

Locklyn Kelly

Leigha Decker


Speech and Language: 585-289-9647

Marissa Baughman

Barbara Varney


Occupational Therapy: 585-289-9647

Jennifer Griffin

Anina Olsen



Physical Therapy: 585-289-9647

Karen Munson

Joy McDonald



Committee on Preschool Special Education (CPSE)

The Committee on Preschool Special Education is appointed by the Board of Education and is responsible for identifying preschool children with disabilities and arranging for the delivery of special education services. Educational programs and services for preschool children with disabilities from the ages of three to five are the responsibility of the school district in which the child resides in accordance with New York State Education Law, Article 89. Mandated committee members of the CPSE include a special education representative from the school district who serves as Chairperson, a parent of a preschool or elementary aged child with a disability who resides in the district, a professional who participated in the evaluation of the child or the child's teacher, the county representative, and, if the child is transitioning from the birth to two program provided by the county of residence, an early intervention coordinator.

Committee on Special Education

The Committee on Special Education is a multidisciplinary team mandated by Commissioner’s Regulations Part 200 that makes recommendations to the Board of Education concerning the classification and special education services that students receive. The responsibilities of the Committee on Special Education include: 

  • The determination of whether a student is eligible for special education services or programs;
  • The determination of the educational needs of the student relative to the student's academic achievement, learning characteristics, social development, physical development and management needs in the classroom;
  • The recommendation to the Board of Education of special education services and/or programs based on the stated needs of the student with a disability

Members of the Committee on Special Education:

  • CSE Chairperson
  • School Psychologist
  • General Education Teacher 
  • Special Education Teacher
  • Parent
  • Any related services therapists involved with the child's education
  • Other persons the parent wishes to bring that have knowledge or special expertise regarding the student
  • The student, if appropriate

IEP (Individualized Education Program)

Central to the tenets of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act of 1990 (IDEA), which amended the Education of All Handicapped Children Act of 1975 (EHA), is the provision of an Individualized Education Program for each student with a disability in order to provide a free and appropriate public education for that student. The Individualized Education Program (IEP) is a written program that specifies the special education programs and services to be provided by the school district to meet the educational needs of a student with a disability. The IEP must include:

  • the individual needs of the student including academic, social, physical and management needs;
  • the classification of the disability of the student;
  • annual goals that are consistent with the student's needs and the short-term objectives necessary to meet the annual goals;
  • the recommended program including class size and the extent that the student will participate in regular education;
  • the projected date for the initiation and the review of special education and related services, and the amount of time the student will receive such services;
  • a description of any specialized equipment needed for the student to benefit from education;
  • program modifications;
  • a list of testing modifications to be used by the student; and,
  • the recommended placement for the student.

The program of each student with a disability is reviewed annually and a re-evaluation is completed every three years to determine current individual needs and continuing eligibility for special education.

Least Restrictive Environment

Least restrictive environment means that placement of students with disabilities in special classes, separate schools and other removal from the general educational environment occurs only when the nature of severity of the disability is such that, even with the use of supplementary aids and services, education cannot be satisfactorily achieved.  The placement of an individual student with a disability in the least restrictive environment shall:

  • Provide the special education needed by the student;
  • Provide for the education of the student to the maximum extent appropriate to the needs of the student with other students who do not have disabilities; and
  • Be as close as possible to the student’s home.
  • If the student can be educated satisfactorily in the general education classroom, with aids and services, then that is the student’s LRE.

Related Services 

These are developmental, corrective, and other supportive services as required to assist a student with a disability as recommended by the CSE.  

The following are descriptions of some of these services:

Speech/Language Therapy:  Service provided by a licensed speech-language pathologist who is responsible for the assessment, diagnosis, and treatment of children with communication deficits and disorders that interfere with a student’s ability to speak, understand, or use language. 

Physical Therapy: Service provided by a licensed Physical Therapist (PT) who identifies the physical conditions which interfere with a student’s educational program.  PTs conduct assessments of mobility skills, daily activities, positioning, posture, muscle strength, and sensory-motor performance during activities in the school environment.  They may collaborate with teachers and parents to determine physical therapy goals that will allow the child to benefit from individualized instructional program. 

Occupational Therapy: Service provided by a licensed Occupational Therapist (OT) who provides direct service either individually or in a small group.  OTs help students to learn, re-learn, and adapt skills to be as functional as possible in their daily lives including but not limited to; school performance, self-care, and play / leisure activities. 

Vision Services:  Service provided by a certified teacher of the blind/visually impaired (TVI) who provide instructional support to classroom teachers and students with visual impairments.  Teaching strategies, environmental modifications, Braille instruction, specifically deigned materials such as large print exams, computer adaptations, and professional development opportunities are provided. 

Orientation and Mobility Services:  Designed to meet the needs of students with visual impairments in mobility and orientation training in a variety of settings.  A certified teacher for the blind/ visually impaired teaches strategies to help students successfully navigate through their environment.

Audiology Services: Consultation services, evaluations for hearing acuity, middle ear dysfunction, educational FM amplification, and central auditory processing disorders are included in this area. 

Autism Services:  Training, consultation, transition assistance, and assessments support for parents and staff working with students with autism.  Strategies are shared to increase the student’s learning, communication skills, adaptive behaviors, and levels of independence. 

Behavioral Support Services:  Services provided for students with severe emotional and /or behavioral difficulties including mental health support, prosocial skills training, and therapeutic crisis intervention.  This may include the development of a Functional Behavioral Assessment and Behavioral Intervention Plan.

Deaf and Hard of Hearing Services:  There are a variety of services offered including; Teacher of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (TOD/ HH) with direct service, consult services, interpreting, sign skills coach, note taking, speech/language therapy and audiology. 

Assistive Technology Services:  These services offer students a variety of options to assist in the selection, acquisition, or use of assistive technology devices. 

Programs and Placements

Consultant Teacher Services (CT): direct and/or indirect services provided to a student with a disability in the student’s regular education classes for a minimum of two hours per week. 

Integrated Co-Teach (ICT): A special education program with one special education teacher and one general education teacher who share responsibility for the instruction of all students.  A minimum of 12 students can be placed in an integrated classroom. 

Resource:  Resource room programs shall be for the purpose of supplementing the regular or special education instruction of students with disabilities who are in need of such supplemental programs for a minimum of three hours per week.

Helpful Resources: