Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Engaging Families

Dear Parents,

The Medford Area Public School District takes an active approach to engaging families in our many educational offerings for students with an Individualized Education Plan (IEP). 

First, our programs/services help students as young as three years of age through the age of 21.  I have attached a copy of our Special Education/Student Services brochure which highlights many of these programs/services.  These will also be featured on the local radio and newspaper in the coming week.

Second, we take an active approach in engaging families through a variety of council and committees. Some of these are directly led by the Medford Area Public School District and some we have an active role on them through a countywide approach.  Please contact me if you would like to learn more and/or attend them as a parent representative.

·        Special Education Advisory Council
·        Taylor County Transition Advisory Council
·        Taylor County Autism Support Group
·        Taylor County Early Childhood Sub-Committee

Third, The Special Education Advisory Council plans parent-child activities.  Our upcoming event is:
Family Fun Day at the Movies
Penguins of Madagascar
Saturday December 6 at 10:30 am
Broadway Theatre

We will also have upcoming snowshoe, movie, and swimming events. 

Finally, to help inform parents of upcoming events and services – I maintain the following means of communication:

·        Medford Area Public School District Special Education/Student Services Facebook page which is located at: https://www.facebook.com/MAPSDSPEDSTUDENTSERVICES
·        Student Services Newsletter two times per year
·        Twitter account: www.twitter.com/Joseph_Greget
·        Blog: www.jgreget.blogspot.com

You are welcome to contact your child’s special education teacher or myself for any questions, supports, or services that you might need throughout the school year. My contact information is: 715-748-2316 ext 324 or gregejo@medford.k12.wi.us .

I hope that each and all of you are having a rewarding and exciting school year.  May you have a Happy Thanksgiving and a Merry Christmas.  We are privileged to be educating your child this holiday season and throughout the school year.  


Joseph A. Greget (Mr. Joe)
Director of Student Services/Special Education

Medford Area Public School District

Monday, November 3, 2014

“Always Good and Making a Difference”

“Always Good and Making a Difference”

For the past 10 years I have had the opportunity and privilege to be the Director of Student Services and Special Education for the Medford Area Public School District. Over this time there have been many wonderful memories and moments with students, new initiatives/programs created, privileges to work alongside quality people on personal and professional levels, and opportunities to provide direct and indirect support to 300 plus families on an annual basis.    

Special Education and Student Services are delivered across the school district and designed to help make a difference for our students and families.

Did you know that:
·         The Medford Area Public School District is required to provide special education services to students with disabilities between the ages of 3 and 21 years of age  
·         There are 322 students who receive special education as of September 19, 2014: 

Schools                                                                                Numbers
Medford Area Senior High School            101
Medford Area Middle School                     84
MAES/SES                                                           99
Others (RVA, Holy Rosary
Immanual, and Itinerant)                             38                                                          

The overall 322 students who receive special education represent 13.96% of the overall student population:

Impairment                                                        Percentage
Learning Disability                                          4.47%
Speech Language (primary)                        3.12%
Other Health Impaired                                  2.86%
Emotional Behavioral Disability                                1.17%
Autism Spectrum Disorder                          1.04%
Cognitive Disability                                        0.69%
Other (Vision, TBI, SDD)                                               0.61%

·         A student on the autism spectrum was Mayor for the Day and gave the proclamation to help light the Taylor County Courthouse blue for Autism Awareness Month in April
·         18 adults have come back to school to complete high school graduation requirements since the inception of our Medford Adult Diploma Academy in 2010
·         158 students have earned their diplomas through our Alternative High School program – now in our 15th year
·         Child Development Day is offered each Fall to help screen children ages 2-4 for developmental readiness 
·         18-21 year olds – have the opportunity to continue their education/develop job skills/work on college credits/learn independent skills in our SOAR (Students Open to Achieving Reality) program
·         Students do not have to be identified with a disability to receive layers of academic/social/behavioral intervention supports across the school district
·         Adapted Physical Education is offered in each school building
·         At the of end of the 14-15 school year we will have  – 4 staff that completed their Wilson Reading Level II Certification, 20 staff that completed their Wilson Reading Level I Certification, a certified Wilson Fundations presenter and our own in-district Wilson trainer
·         Very Special Arts Band experience on the field of Camp Randall during a fall UW Badgers Game is offered to regular and special needs high school students on an annual basis
·         Preschool Options Model offers early childhood special education services to students in their homes, community child care settings, pre-kindergarten class, and in early childhood classroom
·         Staff have multiple licensures including: Special Education Teacher, Regular Education Teacher, Reading Teacher, Alternative Education, Adapted Physical Education, School Psychology, Speech Language, Early Childhood, Guidance Counseling, and more
·         One of our special education staff have their National Board Teacher Certification
·         Taylor County Education Center is now home to our Medford Adult Diploma Academy, Alternative High School, Rural Virtual Academy, 18-21 year old SOAR, Speech Language/Early Childhood Motor Group, and Taylor County Literacy Council
·         Special Olympics Basketball is offered each Fall
·         MAES and SES have earned distinguished state awards for being Positive Behavioral Intervention Supports (PBIS) schools
·         Leadership positions are taken countywide including: Taylor County Literacy Council, Taylor County Autism Support Group, Taylor County Early Childhood Sub-Committee, Taylor County Interagency Communications Committee, Medford Morning Rotary Club, and Special Education Advisory Council
·         Related services are offered to students in the areas of Speech Language, Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy, School Nursing, School Based Mental Health Counseling, Police Liaison, Educational Interpreter, Hearing Impaired, Audiology, Special Bus Transportation, English Language Learner, Core Assistive Technology, Job Coaching, and School Guidance Counseling
·         Career Fairs, Mini-Business World, Family Being Involved Workshops, Laws of Life Essay Contest, Special Education Family Days, Taylor County Transition Night, Taylor County Reality Fair, Financial Aid Workshops, B.U.G, and Cultural Fair are just some of our student services programs
·         Ongoing balanced assessment helps measure student achievement and progress through – DLM, PALS, WKCE, ACT, ACT Aspire, Dynamic Learning Map, AIMS Web progress monitoring, and NWEA-MAP
·         Evidence based curriculums include: Read 180, Wilson Reading, Wilson Fundations, Wilson Just Words, Reading Mastery, Achieve 3000, Edmark Reading, Reading Assistant, Voyager Math, Connecting Math Concepts, and Early Literacy Skills Builder are just some curriculums used
·         Special Education Classes are built on Extended Grade Band Standards, Common Core Essential Elements, Wisconsin Model Academic Standards, Common Core Standards, and/or IEP goals/objectives
I will often be asked by those I come in contact with – how is it going?  By looking at everyone that I get to work with (students, parents, school staff, and community), seeing our existing and newer programs/initiatives, and most importantly getting to know and seeing our students have success  – it has to be “Always Good” especially when we are working hard on making a difference in the lives of our students and families.   
Please contact me with any questions or for more information about special education or student services at any time.

Joseph A. Greget
Director of Student Services/Special Education for Medford Area Public Schools
715-748-2316 ext 324