Links to Support Families During the Coronavirus Crisis

Please note that these resources are not affiliated with PAVE, and PAVE does not recommend or endorse these programs or services. This list is not exhaustive and is provided for informational purposes only. PAVE provides a separate resource list to help parents support learning at home: Links for Learning at Home During School Closure

  • For state information in multiple languages, visit Washington’s official COVID-19 site, managed by the Joint Information Center, a part of the Washington State Emergency Operations Center.
  • For the most current information about school district meals for students, families are encouraged to check their local district website or call the district office. OSPI provides a list of districts throughout the state, with direct links to district websites and contact information.
  • Washington is among states that have re-opened enrollment for public health insurance due to the pandemic. The Washington Health Benefit Exchange provides information about how to enroll through the state’s Healthplanfinder.
  • The Washington State Department of Financial Institutions has developed a list of financial resources for Washington consumers impacted by the Coronavirus.
  • The Washington Department of Health (DOH)tracks statewide spread of the coronavirus and provides a call center: 1-800-525-0127. Hours for the call center are on the website, which lists frequently asked questions related to symptoms and testing. Note that DOH is waiving certain requirements for tele-health access.
  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention(CDC) maintains a page to track national news and updates related to the outbreak.
  • A simply written 8-page booklet about Coronavirus, created by and for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, is available for download from the Center for START Services at the University of New Hampshire Institute on Disability.
  • The Developmental Disabilities Administration (DDA) has established a webpagefor case managers, home care workers and other service agencies and facilities. Included are linkages to the following downloadable documents:
  • Protecting Immigrant Families provides a downloadable fact sheet called You Have Rights: Protect Your Health. The website offers updates from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS): In March 2020, USCIS announced that immigrants can seek testing, treatment, and prevention of COVID-19 without immigration consequences despite a public charge rule that went into effect in February.
  • The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid have relaxed rules in order to give states more flexibility in providing medical and early learning services through remote technologies. The Early Childhood Technical Assistance Center (ECTA) has a webpage on teleintervention. Topics include training for families learning to navigate technology for online learning and appointments.
  • com suggests 7 Telehealth Activities ABA Providers Can Use with Children with ASD [Autism Spectrum Disorder]
  • The Child Mind Institute provides access to live video chats with clinicians, telemedicine and more. The agency provides guidance in English and Spanish and offers parents an opportunity to sign up for a COVID-19 tip of the day.
  • The Branch, a program of PAVE, provides sample documents and medical guidance for family caregivers who are responsible for children because of a parent’s military service.
  • The US Department of Agriculture provides guidance about Food and Nutrition services, including information about waivers available because of the pandemic.

Education System Links

 

OSPI Provides Guidance for Families

The Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) is the agency responsible for oversight of all public schools and non-public agencies in Washington State. In addition to supporting schools, OSPI provides resources and support directed toward students and families.

OSPI upgraded its website (k12.wa.us) in July 2019. The home page provides news about current events, a calendar, and an option for Parents and Families to seek resources specific to their needs and concerns.

The Parents and Families section of the website is divided into three categories:

  • Learning, Teaching, & Testing: Information about graduation requirements, learning standards, testing and more
  • Data & Reports: Access to data specific to a school or district, financial reports and guidance about the Washington School Improvement Framework
  • Student & Family Supports: Special Education guidance and information about student Civil Rights, how to file a complaint, health and safety, English Language Proficiency (ELP) and more

Under Guidance for Families: Special Education in Washington State, the website provides this statement:

“The OSPI Office of Special Education aspires to ensure students with disabilities receive Free and Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) as required by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). About 14 percent of students overall receive special education services in the state of Washington.”

Linkages through the Special Education section of the website provide information on a range of topics. Here are a few examples:

  • How Special Education Works
  • Laws and Procedures
  • Parent and Student Rights (Procedural Safeguards)
  • Making a Referral for Special Education
  • Individualized Education Programs (IEPs)
  • Placement Decisions and the Least Restrictive Environment (LRE)
  • Transition (Ages 16-21)
  • Behavior and Discipline
  • Disagreements and Disputes related to Special Education
  • Special Education Advisory Council (SEAC)

Each section includes state guidance under the rule of federal law (the IDEA) and provides linkages to other resources within and beyond OSPI.

A Need Assistance? link on the Special Education page provides contact information for the Special Education Parent Liaison, available as a resource to parents in non-legal special education matters. According the OSPI’s website, the liaison “serves as a neutral and independent advocate for a fair process.”

“The Special Education Parent Liaison does not advocate on behalf of any one party. Rather, the Parent Liaison exists to address individual concerns about bureaucratic systems and act a guide for anyone attempting to understand and navigate various special education or school district processes and procedures.”

To contact Scott Raub, the Special Education Parent Liaison, call 360-725-6075 or submit a message through OSPI’s Contact Us web page.