The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) requires that states establish advisory panels to advise and assist the Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) on special education and related services for children with disabilities. The SAPEC members represent various agencies, individuals with disabilities, parents of children with disabilities, service providers and administrators.
The SAPEC has several duties outlined in federal regulation, including:
- Advise the Department of Education of unmet needs within Kentucky in the education of children with disabilities;
- Review and comment on rules or regulations proposed by the Commonwealth relating to the education of children with disabilities;
- Advise the KDE in developing evaluations and reporting on data to the U.S. Secretary of Education under section 618 of the Act;
- Advise the KDE in developing corrective action plans to address findings identified in Federal monitoring reports under Part B of the Act; and
- Advise the KDE in developing and implementing policies relating to the coordination of services for children with disabilities.
The State Advisory Council shall consist of up to twenty-one voting members appointed by the Governor, the majority of whom shall be persons with disabilities or parents of children with disabilities ages birth through 26. The Governor shall appoint members that meet the following minimum qualifications:
- Two individuals with disabilities or exceptional needs;
- One parent of an exceptional child ages birth through 12 years;
- One parent of an exceptional child ages 13 through 26 years;
- One elementary special education teacher;
- One middle or secondary special education teacher;
- One higher education member who trains and prepares special education teachers;
- One private sector administrator of programs for exceptional children;
- One local education administrator of programs for exceptional children, who shall also be experienced with the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act;
- One child welfare agency member responsible for foster care;
- At least one representative of state juvenile or adult correction agencies involved in the delivery of services to disabled children;
- One state education official who carries out activities associated with the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act;
- At least one state agency member involved in the financing or delivery of services to children with disabilities;
- One member of vocational, community or business organizations concerned with the provision of services to disabled children;
- At least one representative of private schools or charter schools; and
- Up to six additional members meeting the requirements of the Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA) as articulated in 20 USC 1412.