MUSER Changes

>> Good morning. This is Jayci Holmes, Federal State Legislative Liaison and the person who tends to be in charge of revisions to Chapter 101, the Maine Unified Special Education Regulations. What we're going to do is walk through the changes that were made during the last legislative session.

>> Do you just report in?

>> And that went into effect on July 19th of 2013. What I'm going to--is go through each slide which is the inspection of the regulation, indicate what was refined or added and what was the reason for that, and then at the end of that slide, we will take whatever questions you type in to the chat, vocation.

>> Yes. And choose on the other phone. I'm on the other phone with the webinar but--yeah. I got to get a call back and maybe call. OK. I can just see a few slides. Let me just [inaudible].

>> Going to be changes that they made in July. I hope you find it though.

>> The slide one.

>> Can you please mute your lines by pushing star 6 until we finish each slide?

>> Push the button.

>> I just got--listen in yours and just watch your [inaudible].

[ Inaudible Remarks ]

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>> I look at--

>> Password and--

>> In the first section of the rules that was the definition of informed clinical opinion, this is a Part B, federal definition that was included on page 7. Next definition that was modified was the definition of the intermediate education unit and that was changed because of the statutory revision in the spring of 2012 for the CDS system. That's on page 7. The added and definition of multidisciplinary which was requested by the US Department of Education during our comment period, that's on page 8. We added a definition of native language. Again, this was requested by the US Department of Education of the special education programs during the comment period. And we added a definition of qualified personnel on page 10 with the clarification so that it neared the federal regulatory language. Are there any questions about those definition changes? And make sure if you post your question on the chat box, I'll take a look and see if there's any questions.

>> If everybody could mute their line by hitting star 6, there's some echoing going on.

[ Noise ]

>> Looks as though there's no question, so we'll go on to section--next slide, which is about the responsibility for qualified early intervention and special education. We changed the references to the Child Development Services Boards to the State IEU that was due to the statute revision that deleted the CDS Board ages 15 through 21. We added parental consent which is a Part C definition on page 16. Next bullet, we added federal Part C language regarding the health assessment on pages 15 and 18. That's verbatim federal language required by the US Department of Education. We added the federal Part C language of informed clinical opinion. Again, the verbatim federal language required by the US Department of Ed. We added federal language regarding family assessment on page 19. Again, that's verbatim federal language required by the US Department of Ed. We added the term post-referral on page--which is a new term in the federal Part C regulations that came out a year ago in the fall. We added three new items to the responsibilities entity, entities, the Education in Unorganized Territories, the main school of finance in mathematics and charter schools, and that was to provide clarification of the authority for those entities for the provision of FAPE. Are there any questions on Section IV of the rule with those revisions?

>> Yeah, they think they just read the slides and they--

>> Right?

>> Back to the--

>> There's not at all the [inaudible].

>> OK, we'll move to the next slide which is Section VI, Individualized Plan Team Membership. The first bullet was changed for clarification about the written delegation of authorization by the responsible SAU to the SAU in which the child is placed. The transition information to be provided to CDS when the child turns three was requested by the US Department of Ed during their comment period. And the references to the regional boards as it was in the earlier section was because of a state statutory change that deleted the board. So, you can begin to see many of the changes made during this rule-making. We're required by the US Department of Ed or we're due to state statutory changes which we had no, no authority to do otherwise.

>> Any questions?

>> No.

>> No questions, so I'll move on to slide 7--no, Section VII, the Eligibility Criteria and Procedures. And the first bullet is we inserted the definition of informed clinical opinion that was because of the new federal definition. We move two paragraphs from page 89 to page 74 which were to make clear that the needs for specialized and related services is part of the eligibility determination for all eligibility types that had been in the adverse effect section. Wait, that was just a clarification. And on page 83, we added a fourth procedure item under the specific learning disability to address English language learners that was merely a clarification that has been requested by the field.

>> There's a question.

>> OK. We have a question.

>> Can you explain the changes in a bit more detail? Not understanding the first one on the last slide. Thanks.

>> So, let's go back to the last slide.

>> OK. The last--that was the language to reflect that the individual has the written delegation of that authorization by the responsible SAU to the SAU in which the child is placed. So, there has to be someone who has the authorization to expend federal funds. And, this is to make it clear that when a child--the team is looking at the student being served in another SAU that there has to be someone at the team meeting when the written delegation of authority from the original SAU to the other in terms of the responsibility for payment.

[ Inaudible Discussion ]

>> And folks, if you don't mute your lines, we can hear what you're saying. And if you have a question, you can state your question or you can type it into the chat box. But if you're having conversations amongst yourselves, that's fine, you definitely want to mute your lines by pressing star 6 and mute your computer speaker that will settle the feedback.

>> Paula Levitt [assumed spelling] asked that you give an example.

>> OK. If the students going to be served by SAD1 but originally resided in SAD20, SAD20 has to provide written delegation of that--the authorization to expend funds to the SAU in which the child is placed. So, SAD20 has to provide written delegation to SAD1 to author--to have that person authorize the expenditure of federal funds. Does that make it clearer?

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[ Inaudible Remark ]

>> Does 20 need to be at the table or just a letter?

>> It's just a--we want a documentation of a written delegation. They do not--they do not have to be at the team meeting.

>> Great, [inaudible] it.

>> Right, but the person who's authorized, you need to have made that written delegation so that the--or if you--excuse me, SAD1 person going to be at the team meeting where they're talking about that child services in their--in receiving district needs to be have that written authorization at the team meeting at which time they're making modifications to that child [inaudible].

>> OK. And then Deb says, "Is this is a BC [phonetic] of a superintendent agreement?"

>> That's a good question. We'll have to go--I think we--

>> I think we'll have to research that.

>> The superintendent agreement that this regulation changed in user--

>> I want pizza.

>> Wow.

>> Get your line posted--

>> So, we're having [inaudible] for dinner, remember?

>> Are we talking about dinner? You might want to mute your line by pressing star 6 so we don't have to hear that conversation. Thank you. That says every SAU has a requirement to have an authorization who's delegated to commit fund. We have to have that for every SAU. If you have a student who is going to another SAU for, let's take a region that it's an out of district placement because it's a regional program that's outside of your SAU. The--sending SAU is responsible for FAPE but the receiving SAU is going--if they're right into the IEP, they have to have somebody who's authorized to commit fund. So, sending SAU is--correct me if I'm wrong--sending SAU's confirmation that that receiving SAU has somebody who's able to commit funds for that student.

>> First on the IEP that they have to have some other meeting that can--

>> But we need further clarification on that. We'll go back to the regulation and we'll get back to you and you'll submit the questions. OK?

[ Inaudible Remark ]

>> I think we've got a few more coming in but the one--the question with what's the relationship to the superintendent's agreement is one I will research with other staff.

>> What if a sending SAU goes to the out of district meeting?

>> If--[inaudible] to describe that. It's [inaudible] so I don't want to confuse them. With sending SAU, and example I think that, I'm not sure if it relates to this but if sending SAU is going to the meeting of the out of unit placement at the special purpose private school for instance, if the sending SAU who's responsible to commit funds, I'm not sure if there'll be many situations where a sending SAU would give permission to a special purpose private school to commit funds. If your setup is such that the sending SAU is always in attendance at the IEP meeting at the receiving SAU, then the receiving SAU does not have to have authorization, delegation to commit funds because the sending SAU is they're doing that. And in your file, we would expect to see that if the sending SAU's authorization to commit funds at those bad individual is who we would expect to see at that IEP meeting.

>> So, this clarification was put for those situations where the receiving SA--the sending SAU wanted to provide written authorization to the receiving and by--to facilitate the IEP meeting and execution of--or authorization of funds. If the sending does not want to transfer that authorization, you do not have to. This is just on those circumstances where there is a desire to give another SAU the authorization, it has to be done in a written document.

>> OK. Mary says, "The sending SAU can still send a representative rather than have a letter?"

>> That is correct.

[ Inaudible Discussion ]

>> OK.

[ Inaudible Discussion ]

I think we'll go to wide--yeah--Section VII, the eligibility for FAPE for five-year-olds. We have just replaced the current, the existing--what had been the former regulatory language with the new state statutory language on page 90. That was changed in the statute and the Joint Committee on Education when they review the rule last spring [inaudible] language.

>> We'll meet from 9, 11, or 11:30.

>> OK. If there's any question. There's no questions on that slide. We'll move to the next slide which is section--Individualized Plans. There's new federal Part C language regarding the transition from Part C services on page 92 and 93. This was verbatim federal language required by the US Department of Ed. The only other change in that individualized plan sections was on page 94 with the reference to the early learning guidelines was changed to early learning standards and the reference to the learning results also taking this FAPE statutory language and indicating that it may include a comment, a core of standards in English language, arts, and mathematics that are common with other states. Again, that's to address a state statutory revision.

>> Did all dismissal language get taken out of reg?

>> Yes, all the dismissal language was removed. That happened during the second--the review by the Joint Committee on Education. Any other questions? There's not up here that we have any other. We will move to Section X which is Early Intervention and Special Education. We clarified the caseload and the case management on pages 108 and 119 through 120. That was at the request of a number of people in the field. We added language that consultation may be provided to special educators by related service personnel or educational consultants. That's on page 108. Again, that was as result of desire in the field for clarification. The third item is included or added a teacher of record. Just for clarity, a number of the staff in special services on--in the department were having questions posed by the field in the intersection of teacher record as it relate to No Child Left Behind and special ed. So that is why that was put in there. And we updated the qualifications chart to reflect what Maine has in place after the house which is the, you know, highly--the qualified personnel federally.

>> She was a--is the most recent user from 7-19-13?

>> Yes. The most--the final adoption of the regulations I'm discussing right now were in effect on July 19th, 2013.

>> And hence that no resources ratios?

>> There are no resource ratios. We've got one more question coming in.

>> What part was updated on page 113 through 115?

>> That is the qualifications chart and Meghan Southworth who's involved with title 2 updated that for me to reflect the federal--was called Housse, H-O-U-S-S-E, federal requirements.

[ Inaudible Remark ]

OK. That seems to be the last question in the math section. Now, we'll move to Section XI which is Early Intervention Services and Related Services.

>> OK.

>> We added qualified staff for vision services which is a federal Part C, Part 2 two piece of language required by the US Department of Education. We added the national standard for qualifications for assistive technology professionals on page 132 and 133. We did not have a qualification standard for this discipline, and so we should include one to be consistent with the other services that all had a qualified individual. Similar to that, we added on page 137 the services that could be provided by a board certified behavioral analyst. Again, that's a national recognized standard. And on page 137 added the qualification for nutrition services that was a federal Part C birth through two regulatory language provide--or required by the US Department of Education. So, two of those were because of federal requirements, the other two were to be consistent that we named who was the qualified individual for that particular service. That was after a lengthy discussion within the idea team. So, those were pretty much pro forma. It looks like we have no questions on that section. The next is Program Approval, Section XII. And we added language requiring the application to include the capacity to provide a safe, healthy, and appropriate educational environment as an additional piece of information that was important as part of program approval. Doesn't appear that we have any questions on that.

>> [Inaudible] science agency.

>> Section XVI, Dispute Resolution Procedures. Jonathan Braff went through and really tried to refine the language throughout the section to be more reader-friendly on pages 150 to 178. He did not change the federal element but rather just try to make it more field personnel friendly. Doesn't appear that we have any questions on that. So the last section is Section XVIII which is a Special Ed Finance section. We added the national credentials that we had done in the earlier section in terms of qualified personnel, added those credentials for the assistive technology professional and the board certified behavior analyst to the chart on page 191. We deleted the reference to the 140 percent of the Medicaid rate on page 194. They're just going to--having to the field. And if you take the Medicaid rate, the Medicaid rate is considered full payment. So, it was not appropriate to have--have the 140 percent in there. Third bullet, we added language to classify the written consent under Part B for accessing insurance which was part of our federal regulatory language, and we added a Part C language regarding policies related to the use of public benefits and insurance. In essence, the federal Part C regulations had in their newest version used the same language as for Part B. So, the accessing of either public benefits or insurance or private insurance is now comparable for both the birth through two children or families as it is for under Part B for three to five--three to 20. Doesn't appear that we have any additional questions.

>> Like when we hang in the time.

>> What? 12 o'clock.

>> We will certainly clarify with staff here the relationship to the superintendent's agreement on that SAU transfer written on--

>> Both can't, right?

>> Sounds like.

>> Both can't?

>> Yes.

>> Thank you.

>> If anyone has any further questions, if you could type them in, I'd appreciate it.

>> Hi.

[ Inaudible Remarks ]

>> What did it mean to have no resource ratio?

>> That's short. What does it mean to have no resource ratios? There are no ratios or what the staffing should be in a resource classroom in Chapter 101.

[ Pause ]

We are not going to a rule-making during this call on Chapter 101. We've only had a couple of items and discussed in the department, they aren't substantive changes and so we, we are just keeping up running file of what will be some refinements that we will implement in a rule-making in a substantive year as necessary. So, you will not see Chapter 101 revised. It will stand as it is in the July 19th, 2013 version. We have another question in the process of being [inaudible].

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>> Why were the ratios removed? Good question.

>> And I would have to go back my comments and responses but as I recall, there was a confusion having the ratios in one place in case management and another and people were confusing the two.

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>> I believe it used to be eight students per special ed teacher additional with assistant. So now, we could have up to 35?

>> No. You're mixing case management with ratio.

>> Well, there is no ratio.

>> Yeah, there is.

>> I'm just going into that section of the rule to see if I can find it.

>> So, Jody [assumed spelling] says, so we may have unlimited--one last thing before I forget. So, we may have unlimited number of kids with teachers. I'm just going to the ratio page to see what I can find. The ratios, the child staff ratios are still in Chapter 120. I mean the Chapter 101 on page 120. For children ages 5 to9, it's a 6 to 1 ratio. Ages 10 to 14, it's 8 to 1. And ages 15 to 20, it's 10 to 1. And we'll go on further and say for classes for children with a severe profound degree of impairment shall be staffed with a minimum of two providers, one teacher, one ed technician at all times to ensure safety and wellbeing of the students.

>> OK. So, Jody says for self-contained, not resource, and then Jen [assumed spelling] said that is self-contained, not resourced. Kim Kennison [assumed spelling] says, "It is my understanding that they can only case management 35 but may provide instruction for additional students in a resource setting."

>> That's correct. We were trying to differentiate--You can teach a number of children but what we're trying to clarify is that you should not be case managing any more than 30. Be assign--and as the child case management are no more--

>> Included in the 35.

>> I know, that's--they never--

>> I would have to check my former versions of Chapter 101 as to whether we did have ratios in resource room. I'm not remembering that we made that as a change.

>> And.

>> But I will clarify that.

>> And Jody says, "Oh, I thought the case management and teaching were combined?"

>> No, they are not combined. We were trying to differentiate that you have to look at--Which children are you assigned to be their case manager, that's different from children for whom you are teaching. There will be that some of the children whom you are case managing, you are also teaching in your classroom.

>> And would that help with high school?

>> OK. Exactly. Someone just said that helped in high school, and that was the very reason why we try to make that clarification.

>> Mary Guerrette [assumed spelling] says, "Much of that has with high school just within children they taught and other special teaching in their case management."

>> Yes.

>> Lesley [assumed spelling] says, "Jody, they used to be combined but not anymore. Thank you all. I needed that tutorial. I must have missed something."

>> That's the very purpose for this webinar.

>> I think you have some more typing going on.

>>We've got some more typing going on. I will say if as you're implementing these regulations, tere are places that you in the field are finding there's a desire for more clarification. I am certainly keeping a running file of what are people's thoughts both state educational agency special ed staff but also thoughts that have come in from the field. So, I would welcome any areas that people feel would benefit from further clarification.

>> OK. Kevin says, "How many students can a resource teacher work with at one time in the resource room?"

>> That is not stipulated in the regulation on page 120.

>> Sheila says, "I'm still concerned that we could have up to 35 kids at a time.

[ Inaudible Remarks ]

Is the 35 children at a time in the classroom or as a caseload? I'm not clear on the question."

>> Are you kidding me?

>> In the resource room, Sheila said.

>> And then, and then members for how many kids you can--

>> Well, right now, there's no specific ratio articulated in the resource room section on page 120. If there's a desire to consider that, I would welcome suggestions from the field.

>> Christine [assumed spelling] says, "So, assuming that they are providing services within a resource setting, creating and carrying out goals, these numbers are not combined under case management.

>> Correct. Case management is distinct from teaching in the classroom. If you are assigned as that child's case manager and also teaching them, then you look at that concurrent responsibility. But we need everybody to be clear at the IEP meeting who is assigned the responsibility of case manager so that you're--the case manager is clear on the total number of 235 that they are responsible for case managing.

>> Jody asks, "Are there upper limits on both or--I'm sorry--on one or both sets of responsibility?"

>> Well, there are upper limits for self-contained but there are not ratios at the present time for the resource room.

[ Inaudible Remark ]

[ Coughing ]

>>Could you please mute your line please? OK. We have--

>> One more question being typed in.

>> So, we can case manage up to 35 but we may teach any number.

>> Regulations don't state it specifically for resource room and students in the regular ed classroom. You know, regular ed has more than 80 percent at the time, it does state the ratios for students in regular education less than 40 percent at that time. Your regular ed classrooms for instance, I--let me guess here that there may be SAUs, the policies on how many students they're able to be in a regular ed classroom, 20, 25, whatever it may be.

>> But there actually are classroom sizes articulated in Chapter 125 which is basic school approval and it gives amounts of children in kindergarten classrooms and early elementary and I believe in high school. So that is in a regular ed regulation.

>> So, regular [inaudible]. Their current staff, they're not being a stated ratio in resource room 40--between 40 percent and 70 something percent at the time out of regular education, then communicate that to the department and like as you said, keeping a running log of [inaudible] at something that's a concern.

>> Sheila says, "I believe the regs for resource room used to state eight students per teacher and we could add five students per ed tech in the room. This seems to make sense and perhaps should be reconsidered."

>> I will record that as a thought from this seminar for consideration in the next rule-making.

>> And print those.

>> And Kim also thought that criteria was still in place.

>> It's not in place but certainly I tend to understand and hear from the questions that there is several people that feel that's a thoughtful consideration.

>> "Actually, I like the flexibility of it and we'll just ask my staff to follow best practices," and that came from SEA Direct.

>> OK.

>> We have more coming in.

>> We've got some more questions. One individual said they like the flexibility of it now and would just work on best practices. So, I guess we'll print all of these questions and respective comments and I will keep that in the consider for changes file.

>> Is the staff-child ratios the same as case management for self-contained?

>> No, those are the staff-child ratios for the classroom. Case management is who's assigned that responsibility. And remember, Mary, that that's an up to--I think if you feel from a best practice standpoint, you want that number to be lower for the number of children in self-contained, that can be a local decision.

[ Pause ]

It appears we have no other questions. As in time, however, if you have thoughts, my email is jaci.holmes@maine.gov and I will welcome any thoughts or considerations from now until I move into another rule-making. So, feel free to email me with any thoughts.

>> We have a lot of thank you. Here's one from Delia [assumed spelling], "I am not sure that it makes sense that the threshold for resource room is less than what is now in the regs for self-contained classrooms. I believe the question about how many to teach might be asking more. How many a resource room teacher is working with throughout the day, not at any given time."

>> But I would certainly welcome following your consideration, that discussion we've had or the questions we've had about resource room for people to think of what might be the right balance.

>> The other thing we could do is put a Q&A arm specifically about ratios including case management. Put it on the website to make sure that everyone has clarity based on these new regulations on what is that--

[ Noise ]

>> Here, we have some more questions coming in.

>> Oh, thank you.

>> On ratios at--even though--

>> Well, I would welcome any emails, fax, and/or further questions and we will get further clarification on the relationship to the superintendent's agreement with that written authorization language and we will print the thoughts and considerations about the resource room ratios to put in my file for future changes. I think what we will do is once we have clarity on the relationship to the superintendent's agreement, we'll do that as a Q--an additional Q&A on the regulations. And I will probably alert Jill at NAPSAC and maybe she can send out a link to that new Q&A so that everybody knows what the response to that question is.

>> And we would do it.

>> And we'll do a dispatch as well.

>> OK.

>> You are. And I'll go to [inaudible].

>> Thank you very much for participating. I think we had close to 25 to 30 people. We appreciate your participation.

[ Inaudible Remark ]

>> Thank you.