MCPS Parents Invited to Participate in Listening Sessions, Focus Groups on Special Education Processes and Services

January 20, 2015

The Montgomery County Board of Education has contracted with WestEd, a national research and service nonprofit organization, to conduct an independent review of Montgomery County Public Schools’ (MCPS) special education processes and services.

The goal of the study is to better understand the experiences of students and their families related to Individualized Education Program (IEP) development, implementation, and dispute resolution. The study will include site visits to learn about special education instruction at a number of MCPS schools, and will benchmark best practices in other school districts. Findings from the study will be used to make recommendations for improvement to MCPS programs.

MCPS parents/guardians will be offered multiple opportunities over the next several months to provide feedback on the district’s special education services. This will include listening sessions, focus groups and surveys.

The listening sessions, hosted by the MCPS Special Education Advisory Committee and the Special Education Committee of the Montgomery County Council of PTAs, will take place on:

-Thursday, January 22: Rock Terrace School, 390 Martins Lane in Rockville

-Wednesday, January 28: John F. Kennedy High School, 1901 Randolph Road in Silver Spring

Both listening sessions will be held from 7–9 p.m. Free child care and interpretation services will be provided.

Focus Groups

Parents and guardians can volunteer to participate in focus groups that will be held in February and March. Those who are interested must submit their information by January 30. Applications are available online. WestEd will select diverse groups of participants.


A sample of parents and students will receive a survey in the mail. All recipients will be asked to complete and return the survey in a timely manner.

WestEd will maintain the confidentiality of all participants. For more information, visit the Special Education website.  

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