What is “Medically involved”?
The Medically Involved Program is a specialized version of the Multiply Disabled programs found through out Newark Public Schools. This program focuses on the needs of students who are medically fragile and have cognitive impairments. Medically Fragile students are “students with specialized health care needs that require specialized technological health care procedures for life support and/or health support during the school day.” They are at risk for multiple failures in education, medical and health care needs. The combination of the two disabling conditions is what these classes are designed to accommodate. The Medically Involved classes are designed to offer access to the Newark Public Schools Curriculum and meet the physical, medical, and social needs of the students within their least restrictive environment.
Guidelines for Enrollment
Students who meet the criteria of Multiply Disabled by being Cognitively Impaired and Medically Fragile should be considered for enrollment into the Medically Involved program. Child Study Teams who believe that a student would best be educated within a Medically Involved program should contact the Program Coordinator to begin the evaluation process.
A student recommended for the Medically Involved program will need to be evaluated by a team of specialists. This team will include a representative from Health Services, an Occupational and/or Physical Therapist, the Program Coordinator, and members of the Child Study Team. The team may also include other related service providers (e.g. Speech and Language pathologist, audiologist) as needed. The team will determine if the student meets the criteria of the program, and if the program can adequately service the student’s individual needs.
Once a student is eligible for the Medically Involved program, the case manager will request a placement from the Office of Special Education. A Nursing Care Plan and an Emergency Health Care Plan will be developed by the school nurse once the student arrives at the new placement.
Medically Involved students receive physical, occupational and speech therapy as dictated by the individual IEPs. Students will participate in the MOVE (Mobility Opportunities Via Education) program which is designed to help families, educators and therapists work together toward goals specific to the individual student needs. MOVE is an activity-based program which gives the students opportunities to improve sitting, standing and walking skills while participating in activities of daily living. Classes for the Medically Involved program have physical and environmental requirements to meet the health and safety needs of the students. First, buildings must meet Americans with Disability Act (ADA) regulations in order to allow non ambulatory students access to the facility. Second, facilities must be air conditioned for the health and safety of the students who have equipment and health conditions that require temperature controlled environments. Finally, classrooms must have ample space to accommodate medical and therapy equipment. Considerations are made for each student for emergency and evacuation procedures.