Red Oak Academy Special Needs Services

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Using the same K-12 textbook and supplemental materials* for all students, Red Oak Academy provides to parents at-a-distance guidance for at-home course selection. Students who perform at a lower rate may be advised to work below grade level. Students who are capable of performing at a faster rate are allowed to proceed at a faster rate. In all cases, students are allowed to work at their own pace.

(*) supplemental materials for preparing students to perform certain tasks and for remediation of course-specific deficiencies are made available to parents. These include ACT/SAT/GED preparation guides and Phonics Skills development kits - all for at-home administration.

  1. Red Oak Academy voluntarily observes all of the requirements of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Individuals with Disabilities in Education Act.

  2. This voluntary compliance is primarily comprised of assisting parents in obtaining private evaluations of their student's specialized needs in their own home towns or surrounding areas AND implementing modifications to the home instruction plan provided by Red Oak Academy

  3. Once assessments have been completed, ROA meets with parents at-a-distance to engage whatever professional recommendations have been obtained from the third-part evaluation to insure their student's academic success.

Additionally, Red Oak Academy provides the following services for special needs students:

RECORDS ASSESSMENT - At the time of enrollment, Red Oak Academy requests student records and transcripts from students' previously attended schools. Once received, the records are reviewed by an Administrator who then creates a deficiency plan and confers with parents about options for placement in Red Oak Academy.

PLACEMENT - Following the records assessment, Parents and students are then advised which courses to take through the Red Oak Academy program. In the absence of viable record keeping by the previous school/home school, Red Oak Academy administers a Generalized Reading and Math assessment test to determine appropriate grade-level.

EVALUATION REFERRAL - When it is determined that a student enrolling at Red Oak has learning difficulties or difficulties relating to a physical disability while executing the ROA program of academics, and at the parents' request, Red Oak Academy will assist parents in finding a local evaluation service that is documented through the American Psychological Association (APA) or the American Medical Association (AMA) as professionally competent and affordable. Parents are solely responsible for making these contacts and arrangements for assessment. Low income families or families without health insurance are directed to free or discounted service providers in their area.

IEP MANAGEMENT - At the time a student is enrolled, Red Oak Academy requests copies of any previous Individualized Education Plans from the student's previous school. Many times school districts are unable or unwilling to produce these documents. In these situations, Red Oak Academy will assess parent copies of IEP minutes and any other documents available as a result of their attendance in such meetings. If no IEPs have ever been convened Red Oak Academy will schedule an online IEP meeting.

Following the collection of student data from a variety of sources including but not limited to parents' privately obtained professional assessments of physical, emotional and educational ability, Red Oak Academy will convene an IEP committee online or in a conference telephone call using the guidelines specified in Sec. 504 of the Rehabilitation act of 1973 whereby the committee is comprised of parents, teachers, diagnosticians and other the individuals who may know the student and their individual strengths and limitations.

The placement decisions made by the committee are documented and an updated IEP is placed in the student's permanent record. ROA teachers are notified of any modifications to instruction or other pertinent information and a date is set for a follow-up IEP meeting to be reconvened within 10 months.

MODIFICATION TO INSTRUCTION - Typically, the recommendations of the IEP Committee will include modifications to the student's daily instructional activities. These modifications may include but are not limited to:

  • Shortened Assignments
  • More time for Assignments
  • Ability placement in specific subject areas
  • Extended Academic Year
  • Oral Testing
  • Assignment notebooks (ROA provides this to all students in webpage format)
  • Study sheets/summary sheets/outlines of most important facts
  • Mnemonic aids
  • Adaptive Assistive Devices
  • Taped textbooks
  • Highlighted textbooks
  • Large print material
  • Word processor/spell checker; calculator
  • Video Taped lectures (specific subjects)
  • Self-testing
  • Grade only on completed class work
  • Credit for class participation, effort and attendance
  • Additional time for test preparation
  • Online Reviews for tests

DYSLEXIA - Referral: Red Oak Academy provides referral to the Scottish Rite Masonic Children's Learning Center (Cincinnati, OH), The Texas Scottish Rite Children's Hospital (Dallas, TX) and America Literacy Directory to assist parents in obtaining professional dyslexia diagnosis and therapy. Red Oak academy receives the results of such testing and implements diagnostic recommendations to the IEPs of students with dyslexia.

Therapy: Additionally, Red Oak Academy provides to parents a program of intensive phonic instruction using the Saxon Phonics and Spelling curriculum - the kit is free of charge to families with financial need. Telephone support and training in the use of these Orton Gillingham based materials is available through the Saxon teacher support line (Ms. Marian Collins).

ADAPTIVE ASSISTIVE TECHNOLOGY - Red Oak Academy provides retail sources for voice synthesizer and voice recognition technology for students who are unable to read or write for whatever reason. Many students especially students with dyslexia have been able to successfully participate and interact in ROA's live online classes using these technologies. Additionally, ROA assists parents in acquiring computer-based audio recordings of textbooks (books on tape). Moreover, it has been discovered that synchronous online schooling is in and of itself an appropriate adaptive assistive device and therapy for a wide array of learning disabilities - including dyslexia.

ADD/ADHD - Since its founding in 1995, the framework for the ROA program of distance learning has served approximately 8,000 students. Of these, more than half were diagnosed as having some degree of Attention Deficit/Hyper Activity Disorder. As a result, a large body of variable symptoms have emerged of which faculty and staff have been made aware. Thus, the faculty and staff at Red Oak Academy are periodically updated on how to identify students with ADD/ADHD.

The parents of undiagnosed students are advised to contact their family physician. Students whose diagnosis is confirmed by professionally certified are urged to follow the IEP Committee process described above. Teachers are acutely aware of the strengths and limitations imposed by this anomaly. Every effort is made by ROA staff to accommodate and assist students in overcoming the limitations and developing their strengths.

GIFTED STUDENTS - Dual College Enrollment: Through it's association with the Dallas County Community College District, Red Oak Academy is able to offer gifted student populations a means by which to partake in advanced placement while in high school. With acceptable SAT/ACT scores, or by submitting to the DCCCD entrance testing in Reading and Math, ROA Students who live in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area can attend the Richland College campus and enroll in any freshman or sophomore course. Student who live out of state may enroll in any of the DCCCD courses that are offered at-a-distance. The DCCCD is accredited through the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. Tuition for these college courses is waived as long as students are enrolled in Red Oak Academy.

AP Course: Red Oak academy offers 1 Advanced Placement course online (Biology 2). Completion of this course of study prepares students to submit to the AP Biology exam.

Independent Study: Gifted students are also permitted to engage in independent accelerated studies using the standard ROA online curriculum.

Qualifications: Students wishing to qualify as gifted must present with documentation from their previous school or a licensed diagnostician. The minimum age for ROA's dual college enrollment program is suspended for Gifted students. In all cases, an IEP is created for gifted students documenting which of the ROA services the student will receive.

OTHER SPECIAL NEEDS - Red Oak Academy will make whatever modification to instruction are necessary to enable disabled students to become academically successful on a level comparable to their non-disabled peers. ROA's K-12 online program provides diagnostic referral services and modifications to instruction for a wide array of special needs including but not limited to:

  • Developmental Speech and Language Disorders
  • Social Anxiety Disorder
  • Attention Deficit Disorders
  • Processing Deficits
  • Teen Pregnancy
  • All Chronic Illness that has resulted in attendance in regular educational programs.

When student enroll with these and other disabilities, ROA makes every effort to accommodate all disabilities. Red Oak Academy was originally founded for the express purpose of offering a high tech homebound educational program for public schools. It has since evolved into a superior program of instruction that addresses the needs of all students in the K-12 age level.

Red Oak Academy, Inc. does not discriminate against any party on the basis of sex, race, national origin, ancestry, creed, pregnancy, religion, marital or parental status, sexual orientation, or physical, mental, emotional, or learning disability or handicap in its education programs or activities.

Red Oak Academy does not provide advocacy for parents who believe they have experienced discrimination in a publicly funded school setting. Red Oak Academy refers parents to the complaint process offered by the United States Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights.

All of these Special Needs Services are available free of charge to students in all states using online conferencing technology and telephone, (when necessary). Live video classes with text-based communications (chatrooms) are the primary mode of live class deliver for grades 9-12.

Distance learning courses through Red Oak Academy and the Dallas County Community College District are of immeasurable benefit to home school families in all U.S. states as it allows them to acquire a k-12 curriculum that is modeled on public schools and delivered by licensed and certified teachers and administrators.

 

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