Jefferson Township is the northern-most township in Morris County, New Jersey. Living in Jefferson Township offers residents a rural feel. The Jefferson Township Public Schools serve students in kindergarten through 12th grade. The district’s Department of Special Services is committed to parental involvement and consider it a vital factor in the provision of supportive services. With this in mind, the Department of Special Services has partnered with district parents and SPAN’s START-Engaging Parents of Students with Disabilities (START-EPSD) Project to create a Special Education Parent Advisory Group (SEPAG) for the Jefferson Township School District.
Families of students with special needs in Jefferson Township have shared that resources, parent information and education are very limited in their part of the state. A group of committed parents not only made it their priority to assist in the creation of a SEPAG but also answered the call to ensure that families in Jefferson Township and surrounding areas have access to information, resources, support, and advocacy assistance. By collaborating with both the START-EPSD Project, SPAN’s Training Department, and Parents as Champions for Healthy Schools, Jefferson Township SEPAG provided regional, county, and district workshops, roundtables, and parent leadership opportunities.
Monique Dujue Wison, Parent Group Specialist (PGS) for Morris County on the START-EPSD Project, provided guidance by holding initial meetings with start-up leaders to review components of effective groups outlined in the SEPAG Guide, both in person and virtually. The PGS assisted the group in identifying future technical assistance and training needs based on the input from all families in the Jefferson Township school district.
Jefferson Township SEPAG is working together with the district in the role of advisors to help shape programs and policies to improve student achievement not only for students with disabilities but for all children. Furthermore, Jefferson Township parents are developing into leaders, advocates, advisors, health champions, resource parents and trainers. They are Empowered, Engaged, Educated, and Effective in the northernmost township in Morris County.
For more information or to join Jefferson Township SEPAG, please