The special education department at Norridge SD 80 provides a comprehensive continuum of services to meet the dynamic needs of our students. Our services are designed to provide students access to a free, appropriate public education in the least restrictive environment possible.
In order to receive special education services, a student must have a qualifying disability (ISBE, n.d.) that adversely affects educational progress and requires specially designed instruction.
It is important to note that not all students with a disability will be eligible for special education services. If a student with a disability does not qualify for an IEP, they can request a 504 plan to meet their educational needs (105 ILCS 5/14-6.01).
Parent and Student Right to a Qualified Interpreter at IEP and Section 504 Meetings .pdf file
English Language Program
What is the English Language Program?
The purpose of the English language program is to increase English language proficiency. District 80 teachers create classroom settings where all languages and cultures are valued. Research-based learning strategies are used to align the English learner program with grade level curriculum to provide a challenging educational program for all students. The goal of the program is to help students function in the classroom at high levels of social and academic English proficiency.
How does a student qualify for the English Language Program?
All students new to the district are required by state law to complete a Home Language Survey. When "yes" is answered to one or more of the questions the attending school is required to assess the student's English language proficiency.
Students must be assessed within 30 days of their first day in the district.
Kindergarten student are assessed using the WIDA Measure of Developing English Language (MODEL). For second semester of 1st grade through 8th grade, students are assessed using the WIDA Online Screener to determine eligibility for EL services.
Parents of students who are eligible for EL services will receive a letter of notification regarding their child's eligibility for EL services. If there are questions about the services parents should contact the building assistant principal.
What does the program look like?
There are a few program models available in the district. Students qualify for a program model based on the number of students in the school who speak the same language and/or on the assessment results. The following programs are available:
Transitional Program of Instruction: this program provides English as a second language and native language support, as needed. In this program the majority of the instruction take place in the general education classroom with push-in support form an English Language teacher. Students with lower proficiency levels in English receive additional support from an English Language teacher for an additional pull out time.
Transitional Bilingual Education: this program provides instruction in both English and students' native language in order to help students learn the core academic subjects required for all students.
Newcomer: short term program available to recent immigrants. Students receive ESL and content area instruction designed to address any gaps in learning and help smooth the transition to the classroom.
How does a student exit the program?
The State of Illinois has established exit criteria for English Language services.
A student who obtains an overall composite proficiency level of 4.8 on the ACCESS Assessment. ACCESS must be taken yearly by all students who qualify for services.
The ACCESS test measures a student's English Language in four language domains: Listening, Speaking, Reading, and Writing.
Parents, at any time, may decline English Language services. Parent must indicate, in writing, to the building assistant principal. Students who do not receive services are required to take the ACCESS assessment yearly until a score of 4.8 on the overall composite is achieved.
The ACCESS assessment is required by the Illinois State Board of Education. The district can not exclude students from ACCESS.
Can you tell me about the Bilingual Parent Advisory Committee?
A school district is required to have a Bilingual Parent Advisory Committee (BPAC) when there are 20 English learner students of the same home language. BOC is made up of bilingual parents with students currently enrolled in the EL program, as well as teachers and other school staff. The members participate in the planning, operation, and evaluation of the EL program in the district.
BPAC Meeting - February 23, 2023
Where can I find additional information?
Please contact the building assistant principal for additional information.