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Student Support Services

Special Education

The term "special education" means specially designed instruction, at no cost to parents, designed to meet the unique needs of a child with a disability, including instruction conducted in the classroom, in the home, in hospitals and institutions, and instruction in physical education.

Special education and related services are available for eligible students with identified disabilities in accordance with the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and state regulations, the Exceptional Children’s Education Act (ECEA).

When a student is not making expected academic progress or social, emotional or behavioral gains, a request for assistance from the school’s student support team can be made. The goal of the team is to find solutions for students through a team approach using a structured problem-solving process that focuses on student strengths.

At any time during this process, the team may determine that the student needs to be referred to special education for further evaluation. There are times when the student will be referred for evaluation without going through the problem-solving process. When parents/families are concerned about a student’s lack of progress, they may also request an evaluation.

A special education evaluation includes a variety of individualized assessments administered to a child and/or the use of a Response to Intervention (RtI) model, but only after parents have given informed written consent.

This evaluation includes assessment results, including data from interventions, that will lead to the most complete understanding of the student's unique educational needs. A meeting will be held with the parents, teachers and those who conducted assessments to determine if the child has an educational disability and is eligible to receive special education services.

If a disability is identified, an Individual Education Plan (IEP) will be developed to ensure the student receives a free, appropriate public education (FAPE).

For more information, please contact your child's teacher, counselor or school psychologist or the Exceptional Student Services department at 970-613-5026.

Section 504/ADA

Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 504) is a civil rights statute that protects persons with disabilities from discrimination. It states that “no otherwise qualified individual with a disability shall solely by reason of his or her disability be excluded from the participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving federal financial assistance.” The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) contains similar prohibitions against discrimination.

Under Section 504, school districts are required to make their programs and activities (including non-academic and extracurricular programs and activities) accessible to all individuals with disabilities and to provide students with disabilities a free, appropriate public education (FAPE).

FAPE under Section 504 is the provision of general education and related services (if eligibility is determined) that are designed to meet the individual educational needs of students with disabilities as adequately as the needs of non-disabled students are met.

For more information, please contact your child’s counselor or school psychologist or the Student Support Services department at 970-613-5026.


In 1988, the U.S. Congress passed legislation enabling school districts to access Medicaid funds for health-related services provided to children. Such services include, but are not limited to:

  • health assessments and evaluations,
  • nursing services,
  • speech,
  • occupational and physical therapy,
  • and psychological or social work services as part of an individual student's educational or health plan.

Your child will continue to receive services at no cost to you under this system. This initiative simply helps the district maximize federal funds in support of local education. Allowing the school district to receive Medicaid funds in no way limits other Medicaid benefits for which your child is eligible and has no impact whatsoever on your own family coverage.

The district appreciates your assistance with this important program. For more information about Medicaid, please contact the Student Support Services department at 970-613-5076.

Health Services

Health services in Thompson School District are aligned with the Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child (WSCC) model to provide evidence-based, clinically competent, quality care. Our nurses recognize that each student has unique health and safety needs that require an integrated, collaborative approach to address barriers and supports related to learning and health.

School health offices are staffed by school health office assistants (SHOAs) who are trained and supervised by school nurses. School nurses are regularly scheduled at multiple school sites and partner with parents and health care providers to design and implement the health services provided to all students.

For more information, please contact your school nurse, the district nurse at 970-613-5021 or the Student Support Services department at 970-613-5026.

Homebound Services

Homebound instruction is available to students between the ages of three and twenty-one who have not graduated from high school. These services are provided when a student cannot attend school for greater than three weeks due to an extended illness or condition, for a brief recuperative period of time after giving birth, or as a special education placement determined by an IEP team.

Homebound services are not a disciplinary placement or a program for students to make up missed assignments. Homebound instruction, although correlated with what the student is missing in the classroom, shall be focused on the student’s needs and what the student is capable of doing during the period away from school.

Services will be provided by a Colorado certified teacher on an itinerant basis, usually five to ten hours per week. Homebound instruction is a partnership between the school of attendance and the homebound instructor and is an extension of Thompson School District.

For more information, call Student Support Services at 970-613-5026.

Student Records

Student records are maintained at the district administration building. For information regarding special education records, please call 970-613-5062, and for all other student records, please call 970-613-6781.

Student Success

The Student Success Department promotes student achievement through educational programs and services that support social-emotional, behavioral, physical, and mental health. This includes a wide variety of programs such as counseling and guidance, prevention programs, and wellness.

Student Success collaborates with schools on Positive School Climate and Culture efforts including reducing exclusionary discipline, truancy prevention, substance abuse prevention education, suicide prevention education, and bullying prevention education, as well as supporting district-wide restorative practices, trauma-informed practices, Social Emotional Learning, and PBIS (Positive Behavior Intervention Supports).

The team collaborates with school staff, the Safety and Security Team, the Curriculum and Learning Team, the Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Team, the Assessment Team, and the Directors of Early Childhood, Elementary Education, Secondary Education to ensure our schools are welcoming, inclusive, supportive, and safe.

For more information, call Student Support Services at 970-613-5026 or Brandi Hamilton at 970-613-5093.