Child Find is a component of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEIA), which requires school districts to identify, locate and evaluate all children with disabilities between the ages of 3 and 21 who are in need of early intervention or educational services.
Laurens County School District 55 provides free developmental screenings throughout the year for children between the ages of 3 and 5 through the Child Find screening process.
Child Find Coordinator:
Muri Howle, Ph. D.
Special Services Department
Laurens County School District 55
301 Hillcrest Drive
Laurens, SC 29360
CHILD FIND CLINIC INFORMATION
Student Health Screenings
Laurens County School District 55 school nurses offer screenings as recommended by the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Services for specified grade levels each year. For questions about health screenings at your child's school, contact the school nurse.
ANNUAL PUBLIC NOTICE OF SPECIAL EDUCATION SERVICES AND PROGRAMS
According to state and federal special education regulations, annual public notice to parents of children who reside within a school district is required regarding child find responsibilities. School districts are required to conduct child find activities for children who may be eligible for services via Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEIA).
This notice shall inform parents throughout the school district of the child identification activities and of the procedures followed to ensure confidentiality of information pertaining to students with disabilities or eligible young children. In addition to this public notice, each school district shall publish written information in the handbook and on the website. Children ages three through twenty-one who attend public or private schools; those who are home schooled; those who are homeless or are wards of the state can be eligible for special education programs and services. If parents believe that the child may be eligible for special education, the parent should contact their district of residence.
A screening process for children ages 3 years through 5 years, which may lead to a more comprehensive assessment is provided at no charge to parents through Child Find at Laurens County School District 55 District office. Parents can obtain additional information about this process by contacting the Child Find Coordinator at 864-984-3568.
For children who are currently enrolled in Laurens County School District 55, parents may request a screening by contacting the principal or guidance counselor at the child’s school. The contact persons at each school are responsible for ensuring permissions are obtained within a reasonable time.
For children who live within the Laurens County School District 55 attendance zone and are homeschooled or attending a private school, parents may contact the Special Services Department at 864-984-8128.
For students who were receiving services under IDEIA at their previous school and are transferring into Laurens County School District 55, please contact the principal or guidance counselor at your child’s school.
Parental Rights in the Child Find Process
The Child Find process is a collaborative one with school personnel working in conjunction with parents to locate, evaluate, and identify children who may need special education and related services. Parents and guardians will be provided Procedural Safeguards at the time of this collaborative meeting. Following the meeting to determine if an evaluation is warranted, parents and guardians will be issued a Prior Written Notice. Children in need of special education services or an accommodation for a disability should be identified in a timely manner. If the child is referred for a comprehensive evaluation, informed parental consent must be obtained prior to beginning the evaluation. Once written parental consent is obtained, the district will proceed with the evaluation process.The initial evaluation must be conducted within 60 calendar days of receiving parental consent for the evaluation.
Once the evaluation process is completed, a team of qualified professionals and the parents determine whether the child is eligible. If the child is eligible, the individualized education program (IEP) team meets, develops the program, and determines the educational placement. Once the IEP team develops the program and determines the educational placement, school district staff will issue a notice of recommended educational placement/prior written notice. Written parental consent is required before initial services can be provided. The parent has the right to revoke consent after initial placement.
Confidentiality of Information
The school district maintains records concerning children enrolled in the school, including students with disabilities. All records are maintained in the strictest confidentiality. Your consent, or consent of an eligible child who has reached the age of majority under State law, must be obtained before personally identifiable information is released, except as permitted under the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). The age of majority in South Carolina is 18. Each participating agency must protect the confidentiality of personally identifiable information at collection, storage, disclosure, and destruction states. One official at each participating agency must assume responsibility for ensuring the confidentiality of any personally identifiable information. Each participating agency must maintain, for public inspection,a current listing of the names and positions of those employees within the agency who have access to personally identifiable information.
For additional information related to student records, the parent can refer to the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).
This notice is only a summary of the Special Education services, evaluation and screening activities, and rights and protections pertaining to children with disabilities, children thought to be disabled, and their parents. For more information or to request evaluation or screening of a public or private school child, contact the responsible entity listed above in the Screening Section. For preschool age children, information, screenings and evaluations requested, may be obtained by contacting the Child Find Coordinator at the District Office.