Frequently Asked Questions

What is Special Education?

Special education is specially designed instruction and related services that meet the unique needs of an eligible student with a disability or a specific service need.  This specially designed instruction is necessary to allow the student with a disability to access the general curriculum.  The purpose of special education is to allow the student to successfully develop his or her individual educational potential.  (From the Massachusetts Department of Education and the Federation for Children with Special Needs)

What services are provided?

Medfield Public Schools may provide the following services based on a student’s disability.

  • Learning/Academic
  • Speech/Language
  • Occupational Therapy (OT)
  • Social/Emotional (Psychological)
  • Physical Therapy

How do I refer my child for special education?

Referrals need to be made in writing to the Director of Pupil Services or the building principal.  Included in the referral should be:

  • The date
  • Your child’s name, grade, and teacher
  • Your specific concerns
  • Your signature

*No evaluation or testing will take place until the school system has obtained your written consent.

What are the criteria to be eligible for Special Education services?

The evaluation examines all areas of suspected disability.  A meeting is held to answer the following questions:

  1. Does the child have a disability? What type of disability?
  2. If so, is the child making effective progress?· If the child is not making progress, is it due to the child’s disability?
  3. If so, does the child require specially designed instruction to make progress or does the child require a related service or services in order to access the general education curriculum?

Does a child have to attend Medfield Public Schools in order to be evaluated?

No, the child must be a resident of Medfield and if recommended, services would generally be provided in the Medfield Schools.

What if my child is not eligible for Special Education services?

If your child is found not eligible for services, your child may still receive accommodations and assistance through general education.  Support services are available through general education.  These support services can fully explored with your child’s building principal.  If your child has a disability and is not eligible for services, the child may be eligible for a 504 plan which provides accommodations for children with disabilities.  This can also be explored with the building principal.

What do I do if I have concerns about my child’s progress and achievement?

You should always start by talking to your child’s teacher as well as other professionals at your child’s school.

If your child is on an Individualized Education Plan, talk with your contact person.  The name and phone number of your child’s contact person is at the top of the first page of your child’s IEP.  If unsure, contact the Inclusion Coordinator at your child’s school.