Special Education

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Alone we can do so little.
Together we can do so much.

– Helen Keller

Department overview

Niskayuna Central School District is responsible for providing special education services to all students who qualify for such support. These services are coordinated by the district’s Special Education and Pupil Personnel Services Department (PPS), which encompasses the district’s Committees for Special Education at the preschool, elementary and secondary levels. PPS also oversees the district’s health(nurses), counseling and mental health (social workers, school psychologists, school counselors) services for all students who attend schools within our school district.

Navigate to information about:


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Sign up for a virtual SUNY Information Session designed to support students with disabilities as they transition from high school to college. Please email our Dawn Dagostino (Niskayuna Transition Coordinator) if you have any questions.

https://www.suny.edu/counselor/events/


Register for a Virtual SUNY College Fair

https://www.suny.edu/attend/events/virtual-college-fair/


SEPTO Meetings

The Nisky SEPTO will be meeting on March 12, 2020, from 7-8:30 pm in the Board of Education Room in Van Antwerp.

We welcome all parents and caregivers of students with disabilities and 504’s to participate.

For more information please see our Facebook.

Our next meeting will be refining our goals for this school year and discussion of moving toward charter!


Results from the Fall 2019 Special Education Survey

The school district and Pupil Personnel Services Department, in particular, would like to thank the families that participated in our first-ever Special Education Survey this fall. The survey received 173 total responses and provided great input to help in our planning.

A link to the survey results shared at a Board of Education meeting is below.

Based on the survey responses, a district-wide Special Education Parent-Teacher Organization (SEPTO) will be created, the Special Education website is being updated, and we will be working to provide more communication in general, especially about transitions, programs, and the special education process. The survey reinforced our focus on continually evaluating our continuum of services and planning for the future.

Here is a link to the survey results: https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1aN2-S0mHJ7iLFIv8LhjNrl8UgniCqztmsOjjn63hYyk/edit?usp=sharing​

Preparing for Annual Review

We continue to use IEP Direct for annual reviews, so the documents should all be familiar to you. As in the past, pre-meetings and preparing for the meeting makes for a smoother Annual Review meeting. Please read our program description [PDF], which may help you prepare. Students who demonstrate substantial regression may be eligible for Extended School Year (ESY.) Your child/students’ case manager will discuss this with you prior to the annual review meeting. In preparing for Annual Reviews we hold numerous transition nights in February; usually Pre-K to Kindergarten, Grade 5 to Grade 6 and Grade 8 to Grade 9.

Information for parents of students with disabilities

If your child has a disability or if you suspect that your child has a disability, you can request a meeting of the Committee on Special Education (CSE) by contacting the district’s Special Education Department at (518) 382-2525.

“A Parent’s Guide to Special Education,” published by the New York State Education Department, is also a helpful resource.

Committee on Preschool Special Education

The district’s Committee on Preschool Special Education (CPSE) is responsible for ensuring that parents are aware of the opportunities available for evaluation of children 3-5 years old who are suspected of having a disability, and for services to preschool children with disabilities. The committee consists of representatives from preschool special education agencies, county administrators, parents and district staff. All recommendations for services are made to the Board of Education. If you have concerns about your child’s development or would like more information, call Lorraine Noel at (518) 382-2525 or e-mail lnoel@niskyschools.org.

CSE/CPSE 504 meetings & Closings/delays

If school is closed, all meetings will be canceled and rescheduled.

If school is delayed by one hour, all meetings will be delayed by one hour.

Please note the following important changes if school is delayed by two hours and:

  • Your student attends Niskayuna High School and the meeting is scheduled to begin at 9:30 a.m. or later, the meeting will be held as originally scheduled. If the meeting is scheduled to begin before 9:30 a.m., the meeting will be canceled and rescheduled.
  • Your student attends Iroquois Middle School or Van Antwerp Middle School and the meeting is scheduled to begin at 11 a.m. or later, the meeting will be held as originally scheduled. If the meeting is scheduled to begin before 11 a.m., the meeting will be canceled and rescheduled.
  • Your student is either a preschool student or attends one of the Niskayuna Elementary Schools and the meeting is scheduled to begin at 11 a.m. or later, the meeting will be held as originally scheduled. If the meeting is scheduled to begin before 11 a.m., the meeting will be canceled and rescheduled.
  • Your student attends either a private school, a BOCES program or a residential program and the meeting is scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. or later, the meeting will be held as originally scheduled. If the meeting is scheduled to begin before 10 a.m., the meeting will be canceled and rescheduled.