The State Advisory Panel of the State of Georgia is established in accordance with IDEA 2004 SEC. 612 State Eligibility and Section 1412(a) (21) of IDEA. The state has established and maintains an advisory panel for the purpose of providing policy guidance with respect to special education and related services for children with disabilities in the state.
A. The SAP shall:
1. Advise the State Education Agency (SEA) of unmet needs within the State in the education of children with disabilities;
2. Comment publicly on any rules or regulations proposed by the State regarding the education of children with disabilities;
3. Advise the SEA in developing evaluations and reporting on data to the Secretary under section 618 of the Act;
4. Advise the SEA in developing corrective action plans to address findings identified in Federal monitoring reports under Part B of the Act;
5. Advise the SEA in developing and implementing policies relating to the coordination of services for children with disabilities;
6. Review and comment on completed due process hearing findings;
7. Serve as a Stakeholder Committee as outlined in the Georgia Continuous Improvement Monitoring Process.
The SAP shall be comprised of members appointed by the State Board of Education. The majority of the members of the panel shall be individuals with disabilities or parents of children with disabilities (ages birth through 26). The members shall be representative of the state population and composed of individuals involved in, or concerned with the education of children with disabilities.
The SAP also has a subcommitee on Family Engagement. The Family Engagement Committee assists in the review of fact sheets for families on initial and annual evaluations, transition from Babies Can’t Wait into school, transition out of high school, IEPs, and discipline. The committee also reviews data and information related to parent participation in individualized education program (IEP) meetings and parent response rates on the parent survey. The parent survey is disseminated each year in order to assess the percentage of parents with a child receiving special education services who report that schools facilitated parent involvement as a means of improving services and results for children with disabilities. This committee makes recommendations for strategies and materials to support increased family engagement.