Special Education - Oregon Virtual Academy

Special Education

The Oregon Virtual Academy is committed to the identification and service of students with special needs, within the least restrictive environment and with access to the general education curriculum. Services and placements are based on each student’s Individualized Educational Program (IEP). ORVA is dedicated to supporting all students and their families who meet the special education eligibility requirements of IDEA through robust programming options within the virtual learning environment.

Screening

ORVA provides universal screening and Multi-Tiered Systems of Support (MTSS) to ensure systematic identification of students who may require special education services. Our MTSS model allows for academic and behavioral intervention for all students, with progress monitoring to determine the need for more intensive supports. Most often, students are referred for a special education evaluation through our MTSS process and team. If your child may benefit from classroom interventions or for more information on this process, please visit our MTSS page.

Accommodations & Modifications

Alternatively, ORVA provides 504 plans for students with identified educational disabilities that require accommodations and/or modifications in the classroom. To understand the difference between an Individualized Education Program (IEP) and 504, or to gain more information please visit our Section 504 program page.

ORVA Special Education Services

Special education staff collaborate with general education teachers and learning coaches to provide necessary supports for each student within the virtual learning environment. This may include implementing a variety of accommodations or modifications in the general curriculum and differentiating instruction to meet the needs of diverse learners. Specially Designed Instruction at the student’s skill level also takes place in small groups or individualized sessions. Progress is monitored regularly, and plans are adjusted as needed to ensure that students meet their annual goals.

Common virtual Special Education and related services:

  • Specially Designed Instruction
    • Reading, Writing, Math, Study Skills, Transition, Self-Management, Life Skills
  • Speech and Language Therapy
  • Occupational Therapy
  • Physical Therapy
  • Psychological Services
  • Behavior Consultation
  • Counseling
  • Vision Services
  • Autism Consultation
  • Hearing Services

Placement Options

ORVA maintains a continuum of special education placement options for students designed to meet individual needs within the virtual classroom environment. All students at ORVA require adult support of a Learning Coach in the home to ensure success and access to their online learning. Consultation between teachers and Learning Coaches is provided across all placement options. In general, the following options are available:

General Education Classroom

In the virtual General Education classroom students receive instruction from their classroom teacher with consultation and support from the Special Education Teacher to monitor progress towards meeting IEP goals and objectives. In some cases, virtual classes may also include team teaching/push-in support. This is where the Special Education Teacher attends the General Education classroom specifically to support the students IEP goals.

Resource Room

Each of our grade bands have multiple Special Education Teachers who case manage and provide Specially Designed Instruction (SDI) to students with IEPs. Based on needs, students may receive SDI in a small group separate virtual classroom.

Functional Academics & Life Skills

This program is available at all levels for students with a range of disabilities who require intensive, individualized instruction in both life skills and functional academics. These students demonstrate a need for long term highly modified instruction and are serviced within a self-contained virtual classroom.

Program Standards & Assessment

Under the requirements of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) 2004, the Oregon Department of Education publishes an annual Special Education report card as part of the State Performance Plan. This report provides data from our school, compared with state data or targets.

As Oregon schools and districts continue to face many challenges, educators remain committed to providing the highest quality education for Oregon students. We are proud of the achievements of our students with special needs and the teachers and staff who serve them. We continue to work to serve our special needs students and provide appropriate academic challenges. We continue to use our current successes to set targets for the future.

Special Education Staff & Faculty

Kat Bierkens

High School Special Education Teacher

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(541) 294-0236

Jennifer Cole

High School Special Education Teacher

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Shannon Curtin

Middle School Special Education Teacher

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(458) 710-0327

Tena Dickinson

Middle School SpED Teacher

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Devon Dorn

High School Special Education Teacher

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(541) 972-1237

Janelle Getz

Elementary Special Education Teacher

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(541) 751-3018

Jeanne Gifford-Ohnemus

Middle School Special Education Teacher

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(458) 710-0846

Joyce Harrer

High School Special Education Teacher

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(541) 294-0815

Clare Leeper

High School Special Education Teacher

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(541) 435-4337

Lee Lynch

Elementary Special Education Teacher

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(541) 435-8000

Steven Marek

High School Special Education Teacher

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(458) 710-0326

Medina Moes

Elementary Special Education Teacher

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(541) 213-0013

Laura Rockwell

Elementary Special Education Teacher

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(458) 710-0394

Sarah Session

High School Special Education Teacher

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Frequently Asked Questions

Depending on a child’s Individualized Education Program, we can tailor our curriculum to meet your needs. To discuss your child’s needs with us, please contact our office and we will put you in touch with our special education team.

Learn about ORVA’s Special Education, Section 504, and School Interventions programs.