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Specialized Academic Instruction (SAI)

SAI is “Adapting, as appropriate to the needs of the student with a disability the content, methodology, or delivery of instruction to ensure access of the student to the general curriculum, so that he/she can meet the educational standards within the jurisdiction of the public agency that apply to all students.”  IDEA emphasizes that all children are to be in general education classes to the greatest extent appropriate.

A less restrictive placement is considered when documentation demonstrates that a student is making sufficient progress on his/her goals and objectives and with modifications, accommodations, and needed services can participate in a meaningful way in a less restrictive environment.


Early Childhood Special Education

The Early Childhood Special Education Services program provides a full range of educational programs and services to eligible children from 3 to 5 years of age who have disabilities.

For registration information contact the preschool assessment team (PAT) at Clair W Burgener (760) 901-7103.


Adult Transition Program

ATP serves our adult students with disabilities ages 18-22 with a combination of work experience and volunteer opportunities as well as classroom and community based instruction to prepare students to meet their post-secondary goals in the area of education/training, employment, and independent living.

If you would like more information or new to Oceanside Unified, please contact ATP at Clair W Burgener (760) 901-7100.



Related and Specialized Services

Adapted Physical Education (APE)

APE is a diversified program of developmental activities that are modified to meet the district’s physical education standards. A carefully designed physical education program is developed and implemented within the psycho-motor domain for individuals with disabilities. Assistance can be provided to students in the general education program and/or along a continuum of physical education services. The Adapted Physical Education teacher must have a credential authorizing the teaching of APE, as established by the Commission on Teacher Credentialing. APE services students ranging from preschool to high school. 


School Psychology Services

School psychologists facilitate the educational and emotional development of all students by working collaboratively with school staff, families, and community agencies. Oceanside Unified School District promotes the professional growth of highly qualified school psychologists who design, organize and provide a broad range of services to the schools and communities in which they work. Data-based decisions drive the recommendation of psycholoeducational services which promotes the mental health, welfare and education of our students. 


Speech and Language Services

Oceanside Unified School District’s team of Speech and Language Specialists hold appropriate credentials with specialization in language, speech, and hearing. They accept and initiate referrals and assessments. They provide specialized instruction and services for individuals in pre-school (age 3) through high school. They monitor student progress on a regular basis, provide information for Individualized Education Program reviews, provide consultative services to pupils, parents, teachers, or other school personnel, provide direct speech and language therapy, and coordinate those services with an individual’s regular and special education program.


Nursing Services

The school nurse is a registered nurse with a public health certificate. Additionally, she or he is credentialed in health services by the Teacher's Commission on credentialing. Functions of the school nurse include but are not limited to state mandated hearing and vision screening and scoliosis screening. School nurses supervise unlicensed personnel in the health office in medication administration, first aid and specialized procedures. Generally, school nurses work at several school sites so they must respond to emergencies by phone. The nurse is a member of the special education team where she serves as a consultant . The school nurse also assists families and students by offering counseling and referrals to physicians, mental health workers, dentists as well as other public agencies. The school nurse is the only staff member on campus who is educated in health care and is often the first contact for children with health problems.


Occupational Therapy (OT) and Physical Therapy (PT)

OT and PT services are provided to students with special needs under provisions of the Individuals with Disabilities Educational Improvement Act of 2004. Since Occupational Therapy and Physical Therapy are Related Service as indicated by California State Education Code, a student may receive OT or PT as a part of an IEP. Both the therapy specialist and therapy assistants provide student services in the classroom, provide skill building outside the classroom, and support a student through ongoing collaboration with teachers, staff and other service providers. Therapy specialists have the additional duties of performing assessments and developing and monitoring a student’s therapy intervention plan.

School-based Occupational Therapists can assist in supporting student performance in the areas following areas:

  • Motor Skills / Sensory Motor Abilities (ex. Classroom tool use, accommodations for writing, supports for desk posture)
  • Social/Emotional /Behavioral Skills (ex. Proactive movement strategies to assist with self-regulation, accommodations for sensitivity to sensory input).
  • Self-Help / Adaptive Skills  (ex. Motor ability for hygiene and clothing management, provide accommodations through equipment).


Visually Impaired (VI)

Visual Impairment program serves the needs of visually impaired students as indicated by their Individualized Educational Programs. The majority of students attend their neighborhood schools and are served by an Itinerant Teacher of Visually Impaired.

Teachers of Visually Impaired work with the students towards the goals in their IEPs. These goals address the development and maintenance of special skills needed as a result of the visual impairment and may include one or more of the following: visual efficiency skills, Braille skills, keyboarding, computer skills, assistive technology, use of specialized equipment, orientation and mobility, self advocacy, concept development, daily living skills, pre-vocational skills, etc.

Some of the specialized equipment and materials required by the students are:

  • daily worksheets, assignments, and tests in large print or Braille
  • books in large print, Braille or on tape
  • adapted tape recorders
  • appropriate optical aids, magnifiers, CCTV
  • Braillewriters, electronic Braille notetakers, computers
  • assistive technology software and equipment
  • talking calculators, electronic dictionaries
  • special paper, pens, tactile materials
  • manipulatives for concept development
  • vision stimulation materials
  • adapted materials for daily living and functional skills


Assistive Technology (AT)

The goal of AT is to appropriately match and provide the necessary technology tool to students who need to increase, maintain, or improve their functional capabilities to access their educational programs.

  • Equipment Only Request: AT needs can be determined by a site IEP team if those members have enough information to make a decision. In these instances, team members have frequently had experience with other students with similar needs and are able to make appropriate recommendations. Team members have been trained on the supports being requested and are responsible for completing installations on site hardware.
  • Consultation: The team is unsure about appropriate AT supports and need consultation with an AT specialist to determine if assistive technology tools would be beneficial to meet IEP goals and if so, how to implement those tools.
  • Assessment: The team receives a formal request from any members of the IEP team for an AT specialist to conduct an assessment if more information is needed to determine what AT or augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) device may be appropriate to support a student who are unable to use verbal speech to communicate. AAC methods vary and may be personalized to meet each individual's needs. 


Behavior Support

The goal of the behavior support team is to build capacity with school site teams by providing support to meet the social, emotional and behavioral needs of students through Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS).

  • A comprehensive system of positive behavioral support which fosters positive social, emotional and behavioral outcomes for all students in the Least Restrictive Environment (LRE)
  • Collaboration with district personnel, outside agencies and organizations that support positive behavioral outcomes for students
  • Evidence-based behavioral and instructional approaches
  • On-going training and support to ensure that site staff have the skills necessary to meet the ever changing needs of students

Our district's behavioral support services are designed primarily to facilitate positive outcomes for students with disabilities and to build capacity of all staff at school sites.  Resources are provided through:

  • Consultation
  • Observation
  • Collaboration with site staff
  • Specific student based training
  • Staff training



Transportation as a related service is included in your child's IEP if the IEP team determines that service is needed. Transportation includes: 

  • travel to and from school and between schools
  • specialized equipment if required to provide special transportation

The specific needs of the student must always be the primary consideration when the IEP team is making decisions regarding transportation needs.