In Conejo Valley Unified School District (CVUSD) we provide a full continuum of special education services and placements for students who are eligible with an Individual Education Plan (IEP).
A Specialized Program, also known as a Self-Contained Class, is one component of the continuum. CVUSD offers Learning Essentials Academic Program (LEAP) Specialized Programs for students with a disability that presents with significant learning, adaptive and language needs, which cannot be sufficiently supported through the learning center and/or general education programs. Placement into one of our LEAP-Specialized Programs is discussed during an IEP meeting and is an IEP team decision. Our University Preschool (Be-Me) campus supports preschool students ages 3 to 5 years old, Madrona Elementary supports students in Transitional Kindergarten through 5th grade, Colina Middle School supports students in grades 6 through 8, Newbury Park High School and Westlake High School support students in grades 9 through 12. Our post-secondary program supports students who are working towards a certificate of completion up through age 22.
In order to sufficiently support the learning needs of our students in our LEAP-Specialized Programs, we maintain a low teacher to student ratio of approximately one teacher to 12 students. We also staff with two paraeducators, who, under the direct supervision of the classroom teacher, assist students towards achieving their IEP goals. Additionally, related service providers (e.g. School Psychologists, Speech Language Pathologists, Occupational Therapists, Physical Therapists, Adapted Physical Education Specialists, and Board Certified Behavior Analysts) work closely with the special education teachers and paraeducators to support and meet each student’s needs.
The LEAP-Specialized Programs use an alternative curriculum that is aligned with common core standards. The alternative curriculum incorporates a combination of essential academic skills, communication skills, life skills, and vocational education. The LEAP-Specialized Programs are highly structured with visual and language supports that are integrated throughout the day. The classroom teacher and paraeducators are always working to maximize the student’s access and opportunities in a general education setting. Strategies utilized to support students’ progress on IEP goals and access to education may include, but not limited to:
- Frequent repetition
- Visual supports
- Augmentative and alternative communication
- Socials skills training
- Social stories/narratives
- Fine/gross motor skills activities
- Positive behavior reinforcement
- Functional communication training
- Video modeling
- Peer supports
Learning skills to live an independent life becomes prominent in the programs as the students enter high school and in post-secondary education. Community Based Instruction (CBI) is incorporated throughout the week and includes job tours, job training, recreational opportunities with peers, exploration of community resources (e.g. police, fire, grocery stores, post office), use of public transportation and vocational and life skills.