North Region SELPA Home

What is a SELPA?

Text 1
In 1977, all California school districts  formed consortiums in geographical regions of sufficient size and scope to provide for all special education service needs of children residing within the region boundaries. Each region, called Special Education Local Plan Area (SELPA), developed a local plan describing how it would provide special education services.
The SELPA coordinates with member school districts to provide a continuum of programs and services for individuals with disabilities, from birth through 22 years of age. The SELPA is also available as a resource to the community on topics such as:
Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE).  Each public school system is responsible for ensuring that each child 
with disabilities is served appropriately, at no expense to the parent.
Least Restrictive Environment (LRE). Each child is assured of their right to an education with nondisabled peers to the maximum extent appropriate to the needs of both.
Due Process. Parents have a right to participate in all aspects of decisions about their children’s education, including assessment, eligibility, goal development, and placement. When disputes arise, they are entitled to due process protections, which may involve mediation, administration hearing procedures, and complaint procedures.
Individualized Educational Plan (IEP). The right of a child to an educational program designed to meet their individual needs and based on adequate assessment is assured. At age 16 this includes the development of an Individual Transition Plan (ITP) to provide for transition into life after school.
There are over 130 SELPAs in California, ranging in size from those serving fewer than 1,000 students to those serving more than 10,000 students. The North Region SELPA serves over 3,000 students with disabilities residing in its five school districts.


Child Find

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Child Find activities are the responsibility of each Local Education Agency (LEA) and occur prior to a referral for special education services. These activities are designed to locate individuals, birth through 21 years of age, including children not enrolled in public school programs as well as children who are homeless or wards of the state and reside in the district and may be eligible for and in need of special education and/or related services.
Child find activities also foster awareness and understanding on the part of educators, parents and other community members of the referral procedures for special education, the eligibility criteria, and the continuum of special education programs and services available. Child find activities inform educators, community agencies, and parents/guardians of their right to refer their child for a special education assessment to determine eligibility and the need for special education services.
(E.C. § 56300 and 56301)