Q & A on CHILD/SEPAC

What is C.H.I.L.D?
Children Having Individual Learning Differences, Inc. (C.H.I.L.D.) is 501(c)(3) New Jersey nonprofit organization that was formed in 2006. Our main focus is to provide support to students with learning differences. However we support ALL students whether they receive special education services or not. C.H.I.L.D. seeks to bridge the gap between general and special education by working together with administrators and teachers to create an educational and social environment where all students can succeed. We also serve as a resource to the surrounding educational community and therefore all of our workshops and events are open to the public.

We provide free workshops for parents, teachers and administrators, provide parents with
support and networking opportunities through our Circle of Friends meetings and parent groups. Currently we have 3 Parent Groups: Dyslexia, Autism and ADHD.

What does C.H.I.L.D. do?
C.H.I.L.D. is dedicated to education, support and collaboration. We serve as a (1) Parent support group providing support and information to parents, and (2) a Special Education Parent Advisory Committee (“SEPAC”) facilitating in-depth discussion of key issues affecting parents and the School District, and providing input to the District on systemic issues concerning children receiving special education and related services. The state of New Jersey, in the New Jersey Administrative Code 6A: 13-1.2(h), mandates that all public school districts have a SEPAC: “Each board of education shall ensure that a special education parent advisory group is in place in the district to provide input to the district on issues concerning students with disabilities.”

As a parent support group, our goals are to:

  • Provide information to support parents as they advocate for their
    child’s special education needs.
  • Provide opportunities for families to support each other and share
    resources and information that will impact their child’s success.
  • Write grants and conduct fundraisers.

As a SEPAC, our goals are to:

  • Provide input to the district on issues concerning students with
    disabilities.
  • Enhance the family-school collaboration and partnership in special
    education and general education.
  • Promote active participation and acceptance of children with special education needs in the Verona academic and wider community.

When does C.H.I.L.D. meet?
C.H.I.L.D. board meets monthly and these meetings are open to the public. We have “Circle of Friends” and parent group meetings 3-4 times a year. Our schedule of meetings can be found here on our website. SEPAC meets monthly in closed session with school district personnel.

Where can I get more information about C.H.I.L.D./SEPAC and special education services in Verona?
You can find current information about C.H.I.L.D./SEPAC here on our website or by going to http://www.veronaschools.org and visiting the Department of Special Service’s webpage.

If my child is not eligible for special services, should I become a member of C.H.I.L.D.?Absolutely! We want to be a resource for ALL parents. Our past workshops have covered topics about study strategies, organizational skills, and school anxiety. Input from the entire community helps us to ensure success for ALL students.

My child just qualified to receive special services. Can I speak with a Verona parent with experience working with the Special Services Department and navigating through the process?
Apart from C.H.I.L.D. meetings, our members are available to provide parents who are new to working with Special Services with informal orientation discussions. These parents can share their own perspectives and experiences navigating the process of determining and managing their child’s special education program and help connect parents with additional information and the right resources. If this type of informal discussion with another parent would be helpful, please feel free to email us at childverona@gmail.com.

How can I get involved with C.H.I.L.D.?
C.H.I.L.D. is always in need of a helping hand! Please consider volunteering in one of our
committees or parent groups. If you are interested in volunteering, please email us at
childverona@gmail.com.

Advertisements