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Trumbull County Educational Service Center's (TCESC) multiple disabilities education program serves students with simultaneous impairments, the combination of which causes severe educational needs that cannot be addressed or accommodated in a special education program for one specific disability. This includes a severe or profound deficit in communication or adaptive behavior documented through use of individually administered standardized instruments that are validated for the specific purpose of measuring communication or adaptive behavior.

  • The program is a cooperative effort of school districts throughout Trumbull County. It serves approximately 195 students in 22 different units throughout the county.  This includes a special classroom for students in upper grades with specific accommodations, a medically fragile classroom and a classroom at TCTC.

  • There are approximately eight students in each classroom. Two or three adults - an intervention specialist, and 1 or 2 classroom assistants - are assigned to every class. The intervention specialist possesses a certificate to teach children with mild/moderate to moderate/intense needs. The assistants do not design or teach lessons, but assist in implementing lessons, collecting data and keeping students focused on learning. The assistants also attend to the physical and medical needs of the students.

  • Conducting this program within the public school setting provides students with multiple disabilities opportunities to develop and generalize social skills as they are integrated with children in traditional classrooms and other school settings, such as the cafeteria or playground.

  • Transportation is provided to classroom units via Community Busing Services or the school district if attending a classroom within their district of residence.

  • TCESC provides the students therapies as determined by the IEP team, including speech and language; occupational therapy; physical therapy; vision services; orientation and mobility; and adaptive physical education. 

  • An Evaluation Team Report determines the disability category and needs of each student. Every student receives an individual assessment and an Individual Education Program (IEP) is written based on the ETR results, which serves as a roadmap for individualized, specially designed instruction.  Although students may attend school in a classroom outside the home school district, the home school district remains involved in the education of the student. 

  • TCESC staff conducts caretaking tasks, such as tube feeding and seizure care, that a physician allows to be performed by a lay person. The parents and school nurse train staff individually for each child. In many cases, TCESC staff members visit a child's home to learn caretaking responsibilities in a comfortable environment. A TCESC MD classroom for the most medically involved students is also available in a separate facility at Fairhaven School of Niles, Ohio. 

  • The program takes a functional academic approach to teaching using a modified curriculum. The curriculum centers on Ohio learning progressions and extended learning standards. The modified curriculum is consistent throughout all classrooms. For example, students visit the grocery store, search for specific items and conduct monetary transactions. They focus on accomplishing just small portions of an entire activity. Further adaptations to the curriculum and materials are made based on each student’s individualized needs. Technology is available in each classroom to enhance instruction and aid in communication, the development of fine motor skills, practice and review of learned skills.

For additional information, contact Michelle Tul, supervisor, Trumbull County Educational Service Center, at 330-505-2800 ext. 145.
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Contact Information
Michelle Tul, supervisor of multiple disabilities program
Phone: 330-505-2800 ext. 145
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6000 Youngstown Warren Rd.  Niles, OH  44446-4603
Phone: 330.505.2800  Fax: 330.505.2814
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