• A hallway with lighting fictures in the ceiling and a door with PUSD logo on it

      Pasadena Unified School District building (Photo – Staff)

      PUSD Board made a commitment to improving outcomes for Special Education students. Community Advisory Committee will develop new bylaws.

      By Albert Martin

      The PUSD Division of Special Education will be working in collaboration with Student Support Services and the Division of Curriculum, Instruction and Professional Development to develop the following system of support based upon Multi-Tier Systems of Support (MTSS):

      Operations Information – Staff can find the information they need quickly and efficiently.

      Governance- PUSD is currently working with CDE on their Special Education Plan, especially in the areas where they did not meet state targets. This document will guide PUSD to identify root causes and plan for continuous improvement.

      Effective Decision Making-The Special Education Division has team collaborative meetings every week to review data, discuss instructional practices and ensure that operations are effective across the organization.

      Transparency and Communication- As PUSD works to bring together a cohesive, collaborative team with all staff members, the following is being done to support principals and site administrative staff:

      • Comprehensive needs assessment survey is being sent to all administrators;
      • Professional development modules will be designed based on the feedback received;
      • Monthly office hours are being established with the Interim Director of Special Education.

      Supporting Partners

      Urban Collaborative

      The Urban Collaborative is a national professional learning community providing in-depth support to PUSD to provide equitable and inclusive education and ensure that students are educated in the least restrictive environment. They have conducted a district review and will be working with PUSD for five years to support development and monitor implementation of a strategic plan focused on promoting inclusive supports and services for students with mental health challenges.

      Community Advisory Committee

      The Community Advisory Committee is established pursuant to procedures outlined in the Special Education Local Plan for the Pasadena SELPA. Membership in this Committee includes individuals who are sensitive to and will work on behalf of students with disabilities (parents/guardians of students with disabilities, special education staff, general education staff, agency representatives, and community members) and responsible to the Board of Education and the Pasadena SELPA administration. The Community Advisory Committee responsibilities include advising the policy and administrative entity of the district, SELPA, or county office, regarding the development, amendment and review of the Local Plan.

      The Community Advisory Committee (CAC) members represent not only parents concerned with the quality of Special Education but the entire special education community.  The members are recommended by their peers, then formally appointed by the School Board.  PUSD Superintendent Brian McDonald stated that the relationship between the CAC and PUSD staff has not been productive. By the CAC developing bylaws he hopes to establish a better relationship between staff and the CAC as well as clear guidelines in which to do their work. Once this is established, new CAC members will be approved.

      The Special Board meeting ended with six votes in favor, and one absent, with all in favor of the CAC (Community Advisory Committee for Special Education) working on Bylaws to govern themselves before approving a new advisory committee. For now, the list of potential CAC committee members will remain provisional.

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