The Special Education Program of Mars Area School District provides a free, appropriate public education to exceptional students according to state and federal mandates. In compliance with the Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA) and directives from the Pennsylvania Bureau of Special Education, the District provides services to students identified as having a disability, which necessitates specialized instruction. Each of our schools continues to implement a continuum of regular and special education services to meet the needs of all students. The continuum includes all levels of special education services based on the individual needs of each student. Mars Area School District serves students in the least restrictive environment, maintaining them in District schools whenever possible. Some students with low incidence disabilities are served by intermediate units, alternative or approved private schools.
Regular and special education classes serve students in kindergarten through age 21 with learning, emotional, social and behavioral needs as well as those with physical or other handicapping conditions. Most exceptional students are assigned to regular homerooms and participate in the general education curriculum to the maximum extent appropriate, based on research based assessment data and as determined by the student’s Individual Education Plan (IEP). A range of services is also provided for students identified as mentally gifted.
Special Education information must be published periodically, according to state and federal regulations. Questions regarding content, screening, evaluation procedures and/or procedural safeguards may be addressed to Mars Area School District’s Office of Special Education & Gifted Education at (724) 625-1518. Parents/guardians participating in the IEP process are advised to keep a signed and dated copy of the most recent Procedural Safeguard Notice for their records. A copy of the updated notice is posted on the District’s website, www.marsk12.org.