The purpose of CMS Student Support Services is to collaborate with parents, students, and teachers to ensure students receive the necessary supports and services needed to successfully access their education.
The CMS Support Services Department is comprised of a continuum of supports and interventions working within the district’s MTSS (Multi-Tiered System of Supports) model. Below is a brief overview of some of the academic and social/emotional supports available to students and families at CMS. Further information for many of the areas can be found by clicking the links to the right.
Team Level Enrichment
All students are eligible for and scheduled into literacy and math supports at the team level depending on their performance on standard local, district, and national assessments. These interventions are generally provided by classroom teachers and are supplementary in nature to their general classroom instruction.
Strategic Literacy & Strategic Math
These interventions are similar to the ones listed above, however they are being provided by the school’s reading and math specialists and may be more intensive in nature.
Educational Support Team
CMS maintains an Educational Support Team designed to act as a “think tank” in order to help determine what students may need to be more successful in school. Any student may be referred by teachers or parents who feel the child is in need of additional supports, interventions, and/or accommodations in order to successfully access their education. Upon referral the team will meet to discuss the child’s needs and may or may not put a formal EST plan in place. Additional information is available in the Parent Guide to EST
504 (Americans with Disabilities Act) Supports
Supports and accommodations under a 504 plan require a determination of a disability as well as a determination that the disability is significantly impacting one or more major life functions. If students meet this criteria, a 504 plan may be developed which will include any necessary accommodations in order for them to access their education.
Special Education (IEP) Services
Services under an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) require a student to be found eligible for special education services. This determination requires an identified disability, evidence it is adversely affecting the acquisition of one or more basic skills, (performance in lowest 15% compared to similar graded peers), and a determination of need for specialized services above and beyond what is typically available in the school’s regular continuum of services.
CMS also provides a variety of other related services based on individual student needs. These include but are not limited to speech and language, occupational therapy, physical therapy, and transportation.
School (Guidance) Counseling
CMS employs two school counselors who provide a variety of services to students, families, and staff. This includes education on a myriad of topics, individual and group interventions, professional development, serving on the school’s EST team, and general team consultations.
Clinical Social Work
Colchester School District contracts with the Howard Center for Children and Families to provide school social work services to children and families who are in need of individualized clinical support and/or assistance in coordinating community based services. CMS currently has two clinical social workers. One who works primarily with the alternative program and another who serves identified students within the remainder of the student population. These services are accessed through referral only.
Colchester School District employees one school psychologist whom CMS accesses to provide clinical consultations, conduct evaluations, and support the EST team. Our psychologist does not provide individual therapy but is a referral resource for families who may be seeking this for their child.
CMS offers alternative programming on campus for students whom the regular education environment is not meeting their social, emotional, or behavioral needs. This is a small group instructional setting which generally serves between 8-12 students at any given time. Students are provided the regular grade level curriculum with supports embedded as needed for individual students. In addition, this program offers a flexible learning environment with opportunities for explicit social/emotional instruction, hands-on/project/community based learning, and individualized supports as needed throughout the day.