Spotlight on Special Education in Modesto: Resources for Students, Teachers, and Parents

The largest city in Stanislaus County, Modesto, California, is home to a few resources for special education professionals, parents and students. These resources can be found through educational organizations, treatment centers and nonprofit agencies.

Special Education Modesto

However, though it is a large city, Modesto has somewhat limited special education resources. Residents seeking support in or information regarding special education might look beyond the city’s limits to organizations located in nearby cities.

Education-Based Resources for Special Education Teachers, Parents and Students

Modesto City Schools provides a Community Advisory Committee offering parents workshops and meetings addressing such topics as IEP development and special education laws. The website for the school system also provides a link to a document detailing the rights of special education parents and children. Parents can also access Special Education Local Plan Area (SELPA) news.

The Stanislaus County Office of Education, based in Modesto, has a Special Education Department that oversees speech and language, occupational therapy and Early Start services. The office also has an intern program for teachers seeking special education certification.

Other Organizations in or Near Modesto Offering Special Education Resources

Very few organizations focusing on special needs are located directly in Modesto. Parents and special education professionals interested in workshops, support groups or other services may need to travel up to 50 miles outside of Modesto.

Behavioral treatment programs are offered to infants, toddlers, preschool and elementary special needs children through the Central Valley Autism Project in Modesto. Programs are designed to help children develop language, social and cognitive skills. B.E.S.T. (Behavioral and Educational Strategies and Training) has an office in Modesto  offering assessment and treatment plans for autistic children. Parent services include a newsletter, monthly support group and training workshops.

Based about 30 miles northwest of Modesto in Stockton and serving several counties, including Stanislaus, Family Resource Network provides advocacy services, workshops, seminars and support groups for parents of special education students. The Network also hosts an annual Early Start symposium and publishes helpful articles for special education parents in an online newsletter published four times per year.

Special Education Modesto

In Sierra Vista, about 50 miles southeast of Modesto, the Sierra Vista Regional Medical Center offers an Autism Support Group for parents. The group meets on the third Friday of February, April, June, August, October and December.

And the Sacramento Autistic Spectrum and Special Needs Alliance (SASSNA), about 75 miles Modesto, provides advocacy and case management services. There’s also events designed to help special education students build social skills, parent support groups and an email discussion group for families, teachers and other professionals.

The California Special Needs Law Group (CSNLG) is a Pasadena-based firm offering services throughout the state. These services include IEP development assistance and conflict mediation.

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