Programs & Services

OUR VISION

To be the premier team of professionals who provide the highest quality educational services and supports to Vermilion County schools, students, and families to ensure our students reach their fullest potential

OUR MISSION

VASE exists to provide comprehensive, evidence-based prevention and intervention services to enable students with diverse needs to achieve their maximum learning potential through collaboration with, and support to the families, district personnel, and community agencies.

OUR VALUES

 

  • Everyone will learn.
  • Every person has a purpose and should be treated with fairness, honesty, and respect.
  • A strong sense of unity, responsibility, open communication, and a solid work ethic are the keys to a positive collaborative learning community.
  • Ongoing personal and professional growth along with sharing this knowledge with others will promote a professional learning community.
  • Through the use of professionalism and open communication, conflicts and problems are an opportunity for growth/change.

Adapted Physical Education Program

The intent of the adapted physical education program is to provide physical education instruction to those students who cannot safely and/or successfully participate in the traditional mainstreamed physical education environment. Regular physical education is a direct service mandated by law that must be provided for all students with a disability. As a result, any student in a school served by the cooperative is eligible to receive adapted physical education instruction or consultation. Students are referred for services from a variety of sources including: physical education instructors, classroom teachers, administrators, VASE personnel, nurses and physicians. Each student's physician has input into the development of the child's physical education program.

The program goals of the adapted physical education program emphasize the teaching of lifetime sports skills, and the improvement of each student's overall level of physical fitness. After a complete assessment of the student's motor skills is completed, he/she begins working in an individualized program designed to remediate motor deficiencies. Equipment and activities are modified to assist this student in meeting specific IEP goals. Existing abilities are used in a positive atmosphere to encourage the development of new lifetime skills and help the student lead a more healthful enjoyable life.

Audiology Services

The VASE audiology department provides educational audiology services for students from pre-K through graduation from high school.  Our audiologist performs comprehensive, diagnostic audiology evaluations and makes appropriate referrals to area professionals when needed.  Referrals are accepted from parents, school nurses, teachers, and other school personnel.  All VASE audiology services are provided free-of-charge.  Appointments are available on Tuesdays and can be scheduled by calling 443-8273, option 3.

The audiologist and itinerant teachers of the deaf and hard-of-hearing make up the Education and Audiological Review (EAR) team which coordinates services for the hearing-impaired students in the classroom.  This may include providing classroom amplification systems, troubleshooting and monitoring students' amplification systems, teacher in-services, participating in staffings and consulting with other school personnel.

Deaf and Hard of Hearing Program

The Deaf and Hard of Hearing (DHH) Itinerant Program covers the VASE service area of Vermilion County. We service students with documented hearing losses of varying degrees. The program provides a specially trained teacher certified to teach deaf and hard of hearing children. This teacher travels to the student's local school. Services are provided either within the student's classroom or on a pull-out basis.

The DHH teacher also assists the classroom teacher in creating personal educational modification, amplifications questions, and in-service topics.

The philosophy of the DHH program is Total Communication. This means the child has the right to use and receive all forms of communication tools available to develop gestures, vocal speech, formal signs, fingerspelling, speechwriting, writing, and the use of amplification to develop any residual hearing.

Educational services are determined through the following criteria:

1. Documented hearing loss
2. Below average language standard scores
3. Below average listening standard scores
4. Consensus of the multidisciplinary team members
5. Below average vocabulary standard scores

Early Childhood

VASE is the referral point for children ages 3-5 of our member districts for whom a medical professional or parent/guardian has concerns.  VASE provides preschool screenings and full evaluation services to determine the child's eligibility for special education services.  Early Childhood Special Education (ECSE) is designed so that staff can work with each child at his/her level and help them enhance academic readiness skills in all developmental areas such as speech/language, fine and gross motor, self-help, social/behavioral and cognition.  The ECSE program provides communication opportunities between the home and school to reinforce student's progress and for purposes of parent education.  Parental involvement is supported and encouraged in the classroom and when planning for the child.  The ECSE program strives to provide a secure, caring, consistent and quality classroom experience that provides hands-on opportunities, through which children will realize their own unique talents and potential.

Occupational Therapy


Occupational Therapy is a related service provided to qualifying students who need assistance to benefit from educational opportunities in the least restrictive environment or who need assistance in overcoming educational deficits directly/indirectly from a physical, sensory, or motor disability. Handicapping conditions may include learning disabilities, sensory-motor dysfunction or perceptual motor dysfunction.

Occupational Therapy services assist in promoting independence in daily living skills, increasing function through the use of adaptive/assistive devices, facilitating muscle strength, motor coordination and range of motion, improving sensory-motor performance and improving fine motor/visual perceptual skills. Therapy goals that evolve from the evaluation process are observable, measurable, and educationally relevant.

Physical Therapy

Physical Therapy services are implemented by a licensed therapist and treats students with various disabilities who have difficulty with accessing and participating in their school environment.  Crutches, braces, standing devices and other equipment may be used in therapy as well as special adaptations created by the therapist.  The therapist will consult with the family and school personnel in the implementation of the child's therapy program.  Therapy can begin after a physician examines the child and gives a written prescription for treatment, the Physical Therapist evaluates the child, and the IEP team determines if physical therapy is necessary to benefit the child's education program

School Psychological Services

School psychological services are designed and implemented to support and advance the educational needs of all students within Vermilion County so each student can realize their fullest potential in life.  School psychologists tailor their services to the particular needs of each student and situation.  Roles and services vary based on the current needs of each school.  While many approaches may be used for the delivery of services, most core services involve: problem-solving, assessment, consultation, prevention, and intervention.

The functions of the school psychologist include:

  • Assessment: Cognitive, Academic, Emotional-Behavioral
  • Observation: Classroom, Small Group, Individual
  • Interview: Students, Teachers, Parents
  • Teacher Consultation: Problem-solving, Interventions, Teaching strategies, Student development
  • Parent Consultation: Help understand student’s development and educational system
  • Evaluation Process: Review of records, Assist with paperwork completion, Help determine eligibility, programming, and writing goals
  • Response to Intervention (RtI): Analyze universal screening and progress monitoring data, Assist with intervention implementation, modeling, and integrity, Consultation
  • Counseling: Group, Individual
  • Collaboration: With community agencies and medical professionals
  • In-service Training: Teachers, Parents

School Social Work Services

School social work services are part of an interdisciplinary approach to understanding and providing help for children who are having difficulties in school.

Children in need of social work services are those who show any prolonged or significant deviation from the normal age expectations of behavior, performance, or attitude. Students served may exhibit some of the following behaviors:

  • Disrupts the classroom
  • Poor peer relationships or lack of social skills
  • School phobia
  • Abused or neglected
  • Poor self-concept
  • Truancy relevant to school or home problems
  • Home problems; problems getting along with parents
  • Difficulty following the rules in school
  • Immaturity
  • Aggressive, temper tantrums
  • Stealing, lying, dishonesty


There are many functions a school's social worker may perform. The following list indicates functions social workers may engage in to best achieve the objectives of the educational system.

* Assist in the identification, evaluation, and placement of special education students

* Direct casework or group work with children and/or their families

* Interpret the service to school, parents, and community

* Serve as a liaison between the school and community agencies, including referral to appropriate social agencies

* Make appropriate home intervention and encourage parental involvement

Children are referred to the school social worker by school personnel. Parents interested in having their children receive school social work services may contact their school principal.

Speech Therapy Services

The VASE speech-language department is proud to serve the students and families of Vermilion County.  We provide a variety of services to children with identified areas of need, including delays/disorders of articulation and phonology, and pragmatics (social skills).  Our licensed speech-language pathologists work with parents/guardians, teachers, and other district personnel to screen students and conduct evaluations when appropriate.  When services are deemed necessary, students are seen individually or in small groups of peers at school. Walk-in speech-language services are available for eligible preschool-age children who are not yet enrolled in a classroom.  Screenings are conducted several times a year throughout the county in order to identify at-risk preschool-age children.

Involved parents/guardians are appreciated, so please contact the VASE office or your local school district with any questions regarding available speech-language services or screenings in your area.

Visual Impairment Services

Visually Impaired children are those whose best corrected vision in the better eye is 20/70 or less, or whose field of vision does not exceed 20deg. Those whose vision is 20/200 or less with best correction in the better eye are considered legally blind. A child who is visually impaired may become visually disabled when his environment requires visual performance which is difficult or impossible without special materials and teaching techniques.

Services which may be provided by the Visually Impaired Program include:

1. Direct instruction to the child in areas not available in the regular classroom such as Braille, daily living skills, efficient use of vision and low vision aids, typing, orientation and mobility.

2. Interpretation of the child's eye condition and how it affects the child in the school and home.

3. Provision of ideas and direct help to aid the classroom teacher in successfully integrating the child into the regular classroom.

4. Provision of information and resources whenever necessary in the school and community.

The visually impaired program is itinerant. In this program, the child remains in the classroom where he would be enrolled in his home school if he were not visually impaired. He participates in regular classroom activities and receives services from the teacher of the visually impaired on a direct or consultant basis. A vision coordinator assists with supervision and consultation.

Transition

The Secondary Transitional Experience Program (STEP) is designed to provide supervised work experience for high school students with disabilities. Emphasis is placed on developing appropriate work-related habits and attitudes and on acquiring marketable work skills. STEP provides an opportunity for students to experience guided on-the-job training.

To participate in this school-to-work program, a student must be sixteen years of age (generally, a junior or senior in high school) and identified as having a disabling condition that would create a barrier toward employment. One and a half or more hours of each student's school day may be spent at an established work-site training station. The training station may be located at businesses in the community or on training sites within the school district. Supervision of the student's work experience is provided by the coordination effort of a vocational coordinator with the student's employer, teachers, and parents.

Students receive work related instruction in order to enhance their job training experience. Students participating in the STEP program earn school credit(s) toward graduation. Students learn to mangage money earned through work either through a STEP stipend grant or by being employer paid. The ultimate goal of the STEP program is to prepare the student for "the world of work" while working toward a diploma.