The Tri-District Initiative is a partnership that begins in the elementary and middle schools of Rumson and Fair Haven boroughs, and continues at the separate district dedicated to Rumson-Fair Haven Regional High School. In the spirit of aligning programs and creating dialog between the students, families and educators, the special services department at each district created a public-invited program under the name Special Education Parent Academy.
This forum features topics that can help parents at each level of the educational process. For December’s meeting, the tri-district team shared information regarding supports and programming for students receiving special education services, as they transition from middle to high school and beyond.
Examples included: completing interest inventories, identifying individualized strengths, obstacles and compensatory strategies, as well as setting personal goals. While each district highlighted its approach in these areas, emphasis was placed on maintaining strong partnerships between the three school districts in best supporting students and families as they navigate prevocational and post-secondary schooling options.
Each district offered perspective and shared success stories regarding students who have explored and/or enrolled in vocational programs offered through Monmouth County Career Center in Freehold. Web-based resources such as New Jersey Career Assistance Navigator (NJCAN) were also reviewed for students in accessing personalized career planning accounts across grades and schools.
The three districts spoke to the collaboration between child study team members, including opportunities for classroom observations as well as a high school forum offered at RFH, to make the transition from middle school to high school a little easier. A selection of students receiving special education supports at each grade level speak to incoming freshman, offering advice on topics, ranging from the importance of maintaining a strong cumulative grade point average to the finer points of navigating the school cafeteria.
Michael Snyder, Supervisor of Special Services for the Rumson School District, reinforced the importance of a team approach to student support services, and committed to future offerings of shared district events and initiatives in the upcoming months.
“This is another stellar example of our tri-district approach and the important recognition for partnership and collaboration to support our students and their families,” he said. “By providing better clarity and transparency to the high school transition, we believe this will assist in our students’ academic and personal success.”
For more information on the Tri-District Initiative and its Special Education Parent Academy, contact the Rumson School District at (732)842-4747.