Seattle Public Schools

Family Involvement and Resources

Special Education Family Communications

September 2021

Dear Families of Students Receiving Special Education Services, 

Welcome to the 2021-22 school year! We are thrilled to have you all join us for 180 Days of Excellence. Please know that we remain focused on health and safety and continue to work closely with state and local public health officials. We take our responsibilities seriously and are working hand in hand with public health leaders to ensure best practices in protection and mitigation to limit the spread of the virus. 

We know that this school year might feel different, but we are confident that we will be able to focus on joy, connection, and inclusion as much as possible.  

Below are some brief reminders and updates to kick off the year: 

Remote Meetings Until October 29 

In response to the continued COVID-19 pandemic, from September 1 – October 29 all SPS parent meetings with educators will be held virtually via Microsoft Teams. This means IEP meetings will be held remotely through the end of October. If you would like to communicate with your student’s case manager or staff, please do so via Teams or phone. We will share more information as we continue to work with our labor partners and receive additional updates from state and local public health experts.  

Recovery Services  

Recovery services are the additional special education and related services for students with disabilities that are designed to address lack of appropriate progress on IEP goals because of the pandemic. Recovery services were offered this summer and will continue to be offered through the summer of 2022.   

Examples of recovery services may include: Additional in-person instruction, in-person or teletherapy services, additional transition services, additional remote services (offered before/after school or during school breaks), special education services on early release days, additional in-person structured play groups or peer social groups (offered before/after school or during school breaks).  

We will continue to share information about recovery services. If you have questions now or would like to discuss the potential need for recovery services for your student, please contact your student’s case manager or special education teacher. You can also visit our Let’s Talk page and select the “recovery services” button under the “Special Education General” tab to submit questions.   

Community Engagement Opportunities 

Last year, the Special Education Department hosted three rounds of family and community forums to provide families with information, listen to feedback, and answer questions. We will be offering similar opportunities for family engagement this year. More information will be available in the upcoming weeks.  

Monthly Family Communications  

Families can expect monthly communication from the Special Education department. We focus on delivering information about the department’s work, updates, and resources. All communications to families will be translated into our top five languages and will also be posted to the Special Education department website. Additional information will also be shared via School Beat, social media platforms, and district website. 

As always, we appreciate your collaboration. Take care of yourselves and your families! 

In partnership, 

Dr. Rocky Torres, Executive Director of Special Education and Inclusion