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January Parent Newsletter

Updated: Jan 17, 2019

Happy New Year! We hope you all enjoyed your holidays! We have been busy planning our 2019 Spring Calendar of SEPAC Events! Check out our upcoming events and Save the Dates for the spring!


We Need Volunteers!

The SEPAC is seeking volunteers to help organize key fundraisers and workshops in the coming year. Commitment will be isolated to one specific event and committees will be formed to share the responsibility.

Planning committees are forming now for the following events:

  • Friends of SEPAC Cinco de Mayo 5K (May 5, 2019)

  • Friends of SEPAC Summer Concert and Food Truck Event (Date TBD, corresponds with final Summer Concert on the Green)

Email if you are interested.


Don't miss these upcoming SEPAC Events!

Wednesday, January 23, 2019 – Workshop: An IEP for my Child: A Free Workshop for Parents and Professionals

H. Olive Day School, Library

7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

Registration Requested - Register here: Registration Link

Thursday, February 7, 2019 – SEPAC General Meeting

Meeting Topic - An Evening Chat with an HOD Math Specialist

H. Olive Day, Library

Math Discussion 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm | Board Meeting 8:00 pm - 9:00 pm

Registration Requested - Register here: Registration Link

Join the SEPAC Board in welcoming Eileen Cloutier to our next general meeting! Mrs. Cloutier has generously offered to attend our monthly meeting and share some insight into the math curriculum at HOD, the way students in grades K - 2 acquire a foundation in fluency and number sense, and how we as parents can support our children in building these foundational math skills. She will be available for a short question and answer period as well. Please submit a question here so she can be prepared to answer as many questions as possible.

Wednesday, February 20, 2019 - February Vacation Week Activity!

South Shore Conservatory - Kids Music Workshop

Wednesday February 20, 2019

Norfolk Public Library, Community Room

Times are age specific: 9:30-10:30 a.m. (PK - 2) and 11:00-12:00 (3-6)

Registration Required (Limited spaces available, First come first served)

Register Here: Registration Link


**Save the Date for our Spring SEPAC Parent Workshop**

Understanding Executive Function and Its Impact at Home and in School

Thank you for all of your support during our Fall 2018 fundraising efforts. We have raised enough funds to offer this free workshop for Norfolk parents!

Date: Monday, April 1, 2019

Location: TBD

Space may be limited, so register early - details will be available soon!

Come hear Donna Kincaid, of the "Institute for Learning and Development" talk about Executive Function deficiencies and how to support your child through these challenges.

This presentation will provide parents with a clear understanding of the term “executive function” and how executive function weaknesses affect children in school and at home. Parents will also learn how anxiety can affect one’s ability to plan, organize, and complete tasks (e.g. homework and chores) and typical behaviors that often result. Parents will leave with specific strategies to help their children (and themselves) to decrease anxiety and increase productivity.


Get Your Walking and Running Shoes ready for the first annual:

Friends of SEPAC Cinco de Mayo 5K Fun Run

Sunday, May 5, 2019, Town Green

Join SEPAC Families for some family fun! Run, Jog, Walk, or Stroll around Norfolk and help support the SEPAC! Following the run, bring your family for some refreshments, music, and kids activities on the town green (weather permitting).

Registration Details:

RACE INFORMATION Date: Sunday May 5, 2019 Registration: 8:00 a.m. - 8:45 a.m. Start Time: 9:00 a.m. Location: Norfolk Town Hill, 1 Liberty Lane Norfolk, MA 02056 Cost: $20 Registration: Register online or at the Norfolk public library on race day Dogs: Dogs are not permitted on the race course during the race T-shirts: Can be purchased for $15 via online registration After Party: 11:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

Want to Volunteer? The SEPAC is looking for volunteers to form the 5k planning committee that will assist with Registration, After Race Entertainment and Games, and Course Cleanup. Contact if interested. The planning committee will meet once in person and then bi-weekly for 30 minutes via conference call on an as needed basis. If you are unable to volunteer but know of a vendor(s) that would like to participate please contact us. We are also accepting items for race day prizes and raffles as well as looking for local entertainment.


Parent Education

What is in an IEP?

There are many different components in an IEP. There are many different resources that can help demystify the IEP, making evaluation and review meetings more meaningful for parents. See below for a description of each IEP section and links to resources with more details.

For an in-depth discussion on IEP structure and development, join us for our SEPAC workshop on January 23, 2019 featuring Cathy Hickey from the Federation for Children with Special Needs!

An IEP includes the following sections:

(Note: not all naming conventions are the same from district to district):

Student Information - A documentation of demographic and contact information for the child and family.

Parent Concerns - This is an opportunity for parents and caregivers to document their concerns in the IEP. Parents typically can discuss these concerns during the IEP meeting and/or email them to be included following the discussion.

Present Level of Performance - During the IEP meeting there will be an extensive discussion about your child's Strengths and Progress Areas and these will be documented in the IEP.

Goals - Specific and measurable goals that relate to each progress area. Your child's progress will be measured against these goals and progress reports will discuss them throughout the school year.

Services - Sometimes referred to as the "grid", services are listed in number of times per week and in increments of minutes. For example, "1x30" listed for a specific services means a child receives that specific service one time per week for 30 minutes. Larger services (e.g. special education classroom programming) can be listed with large numbers: 5x150. This means the child will receive this service 5 days per week for 2.5 hours (150 minutes) each day.

Additional Information - This section can be used to document additional information that is important for all teachers and providers supporting your child to know. This can be special accommodations in the classroom, lunchroom, or recess.

Parent Consent - The signature page typically needs to be returned to the school signed before the new programming listed in the IEP will begin. There are options to agree to the programming listed, and options to consent to a portion of the programming listed and provide feedback to the TEAM.

Additional Information

If you have questions about a component of your child's IEP, please reach out to your IEP Team Chairperson (Mrs. Alicia Whitehead (PreK), or Mrs. Tara Oliveto (Grades K - 6)) or Anna Tupper, Director of Special Education, Norfolk Public Schools.

Some additional links and resources are:


Knowing What is in an IEP - Link

Anatomy of an IEP - Link

National Association of Special Education Teachers - IEP Components. Link


SEPAC Book of the Month

Wrightslaw - All About IEPs

Whether you are the parent of a child with special education needs, a seasoned educator, or a professional advocate, you have questions about Individualized Education Programs, (IEPs). In this comprehensive, easy to read book, you will find clear, concise answers to frequently asked questions about IEPs. Learn what the law says about IEP Teams and IEP Meetings, Parental Rights and Consent, Steps in Developing the IEP, Placement, Transition, Assistive Technology and Strategies to Resolve Disagreements.

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