Special Education Services

Three Students

Ceres Unified School District currently provides services to approximately 1,500 students in a variety of special education programs and related service settings, including students that have a Specific Learning Disability, are Speech or Language Impaired, Emotionally Disturbed, Intellectually Disabled, Other Health Impaired, Visually Impaired, Deaf or Hard-of-Hearing, Autistic or Traumatically Brain Injured.

Students are placed in programs in accordance to the severity of their disability. Currently 90% of our special education students attend classes and participate in related instructional services on all campuses in our district. Another 10% receive instruction and related services in regionalized special education programs through the Stanislaus County Office of Education, Non-public or State Schools.

Individualized Education Plan (IEP)

Special Education program placement and related services are determined by the IEP Team based on assessment results and appropriate goals and objectives.

The Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA) requires that the school, in conjunction with the parents and other professionals, develop an IEP for each student with a disability. The IEP will describe the level at which your child is performing and will identify specific services (e.g. remedial work, tutoring, special education classes) or instruction your child will receive to address his or her specific needs. The IEP and related special education programs are provided at no cost to families. Each year, the IEP is revised based on the child's progress.


All special education students are placed and receive instruction in the least restrictive environment. Students are placed in general education classes and supported with special education instruction to the degree that is appropriate to meet individual educational needs. Including special education students in general education classes can be beneficial for their academic, social, and/or emotional development. Special education staff work closely with general education teachers to assure the quality of education for both general and special education students.

Continuum of Services

Special education students are placed and receive services according to their specific needs, as identified in each Individualized Educational Program (IEP). By law, these students must be educated in the least restrictive environment. This means a special education student must be educated in the general education classroom setting with supplemental aids and services to the maximum extent appropriate, unless the student cannot satisfactorily be educated there.

Special education placement options in Ceres Unified School District include the following:

  • A general education classroom
  • A general education classroom with modifications and/or supplemental aids and designated instructional services, such as Speech and Language therapy or Adapted Physical Education services, etc.
  • A Resource Specialist program for special education instruction with instruction in a general education classroom
  • A Special Education classroom for students with disabilities located at a comprehensive site, within our school district. Ceres Unified currently operates Special Education classes for autism, moderate/severely handicapped, emotionally disturbed and mild/moderate students.
  • A regionalized Special Education classroom for students with disabilities located at a comprehensive site in another school district
  • A Special Education center where many or all students may have disabilities
  • A Non-public school, home, hospital, or State School.

Related Services

Related Services are supportive services that are available to assist a handicapped student benefit from special education. Listed below are some commonly provided services available to eligible students in our District.

  • Speech and Language Therapy
  • Adapted Physical Education
  • Occupational Therapy
  • Vision, Mobility, and Orientation Services
  • Physical Therapy
  • School Health Services
  • Assistive Technology
  • Inclusion Specialists