Family Resources

Sr. Manager: Courtney Leyba

Alternative Placement Services (APS) may be provided when a student suffers from a severe medical or psychological condition that prevents the student from accessing education in a school setting for an extended period of time.

The goal for APS is to provide continuity of instruction and to facilitate the student’s return to a regular school setting as quickly as possible.

What is Assistive Technology (AT):

  • AT is any kind of low or high tech device, software or system that is used to increase, maintain or improve the functional capabilities of persons with disabilities.

What We Do:

  • Assistive Technology provides training and consultation for school IEP teams in determining students’ needs and accommodations and in conducting AT Evaluations. We also provide equipment, when necessary, to meet the needs identified by the IEP team. We are committed to supporting students by using technology to provide access to the general curriculum and increase positive outcomes.

Need Help?

Click here for more information on Assistive Technology Resources »

We provide services to gifted/high potential students and their families. Gifted and Talented Services oversees gifted and highly-gifted identification and programming in the district. Gifted identification begins at the school level with the GT teacher and ends with a district level identification team review process. In addition, we support and monitor each schools’ gifted programming in order to support best practice for gifted learners.

For more information please visit the GT Website

Learn more about GT Services here. »

The Deaf & Hard of Hearing (DHH) team is comprised of audiologists, educational interpreters, teachers of the deaf and paraprofessionals. This team provides center-based or itinerant services in the areas of functional auditory performance, language and communication, academic skills, social-emotional, self-advocacy and technology usage to students with hearing loss as defined in their IEP or 504 plan.

For more information, please contact:

Please contact Kristy O’Bryan for more information
(720) 423-3222

Home School in Colorado CDE Site

For Services Contact:

(720) 423-2660 

Supervisor: Rosa Melendez-Nguyen Email:


Families can now visit for assistance with Medicaid Enrollment.


The DPS Medicaid Program accesses reimbursable funds for health services provided in our schools. These resources are used to improve, expand, and enhance health-related services for students. Our Outreach and Enrollment specialists help families apply and access free or low-cost health insurance. Additionally, we also provide medically related case management services to our families and DPS staff.

School-based (Educational) OT/PT Services vs. Medical-Based OT/PT Services

Manager: Kelley Morrison    Email:

  • There are distinct differences between educational services and medical services. This can be somewhat confusing and it is important to understand some key differences.
  • School-based or educational motor services provided by OTs and PTs are related services under the Individuals with Disabilities Educational Act of 2004 and the Colorado Exceptional Children’s Education Act.
    • To receive related services, a student must be eligible for an individualized education program (IEP) and require the service to be able to benefit from his/her special education program.
    • The services are intended to support their access to their specialized instruction, educational environment and functional participation within their school environment.
    • Students may have motor concerns that qualify them for medical-based services; however, if the concern is not interfering significantly with their ability to learn and access their specialized instruction they may not receive motor services provided by OTs and PTs at school.
  • Medical-based services are often delivered in a hospital, out-patient clinic, private therapy clinic, or in your home. Services are initiated by a referral from a physician and are based on underlying medical causes, delay and/or diagnosis. Their goal is to improve function across all environments the child interacts within.

Coordinator: Paul Thompson   Email:

Section 504 is a federal civil rights law that ensures students with disabilities are afforded “equal opportunity to obtain the same result, to gain the same benefit, or to reach the same level of achievement” as peers. To pursue eligibility, a student can be referred to the school’s Section 504 coordinator. A Section 504 team would conduct an evaluation to gather a body of evidence and convene to determine eligibility. If the student is found to be eligible, the Section 504 team would determine the student’s placement by offering services and/or accommodations to help mitigate barriers caused by the impairment(s).

The Denver Special Education Advisory Committee (DSEAC) is a district-level committee that provides advice to the Director of Special Education, the Superintendent and the Board of Education.

Members include parents of and individuals with disabilities, educational service providers, administrators and representatives from a variety of related agencies. Participation is district-wide and representative of diverse disabilities. Members are interested in the quality of education received by children and youth with disabilities.


Denver Special Education Advisory Committee (DSEAC)

Learn more about DSEAC here! »

Manager: Meredith Fatseas

The Department of Social Work and Psychological Services is part of the Division of Student Equity and opportunity. School psychologists and school social workers are uniquely qualified members of school teams who provide direct educational, behavioral, and mental health services for children and youth, as well as work with families, school administrators, educators, and other professionals to create supportive learning and social environments for all students.  School Social Workers and School Psychologists are experts in leading school teams as they implement: bullying prevention and intervention programs, positive behavior interventions and support (PBIS), the response to intervention (RTI) model, and multi-tiered system of supports (MTSS), responsive cultural and linguistic service delivery. Priority Areas Include: Provide culturally responsive special education services, provide evidence -based, culturally responsive interventions, ensure student & staff safety with best practice in suicide risk reviews, threat appraisals, suicide prevention programs, and crisis response.

Need Help?

  • Liz Van Liere, Program Manager



What is a Speech Language Disability?

  • Children with speech difficulties may struggle with articulation or pronunciation, functional communication, voice characteristics, or fluency.
  • Children with language difficulties may struggle in expression or understanding of language at an age-appropriate level.
  • Some causes of speech and language disorders include hearing loss, neurological disorders, brain injury, and cognitive deficits, physical impairments such as cleft lip or palate, and vocal abuse. Frequently the cause is unknown.

How Do Services Begin:

  • Students can be referred by a teacher or parent to the school’s MTSS (Multi Tiered Systems of Support) team.  When a referral is made to this team for communication concerns, the team may consult with the speech-language pathologist to determine if concerns are significant enough to warrant a referral to special education. If so, the school may request that the parent sign a consent for initial evaluation for special education.
  • Once the evaluation is completed, a team of school staff and the parents meet to discuss the results of the evaluation. Those results help determine if a child is eligible for services.  In schools, the definition of a Speech or Language Impairment is as follows: “A child with a Speech or Language Impairment shall have a communicative disorder which prevents the child from receiving reasonable educational benefit from general education.”  The child must be found eligible for services, and the school must obtain written consent from the parent/guardian before beginning those services.


How Do I Find My School SLP?

  • Contact your school and ask for the Speech Pathologist’s name to ask questions.


Parent Resources:

Supervisor: Liz Van Liere

Colorado’s BrainSTEPS CO (Strategies Teaching Educators, Parents, and Students) Brain Injury School Re-Entry Consulting Program was modeled after Pennsylvania’s BrainSTEPS program which began assisting school districts in 2007 and is considered a national model for brain injury educational consulting. 
As a result of acquired brain injury many students return to school with lingering effects that impact classroom performance. BrainSTEPS CO has been designed to consult with school teams and families in the development and delivery of educational services for students who have experienced acquired brain injury.

BrainSTEPS CO works to not only re-enter students following brain injury, but with students previously identified as having a brain injury who may begin to develop educational effects over the years as the brain develops and matures.

For more information, or to refer a student, click here.



DenverRAP and Denver Public Schools are partnering to bring upstream prevention programs to DPS middle schools. This partnership will provide students with the tools necessary to make safe and healthy decisions as they move forward with their lives.

We provide prevention through the use of evidence-based services in the following six areas:

  • Information Dissemination
  • Prevention Education
  • Environmental Strategies
  • Community-Based Process
  • Alternative Activities
  • Problem Identification and Referral to Treatment

Transition services are intended to prepare students to move from the world of school to the world of adulthood successfully. 

Transition planning begins at age 15 or in the 9th grade IEP at the latest, if the student is still 14 through 9th grade.  Transition planning may start earlier (when the student is younger than 15) if the IEP team decides it would be appropriate to do so.

Transition planning takes place as part of developing a high school student’s Individualized Education Program (IEP).

Transition planning is based on information from various Transition assessments carried out every year.

Transition services and activities are documented in the IEP and are aligned with post-high school goals in the areas of Career/Employment, Education/Training & Independent Living.  Annual goals in each annual IEP should reflect the incremental steps necessary to support the student to achieve their post-high school goals. 

  • Transition services & activities are a part of the high school experience for students with IEPs 9 – 12th grade
    • High School Transition services should include community based activities & services, including work based learning
  • Students are also able to access services to support achieiving their Transition plan post-high school goals ages 18 – 21 if the IEP team determines those services are necessary for them to be able to achieve their goals, regardless of disability.
    • These 18 – 21 Transition services may be based in a school or community setting, as determined by the student’s IEP team based on the student need & best fit.
    • Community based programming should be a part of all students’ Transtion activities and services to achieve the best outcomes for the transition to adult life and responsibilities.

Information to empower you in Transition planning: HERE

Questions: Please fill out this FORM

For  students  identified  for  special  education services, the Individualized Education Program (IEP) designation will determine if your child requires transportation. The Department of Transportation must receive complete and accurate information regarding your student’s special needs from the Department of Student Services to ensure safe transportation. The Transportation Information Form is required before transportation service begins. Below is a pamphlet for parents detailing this process:

In accordance with the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) all personal information regarding students is strictly confidential.

To learn more, visit

Team Lead: Elsa D’Angelo
Email: ELSA_D’

Vision services can take several forms:

  • Direct Services: A teacher certified in visual impairments works directly with students, and assists with:
    • Learning to read and write braille
    • Learning assistive technology to access the curriculum such as magnification tools, text to speech and electronic book readers
    • Self advocacy skills
    • Expanded Core curriculum – daily living skills
  • Indirect Consultative Skills: Working with classroom teachers, families, other special service providers and other school staff to provide recommendations on appropriate accommodations and modifications for the student required due to a visual impairment
  • Interpretation Services: Our team can assist with material adaptation in braille and print. Please contact us for additional information.
Learn more about Vision Services for families here! »