"Advocacy: What are the best ways to advocate for my child? From both the parent and special needs child's point of view"
~Becca Lory, Longwood students and parents
Special needs students and parents speak out about the best ways to advocate for your children and how to achieve success.
What is SEPTA?
SEPTA stands for Special Education Parent Teacher Association. Becoming a SEPTA member provides families with an organizational structure, resources and the opportunity to be a collective voice for their special needs children.
Can I join both my school PTA and SEPTA?
YES! Getting involved in both the school PTA and SEPTA is a great way to encourage inclusion and helps keep the lines of communication open to all parent groups. Families can then be a part of all school activities, ensure the inclusion of their children and still have their own format for the special supports and opportunities that they may see. Campus-based parent organizations provide parent involvement opportunities and cover specific issues that the SEPTA will not cover as a community-wide parent organization
What can SEPTA offer to me and my family?
One major benefit of being part of SEPTA is to offer support to other parents who have similar circumstances. Sometimes parents like to speak on issues that concern their children and just listening to them can help other caretakers. Other things can happen during the support time, for instance, caretakers can learn about doctors and services that are a positive experience for their child such as a place to take your child for a haircut that is not stressful and a place of business that is understanding and patient. Other benefits are that SEPTA sponsors workshops and speakers on topics that can help better advocate for exceptional children and topics that can help parents better understand aspects of special needs and many diagnoses.
Because parents of children with special needs have special needs themselves. They need to learn how to work with the special education teachers and other specialists who educate their children. They need to understand the system of special education and their rights under the law and they need to connect with and support other parents in the same position. Special Education PTAs help meet these needs by bringing together people who have an interest in special education and providing a forum for them to share their experiences.
SEPTA Members will also receive special discounts at certain activities offered through SEPTA.
Do I have to be a "member" in order to attend a meeting?
No. Though you do not need to be a paid member to attend meetings, it is beneficial for you to become a member once you feel that the group is right for you and the needs of your family.
What are the membership dues?
Longwood SEPTA dues are $10.00 per year ($5.00 per each additional family member)
When and where does SEPTA meet?
We typically meet once a month at the Middle School Library (see meeting schedule page for specific dates and times).
Do I have to attend every meeting?
No! Coming to every meeting is not a necessity, however, is recommended as each meeting could provide vital information relevant to the special needs of your family.