Hazel Park City Guide 2018
2018 Hazel Park City Guide


The program is staffed with Hazel Park teachers, social workers, psychologists, occupational therapists, speech and language therapists, and support staff who not only help students in their home district but in areas such as Avondale, Bloomfield Hills, Birmingham, Clawson, Berkley, Ferndale, Oak Park, Madison Heights, Royal Oak, South Lyon, Walled Lake and West Bloomfield.

“We serve students in approximately 18 different districts within Oakland County. Our building is K-12, and has been housed in the Edison building since 2002,” explained Dr. Michelle Krause, Hazel Park’s Supervisor of Special Education.
“Prior to that, the high school part of the program was located at Hazel Park High, and the junior high and elementary programs were located at the former Beecher Jr. High building.”

Dr. Krause noted since the move very little has been done in the way of renovation or updates. “The building was built in the ‘50s and has needed work both cosmetically and mechanically,” she said. “About two years ago there was conversation at the ISD level that Edison needed to be more on par with our counterpart in the north, Kingsley Montgomery Center, which is located in Waterford and serves the northern district. Kingsley had a major renovation about seven years ago.”

THERE WERE MANY STEPS THAT NEEDED TO BE TAKEN BY THE DISTRICT to get the project approved, but Hazel Park accomplished these late in 2017 as a result of the support of both the ISD as well as the superintendents of Oakland County Schools. The project will involve a complete renovation of the existing building as well as the addition of square footage to serve students with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) as well as students aged 18-26 who have emotional disabilities.

“All furnishings will be new, and we will be adding several additional rooms such as an upgraded sensory room, a life skills room, a STEM lab and greenhouse,” Dr. Krause explained.

These programs will be temporarily housed in a separate location for the upcoming school year, but construction will finalize the following year. “The project timeline was for our program to be moved to a temporary location for the 2018-2019 school year during which construction would start at Edison. Construction would then be completed over the next year with a scheduled return to Edison for the 2019-2020 school year,” she said, noting everyone has had the ability to get involved in rolling out the Ed MAX program.

She said, “Throughout the process all stakeholders have been involved in the decision making. I was able to identify a school team to sit in meetings with architects, construction managers, and interior designers so that we could get input from the professionals who will actually utilize the building. It has been a very interesting process, and staff and students alike are extremely excited for the upcoming changes we will have in our new building.”

HAZEL PARK HAS RECENTLY EXPANDED ITS ADVANCED PLACEMENT (AP) COURSE OFFERINGS TO STUDENTS. DOCTOR CARLA POSTELL, DIRECTOR OF CURRICULUM INTEGRATION AND INSTRUCTION, SAID, “Originally, the district offered only two AP English classes – language and literature – and one class in the art program, because the rest were cut due to our limited budget.” However, she explained, “Within the last year or two, in addition to these three, we’ve been able to add AP psychology, biology, world history, government, and statistics.” The courses offered depend largely on student interest and funding.

Dr. Postell explained that the process for identifying students who qualify for AP course placement is two-fold. “Students can express interest on their own, and counselors often offer their recommendations and guidance. If a student is deter-mined to qualify for AP courses, their counselors will continue the process for placement.” Parents also tend to express interest in placing students when the school sends a form home with course offerings for the following year. “Parents are required to sign this, so they’ll review the card and ensure they’re taking what they need to,” she said. Students interested in advanced placement will then take an exam that will determine whether they can participate.

The AP program helps students develop cognitive skills necessary for success post-graduation. “Just having kids be able to extend their learning base and be able to leave with college credit is great and takes dollars off when they go to ap-ply for college,” said Dr. Postell.

Career and Technical Education (CTE) Courses
THE DISTRICT ALSO RECENTLY INCREASED ITS CTE COURSE OFFERINGS to include business education, digital media, and woodworking options.

“These are the three main umbrella areas under which various individual courses are offered,” explained Dr. Postell. “We’ve increased the program over the past two years. High school students are able to self-select for these.”

Students can also be nominated and identified for CTE county-wide programs, as well as recognized at an annual Oakland County banquet. They are recognized at the CTE Recognition Banquet and Conference through Oakland County Inter-mediate School District, which is held in May.

Some notable students who graduated from the program this year include:

• CHARLES GREY: Grey transformed during his time in the program and is looking at making a career in the skilled trades as a result of being in the program.
• MARCUS WHITE: White had perfect attendance for two consecutive years. He received two awards for his attendance and often volunteered to help with school activities.
• THOMAS EMMONS: Emmons was a leader among the Chrysler/UAW students (both HPHS and Advantage students). He earned an award as outstanding student of the social studies department.

HAZEL PARK OFFERS SPECIAL EDUCATION SERVICES AT ALL SCHOOLS. IN ADDITION TO SCHOOL-AGED SERVICES, THE DISTRICT ALSO OFFERS early childhood special education and early intervention options. According to Director of Student Services, Vita Lusk, “If a child is found eligible for special education services through the evaluation process, the team develops an Individualized Education Program (IEP) and determines the programs and/or services to be provided.” Some of these services include psycho-logical, speech and language, school social work, and occupational and physical therapy interventions.

Early intervention is “designed for children from birth to three years of age,” Lusk explained, while the early childhood program is a classroom-based option for children three to five years of age, and “addresses the developmental hierarchy of skills necessary for success in later formal education,” she said. There is also a resource room program, which provides assistance for eligible students who still spend a majority of time in a general education setting.

For students with cognitive impairment specifically, individualized instruction in classrooms taught by a special education teacher is offered so they can live independently later in life. For those with emotional impairment, classrooms with a small number of students are provided at the elementary and middle school levels, which focus on the development of appropriate behavior skills necessary to be successful in school and beyond. Students in both programs are provided with opportunities in a general setting, whenever appropriate. Students who qualify for Hazel Park’s autism spectrum disorder program are provided with individualized instruction focused on the development of communication, cognitive, social-emotional, self-help and vocational skills for older students.

THE HAZEL PARK SCHOOL DISTRICT ALSO OPERATES CENTER-BASED OPPORTUNITIES, which service students throughout Oakland County. Placement in these programs is determined by the Individualized Education Program Team (IEPT). Yet, because they are county-wide, residency in Hazel Park does not guarantee placement.

Edison is a center-based program for students with Emotional Impairment. The program focuses on the development of appropriate behavior skills necessary to be successful in school and beyond. Students are provided with opportunities in general education, when appropriate, to allow them to develop social skills in the environment in which they naturally occur.

Jardon has served special education students throughout Oakland County since 1966, who continue to qualify for adult transition services and programs after their senior year in high school that require specialized services to meet their adult transition needs. “Jardon’s program focuses on community integration, work experiences and adult living skills,” said Lusk. The program prepares students to successfully integrate into their communities of adult living, through an individualized program and curriculum. “Jardon has extensive partnerships with many local businesses and community agencies that support young adults with special needs,” she said, adding that the program “continues to look for partnerships to provide students with work experiences and community integration, and is also seeking partnerships to support restoration of programs that have previously provided students with additional skill development.”

For more information on Hazel Park’s special education opportunities and assistance, families are encouraged to call 248.658.5204.