Ohio County Schools is now following the state’s newest education guidelines regarding special education students.
During a recent Ohio County Board of Education meeting, members learned that the West Virginia Department of Education requested that the board adopt the newly revised “Regulations for Education of Students With Exceptionalities.”
“This policy became effective from November 2022. The last time the policy was revised and adopted by Ohio County Schools was in 2017,” said Leah Stout, special education director for Ohio County Schools, during the board meeting.
“The major changes were updates regarding eligibility criteria for certain disabilities. We’re already working on trainings with our staff.”
Stout said the policy is the district’s guide to ensure it is following compliance and accountability indicators. She noted the state department of education is slated to soon hold an online meeting regarding the guidelines and OCS special education staff would participate.
“We will continue to criticize and make sure we understand the policy moving forward because it really does drive the office of special education,” Stout said.
Stout said there are currently 915 special education students in the district. This includes children from 3-21 years old. Stout said if a student is on an alternate diploma they can receive special education instruction up to age 21.
It was determined during the meeting that the district did not have to formally adopt the new policy, but simply just start following it.
Stout said she would make copies of the revised guidelines for the board members.