Harford County Public Schools – Department of Special Education believes that individuals with disabilities
full potential in a comprehensive and coordinated birth to 21 system of services emphasizing high
Harford County Public Schools – Department of Special Education provides leadership, supports, and
accountability for results
to all stakeholders by way of a seamless, comprehensive system of coordinated services to children, students
and youth with disabilities, birth to 21, and their families.
Special Education in Harford County Public Schools is a collaborative effort involving schools, families and
working together to ensure a free appropriate public education (FAPE) to all children with disabilities,
birth through age 21. Special education is defined as specially designed instruction, provided at no cost
to parents, in order to meet the unique needs of a child with an educational or developmental disability.
Services are provided in the least restrictive environment (LRE), to the maximum extent possible.
A Child with a Disability or Student with a Disability means a child, birth to age 21, evaluated in
accordance with IDEA
or COMAR having any of the following disabilities, causing an adverse effect on the child’s educational
resulting in the need of special education and related services:
Special education services are available in all Harford County Public Schools and across a range of learning
district’s processes and procedures for disability determination, placement and service delivery align with
federal and State regulations. Harford County Public Schools utilizes the
Statewide IEP Process Guide as the
framework for student educational planning and compliance with the
Requirements of the 2004 Reauthorization of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).
Child Find is a special education service provided by Harford County Public Schools to identify
children with disabilities,
birth to age 21, who are suspected of having an educational disability and may be in need of
special education and related services. Child Find Services are provided year-round, at no-cost.
Preschool children residing in Harford County who are not enrolled in a preschool program as
well as children ages 3 – 21 attending an MSDE approved private/parochial school located in
County are eligible to receive Child Find services.
The Harford County Public Schools’ Child Find process includes referral, prescreening to
determine the need for assessment,
an initial evaluation or reevaluation to determine eligibility and the development of an IEP
or Service Plan upon eligibility for special education services. This process begins with a
to the HCPS Child Find Center initiated by the parent or by an individual familiar with the
development (with parent consent). Parents of children enrolled in Harford County Public
should contact their local school if they suspect their child may have a disability requiring
special education services.
For more information related to Child Find, contact the HCPS Child Find Center at
410-638-4386 or 410-638-4387 .
Parents of children, who are not yet three, may contact the Harford County Infants and Toddlers
Program at 410 638-3823
for inquiries about accessing services.
The Harford County Infants and Toddlers Program, serving children with disabilities, birth through age 3
to 4* is a countywide system of coordinated, interagency, multidisciplinary early intervention services.
Through family centered services, parents and caregivers are provided guidance and coaching to help
their child be successful at home and in the community.
Parents or other individuals who are concerned about a child's development may make a referral to the
Harford County Infants and Toddlers Program at 410-638-3823 or through the Maryland Infants and Toddlers online referral link at https://referral.mditp.org/. Upon referral, developmental evaluations are completed to determine eligibility for early intervention services. Health and developmental needs may
be identified in the areas of: hearing; speech; language; physical development; cognitive development;
social-emotional development; and/or self-help skills.
Children, birth through age 3 to 4*, are eligible to receive Individualized Family Service Plan
(IFSP) services, if a developmental delay or diagnosed condition that has a high probability of
resulting in developmental delay is identified during the IFSP Team Process. The IFSP provides the
"what, when, where, why, and how" of early intervention services to be provided to the child with a
disability and his/her family. The IFSP is implemented and monitored by staff of the Harford County
Infants and Toddlers Program. Prior to the child's third birthday, a transition planning meeting is
scheduled to discuss the continued need for early intervention services (IFSP) for children birth to age
3, an extended IFSP option or the transition to preschool special education services, addressed by the
Individual Educational Program (IEP) are also available for children with disabilities, ages 3 to 4*
*Children ages 3-4 are provided services through Harford County Infants and Toddlers Program upon
meeting the requirements of the Maryland Extended Individual Family Service Plan options.
A Family Guide to Early Intervention in Maryland: Maryland Infants and Toddlers
For families of children ages 3-5 who have concerns regarding their child's development, please contact
Harford County Public Schools' Child Find at 410-638-4386 to make a referral. The Child Find process
includes referral, prescreening to determine the need for assessment, an initial evaluation to determine
eligibility and the development of an Individual Education Program (IEP) or Service Plan upon
eligibility for special education services. If a preschool age child is determined eligible for special
education services, the IEP team will consider a continuum of services and placement options including
services in the community or school-based preschool settings.
For more information related to Child Find, contact the HCPS Child Find Center at 410-638-4386 or 410-638-4387 .
A Family Guide to Preschool Special Education in Maryland
Maryland Infants and Toddlers Online Referral Brochure
Harford County Public Schools uses a team process to determine whether a child is a student with
a disability requiring specialized
instructional supports and services. Parents are valued and essential members of this
team. The Individual Education Program (IEP) Team determines eligibility of a child for special
education and related services by means of a comprehensive evaluation process, which includes
a range of data sources including, as appropriate: academic or developmental performance;
general intelligence; health, including hearing and vision; motor abilities; and social,
or behavioral status. If a child is determined to have an educational disability requiring
education services, an IEP is developed by the school staff with input from the parents. The
IEP identifies the child’s present levels of academic achievement and functional performance,
measurable annual goals and short term benchmarks, a statement of special education and related
services necessary to implement the IEP.
Harford County Public Schools provides for a continuum of special education services and
placement considerations. Service delivery and placement options are
based upon the needs identified in the IEP and are a result of the IEP Team decision-making
Harford County Public Schools seeks to improve the performance of all children with disabilities
and assist in narrowing
achievement gaps by ensuring equal access to curriculum and differentiated instruction in the
least restrictive environment. The service delivery continuum includes: consultative supports;
inclusion utilizing a co-teaching model; resource or related services provision outside of the
general education setting; self-contained learning environments; regional programs or a separate
day school placement. Programming options include:
Family Support Network (birth to 3)
The Family Support Network (FSN) was created to meet the needs of Maryland
birth to 3, who have been identified as having developmental delays or disabilities. The
FSN provides information to families regarding community services, refers families to
groups, workshops, and advocacy groups, and provides opportunities for families to
El Sistema que soporte familia (nacimiento a edad tres)
El Sistema que soporte la familia fue creado para satisfecher las necisidades de
Maryland con niños , nacimiento a edad tres,quien han sido identificados que tienen un
de desarollo o discapacidades. El Sistema de soporte familia prove información para
sobre los servicios de la comunidad,refiere las familias a grupos locales para
y grupos de defensores y prove oportunidades para familias para conectar y compartir
Partners for Success Centers, established as part of each local school system in
Maryland, are availableto parents as a resource and information center. Specifically,
Partners for Success Centers seekto provide information about community services, assist
families in resolving concerns, and increaseparental involvement in the special
education decision making process.
Compañeros para éxito (nacimiento a edad 21)
Los centros de compañeros para éxito, establecidos de una parte de cada sistema
en Mryland, están disponibles a padres como un recurso y un lugar de información.
Compañeros para éxito busca proveer información sobre servicios de la comunidad, ayudar
en resolviendo preocupaciones, y aumentando la participación de los padres en el proceso
las decisiones de educación especial.
The Office of Third Party Billing is a division of the Department of Special Education reporting
to the Director of Budgets.
Third Party Billing is a process that generates Medicaid funds for the Harford County Public
Schools. Recovery costs for health related services are sought “after the fact” for students
who meet Medicaid guidelines. Health-related services are identified in a student’s
Education Plan (IEP) or Individual Family Service Plan (ISFP). These services include
therapy, occupational or physical therapy, nursing, audiology, social work, and psychological
services for screening, evaluation and treatment. In addition to health-related services,
County Public Schools bills Medicaid for case management services provided to children 3 to 21
years. Medicaid funds are used to supplement specialized services provided by school personnel.
view the Special Education Staffing Plan 2019-2020
Harford County Public Schools (HCPS) provides a full continuum of related
students. Occupational Therapists, Physical Therapists, and Speech-Language Pathologists
licensed healthcare professionals trained to address the needs of students to support
participation, and/or progress in his/her learning environment.
The Vision Program offers specialized Braille Programs within a designated
middle, and high school, with a Braille
Transcriber at each location. Teachers of the Visually Impaired (TVI), as well as
and Mobility Instructors (O&M), travel to the students' assigned school or natural
to provide services relating to the vision loss of the student. The Vision Program
work collaboratively with the family, school staff, and eye medical professionals
consultation in order to provide support and resources.
Eligibility for the continuum of related services and vision/hearing services is
by the appropriate team once all relevant evaluations are completed and reviewed.
be initiated by a parent or outside provider with parent permission.
Based upon the age of the child, please direct your inquiry or referral to the
Online Registration for Students New to HCPS is LIVE! Visit https://www.hcps.org/Parents/registeringforschool.aspx for more information on Prekindergarten Applications and New Student Registration!
UPDATE: JULY 1, 2020
STARS OF SUMMER REGISTRATION IS OPEN
Registration is OPEN for HCPS' Stars of Summer, a virtual, camp-like summer school experience for all kindergarten through grade nine HCPS students. The program runs from July 20 through August 13, 2020, Monday through Thursday.
Teacher-led experiences for students in kindergarten through first grade will focus on literacy and numeracy-centered experiences while students in second through ninth grade will see experiences in all content areas ranging from topics like acting, cooking, science, social justice, writing, and more!
Full brochure of options and additional information is posted on hcps.org.
Registration is open through July 8, 2020. You may register your student(s) using the links below:
Kindergarten and Grade 1*: https://bit.ly/2Vvc53U
Grade 2 and Grade 3**: https://bit.ly/3ieYp6U
Grade 4 and Grade 5**: https://bit.ly/38fRYM7
Grade 6 through Grade 9**: https://bit.ly/3gb1u68
*for 2019 – 2020 kindergarten and Grade 1 students
**for 2020 – 2021 Grade 2 through Grade 9 students
We look forward to meeting our Stars of Summer!
UPDATE: JUNE 29, 2020
The following message will be sent to all students/families at 11:00 a.m.:
Good morning. This is an important message regarding P-EBT, a new pandemic program that provides food benefits to children eligible for free or reduced-price school meals. ALL HCPS families inadvertently received correspondence indicating they were eligible for the P-EBT program. While the error was identified, mailings of letters and P-EBT cards were already underway.
If you receive the letter and card and do qualify for the benefit, the appropriate funds will be available on your card.
If your family has received the letter and card in error, and you do not have a child eligible for the benefit, there will not be any funds available on the P-EBT card and you may dispose of the letter and card.
If you have questions about the funds on your card, please follow the instructions on the letter and visit www.dhs.maryland.gov/p-EBT for additional information. Thank you and we hope you have a wonderful day.
UPDATE: JUNE 26, 2020
PUBLIC NOTICE FOR PARTICIPATION IN THE BOARD OF EDUCATION BUSINESS MEETING FOR (JULY 13, 2020) 6:30PM
On July 13, 2020 at 6:30PM, the Board of Education of Harford County Business Meeting will be hosted virtually. The Audio Live Stream will be available on HCPS.ORG/BOE/LIVESTREAM.
Community members who wish to submit public comment may do so by submitting comments in writing using the following link Contact Board of Education no later than 12:00 Noon on Monday, July 13, 2020.
The following information must be provided in the contact form when submitting comments:
Please contact Teresa.Schmid@hcps.org with any questions on submitting public comments at the Board of Education Business meeting. Thank you.
UPDATE: JUNE 24, 2020
This information will be sent to all current Kindergarten through grade 8 (entering grade 9 in the 2020-2021 school year) families on Wednesday, June 24, 2020 at 5:00 p.m.
This summer, HCPS is introducing, Stars of Summer, a virtual, camp-like summer school experience for all kindergarten through incoming grade nine (for the 2020-21 school year) HCPS students. Stars of Summer participants will have unique opportunities to explore and engage in experiences catered to their age group from July 20 through August 14, Monday through Thursday. Teacher-led experiences for students in kindergarten through first grade will focus on literacy and numeracy-centered experiences while students in second through ninth grade will see experiences in all content areas ranging from topics like acting, cooking, science, social justice, writing, and more!
Class sizes will be capped at fifteen students so be sure to tune in July 1 for the program information release and save the dates, July 20 through August 14, Monday through Thursday to participate in Stars of Summer!
Information will be released on hcps.org as well as on HCPS social media channels on July 1. If you have an email address in our mass communication system, we will also email the program information directly to you on July 1. Once the information is released, parents and guardians can find registration information at hcps.org.
UPDATE: JUNE 18, 2020
The following information will be shared with parents/guardians of middle and high school students via Connect5, our mass communication system, on Thursday, June 18, 2020 at 5:00 p.m.
As shared in April, all parents and guardians have access to an electronic report card for the fourth quarter and moving forward. The Home Access Center, or HAC, is an online portal that allows parents and guardians to log in and view information pertaining to their child’s attendance, classes, grades, and registration information. Please note that HAC allows one account to be established per child.
If you have not established a HAC account yet, you will need to create an account. Directions to set up an account are posted on the COVID-19 webpage on hcps.org. A HAC account will need to be established in order to access your child’s report card. Grades are to be posted on HAC by 5:00 p.m. on Thursday, June 25, 2020. Parents who have technical difficulties establishing a HAC account should contact HomeAccessCenter@hcps.org for assistance. Parents with students in middle and high school should contact their administrator or school counselor with non-technical questions.
UPDATE: JUNE 15, 2020
PUBLIC NOTICE FOR PARTICIPATION IN THE BOARD OF EDUCATION BUSINESS MEETING
FOR JUNE 22, 2020 6:30 P.M.
On June 22, 2020 at 6:30 p.m., the Board of Education of Harford County Business Meeting will be hosted virtually. The Audio Live Stream will be available on HCPS.ORG/BOE/LIVESTREAM.
Community members who wish to submit public comment may do so by submitting comments in writing at Contact Board of Education no later than 12:00 p.m. on Monday, June 22, 2020.
The following information must be provided in the contact form when submitting comments:
7/1/2020 8:00:47 AM