Equitable opportunities to accelerate growth
District 196 Special Education is committed to equitable opportunities through high quality practices to accelerate growth for all students.
We provide a full continuum of services for students with disabilities. Our Special Education Department serves approximately 4,500 students who range in age from birth through 21. All schools in our district provide special education services with licensed special education teachers and offer intervention supports, evaluations and special education instruction.
District 196 offers a wide range of service delivery models. Most students receive services in their neighborhood school and, when possible, in their general education classroom setting.
Special Education is specialized instruction specific to the student at no cost to parents. The instruction is designed to meet the unique needs of a child with a disability. Children must meet specific criteria set by the State of Minnesota and the Federal Government to receive special education services. Special Education is an instructional service, not a place.
To receive special education services, a student must first be evaluated and meet state criteria. Once qualified, an Individual Education Plan (IEP) is developed for the student.
Director of Special Education
District 196 has a comprehensive program of Early Childhood Special Education services for children ages birth through the start of kindergarten. Children ages 3-5 who have cognitive or physical disabilities or developmental delays are served in a variety of welcoming and nurturing educational settings.
Dakota Ridge is a school for District 196 students who are enrolled in special education services and face social, emotional and behavioral challenges. Dakota Ridge provides a safe place for students to work on social, emotional and behavioral regulation and increase pro-social behavior.
The Transition Plus Program is a program for young adults ages 18-21 with special needs, who need assistance and support while pursuing transition goals and objectives. It is a community-based program emphasizing employment and independent living skills.
If your child is evaluated to see if they are eligible for special education, District 196 will share your child’s name and date of birth with the Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS) to determine if your child is on Medical Assistance or MinnesotaCare. If you do not want the district to share your child’s information, you must provide your dissent in writing at the time of consent for an evaluation.
Section 504 protects a student with an impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities, whether the student receives special education services or not.
- Examples of physical or mental impairments that may be covered under Section 504 include: epilepsy, AIDS, allergies, vision impairment, broken limbs, cancer, diabetes, asthma, temporary condition due to accidents or illness, ADD/ADHD, learning disabilities, autism, depression, intellectual disability, traumatic brain injury, and post-traumatic stress disorder.
- Examples of major life activities that can be affected by the student’s disability include: learning, thinking, concentrating, reading, speaking, walking, breathing, sleeping, caring for oneself, as well as major bodily functions, including brain function, immune system function, or digestive functions. This is not an exhaustive list.
If you have questions about 504 please contact your child’s school to learn more.