START-Engaging Parents of Students with Disabilities

Offering programs and services that support the engagement of families to improve outcomes for students.



SPAN Parent Leadership E-News

View articles from the START-EPSD Newsletter Archive below

2019, August 22  |  Leadership is a capability in action

2019, May 25  |  Leaders translate vision into reality

2019, Feb 27  |  Leadership is a choice, not a position

2018, Nov 10  | Parent leaders aren’t born. They’re made!


START-Engaging Parent of Students with Disabilities (EPSD) offers programs and services that support the engagement of families to improve outcomes for students, including developing and supporting Special Education Parent Advisory Groups (SEPAGs) in communities and school districts.

Through workshops, regional meetings, and parent leadership development activities, we help parents and parent leaders:

  • Become informed and active participants in their child’s education
  • Partner with educators in improving educational programs for students with disabilities, particularly in the area of Inclusion
  • Start or strengthen parent advisory groups or parent support groups in their areas


For more information, resources, and materials about a topic, 
select from the one of the START-EPSD focuses below.

Parent Groups

Supporting the engagement  of families in schools to improve student outcomes


Increasing the capacity of schools and parent leaders to engage families in promoting literacy achievement


Providing families with information in order to increase the numbers of students benefiting from greater access to inclusive education


Sharing information useful for families and school and district leaders to engage families in the NJ Tiered Systems of Support Framework

Parent Group Highlights

Union Special Education Parent Advisory Group (SEPAG)

September 5, 2019
A Special Education Parent Advisory Group (SEPAG) gives parents the opportunity to provide direct input to their school district about policies,...
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Cinnaminson Township Special Education Parent Advisory Group (SEPAG)

August 22, 2019
Cinnaminson Township, which is a small school district in Burlington County, had a well-established SEPAG in the past but as...
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Ocean City Special Education Parent Advisory Group (SEPAG)

May 25, 2019
The purpose of the Ocean City SEPAG is to keep lines of communication open between parents/families and the Ocean City School District...
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What People Are Saying

A strong parent advisory group can help foster ongoing communication between the parents and school to better serve our children.

Our group started with two parents and a supportive District Supervisor. What’s important is to get up and running and see where it takes you.

The advice that parents need to continually talk with school district personnel and develop meaningful inclusion programs and then continually evaluate their children’s progress based on data was on the mark.

Engaging Parents of Students with Disabilities is a partnership between the New Jersey Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs (NJOSEP), and SPAN Parent Advocacy Network. The views expressed herein do not necessarily represent the positions or policies of the Department of Education. No official endorsement by NJOSEP of any product, commodity, service, or enterprise mentioned on this website is intended or should be inferred.