Special Services

Welcome to the Special Services web page for the Cedar Rapids Schools!

The Cedar Rapids Community School District is committed to providing a full continuum of quality educational services for students with disabilities. General and special education teachers work collaboratively to provide an appropriate education in the least restrictive setting for all students. We have high expectations of all students and provide comprehensive services to help meet the academic, social, emotional, behavioral, adaptive, and physical needs of all students with disabilities.

Least Restrictive Environment:

We place a priority on serving students in their regular classrooms using the general education curriculum. Students are placed into alternative instruction only after it has been demonstrated that general education interventions have been exhausted and it is in the student’s best interest to receive an alternative method of instruction.

Neighborhood Schools:

The district also strives to serve as many students with disabilities as possible in their neighborhood schools. Every building has a multi-categorical special education program for serving students with mild and moderate disabilities. Students with low-incidence disabilities such as autism or hearing impairments are served in district-wide programs at selected schools.


All programming provided for students with special needs is consistent with federal law, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). IDEA entitles every student to a free and appropriate public education (FAPE) in the least restrictive environment (LRE). To ensure a FAPE, a team of professionals from the school district meet with the student’s parents to identify the student’s unique educational needs; to develop annual goals for the student; and to determine needed accommodations, program modifications, testing accommodations, and other special services that the student needs. These needs and the appropriate placement are recorded in a Individualized Educational Program (IEP).


We are committed to doing all this in partnership with our families. If you have any questions or comments, don’t hesitate to contact us!