Hudson School District Special Education Services and Programs

Hudson's Special Services Department

The Special Services Department in Hudson New Hampshire takes pride in providing quality services to students with disabilities who qualify for special education or Section 504 accommodation plans.  In addition, we ensure homeless students have access to their home public school.  

The primary goal of the education for students with disabilities is to ensure all students make progress in the least restrictive environment.   Programs have been established district-wide to ensure all students can access their education based on their unique needs.  These specialized programs include:

» Pre-school Programs for students ages 3 to 5

» Integrated, regular education instruction for all students in grades PreK - grade 12.

» Resource Room instruction grades K to twelve.

» Instruction using Applied Behavior Analysis for students on the Autistic spectrum in PreK- grade 8

» Programming for students with social and behavioral difficulties grades K – grade 12.

» Daily, functional living skills instruction in PreK, middle, and high school.

» Remedial reading instruction for students in grade one through grade twelve.

» Transition planning is done for all students in preschool through grade twelve.

The continuum of services is continuously reviewed as it is a fluid system suited to the changing needs of students.  Our goal is to work cooperatively with all those involved in the education of the students of Hudson to insure every student has the opportunity to learn and succeed.

Contact Individuals

 Jeanne SaundersDirector of Special Services(603) 886-1253
Beth FernandesAdministrative Assistant (603)
Scott RiddellAssistant Principal - Alvirne High School(603) 886-1260 (ext 2520)
Mark BellAssistant Principal - Hudson Memorial School(603)
Frances GaronDepartment Head - Nottingham West School(603)
Nancy Rothe

Department Head - Hills Garrison, 

 Kristina HenryDepartment Head - Dr. H.O. Smith, 
Library Street Schools
(603) 886-1248
Diane HampioanTitle I Coordinator / Reading Tutor(603) 883-7765 (ext 1318)

The Special Education Process


 A referral is typically made by parent, school or other agency.  The District must hold a meeting within 15 days of a request and determine if the student should be evaluated.


 If the decision is made to evaluate, the team decides on what testing needs to be done and has 45 days to perform such testing and reconvene to review the results.


 Once the evaluations have been completed the IEP Team meets to review the results and determine if the student has an educational disability and meets the criteria for special education services.  The results must indicate that there is an adverse impact on the student’s academics such that they require specially designed instruction and related services in order to be academically successful.


 If the student is determined eligible for special education services then the team reconvenes within 30 days of the eligibility determination to develop an IEP (individualized education program) that appropriately addresses the student's needs.  Considerations in this process are special education and related services, placement and transition.


 Part of the IEP contains goals and objectives that must be reported on in conjunction with regular progress reporting done for all students.  The student’s case manager will report out to the parent how the student is performing relative to the goals and objectives set forth in the IEP.


 An IEP can be written for an amount of time not to exceed 365 days.  At minimum, the Team must convene annually to develop another IEP reflective of the student’s current circumstances.


The law requires that students identified as requiring special education services must be evaluated every three years to determine if they continue to meet the criteria and to determine how the student has progressed over the course of those three years.

The Parental Rights in Special Education Handbook (December 2011) can be found online at:

Child Find Public Notice

The Hudson School District (SAU # 81) has a legal responsibility under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act to locate and identify all children who may have an educational disability within the geographic boundaries of Hudson, NH. Any person may refer for evaluation of a child under the age 21 for reasons including, but not limited to, the following:

1.Failing to pass a hearing or vision screening

2.Unsatisfactory performance on group achievement or accountability measures

3.Receiving multiple academic or behavioral warnings

4.Repeatedly failing one or more subject 

The child find requirements of the district also apply to highly mobile children, homeless children, and children who are suspected of having an educational disability even though they are advancing from grade to grade. Child Find also includes those children in grades K-12 who attend approved, non-public private schools within the geographic boundaries of Hudson regardless of where they reside.

Referrals may be initiated in a variety of ways.  For children who attend the Hudson public schools, building principals or assistant principals, special education department heads, or classroom teachers may be contacted by anyone wishing to initiate a referral.  For children who attend the Presentation of Mary Academy , Vivekananda Academy, or those children who have not yet entered Kindergarten, please contact Jeanne Saunders, Director of Special Services, at 886-1253 to initiate a referral.  Parents of students in grades K-12 who attend private schools outside the geographical boundaries of Hudson should contact the district in which the private school is located in order to make a referral for evaluation.

Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)

 "The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) (20 U.S.C. § 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99) is a Federal law that protects the privacy of student education records. The law applies to all schools that receive funds under an applicable program of the U.S. Department of Education.

 FERPA gives parents certain rights with respect to their children's education records. These rights transfer to the student when he or she reaches the age of 18 or attends a school beyond the high school level. Students to whom the rights have transferred are "eligible students."

 Parents or eligible students have the right to inspect and review the student's education records maintained by the school. Schools are not required to provide copies of records unless, for reasons such as great distance, it is impossible for parents or eligible students to review the records. Schools may charge a fee for copies.

 Parents or eligible students have the right to request that a school correct records which they believe to be inaccurate or misleading. If the school decides not to amend the record, the parent or eligible student then has the right to a formal hearing. After the hearing, if the school still decides not to amend the record, the parent or eligible student has the right to place a statement with the record setting forth his or her view about the contested information.

 Generally, schools must have written permission from the parent or eligible student in order to release any information from a student's education record. However, FERPA allows schools to disclose those records, without consent, to the following parties or under the following conditions (34 CFR § 99.31):

 School officials with legitimate educational interest; Other schools to which a student is transferring;

Specified officials for audit or evaluation purposes; Appropriate parties in connection with financial aid to a student; Organizations conducting certain studies for or on behalf of the school;

Accrediting organizations; To comply with a judicial order or lawfully issued subpoena;

Appropriate officials in cases of health and safety emergencies; and State and local authorities, within a juvenile justice system, pursuant to specific State law.

 Schools may disclose, without consent, "directory" information such as a student's name, address, telephone number, date and place of birth, honors and awards, and dates of attendance. However, schools must tell parents and eligible students about directory information and allow parents and eligible students a reasonable amount of time to request that the school not disclose directory information about them. Schools must notify parents and eligible students annually of their rights under FERPA. The actual means of notification (special letter, inclusion in a PTA bulletin, student handbook, or newspaper article) is left to the discretion of each school.

 For additional information, you may call 1-800-USA-LEARN (1-800-872-5327) (voice). Individuals who use TDD may call 1-800-437-0833".

 Or you may contact us at the following address:

 Family Policy Compliance Office

U.S. Department of Education

400 Maryland Avenue, SW

Washington, D.C. 20202-8520



McKinney-Vento Act

The federal government authorized the McKinney-Vento Act in 2001 as part of No Child Left Behind legislation.  Under the McKinney-Vento Act school districts must ensure that homeless children have equal access to the same public education, including public preschool education, as it is provided to other children and youth in the district.  Under the Act, "homeless children and youth means individuals who lack a fixed, regular and adequate nighttime residence.  The term includes children and youth who are sharing the housing of other persons due to loss of housing, economic hardship, or similar reasons; are living in motels, hotels, trailer parks, or camping grounds due to the lack of alternative adequate accommodations; are living in emergency or transitionary shelters; are abandoned in hospitals; or are awaiting foster care placement" (Federal Register, March 2002, Volume 67, Number 46).  Upon school registration all families will be required to answer questions to identify children who are protected under the McKinney-Vento Act.  If you believe your child (or yourself as an adult student) would classify as homeless, please contact the Special Service Department at 886-1253.  


Online Resources

 Procedural Safeguards in Special Education (Parental Rights in Special Education), December 2011:

Procedural Safeguards in Special Education (Parental Rights in Special Education), December 2008 Translated (Arabic, Bosnian, Chinese, Maay-Maay, Portugese, Russian, Spanish,  & Vietnamese):

NH Rules for the Education of Children with Disabilities:

Life After High School Transition Toolkit Developed by the Parent Information Center:

Hudson School District Special Education Policies and Procedural Manual

The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) requires that each District maintain an updated Special Education Policies and Procedural Manual, or Local Educational Agency (LEA) Plan, that outlines the procedures the District follows in implementing IDEA to ensure the local agency (Hudson School District) will administer the special education program in accordance with all applicable statutes, regulations, program plans, and applications.  In order to receive IDEA federal funds, it is necessary that we assure that we are following the special education process as outlined in the New Hampshire Rules for the Education of Children with Disabilities.  

Please click on the link to access Hudson’s LEA Plan.  A paper copy of the LEA Plan is located in the SAU office and each school building across the District.  The paper copy includes the plan in addition to evidence of plan implementation (e.g. approved school policies, forms, letters to parents, Child Find Notice, etc.).  Members of the Hudson School District and community are encouraged to review the plan and submit written input to Jeanne Saunders, Director of Special Services, if applicable, at or via letter addressed to SAU 81, 20 Library Street, Hudson, NH 03051.  


The LEA manual will be revised on an ongoing basis as regulations, school policies, and federal requirements change.