Special Education and Inclusion

Update as of January 5, 2022

ATTENTION Parents and/or guardians of students with disabilities:

Our school district is working with the New York State Education Department (NYSED) to collect information on how we help you and other parents of students with disabilities to be involved in their children’s education. Parents from school districts throughout the State are completing the same survey. NYSED is working with the Potsdam Institute for Applied Research (PIAR) at SUNY Potsdam, an independent research firm, to collect the information.

Your answers to the survey are very important to us. They will help us identify how well we work with parents in order to improve services and results for all our students with disabilities. No one from our school district will see how you answered the questions. PIAR will compile the results of the surveys from all our parents and the results will be available to you in a public report issued by NYSED for our school district.

Surveys will be mailed out in January 2022, please complete them, and return in the self-addressed envelope that is included in the mailing. There will also be instructions on how to complete the questionnaire on the Internet included in the mailing.

Your participation and responses are greatly appreciated. If you have any questions or do not receive a survey by the end of February 2022, please contact Dr. Joyce Carr at [email protected]


Dr. Joyce Carr
Supervisor of Special Education and Support Services
Elmira City School District
[email protected]

>>Download a copy of this letter

The New York State Education Department, Office of Special Education is sharing the following resource provided by the IRIS Center. Resources are provided for informational purposes only and do not constitute NYSED endorsement of any websites or other sources. Please be aware that websites listed may change. The information provided is true and complete to the best of our knowledge.

The IRIS Center has created a new module specifically for parents titled Parents: Supporting Learning During the COVID-19 Pandemic. This module offers practical tools and easy-to-implement strategies to help clarify what is and is not a parents role during school closure and provides information for parents on how to support their child’s learning and social emotional well-being. The IRIS Center, housed at the Peabody College Vanderbilt University, is funded through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP).

Update March 17, 2020 - 3:30 p.m.

Please view a letter issued by our Special Education Department regarding CSE and CPSE meetings throughout the current school closure.

3.17.20 Letter from the Special Education Department

Thank you,

Dr. Joyce A. Carr
Supervisor of Special Education and Student Support Services

Special education in the Elmira City School District is designed to provide specially designed services and programs that meet the unique needs of students with disabilities. Across the District, we are becoming part of the inclusion revolution, a movement created by the Special Olympics organization to celebrate its 50th year, that raises awareness and promotes the inclusion of individuals with special needs in our schools, communities and society.

Our goal is to provide services to students in the least restrictive environment, whether that is in an inclusive setting in a general education classroom or in a self-contained or BOCES program. Support services are also available to eligible students.

New York State Education Department Procedural Safeguards Notice, Part B | Rights for Parents of Children with Disabilities, Ages 3-21

What is the Committee on Special Education (CSE)?

The Committee on Special Education (CSE) makes recommendations about appropriate special education services and programs for students with disabilities. The committee must ensure that each student's Individualized Education Program (IEP) enables him or her to progress as far as possible in the general education curriculum. Parents and teachers provide valuable information to assist the committee in making decisions about a child's strengths, appropriate programs and services, and placement to meet the child's unique needs. If a child is referred to special education, his or her parent automatically becomes a member of the CSE.

I Suspect My Child Has a Disability - What Do I Do?

If you suspect your child has a disability, please contact your building principal to discuss the process of making a CSE referral. For more information, please contact Joyce Carr, Special Education supervisor, at 607-735-3085.

Assistant Supervisor of Special Education: Suzanne Comstock
CSE chairperson for Fassett Elementary, Ernie Davis Academy, Broadway Academy
Phone number: 607-735- 30333

Assistant Supervisor of Special Education: Emily Sadler 
CSE chairperson for Diven Elementary, Pine City Elementary, Hendy Elementary, Broadway Elementary and Holy Family Elementary
Phone Number: 607-735-3015

Assistant Supervisor of Special Education: Lea Tryon 
CSE Chairperson for Riverside Elementary, Beecher Elementary, Coburn Elementary, BOCES Elementary K-6 (out of District), CPSE, and BOCES classroom at Broadway Academy 
Phone Number: 607-735-3051

CSE chairperson for Finn Academy: Kristen Wilson
Phone number: 607-735-3021

Assistant Supervisor of Special Education: Sarah Woodward
CSE Chairperson for Elmira High School, Notre Dame High School and secondary out of district BOCES grades 7-12
Phone Number: 607-735-3033

Supervisor of Special Education and Student Support Services: Joyce Carr
Susan Moe : Administrative Assistant, Phone number: 607-735-3082

The CPSE office is in the Administration Building. The district office for the Committee for Preschool Special Education is located in the District Administration Building at 430 W. Washington Ave, Elmira. Office hours are 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday-Friday.

Parents who are concerned about the development of their preschool age child (ages 3-5) may refer their child to Elmira City School District Committee for Preschool Special Education (CPSE) to request an evaluation. The CPSE determines the eligibility and authorization of special education services. Services that are offered include Special Education Itinerant Teacher (SEIT) Services, Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy, Speech Therapy and other services for special needs.

Please contact Lea Tryon, CPSE/CSE Chairperson with any questions or concerns that you might have regarding your child‘s special needs at 607-735-3051 or Linda Johnson, CPSE/CSE Secretary at 607-735-3036.

How to Become Involved - Seeking Parents for CSE Committee

The Elmira school district is recruiting parents of students with special needs who live in the school district to serve as representatives on the Committee on Special Education.

Parent reps attend CSE meetings and help other parents understand the proceedings and services being discussed or offered. This is an excellent opportunity to help parents who are new to the CSE process. If you are interested in volunteering as a parent rep, please call 735-3082.