The Continuum of Special Education Services


The continuum of services pyramid is a visual model for an individual student’s services and programs resulting directly from that individual’s needs. School Districts are required to offer services and supports, that start in the Least Restrictive Environment (LRE) and then move across the continuum so that all of the student’s needs can be met. As a student’s needs change, services may move up and/or down the continuum; the goal is always up. The continuum of services is fluid; as a student’s needs change, services and service delivery can change.

Students with disabilities are provided with specially designed instruction, inclusive and/or individualized educational support, assistive technology resources, parent and staff consultation, related services and opportunities with which to achieve success in middle and high school as indicated by the student’s Individual Education Program (IEP). The individual education program is designed for each eligible student by the school based special education team. The individual student is also included when the student is fourteen years of age or older. The individual education plan is reviewed on an annual basis, with three year re-evaluation of eligibility occurring on a three-year cycle. Some students with disabilities may qualify for accommodations in the classroom through a 504 plan.