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Special Education Department

What is Special Education?

Special Education programs are designed for those students who are mentally, physically, socially and/or emotionally delayed. This aspect of “delay,” broadly categorized as a developmental delay, signify an aspect of the child's overall development (physical, cognitive, scholastic skills) which place them behind their peers. Due to these special requirements, students’ needs cannot be met within the traditional classroom environment. Special Education programs and services adapt content, teaching methodology and delivery instruction to meet the appropriate needs of each child. These services are of no cost to the family and are available to children until they reach 21 years of age. (States have services set in place for adults who are in need of specialized services after age 21.)

The Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA)defines Special Education as “specially designed instruction, at no cost to the parents, to meet the unique needs of a child with a disability,” but still, what exactly is Special Education? Often met with an ambiguous definition, the umbrella term of Special Education broadly identifies the academic, physical, cognitive and social-emotional instruction offered to children who are faced with one or more disabilities.

Resources for Transition and Community Agency

Bill Wilson Center



The Bill Wilson Center is a nonprofit community based organization serving youth and families through counseling, housing, education and advocacy.

California Children Services

916-445 4171

Child Care and Development Description:

California Childrens' service is a state program for children with certain diseases and health problems.  Children up to 21 years old can get the health care and services they need. 

Dept. of Rehabilitation

Aaron Lott - 408-254-5750 


Vocational rehabilitation, mobility evaluation, specialized services for the blind, visually impaired, deaf, or hard of hearing, Assistive technology, Social Security incentives and the ticket to work program, independent living, BEP Enterprise program, Schedule A, LEAP.  Services for employers-Workforce Development, Employment today video, Boost your business, Trainings

Families First



EMQ is one of the largest mental health treatment programs in the county. The agency takes the state of the art approach to helping children; youth, adults and family deal with behavioral challenges.  They help families thrive.



Access to benefits, civil rights, community life, education, emergency preparedness, employment, health, housing, technology and transportation for individuals with disabilities.

Lighthouse of Hope


Lighthouse of hope offers counseling for youth with and without disabilities that are in crisis.  Individual and support groups offered.

San Jose Mental Health Department                                     



Santa Clara County Mental Health Department partners with family, clients and communities for Hope, Wellness and Recovery.  Support for individuals and families.  Services are in a variety of languages.

Metro Ed 408-723-6400

Regional Vocational Center


It is the mission of the Silicon Valley Career Technical Education to educate eligible high school and adult students for success in careers and college in a professional, hands-on environment.  Juniors and Seniors in high school with and without IEPs are offered courses within 13 industries ranging from food service, to car mechanics and animation.

San Andreas Regional Center  1-408-374-9960


Community based non-profit corporation funded by the State of California to serve people with developmental disabilities.  They provide diagnostic and prevention services to people under the age of 18.  Services such as respite day care, community living arrangements care and supported living, and advocacy to access in Home Support Service.

Santa Clara County Office of Education 408-453-6503

Resources for students and families


The SCCOE serves the general public in the Santa Clara County, Information on the County Board Of Education, SCCOE branches, Resources for administrators, family, and teachers.  Public School Directory, and Job opportunities.  The website includes resources for programs in students and families with IEP services.

Second Harvest Food Bank  408-266-8866


Second Harvest Food Bank of Santa Clara and San Mateo Counties is a non-profit agency dedicated to end hunger. The Food bank provides food to low-income people.

Silicon Valley Independent Living Center 408-894-9012


Silicon Valley Independent Living Center is a non-profit, non residential organization which serves all people with all types of disabilities in Santa Clara County with support tools and resources needed to live interdependently, and advocates for policies that ensure equal access and opportunity for all.

Social Security Administration  1 800-772-1213 

Individuals with Disabilities Description:

Programs such as selective Placement and Ticket to work. SSA selects qualified Individuals with Disabilities for positions that maximize their talents.  Social Security provides reasonable accommodations to people with disabilities.

VTA Transportation  408-321-2300 


Santa Clara Transportation Authority is an independent district that provides sustainable transportation options such as busses, light rails, trains services to individuals within Santa Clara County.   Services given to physically handicap.

United Way San Jose (no contact) 408-345-4300 


United Way is a non-profit organization throughout the world that improves lives of individuals and families and helps them to achieve human potential through education, income stability and healthy lives.

Local Junior Colleges

DeAnza College Rose Angelo

DSP Services Kim 408-864-8838


Services for students with learning and physical handicaps can access the Disability Support Programs and services, which provide services such as note taking, test taking, accommodations, and modifications.  Students must have written verification of an eligible disability

Evergreen College Robin Salak 408-270-6447

Gavilan College - Tamara Merrill & Cheryl Brown 408-848-4800

Mission College (no contact)

San Jose City College 408-288-3746

West Valley College Mike Scaleta 408-471-2010

San Jose Conservation Corps Natalie Mendoza


Youth Build Program


The San Jose Conservation corp provides disadvantaged youth with academic challenges.  They provide education, hands on learning and development of basic skills such as leadership, communication, computer skills, and employment training.

Contact Yusuf Alam  Yusuf Alam (408) 347-6887 SPED Teacher
Contact Felicia Arnold  Felicia Arnold (408) 729-2505 SPED Teacher
Contact Rachel Avila  Rachel Avila Paraeducator
Contact Estevan Carrillo  Estevan Carrillo Paraeducator
Contact Sara Chong  Sara Chong (408) 347-6671 Psychologist
Contact Ashley Debaun  Ashley Debaun (408) 307-9489 ED Program Social Worker
Contact Mariana Hernandez  Mariana Hernandez (408) 347-6947 SPED Teacher
Contact Poe Hiep  Poe Hiep (408) 347-6639 SPED Teacher
Contact Hyon Kim  Hyon Kim (408) 347-6895 SPED Teacher
Contact Debra Leschyn  Debra Leschyn (408) 347-6971 SPED Teacher
Contact Lily Mwangi  Lily Mwangi (408) 347-6960 Teacher
Contact Elizabeth Nadal  Elizabeth Nadal Paraeducator
Contact Kristi Ryan  Kristi Ryan (408) 347-6890 Teacher
Contact Edith Tayaba  Edith Tayaba (408) 347-6982 Teacher