Special Education

Special Ed Photo Cropped

Special education and related services are provided to eligible students with disabilities ages 3 to 21 and to students who qualify for gifted services Kindergarten through grade 12. Infants and toddlers with developmental delays or disabilities are served through Infant Toddler Services of Johnson County.

Special education in Shawnee Mission is specially designed instruction that enables students to make continuous progress in school. Special education services are present within each school and are an integral part of Shawnee Mission's comprehensive school system. 

Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)

As amended by the United States Congress in 2004, IDEA is a federally-funded statute that requires a free and appropriate public education for students who meet eligibility in one or more of the 13 federal disability definitions. The act has provisions for evaluation, placement, and an individualized education plan (IEP) for eligible students who require specially designed instruction provided by special education certified personnel. Procedural safeguards for parents and the school district are a component of this act. The IDEA is enforced by the U.S. Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) and monitored locally by the Kansas Department of Education.

The Shawnee Mission School District uses compliant practices as described in the Kansas Special Education Process Handbook that is published by the Kansas State Department of Education, which is available online.

Center for Academic Achievement 
8200 W. 71st Street Shawnee Mission, KS 66204
Phone: (913) 993-8600
Fax: (913) 993-8614

Dr. Christy Ziegler, Interim Director

Jackie Chatman, Assistant Director of Special Education
(Highlands, Santa Fe Trail, Westwood View)

Debra Dupree, Associate Coordinator of Special Education, Secondary
(Hocker Grove, Indian Hills, Indian Woods, Trailridge, Westridge)

Jessica Gagewanamaker, Coordinator of Special Education, Secondary
(SM North, SM South, SM East, SM West, SM Northwest, Post High Transition)

Shari Hardinger, Associate Coordinator of Early Childhood Education

Katie Laird, Associate Coordinator of Special Education, Elementary​
(Belinder, Briarwood, Broken Arrow, Brookridge, Corinth, Crestview, John Diemer, Prairie, Rising Star, Rushton, Shawanoe, Tomahawk, Trailwood) 

Linda Phillips, Coordinator of Special Education, Elementary
(Apache, Benninghoven, Bluejacket Flint, Brookwood, Comanche, East Antioch, Lenexa Hills, Ray Marsh, Christa McAuliffe, Merriam Park, Mill Creek, Nieman, Oak Park Carpenter, Overland Park, Pawnee, Roesland, Rosehill, Sunflower) 

Shawnee Mission Early Childhood Education Center  (SMECEC)
9700 W. 96th Street,
Shawnee Mission, KS 66212
Phone:(913) 993-2600
Fax: (913) 993-2699