COVID-19 Related Information

To try to help families during this difficult time with school closures due to Covid 19, we have added a COVID-19 section to the LTF3 website.

To view the original homepage of the LTF3 website, click here.

 

Local Task Force Zoom Meeting Link

DUE TO COVID-19 WE WILL BE HOLDING THE APRIL MEETING EXCLUSIVELY ON THE ZOOM PLATFORM

The LTF3 Meetings will now be available on Zoom Meeting, so you can now access the meetings from your computer or telephone!  Thank you, Brian Welles and the Allegheny Intermediate Unit for setting this up; we appreciate your support!

Topic: Local Task Force Zoom Meeting Link
Time: This is a recurring meeting that occurs on the first Wednesday of each month
Join from PC, Mac, iOS or Android: https://paiu.zoom.us/j/199666919

Or join by phone:

+1 646 558 8656 or +1 669 900 6833 (US Toll)
Meeting ID: 199 666 919
International numbers available: https://zoom.us/u/alogmfj2

Or join from a H.323/SIP room system:

Dial: 162.255.36.11
Meeting ID: 199 666 919

If you have never used Zoom before, or will be using it on a different device, I recommend logging in at least 10-15 minutes early so you have time to troubleshoot any issues and test your settings.  I have found that some of my devices will not allow me to increase the volume enough so I can hear and I always use my laptop for that reason.  You may need to experiment with your device and earbuds/headphones/external speakers, etc. to find the right combination for you.

Also, if you are logging in from a device with a camera but don't want to be shown on-screen, just click on the video camera in the lower left corner of the screen, once you're in the meeting, so a red line appears through the camera icon.  If you are new to Zoom, you'll also want to type your name in, so we can see who is present and who you are when you are speaking.

Lastly, we ask that ALL participants MUTE themselves as soon as they enter the meeting.  Click on the microphone icon on the lower left of the screen so that a red line appears through the microphone.  Otherwise, the background noise from the open microphones will obscure what the current speaker is saying.  Zoom will give you instructions to open your mic, if you'd like to make a comment or ask a question.  You can do that by clicking on the microphone, speaking, and clicking it back off when you're done, or by holding down the space bar continuously while you speak and releasing it when you are done.

I'm sure we'll be working through some technical difficulties our first few meetings, as we'll have to experiment with the room set up, camera/microphone placement, and how we can all work smoothly together through the Zoom interface.  Please be patient with us as we try to expand our meetings to include even more families!

Thank you very much and we look forward to seeing you tomorrow at 6:30 pm, either in person or via Zoom!

Sharon Janosik & Debbie Efkeman
Co-Chairs, LTF3

Meeting START TIME CHANGE

LTF 3 

Meeting START TIME CHANGE 

6:30 PM 

After reviewing the answers to our meeting start time survey, we have decided to try out a new start time of 6:30 PM. In an effort to try to increase the membership of families and self-advocates and be respectful to agency responsibilities, we want to try this new start time.

A light dinner will be provided.

We will see how convenient this time start is over the first few months, and if need be will alter the time again. 

See you September 4, 2019 at 6:30 PM! 

-- Debbie Efkeman & Sharon Janosik

Join Us on Facebook

For related news and information, join the discussion at our Facebook Community.

Welcome to The Local Task Force on the Right to Education in Allegheny County

Welcome to our website.

PARENT ASSISTANCE LINE (412) 394-5930
A member will answer questions or provide information to the caller concerning special education issues.

IMPORTANT!
The City of Pittsburgh has its own Local Task Force. Their parent assistance hotline number is (412) 323‑3996.

OUR MISSION:
The Local Task Force serves as a resource for children with all disabilities and their families in the 42 school districts in Allegheny County.

MEETING SCHEDULE:
Meetings are held the first Wednesday of every month except July and August at the Allegheny Intermediate Unit offices at the Waterfront in Homestead from 6:30 till 8:30 p.m.

HISTORY:
The Local Task Force (LTF) system was established in 1972 as part of the Consent Decree between the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the PA Association for Retarded Citizens. The PARC Consent Decree guaranteed a free public program of education for all school-aged persons with mental retardation or thought-to-have mental retardation regardless of their intellectual functioning.

Today the LTF system supports all school-aged persons with all disabilities and their families.

MEMBERSHIP:
The Local Task Force on the Right to Education is open to:

  • PARENTS
  • PROFESSIONALS
  • EDUCATORS
  • AGENCY REPRESENTATIVES

Under the Consent Decree, parents must make up 51% of the membership.

OTHER SERVICES PROVIDED

  • Cyclical Monitorings

School districts are audited by the Bureau of Special Education every 5 years. The LTF provides information to the chairperson of the cyclical monitoring team. This information can be commendations or issues and concerns which have been brought to the task force’s attention.

  • Parent Satisfaction Survey

Local Task Forces can initiate a process with school districts to have the school districts disseminate the Parent Satisfaction Survey developed by the 29 Local Task Forces throughout the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.  Although not mandatory, the school districts can benefit from receiving feedback from the families of sons and daughters who have IEPs. This survey could be done any year except in the school year when the district is involved in their Cyclical Monitoring or Indicator 13 training.  Families can make this request to our Local Task Force 3 through the Parent Assistance Line or in person at one of the 10 public meetings held from September through June.

For Families by Families!

The Pa Family Network invites you to join other families and individuals with disabilities to discuss the current impact of the Coronavirus in our lives.

Get the Latest updates…answers to your questions…Discuss concerns… and Network with other families…

Francine Hogan is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.

Topic: FAMILY FORUM with the PA Family Network
Time: Jun 3, 2020 07:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)
Jun 3, 2020 07:00 PM
Jun 10, 2020 07:00 PM
Jun 17, 2020 07:00 PM
Jun 24, 2020 07:00 PM
Please download and import the following iCalendar (.ics) files to your calendar system.
Weekly: https://us02web.zoom.us/…/tZYld-yrqDMoEtKbNM5_kqiDDNYt…/ics…

Join Zoom Meeting
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/82805368286…

Meeting ID: 828 0536 8286
Password: 990010
One tap mobile
+13126266799,,82805368286#,,1#,990010# US (Chicago)
+16465588656,,82805368286#,,1#,990010# US (New York)

Dial by your location
+1 312 626 6799 US (Chicago)
+1 646 558 8656 US (New York)
+1 301 715 8592 US (Germantown)
+1 346 248 7799 US (Houston)
+1 669 900 9128 US (San Jose)
+1 253 215 8782 US (Tacoma)
Meeting ID: 828 0536 8286
Password: 990010
Find your local number: https://us02web.zoom.us/u/kXeq9mIsl

Reading Your Pandemic Prior Written Notice

By Caitlin McAndrews, Esq.

By this point, most school districts in Pennsylvania and Delaware have sent some form of written notice to parents of children with IEPs, advising what educational services to expect while schools are closed during the pandemic. Some districts have sent letters, some have sent Notices of Recommended Educational Placement (NOREPs) or Prior Written Notices (PWNs). (NOREPs and PWNs are different names for the same type of document.)

The content of these documents varies significantly. Some districts provided information about specific services that individual students could expect to receive remotely; others sent the same document to all families and advised only that schools were closed and services would change.

We have had many parents contact us to inquire about the meaning of these documents and how to respond. Consider the following questions in reviewing your child’s pandemic notice:

  • If your child normally receives specialized instruction with a special education teacher, do you know if your child will still have contact with that teacher? When and how often? Will the teacher deliver online classes and/or distribute work?
  • If your child normally receives specialized instruction within the general education environment, will he or she participate in the same online classes or receive the same work packets as general education students? Who should you and your child contact with questions about instruction and work?
  • If your child normally receives specialized academic instruction, do you know how your child will access instruction in those areas? Is your child expected to sign online for scheduled classes or complete assigned work?
  • If your child normally receives speech/language, occupational, or physical therapy, will he or she have teletherapy sessions with a pathologist over the computer? If so, when and how often? If not, can you speak to the therapist for tips to support your child at home and help prevent or reduce regression?
  • If your child uses a specialized curriculum, do you have access to materials?
  • If your child normally receives social skills instruction, do you know how that instruction will continue to be delivered, if at all?
  • If your child receives counseling or psychological services, will he or she continue to receive services through a teletherapy model? If so, when and how often?

If you do not know the answers to any of these questions, or if reading these questions sparks others, reach out to your case manager or special education coordinator. The U.S. Department of Education has encouraged parents and schools to be flexible and collaborative, so approach communication as productively as possible. Be polite but firm in your request for information about services for your child. If you do not get clear information, follow up. You should have sufficient information to understand the services that your child, as an individual, will receive.

This is a trying time for everyone, and it can be especially difficult for children with disabilities. Carefully reviewing your school district’s plan for providing services, and working together to obtain clarification and structure now can help minimize regression and educational struggles in the long run.


McAndrews Law Offices
We are a nationally recognized firm that provides families of Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Metropolitan Washington, D.C. Area, and New Jersey with exceptional legal representation in Special Education, Estate Planning, Abuse of Vulnerable Citizens, and the representation of individuals involved in higher education allegations of misconduct.

Main Office: 30 Cassatt Avenue, Berwyn, PA 19312

www.McAndrewsLaw.com
610-648-9300

McAndrews Law Offices | 30 Cassatt Avenue, Berwyn, PA 19312

Free Summer Tutoring

Learn more here http://www.gwensgirls.org/event/academic-support-initiative/, including information about options for students with IEPs.

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