Special Services/TOTE

22650 Sibley Road
Brownstown, MI  48193
Office: 734-783-3322
Fax:     734-281-3761

Joanne Weise, Special Services Director

Irene Miekis
Supervisor of Special Services

Nicole Richmond
Special Services Secretary

Deb Foster, TOTE Secretary

Gail Ratliff, Special Education Bookkeeper

Jamie Stratton, Special Services Secretary 

Approximately 950 eligible special education students receive a broad spectrum of education services including: academic and psychological assessments, speech and language services, teacher and behavioral consultant services, social work services, nursing services, academic support through collaborative teaching, resource room or self contained classrooms, and attendance in out-district specialized programs. These specialized services are provided by a team of more than 86 certified professionals and 28 qualified paraprofessionals.

The determination for special education eligibility is initiated through a building-level Child Study Team meeting process. This team, with parental involvement, reviews current classroom performance and the results of interventions and accommodations that have been utilized to assist the child educationally and /or behaviorally. If further testing is indicated, students are assessed to determine whether or not they are eligible to receive special services under state and federal guidelines. An Individualized Educational Program Team (IEPT) then meets with involved staff and parents to make final recommendations. If a student is eligible to receive special education services, the team develops a service plan based on the student’s present level of achievement. Evaluations and services are delivered within established legal guidelines to ensure the rights of the child, parent, and school district are protected.

Additional information may be obtained by contacting the district’s Special Services Department at 734-783-3322.

Teach Our Tots Early (TOTE) is an infant/toddler special education program for developmentally delayed children birth to three years of age.  As part of Early On Wayne County, we service children who qualify for special education. Children are referred by parents, physicians, and other agencies when there are concerns about development.  An early intervention team evaluates the child to determine eligibility for services under the State of Michigan Administrative Rules for Special Education.  A Multidisciplinary Evaluation Team Report (MET) is completed after evaluation.  An Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP) meeting is held in order to begin services for eligible children.  Appropriate child and family outcomes are developed at the IFSP which meet each qualifying child’s individual needs.  The program funding is provided through Wayne County Act 18 Special Education Millage.  There is no cost to eligible students and families.  TOTE services the Downriver/Dearborn School Districts including: 

Allen Park Gibraltar  Riverview
Dearborn Grosse Ile Southgate
Dearborn Heights       Huron Taylor
Ecorse Lincoln Park   Trenton
Flat Rock Melvindale Woodhaven-Brownstown
  River Rouge Wyandotte

TOTE services are provided in the home of the child and within the community setting. TOTE is founded upon the belief that parents/caregivers play the most important role in the total development of their child.  The experiences of everyday life become the basis for continued learning and growth.  It is the mission of our TOTE staff to help each child progress toward his/her fullest potential using developmentally appropriate practices in collaboration with their families. 

The TOTE staff consists of early intervention teacher consultants, a school nurse, speech pathologist, physical therapist, occupational therapist, school psychologist and social worker.  The role of our professional staff is to assist the family with integration of learning activities into family routines.  Eligible students receive home visits for one hour a week  by their teacher consultant, along with a center based group visit once a week.  Speech, physical, and occupational therapy are available on a consultative basis.  Optional additional components of the program, such as parent child music class, are available throughout the school year.  Traditional family events include a Holiday party in December and a family picnic in June. 

For more information on Early On and Early Childhood Education, see the website for Wayne County RESA.  For more information on the TOTE program, call 734-783-3322.