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Welcome to the Newsletter Page of the OCECD website! Here, you'll find the current OCECD Newsletter packed with valuable information for parents and professionals in the field of special education.

Our current Newsletter is filled with the latest insights, resources, and updates on special education practices. From practical tips to research-based strategies, we aim to provide a comprehensive resource for parents and professionals alike.

In addition to the current edition, you can access our archive of previous newsletters in PDF format. Simply navigate to the right column of this page to download and explore past editions.

We value your engagement and encourage you to subscribe to our newsletter to receive regular updates directly in your inbox. By joining our mailing list, you'll never miss an issue and stay informed about the latest trends, best practices, and upcoming events in the field of special education.


OCECD Winter Newsletter 3-Part Series on Behavior related topics

OCECD Spring Newsletter Behavior: Part Three

Welcome to OCECD’s Spring 2024 newsletter! This newsletter is the final installment in our three-part series on the topic of Behavior. In the first of our series we discussed behavior and discipline, including information about Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS), Functional Behavior Assessments (FBA), Behavior Intervention Plans (BIP), and setting concrete goals and objectives related to behavior in the IEP. In the second newsletter in this series, we continued with a discussion about discipline related to violations of student code of conduct due to inappropriate behavior, which includes suspension, expulsion, and emergency removal and important information about the Manifestation Determination Review. The third newsletter in this series, presented here, finishes the conversation with an important discussion about informal removals, Ohio behavioral health services, Ohio’s current funding for student wellness and success, and information about Pearson behavior toolkits and assessments.

The information provided in this newsletter is for general informational purposes only and should not be considered as legal advice.


Sometimes parents are asked to pick up their child from school early, which could be for various reasons. Maybe the child has been sent to the Principal’s Office, or possibly the school has shortened school days for the child due to behavioral concerns. It is not uncommon for these informal removals to be undocumented in school records that would add to the 10-day rule.

OSEP Director Addresses Why Informal Removals Matter (

Discipline Discussions: Suspension, Expulsion & Informal Removals: Unexpected Realities in Preschool | Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services Blog

informal removals - Search Results (

WASHINGTON, D.C. (Feb. 22, 2023) – Valerie C. Williams, director of the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP), released the third blog in a blog series on discipline and behavior.

Williams, along with the OSEP-funded Center for Parent Information and Resources (CPIR), writes about why informal removals of students matter. “These [informal] removals often go uncounted, are not reported as suspensions, and fly under-the-radar built to ensure that the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act’s (IDEA’s) discipline protections are exercised,” Williams said.

Williams noted the sections in which the
IDEA discipline requirements guidance package, released in July 2022, addresses informal removals.

Additionally, CPIR shares information and resources for parents, schools, and early childhood programs about informal removals. The center describes how schools and early programs can collaborate with parents to address a child’s behavior; provides examples of evidence-based practices schools can implement to avoid relying on informal removals to address behaviors; and highlights resources parents can access to support their participation in their child’s education. Center for Parent Information and Resources | Your Central Hub for Parent Centers Serving Families of Children with Disabilities (

For many parents of children with disabilities, the middle-of-the-day phone call carries a different message and results in a different outcome. As the Office of Special Education Programs’ (OSEP’s) director, I have heard parents share stories that follow a strikingly similar and concerning plot line: their child’s behavior has caused a disruption, and they must be picked up immediately to help their child “calm down.” Forced to abruptly abandon their workday commitments, these parents rush to their child’s school and take their child home. Sometimes this removal from school is for part of a school day, sometimes longer.

Until now, OSEP had not given these removals a name. Now, we call these removals “informal removals.”

In July 2022, OSEP released the most comprehensive IDEA discipline requirements guidance package since the law was passed in 2004. Notably, this guidance:

The bottom line is that informal removals matter. They matter to the child being removed, to the parent/guardian being called, to the school personnel who lack the tools and strategies to address the behavioral needs of children with disabilities more productively, and they matter to OSEP.

If you are a parent whose student has been “informally” removed from school, please contact the Ohio Coalition at
[email protected] or 740-382-5452.


The Ohio Council of Behavioral Health & Family Services Providers published the 2023 School-Based Behaviors Health Services Summary Report.

2023 Ohio Council School-Based Services Survey FINAL FULL REPORT (002).pdf ( The Ohio Council is a statewide trade association representing more than 160 private and not-for-profit organizations providing community-based mental health, alcohol and other drug addiction treatment and family services throughout Ohio. The Ohio Council was established in 1979.

As of the 2022-2023 academic year, Ohio’s community behavioral health providers continue to offer critical screening, prevention, treatment, and crisis intervention services in nearly 3,000 of the state’s public and private school buildings.

Reflecting the urgent need that our students have for school-based behavioral health supports, for the second year in a row, respondents of the 2023 School-Based Behavioral Health Services survey identified Crisis De-Escalation and Intervention Services as being the top-needed behavioral health service in school-based settings (69.2%). This was followed by training for educators/administrators (67.95%), parent/caregiver support and intervention (65.4%), and then trailed by parent/caregiver education and training (61.5%) and treatment services (61.5%). This data mirrors other state and national reports highlighting the intensifying behavioral health needs of America’s youth, and is representative of a shift in behavioral health.

During this year’s survey, 88.5% of responding school-based behavioral health providers reported using at least one evidence-based social and emotional learning curriculum in their daily practice.

Ohio's Social Emotional Learning Standards Introduction and Glossary

Currently, Ohio’s School-Based Behavioral Health providers are responding to the urgent need for youth mental health supports by providing behavioral health treatment, prevention, and social and emotional learning services to tens of thousands of students in over 1,294 elementary schools, 807 middle schools, 752 high schools, and 111 ESCs, private, and charter schools.

School/Community-Based Provider Partnerships: Data Highlights for the 2022-2023 Academic Year

Responding Community Behavioral Health Centers (CBHCs): 78; Number of districts, charter schools, and ESCs served: 584; Number of school buildings with school-based BH services: 2,964

  • Elementary: 1,294
  • Middle School: 807
  • High School: 752
  • ESC/Other: 111 Types of Services Available in Schools
  • 68 respondents offer one or more PREVENTION services through school-based partnerships. 57 offer universal interventions (Tier I), 54 offer selected interventions (Tier II), 51 offer Staff Support, 50 provide parent/caregiver services, and 47 offer targeted interventions (Tier III).
  • 76 respondents offer one or more CONSULTATION services to schools. 84.6% of organizations reported offering student-specific consultation. 79.5% offer consultation to teachers, and 70.5% reported providing consultation within the classroom.
  • 68 respondents offer one or more TREATMENT services to schools. Most offered treatment services: Individual counseling (87%), assessment (87%), CPST (71.4%), TBS (63.6%), crisis intervention (60%), and group counseling (58.4%).
  • Top 3 Most Frequently Requested School-Based Services, According to Respondents: • Treatment/Counseling Services (All Levels)
  • Prevention Services (All Levels) • Crisis Services (All Levels)
  • Top 5 Most Needed
  • Services, in Addition to Those Requested, According to Respondents:
  • Crisis De-Escalation and Behavior Management: 69.2% of respondents
  • Training for Educator/Administrators: 67.9% of respondents
  • Parent/Caregiver Support & Intervention: 65.3% of respondents
  • Parent/Caregiver Education & Training: 61.5% of respondents


In light of this need, Ohio House passed Section 3317.26 - Ohio Revised Code | Ohio Laws

Student Wellness and Success Funds. Enacted on Oct 3, 2023. HB 33.

Previous news announcements: Governor Announces 95% of Ohio Schools Offer Prevention-Focused Services | Governor Mike DeWine

April 18, 2023

(COLUMBUS, Ohio)—Ohio Governor Mike DeWine today announced that his initiatives to increase Ohio students’ access to services that help prevent or intervene in emotional, behavioral, and mental health disorders have hit a new milestone with the release of the 2020-2021 Prevention Services Data Report. The report shows that 95% of Ohio schools offered prevention-focused programs and supports, while more than 81% of schools offered prevention-focused curricula.

Other takeaways from the report include:

  • Nearly 90% of schools reported partnering with community coalitions, organizations, or other external agencies to provide prevention services and resources to families. This 50% increase from the previous academic year likely is related to additional state funding that was used to build community partnerships with the ultimate goal of providing evidence-informed prevention services for every child, in every grade, in every school.
  • Almost 90% of schools reported efforts to engage parents and families in prevention-focused services.
  • More than 93% of schools reported offering some type of prevention-focused professional development and training for school personnel, and 72% of schools reported participating in some type of prevention-focused professional and peer learning during the 2020-2021 school year.

Governor DeWine established the Student Wellness and Success program, which has dedicated $1.2 billion in funding for schools to provide mental, behavioral, and physical health programs to their students since 2019. The Student Wellness and Success program is now part of the current funding formula.


In closing, teaching positive behavior strategies and providing mental health services as consistently as educators teach reading and other academic content is the ultimate goal for implementing PBIS, FBAs, and BIPs in Ohio schools. Working together we can ensure good outcomes for all students.

Be sure to visit the first two newsletters in our series (link here) for more information on the topic of Behavior.



Ask school for names of behavior support personnel and intervention specialists,

Board Certified Behavior Analysts [BCBA]

DISABILITY RIGHTS OHIO for legal assistance Web: Toll free 800-282-9181 or 614-466-7264 Kristin Hildebrant, Esq.; [email protected] ext. 109. Kristin is a special education attorney.

Disability Rights Ohio is pleased to announce that Emily Durell, attorney at law, assists with families in Delaware, Fairfield, Franklin, Licking, Madison, Pickaway, and Union counties at no cost. The quickest way for parents to have a case opened with Emily is to fill out the DRO intake form online ( or calling 614-466-7264 or 1-800-282-9181, pressing option 2, and leaving a voicemail, 9-noon and 1-4.

Contact DRO via mail: 200 Civic Center Dr, Suite 3, Columbus, OH 43215 has many resources on special education topics.

Ohio Coalition for the Education of Children with Disabilities

Ohio Dept. of Education. Office of Integrated Student Supports, coordinates resources for positive and safe schools, such as programs related to safety, anti-bullying, mental and behavioral health, positive behavioral intervention supports (PBIS), and trauma-informed care.
Integrated Student Supports | Ohio Department of Education
[email protected]

Contact Information
Office of Whole Child Supports
[email protected]

Ohio Department of Education
25 South Front Street, Mail Stop 409
Columbus, Ohio 43215-4183



Behavior-Focused IEPs English and Spanish

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Positive Behavioral Interventions and IDEA 2004:
opportunities for parenting and teaching

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This newsletter begins an exciting 3-part series on Behavior and related topics. Here, we discuss Behavior and Discipline, including information about Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS), Functional Behavior Assessments (FBA), Behavior Intervention Plans (BIP), and setting concrete goals and objectives related to behavior in the IEP.  
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