Academics » Special Programs

Special Programs

Special Programs Team


Email IconMrs. Dawn White

Director of Special Programs

Phone IconCampus Phone: 210-236-7693 ext. 2101

Phone IconGoogle Voice/Text: 210-764-3599

Fax: 210-254-9284



Email IconMs. Symantha Rosales

Special Education Specialist/Teacher

Phone IconPhone: 210-236-7693 ext. 2101

Email IconMs. Elizabeth Tesson

Special Education Teacher

Phone IconPhone: 210-236-7693 ext. 2101

Email IconMs. Toni Harris

Special Education Aide

Phone IconPhone: 210-236-7693 ext. 2101


Phone IconPhone: 210-236-7693 ext. 2203


Aiding Students Who Have Learning Difficulties or Who Need Special Education or Section 504 Services

For those students who are having difficulty in the regular classroom, all school districts and open enrollment charter schools must consider tutorial, compensatory, and other academic or behavior support services that are available to all students, including a process based on Response to Intervention (RtI). The implementation of RtI has the potential to have a positive impact on the ability of districts and charter schools to meet the needs of all struggling students.

If a student is experiencing learning difficulties, his or her parent may contact the individual(s) listed below to learn about the school’s overall general education referral or screening system for support services. This system links students to a variety of support options, including making a referral for a special education evaluation or for a Section 504 evaluation to determine if the student needs specific aids, accommodations, or services.  A parent may request an evaluation for special education or Section 504 services at any time. 

Special Education Referrals:

If a parent makes a written request for an initial evaluation for special education services to the director of special education services or an administrative employee of the school district or open enrollment charter school, the district or charter school must respond no later than 15 school days after receiving the request. At that time, the district or charter school must give the parent a prior written notice of whether it agrees to or refuses to evaluate the student, along with a copy of the Notice of Procedural Safeguards.  If the school district or charter school agrees to evaluate the student, it must also give the parent the opportunity to give written consent for the evaluation. 

Please note that a request for a special education evaluation may be made verbally and does not need to be in writing.  Districts and charter schools must still comply with all federal prior written notice and procedural safeguard requirements and the requirements for identifying, locating, and evaluating children who are suspected of being a child with a disability and in need of special education. However, a verbal request does not require the district or charter school to respond within the 15-school-day timeline.

If the district or charter school decides to evaluate the student, it must complete the student’s initial evaluation and evaluation report no later than 45 school days from the day it receives a parent’s written consent to evaluate the student.  However, if the student is absent from school during the evaluation period for three or more school days, the evaluation period will be extended by the number of school days equal to the number of school days that the student is absent.

There is an exception to the 45-school-day timeline.  If a district or charter school receives a parent’s consent for the initial evaluation at least 35 but less than 45 school days before the last instructional day of the school year, it must complete the written report and provide a copy of the report to the parent by June 30 of that year. However, if the student is absent from school for three or more days during the evaluation period, the June 30th due date no longer applies. Instead, the general timeline of 45 school days plus extensions for absences of three or more days will apply.

Upon completing the evaluation, the district or charter school must give the parent a copy of the evaluation report at no cost.

Additional information regarding special education is available from the district or charter school in a companion document titled Parent’s Guide to the Admission, Review, and Dismissal Process

Contact Person for Special Education Referrals:

The designated person to contact regarding options for a student experiencing learning difficulties or regarding a referral for evaluation for special education services is:

Contact Person:Email Icon Dawn White

Phone IconCampus Phone: 210-236-7693 ext. 2101

Phone IconGoogle Voice/Text: 210-764-3599

Fax: 210-254-9284


Section 504 Referrals:  

Each school district or charter school must have standards and procedures in place for the evaluation and placement of students in the district’s or charter school’s Section 504 program. Districts and charter schools must also implement a system of procedural safeguards that includes notice, an opportunity for a parent or guardian to examine relevant records, an impartial hearing with an opportunity for participation by the parent or guardian and representation by counsel, and a review procedure.


Contact Person for Section 504 Referrals:

The designated person to contact regarding options for a student experiencing learning difficulties or regarding a referral for evaluation for Section 504 services is:

Contact Person: Email Icon Danielle Navarro

Phone IconPhone Number:  210-236-7693 ext. 2203

Additional Information:

The following websites provide information and resources for students with disabilities and their families.

Dyslexia and Related Disorders
In 2021, Texas updated the Dyslexia Handbook.  As a result, all evaluations for suspected dyslexia are now conducted through the special education Child Find process.
Texas Education Agency created overview documents for families with the important changes to the 2021 Texas Dyslexia Handbook.  Those change documents are posted below:


Dyslexia Contact Person:

Email IconDanielle Navarro

Phone IconPhone Number:  210-236-7693 ext. 2203

Webpage link iconAdditional helpful information may be found on the Texas Education Agency (TEA) webpage:  TEA:  Dyslexia and Related Disorders 

Transition Planning
Transition services (planning for a child's life after high school) are required to be integrated into the IEP of a child who receives special education services no later than his/her 13th birthday.  Whenever transition services are being discussed in an ARD, the child is a required member of the ARD Committee meeting.
Transition services means a coordinated set of activities for the child with a disability that:
  • Is designed to be within a results-oriented process, that is focused on improving the academic and functional achievement of the child with a disability to facilitate the child's movement from school to post-school activities, including:
    • Post-secondary education;
    • Vocational education;
    • Integrated employment, including supported employment;
    • Continuing and adult education;
    • Adult services;
    • Independent living; or
    • Community participation;
  • Is based on the individual child's needs, taking into account the child's strengths, preferences, and interests; and includes:
    • Instruction;
    • Related services;
    • Community experiences;
    • The development of employment and other post-school adult living objectives; and
    • If appropriate, acquisition of daily living skills and provision of a functional vocational evaluation.
Transition services may be special education, if provided as specially-designed instruction, or a related service, if required to assist the child with a disability to benefit from special education.
If the child does not attend the ARD Committee meeting where transition services are discussed,  the school must take other steps to ensure the child's preferences and interests are considered in his/her transition planning.
Texas Transition & Employment Guide was created by the Student-Centered Transitions Network (SCTN) to assist educators and families with implementing quality transition services for students with disabilities. The Texas Transition Guide is available in English, Spanish, Korean, Vietnamese, and Chinese. 
Additional Resources/Helpful Links for Transition Planning:
Transition Planning Contact Person: 


Email IconMrs. Dawn White

Director of Special Programs

Transition and Employment Services Designee

Phone IconCampus Phone: 210-236-7693 ext. 2101

Phone IconGoogle Voice/Text: 210-764-3599

Fax: 210-254-9284

Procedural Safeguards

Under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), you and your child have legal protections during the evaluation and IEP process. These protections are called Procedural Safeguards. You are offered the opportunity to receive a print copy of these Procedural Safeguards at least one time per year. You can access the Procedural Safeguards at the links below.

A Parent's Guide to the ARD Process

This guide is designed to give you, as a parent of a child who is or may be eligible for special education services, a better understanding of the special education process and of your procedural rights and responsibilities so that you will be able to fully participate in the decision making process regarding your child's education.

Additional Resources for Families
Webpage link iconTexas Education Agency:  Resources on Special Education in Texas 
  • This state developed website provides families with information regarding the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), Dyslexia, Multi-Tiered Systems of Support (MTSS), and Section 504, in both English and Spanish.


  • The Special Education Information Center (SPEDTex) provides resources and interactive features for increasing family awareness of disabilities and special education processes, with the goal of improving partnerships between schools and families. 
  • Contact information:
Resources to Assist with Accessibility and Specialization
Webpage link iconThe Inclusion in Texas Network is a partnership between the Education Service Centers (ESCs) and Texas Education Agency (TEA). Its goal is to to promote a statewide culture of high expectations for students with disabilities and significantly improve academic and functional outcomes for students served by special education. The network assists LEAs build capacity to develop and appropriately implement instructional programs that provide meaningful access to inclusive environments and grade-level standards, where appropriate.
Webpage link iconAs part of its statewide work, the Inclusion in Texas Network has worked with TEA to make available free, TEA-approved and vetted resources, including a webpage devoted to free/mostly free Accessibility and Specialization tools.  These tools include things such as:
  • Accommodation Central;
  • Chromebook Features;
  • Classroom Management Tools;
  • Content Supports for different content areas;
  • Tools to minimize distractions and assist with note-taking;
  • text to speech and speech to text tools; and
  • More!
Webpage link iconTalking Book Program, Texas State Library and Archives Commission (TSLAC)
The Talking Book Program (TBP) provides free library services to qualifying Texans with visual, physical, or reading disabilities. TBP is part of the National Library Service to the Blind and Print Disabled, a program administered by the Library of Congress. The TBP collection consists of more than 100,000 titles, including hundreds of titles in Spanish, and some in French, German, Russian, and other languages.

Original Date of Notice:  7/26/2022

Attention Parents/Guardians, Former Students, Eligible (Adult) Students:

Special Education records which have been collected by Lighthouse Public Schools related to the identification, evaluation, educational placement, or the provision of Special Education in the district, must be maintained under state and federal laws for a period of five years after Special Education services have ended for the student. Special Education services end when the student no longer is eligible for services, graduates, completes his or her educational program at age 22, or moves from the district.  This notification is to inform parents/guardians and former students of the district’s intent to destroy the Special Education records of students who were no longer receiving Special Education services as of the end of the 2016 school year or prior. These records will be destroyed in accordance with state law unless the parent/guardian or eligible (adult) student notifies the school district otherwise.  After five years, the records are no longer useful to the district, but they may be useful to the parent/guardian or former student in applying for Social Security benefits, rehabilitation services, college entrance, etc. The parent/guardian or eligible (adult) student may request a copy of the records in writing or in person at the following address: Lighthouse Public Schools, Attention: Special Education  8138 Westshire Dr., San Antonio, TX 78227.  If you have any questions, please call Dawn White at 210-236-7693. Requests must be received no later than September 30, 2022. 


Atención padres, antiguos alumnos, estudiantes (adulto) elegibles:

Los Registros de educación especial que han sido recogidos por Lighthouse Public Schools relacionados con la identificación, evaluación, asignación educacional o la provisión de educación especial en el distrito, deben mantenerse bajo leyes estatales y federales durante un período de cinco años después de que han terminado los servicios de educación especial para el estudiante. El final de servicios de educación especial es cuando el estudiante ya no es elegible para servicios, sean  graduados, o completa su programa educativo a los 22 años de edad, o se mueve del distrito. Esta notificación es para informar a los padres/tutores y ex alumnos del distrito de que vamos a destruir los registros de educación especial de los estudiantes que no recibían mas servicios de educación especial a partir del final del año escolar 2016 o antes. Estos registros serán destruidos conforme a la ley estatal a menos que el padre/tutor o estudiante (adulto)  elegible notifique al  distrito escolar lo contrario. Después de cinco años, los registros ya no son útiles para el distrito, pero pueden ser útiles para el padre/tutor o ex estudiante de solicitar beneficios de Seguro Social, servicios de rehabilitación, colegio, etc... Los padres o el estudiante  (adulto) elegible puede solicitar una copia de los registros por escrito o en persona a la siguiente dirección: Lighthouse Public Schools, atención: educación especial 8138 Westshire Dr., San Antonio, TX 78227. Si usted tiene alguna pregunta, por favor llame a Dawn White at 210-236-7693. Las solicitudes deben ser recibidas no más tardar el 30 de septiembre 2022.