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Specialized Education Program

Special Education Department at GTA

The specialized education program at Griffin Technologies Academy offers support services to students with disabilities. Our objective, across all our campuses, is to provide an inclusive and personalized education plan for every student. Irrespective of their abilities, each plan is designed to meet their specific needs to ensure their academic success.


The special education department is dedicated to inclusive education for all students, including those with diverse learning needs. Our program offers personalized support and resources to help every student succeed.

Our team of special education teachers and paraprofessionals collaborate with students, parents, and general education teachers to create Individualized Education Programs (IEPs) tailored to each student. Through targeted instruction, and interventions, we provide a positive and nurturing environment where every student can reach their potential.

The special education department is a member of the Sonoma Charter School SELPA (Special Education Local Plan Area).

Click the button below for additional information about the SELPA.


Sonoma Charter SELPA

SAI (Specialized Academic Instruction)

Specialized Academic Instruction (SAI) – At Griffin Academies, SAI is provided by a qualified special education teacher (s) or paraprofessional under their supervision. SAI offers  academic and behavioral instruction tailored to meet the specific needs of students.

Speech and Language Therapy – Our licensed Speech and Language Pathologist (SLP) delivers this service, focusing on areas such as articulation, expressive and receptive language, and pragmatic skills. Depending on individual needs, this service may be provided independently or combined with other supports like SAI.

Occupational Therapy (OT) – Led by Occupational Therapist (OT)  this service addresses sensory integration and fine motor skills, including handwriting, to support student development.

Educationally-Related Mental Health Services (ERMHS) – For students needing additional social and emotional support, Mare Island Technology Academy offers ERMHS, encompassing counseling, individual guidance, and interventions to enhance their school experience and access to education.

Please note that this list is not exhaustive and does not cover all available services. 


Eligibility for Special Education

A student may qualify for special education services if they have a documented disability that impacts their ability to access learning in the general education setting without additional support. This disability may include but is not limited to:

  • Intellectual disabilities
  • Learning disabilities
  • Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)
  • Autism spectrum disorder (ASD)
  • Emotional or behavioral disorders
  • Speech or language impairments
  • Sensory impairments (hearing or vision loss)
  • Physical disabilities

It's important to note that eligibility for special education is determined through a comprehensive evaluation process conducted by a team of professionals, including educators, psychologists, and specialists. This evaluation considers various factors such as the student's academic performance, behavior, attendance and developmental history. If the evaluation results indicate that the student requires specialized instruction or support to make progress in their education, they may be deemed eligible for special education services.


Special Education Department Staff

Mare Island Technology Academy (MS)

Sarah Beesley - Educational Specialist/ Program Manager


Raquel Zaragoza - Paraprofessional

Vlonna Brown - Paraprofessional


Griffin Academy (MS/HS)

Kathleen Schoedrer - Educational Specialist


Charlivan Ingram - Paraprofessional


MIT Academy (HS)

Denise Airole - Educational Specialist


Neil Sheikh - Educational Specialist


MJ Greer - Paraprofessional


Leandrea Matthews - Paraprofessional


Department Assistant

Deborah Cooper-Kelly