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HFM BOCES reopening plan available

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Special Education

The HFM BOCES Reopening Plan outlines procedures that will be followed for all HFM programs including Special Education. As schools reopen, whether for in-person education, remote learning or a mix of the two, HFM BOCES will provide a free appropriate public education consistent/with the need to protect the health and safety of students with disabilities and those providing special education services.

The following considerations will be made by all divisions servings Special Education populations:

  • Protecting the health and safety of students and staff is paramount.
  • During student crisis intervention that prevents social distancing, PPE will be used to the greatest extent possible. Student safety will be paramount when intervention is needed.
  • Teachers and administrators will communicate with parents of students with IEPs and/or 504 plans on their students progress and learning needs.
  • BOCES programs will collaborate with component school district Committees on Special Education on the various possible settings where a student will be served.
  • Students will have access to the necessary instructional and technological supports to meet their needs.
  • Programs will document progress of programs/services and communications with parents.
  • In-person services will be considered whenever possible for students with unique learning needs.
  • Progams will make contingency plans to address remote learning needs as practiable, such as scheduled times for students to work 1:1 with a Special Education teacher.
  • Every effort will be made to engage in meaningful parent engagement in the parents preferred language or mode of communication (Some methods include the use of Google translate, bringing in the school Spanish teacher to assist in translation).
  • Programs will ensure that students are receiving all necessary accommodations, modifications, supplementary aides and services and technology (including assistive technology) in both the virtual and in person instruction and that student IEP’s are being addressed.

Please refer below for more information concerning schedules and instruction for students attending programs in the HFM BOCES Special Education Division.

HFM Special Education Division

School Schedules & Activities

  • Each student’s instructional program will be developed and implemented on an individual basis.
  • Full day in-person instruction will be prioritized for all students.
  • Students unable to participate for a full day will be encouraged to attend 50% in-person instruction and 50% remote instruction.
  • Student’s unable to participate in any in-person instructional program will be provided a remote learning program.
  • The IEP may be amended and modified to reflect the instructional program for each student.
  • Student field trips and other congregate events will be conducted virtually until in-person field trips can resume.


  • BOCES will create a comprehensive plan for a schedule that includes in-person instruction, remote instruction or a hybrid of both in-person and remote. All plans will be clearly communicated, with as much advance notice as practicable, to students, families and staff.
  • Students with disabilities will be prioritized to return to in-person instruction first or more frequently based on educational or other needs.
  • Students will remain in one self-contained classroom each day as much as practicable and will be preassigned  to groups with reasonable size limits.
  • Students unable to attend full-time, in-person instruction will be offered alternate approaches, such as alternative schedules or hybrids of in-person and remote learning.
  • All students will be placed in self-contained classrooms for instructional programs.
  • Physical Education activities will follow all SED guidance and focus on wellness and individual fitness.
  • BOCES will provide a blend of hands-on and virtual science laboratory experiences.
  • BOCES will provide both in-person and virtual work-based learning experiences for eligible students.
  • BOCES will ensure all students are entitled to a free appropriate public education.
  • BOCES will make paramount protecting the health and safety of students and staff.
  • BOCES will ensure meaningful parent engagement in parent’s preferred language/mode of communication.
  • BOCES will collaborate with CSE and other program providers on the various possible settings where a student will be served.
  • BOCES will provide students with access to the necessary instructional and technological supports to meet their needs including assistive technology.
  • BOCES will document programs/services and communications with parents.
  • BOCES will consider in-person services whenever possible.
  • BOCES will consider contingency plans to address remote learning needs.
  • All communication will be provided in each parent’s preferred language and mode of communication and provide social-emotional. learning supports to ELLs in their home language.
  • Instructional units will be provided based on most recently measured English language proficiency.
  • BOCES will provide PD for teachers on supporting ELLs and addressing learning gaps.