Special Education – Information for Families
Lori Cimeno, Director of Student Services
June Ouellette, Administrative Assistant
Special education within the Wellesley Public Schools encompasses a wide range of services for eligible students with disabilities, ages 3 – 22. In accordance with federal and state laws and regulations, students identified as eligible for special education have an Individualized Educational Program (IEP) that is designed by a Team of individuals that includes district professionals, the parents/guardians, and the student, when appropriate. Each IEP is developed to meet the unique needs of the student and includes information of what services will be provided, where the services will be provided, and the goals set for the student.
The Wellesley Public Schools provide a wide range of specialized instruction that represents a continuum of service delivery options. In keeping with the federal mandate of Least Restrictive Environment (LRE), Teams will always consider providing specialized instruction in the general education classroom first. The vast majority of our special education students receive their specialized instruction within an inclusive environment, spending more than 80% of their day in the general education classroom. When the appropriate level of services requires instruction outside the general education classroom, the Team will consider other placement options, such as a Learning Center, a district program, or special education programs outside the Wellesley Public Schools in a state approved special education school.
District programs are developed when a cohort of students have like needs of a more intensive nature. Throughout each level (preschool – post high school), highly specialized programs exist for students with autism, language-based learning disabilities, emotional/behavioral challenges, and for students whose disabilities cross domains, resulting in a need for an integrated Team approach.
Special education is a highly regulated and complex process. The special educators work closely with families and encourage a collaborative relationship. In addition, the Parent Advisory Council (PAC) provides support to families through regularly scheduled meetings and parent networking. For more information about the PAC, you may use this link provided. www.wellesleypac.org
Each level, preschool through high school, has a Department Head that coordinates special education services. The following provides contact information should you have questions regarding special education processes or procedures:
Department Head: Rebecca Zieminski email@example.com 781-446-6222 x2800
Secretary: Isabel Cashman firstname.lastname@example.org 781-446-6222 x2800
Interim Department Head: Kristen Stacy email@example.com 781-446-6210 x5625
- Jamie Morrison firstname.lastname@example.org 781-446-6210 x5625 (Fiske, Hardy, Hunnewell & Upham)
- Astrid Mazariegos email@example.com 781-446-6210 x5625 (Bates, Schofield & Sprague)
Secretary: Cheryl Rose firstname.lastname@example.org 781-446-6210 x5625
Department Head: Mimi Feerick email@example.com 781-446-6210 x5714
Team Chair: Cristina Malinn firstname.lastname@example.org 781-446-6250 x3622
Secretary: Melanie Friedman email@example.com 781-446-6250 x5715
Department Head: Debi Levine firstname.lastname@example.org 781-446-6290 x4627
Team Chair: Katie Lynch email@example.com 781-446-6290 x4630
Secretary: Barbara Newton firstname.lastname@example.org
Out-of-District / Transition Coordinator
Michael McIntyre email@example.com 781-446-6210 x5893
Assistive Technology Specialist: Patti Weismer firstname.lastname@example.org (all schools except PAWS)
Assistive Technology Specialist: Mary Gaynor email@example.com (PAWS, Hunnewell, Upham, WMS, WHS)
Teacher of the Deaf & Hard of Hearing: Liz Wheeler firstname.lastname@example.org (all schools)
Another source of parent information is the Parent’s Notice of Procedural Guidelines (in multiple languages). I encourage all parents to become familiar with this Notice. Please follow the link provided to view this document.
On behalf of the special education department, I wish each student a rewarding school year.