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Our Services

The SCESD's Special Education Department partners with the district schools to serve students with disabilities from birth to sixth grade. We provide a variety of services for children and students with severe or low-incidence disabilities through instructional programs divided into Early Education (birth to age 3), preschool and elementary.

We operate classes on public school campuses to serve children with special needs, and we align all classroom curriculum goals with the California Common Core Standards and the Preschool Learning Foundations. Our students receive instruction in the regular core curriculum in the state content areas and participate in state testing programs.

Special Education Staff Directory

Department Phone: 831-784-2211

Fax: 831-753-4974

Click on name to email
Jan Hamilton

Director of Special Education

Richelle Drollinger
Program Specialist


 Special Education Programs in Salinas City School District

Resource Specialist Program (RSP):

The resource specialist program is designed primarily to serve students with mild disabilities whose IEP teams have determined that they can successfully access and participate in the general education program for a majority of the school day but who require curriculum accommodations and specialized instruction for a portion of the day.  This may be provided to the student through consultation with the student, parent, and general education staff; direct instructional services to the student within the general education classroom; and/or, direct instruction to the student using a “pull out” approach.  The primary goal is to return the student to full-time enrollment in the general education program without any special education support.

Special Day Class Program (SDC)-General Academics:

These classes are primarily designed for students with mild to moderate disabilities whose IEP teams have determined that they require specialized instruction and are able to benefit from instruction in a modified general education curriculum using alternative instructional strategies. The primary goal is to provide the students with the least restrictive educational setting. 

Special Day Class Program (SDC)-Communication/Social Skills Development:

These classes are designed for students with moderate disabilities due to having Asperger’s syndrome, high functioning autism, or other related language-based disorders whose districts to provide focused classroom-wide instruction in the development of communication and social skills. This program provides intensive intervention with a self-contained class for the majority of the school day.  

Special Day Class Program (SDC)-Functional Academics:

These classes are designed primarily for students with moderate to severe disabilities whose IEP teams have determined that they require specialized instruction using an alternative curriculum that focuses on applied or functional academics.  The curricular focus is basic academics as they apply to daily living.

The IEP Process Overview

Assessment: Based on the concerns expressed on the SST referral, an assessment plan will be designed and explained to the student’s parent/guardian for approval.

Meeting to Review Assessment Results: The parent, principal (or designee), the child’s teacher and those who performed assessments will meet to review findings and determine appropriate services. Keep in mind that the goal is to serve students in settings that offer the most normal school experience as is appropriate.

Annual Reviews: At least every twelve months, the IEP team (principal, teacher, special education providers, and parent/guardian) meets to discuss the student’s progress, and to set goals for the upcoming twelve-month period.

Three-Year Reviews: Every third year, an extensive review is conducted and reported to the IEP team. Assessments may duplicate the thoroughness of the initial assessment.

Parents have the right to call an IEP meeting at any time they feel it is necessary.