Interagency Coordination

   
OVERVIEW
   
 

One of three special education workgroups supporting schools in the provision of services for students with disabilities in accordance with state and federal mandates, the interagency workgroup helps to coordinate services for students who are served by multiple agencies and collaborates with schools and human services agencies. Use the links below for more information about:

Residential Review
The agency's residential review process was created by statute in order to ensure that teams who are considering residential services for a student understand the full range of educational options available as early in the process as possible.

State-placed Students
Students who are placed outside of their school district by a state agency or a licensed child placement agency, or who are residing in a program for pregnant and parenting women, or are placed in a residential treatment facility by a state agency are considered "state-placed". Sometimes children need additional supports and services beyond those provided by a school. Act 264 ensures coordination of services for students with an emotional disability who are receiving services from more than one agency.

Surrogate Parent Program
The IDEIA and Vermont's special education rules and regulations ensure that the educational right of infants, toddlers and students are represented in the special education process. Parental involvement in planning a child's special education program is required by both federal and state statute. Surrogate parent volunteers fill the parental role in the special education process and represent students who are in state custody, whose parents are not know or cannot be located, or unaccompanied homeless youth.

Building Effective Strategies for Teaching Students with Behavioral Challenges (BEST) Project
The BEST Project is designed to help schools develop effective strategies to respond to challenging student behaviors. The agency and its interagency partners provide training and technical assistance to increase schools' capacities to implement strategies to benefit entire school communities. View reports and a link to the Web site.

   
LINKS TO CURRENTLY AVAILABLE INFORMATION
   
  Key Contact Staff by DCF District
A listing of Supervisory Union key contact staff who must be called prior to the DCF social worker contacting a school regarding enrollment of state-placed students. This list was developed by the Education Subcommittee of the Justice for Children Task Force.
   
  NOTICE: Regarding Students Placed at 204 Depot Street
When a student is placed at 204 Depot Street (204) in Bennington, the responsible LEA becomes the Southwest Vermont Supervisory Union (SVSU) for the remainder of the student's stay at 204. SVSU will request student records from the previous LEA who should provide them as quickly as possible. This applies even though some students may stay for only a few days. When the student leaves 204, SVSU is no longer the responsible LEA, unless the student's residency remains in SVSU. The responsibility may or may not revert to the previous LEA depending on where the students is placed and resides.  Based on these and other criteria, the agency will advise the Department of Children & Families and the new LEA. For questions or information, contact Mike Mulcahy.
   
 

Case Review Committee (CRC): Change in Department Representation for 2010-2011
Effective July 1, 2010, Mike Mulcahy is the department representative on the CRC. The CRC was created by the State Interagency Team (SIT) with the purpose of working with local teams to develop appropriate Coordinated Service Plans for children and to achieve the following objectives: 1) provide assistance to local teams as they identify, access and/or develop less restrictive resources and 2) when less restrictive alternatives are not appropriate, to assure the best possible match between child and residential treatment facility. For additional questions or information, contact Mike Mulcahy.

   
  Students Placed at Woodside Juvenile Rehabilitation Center (August 18, 2010) PDF
The department and the Agency of Human Services/Department of Families and Children are working to improve the delivery of special education services to students who have been placed at Woodside Juvenile Rehabilitation Center (Woodside). Many students placed at Woodside are eligible for special education services or 504 accommodations and they must be afforded all of their rights under the law. Students with IEPs or 504 Plans who stay at Woodside for more than 10 days are entitled to receive appropriate special education services and/or accommodations and modifications. For questions or information, contact Mike Mulcahy.
   
 

Hospitalized Students: Brattleboro Retreat Change PDF
Upon reexamination of the statutes, the department no longer considers these students "state placed". Therefore when students are hospitalized at the Brattleboro Retreat for a psychiatric hospitalization, it is important for school districts to determine and direct what services are to be offered and when in concert with medical and educational staff at the Brattleboro Retreat, and to authorize expenditures prior to the provision of services based on application of the homebound and hospitalized rules for general education 1252 and special education students 2364.2. For information or questions, contact Mike Mulcahy.

   
  Report Card for Special Education Students in DCF Custody PDF
The department needs assistance in support of Vermont DCF Family Services Policy 151 (Educational Issues for Children in Custody) which states: "To assist in ensuring the stability of educational services for children in DCF custody, DCF workers are now required to obtain report cards and attendance information for all children in DCF custody." The Agency of Education requests that schools provide copies of the final report card for each student in custody who is either in special education or being evaluated for special education as soon as possible after the current school year. For information or questions, contact Mike Mulcahy.
   
  Vermont Positive Behavior Interventions & Supports (VTPBiS)
VTPBiS can best be described as a systems approach to academic achievement and social competence for all children. VTPBiS is not a model, but a compilation of research based practices, interventions and systems integrated to improve the educational experience of all students, including those with disabilities.
   
  Vermont 2009: Success Beyond Six Minimum Standards for Behavioral Interventionists
These standards are a collaboration between the Departments of Education and Mental Health with widespread input from both schools and community mental health centers. The Department of Mental Health has developed a self assessment and documentation system for the community mental health centers to determine if they meet minimum standards. They will provide technical assistance and support to those community mental health centers that did not meet the minimum standards to develop and implement a plan to meet the standards before July 1, 2009. For more information contact Deb Quackenbush.
   
 

Interagency Agreement between the Agency of Education and Agency of Human Services (June 2005) PDF 
This agreement clarifies how these state agencies will work together to ensure that all necessary services for an eligible child to receive a free appropriate public education are provided. Services might include specialized instruction in school, transition support, counseling and mental health support as well as other forms of assistance. The agreement outlines several activities, including creation of transition task forces and cross training for agency staff and educators. It also calls for regular meetings between the education commissioner and Agency of Human Services secretary and annual reports to the Governor's Cabinet on Children and Youth.

  • Interagency Agreement Users Guide (April 2006) PDF
    This document provides background information about the enactment of the original Act 264 legislation in 1988 and a brief summary of the law. It also describes key components of the DOE/AHS Interagency Agreement as it relates to Act 264, including the purpose, mission and principles of the agreement; a definition of who is eligible for coordination of services; and guidelines for how the Local Interagency Teams (LITS) and the State Interagency Team (SIT) assure coordination of services and oversight of the Vermont system of care.

  • Interagency Agreement Strengths, Challenges & Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) PDF 
    Interagency Agreement Support Committee document of May 1, 2006

   
 

Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) & Appendix Regarding Educational Placement and Alternative Educational Plans for Children in DFC Custody (November 16, 2009)PDF
This updated version of the MOU between DOE and DCF, signed in  November 16, 2009 by Commissioners  Armando Vilaseca and Steve Dale more closely aligns with new definitions of state placed students under the statute. Instead of the Family Services caseworker making a request directly to the Agency of Education, the school district that has agreed to educate the student and is seeking reimbursement will send the letter of request to the Commissioner of Education. This will ensure that there is clarity about whom has agreed to act as LEA on behalf of a student and that school districts that have requested an alternative plan for the education of a student receive the appropriate commissioner approval for reimbursement in those instances where services are reimbursable. For questions about this process, contact Mike Mulcahy or Deb Quackenbush.

  • Guidance for Implementing the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU): FM09-14PDF
    The MOU outlines and formalizes a process for obtaining educational continuity. This process has existed in statute but has been generally unknown and infrequently accessed. This document explains the process with examples, funding provisions and responsibility, a sample of questions to consider, and a one page quick reference sheet for your convenience. For questions or assistance, contact Mike Mulcahy or Deb Quackenbush.
   
  Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Coordination Services Planning, Act 264 and the DOE/AHS Interagency Agreement PDF 
Informational handout about coordinated services planning for children and adolescents with disabilities and their families.
   
 

Vermont 2008: Success Beyond Six Final Report
View the joint report from the Vermont Agency of Education and the Division of Mental Health Services to the Vermont Legislature dated January 15, 2008.

   
 

Vermont Interagency Coordinated Services Plan (CSP) & Referral Forms
As defined by Act 264, a coordinated services plan is a written addendum to each service plan developed by an individual agency for a child or adolescent with severe emotional disturbance which shall be developed when the eligible child has needs that require services from more than one agency. It shall be designed to meet the needs of the child within his or her family or in an out-of-home placement, and in the school and the community.

   
 

Coordinated Service Plan (CSP) Survey
The Vermont Agency of Education and Agency of Human Services want to improve CSPs for youth and families. To do this, it is incredibly important to hear from team members like you. If you have been a member of a team that developed a Coordinated Services Plan (CSP) for a youth in Vermont between July 1, 2007 and May 1, 2008, you are invited to complete a short survey (less than 10 minutes) to share your thoughts about how well this process has worked using the link below. For questions about this survey, contact Jesse Suter at (802) 656-1130 or e-mail jesse.suter@uvm.edu.

  • Take the CSP Survey
    Use this link to take the survey. If this link does not work, copy and paste the following address into your Web browser: http://vtcsp.blogspot.com.
   
 

Report to the Legislature to Address Services for Individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders (January 2008) PDF
This report to the Legislature is a collaboration of the Agency of Human Services and the Agency of Education. It is the direct result of Act 35 signed by the Governor in May 2007. The report includes findings and recommendations divided into: Best Practices; Identification and Diagnosis; Early Intervention; Coordination of Services; Access to Information; Training and Workforce Development; Technical Assistance and Consultation; Education Services, Adult Services; and Funding.

  • Vermont Interagency White Paper on Autism Spectrum Disorders: Report to the Act 264 Board (March 2006) PDF
    This joint publication was completed by Vermont Agency of Education and Agency of Human Services staff at the request of the Act 264 Board. The document includes information regarding the number of individuals identified state-wide; evidence-based practice; current and projected needs; roles of parents, schools, and community agencies; and service gaps.
   
 

Vermont State I-Team
The Vermont State Interdisciplinary Team (I-Team) is a state-funded team of professionals and parents who provide consultative services to educators and families of students with severe multiple disabilities and dual sensory impairments. The mission of the I-Team is to assist local teams of families, educators, and other service providers in the delivery of quality educational services to students with intensive educational needs through technical assistance, professional development, and family support. Use the link above to view directions on how to make an I-Team referral and to download a referral form. For questions or information, contact Deborah Quackenbush at (802) 479-1232 or deb.quackenbush@state.vt.us.

   
  Special Education Information
Use this link for additional resources related to special education, including links to parent resources, forms, laws and regulations, policies and various special education-related documents and publications.

Questions?

Mike Mulcahy at mike.mulcahy@state.vt.us or (802) 479-1223

Page Last Updated on March 21, 2014