Streff Behavior Consulting will provide Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA) services for the Washington School District this year.
The school board approved a proposal for the services at its meeting last Wednesday night.
Dr. Rachael Franssen, special services director, recommended Streff Behavior Consulting, located in Foristell.
A Request For Proposal (RFP) was conducted in order to determine competitive pricing and supportive services for staff working with moderate to severely disabled children, specifically related to autism.
Two vendors submitted proposals — Streff, with a bid of $22,400, and The Center for Autism Education, located in O’Fallon, with a bid of $31,350.
In a written report to the board, Franssen said the current special education budget supports the expenditure for fiscal year 2014, and federal/state high needs support will be pursued as additional revenue for fiscal year 2015.
Franssen said the proposal from The Center for Autism Education did provide a higher number of on-site visits, but did not address a plan for professional growth in order to increase staff capacity.
Todd Streff, owner of Streff Behavior Consulting, has worked with the district previously, she said, as well as with other school districts in the area, and has provided extensive professional development for local and professional organizations, including national groups as well.
Franssen said a three-year plan for professional development was provided by Streff.
“This model supports staff professionally in an ongoing way and is proactive in approach to providing appropriate services to our students without tying specific consultants to specific students via the Individual Education Plan (IEP),” she stated.
In her report, Franssen also provided detailed information on the district’s early childhood special education, low-incidence program, which serves students age 3 to 5 in accordance with the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) guidelines.
A low-incidence program for students with severe autism or similar communication needs was established about five years ago and serves students in a typically 1:1 or 2:1 environment. The district serves an average of five students annually at this level.
The kindergarten through sixth-grade program was established approximately three years ago and the amount and severity of students served continues to increase substantially in comparison to the early childhood special education program.
Students at the elementary level are typically served in a 3:1 model, although the need for a 1:1 model continues to increase.