Special education is one of the most rapidly changing aspects of education.  Knowledge about the special education needs of students; effective instructional and assessment strategies; as well as new initiatives from the Ministry of Education with related legislation, regulations, policy and resource guides, is constantly changing.  SEAC members need to be engaged in a process of continuous learning.

PAAC on SEAC recommends that, consistent with Regulation 464/97 Section 10 (2), all members of SEAC have continuous access to relevant information, and further, that SEAC orientation and training includes comprehensive information about special education.  This includes information about:

  • History and development of Special Education Advisory Committees (SEACs)
    • Education Act: Bill 82
    • Evolution of SEACs
  • Roles and Responsibilities
    • Ministry of Education
    • School Boards and School Authorities
    • Minister’s Advisory Council on Special Education (MACSE)
    • Special Education Advisory Committees (SEACs)
    • Principals and Teachers
    • Parents and Students
  • Legislation, Regulations and Policy including:
    • Education Act
    • Regulations, particularly 181/98 and 464/97
    • Policy/Program Memoranda
    • Standards and Resource Guides
  • School Board Obligations and the Special Education System
    • School Boards’ and School Authorities’ Roles
    • Ministry Priorities and Key Ministry Initiatives
  • Funding of Special Education and Accountability
    • Education Funding and the Special Education Grant components
    • Special Education Plans and Reports
    • Board Improvement Plans for Student Achievement
    • School Effectiveness Framework

Education Quality and Accountability Office (EQAO)

Effective Practices to provide SEAC members with relevant special education information include:

  • The Ministry of Education website section on Special Education at
    edu.gov.on.ca/eng/parents/speced.html
  • Ministry of Education: SEAC Website
    www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/general/elemsec/speced/seac/
  • Ministry of Education Memo Summary site
    www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/policyfunding/memos/
  • Ministry of Education conferences and workshops for SEAC members
  • SEAC Orientation Manuals created by each school board and provided to every member of SEAC.
  • SEAC training sessions provided annually by the school board to all SEAC members.
  • SEAC training sessions provided by local or provincial parent associations to their SEAC representatives.
  • Regular updates provided by provincial associations to their SEAC representatives.
  • Section of the school board and provincial parent association websites dedicated to special education and SEAC.

SEAC members also require information about the special education programs and services provided by their specific school board.  PAAC on SEAC recommends that SEAC members be provided information about:

  • School board philosophy
  • Organizational structure of staff and committees
  • Special education program delivery model
  • Individual Education Plan (IEP) and identification, Placement and Review Committee (IPRC) Processes
  • Related school board policies and procedures
  • School board finances and budget development process related to special education
  • Accountability processes, including development of annual Special Education Plan and Board Improvement Plans for Student Achievement

Some of this information is available in the school board annual Special Education Plan and each member of SEAC should be provided with a copy of the Plan, or information on how to access it on-line.  Additional information may be summarized or copied and included in a school board Orientation Manual for SEAC members, as well as at SEAC member orientation and training sessions.

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