About our Program
In accordance with the direction of the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, the Special Education Surrogate Parent Program responds to the mandates of federal special education laws which require that procedures be in place to protect the special educational rights of all children who may require special education services, including those who are in the care or custody of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts or whose parents are unknown or unavailable, and ensure that the rights of these children to benefit from a free and appropriate public education are protected.
The Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education has awarded contracts for the SESPP to two organizations to jointly implement the program: the EDCO Collaborative and the Federation for Children with Special Needs.
Each agency will be responsible for implementing certain aspects of the SESPP.
The Federation for Children with Special Needs will be responsible for volunteer recruitment, training, and support of the SESPs through the Recruitment, Training, and Support Center for Special Education Surrogate Parents RTSC
The EDCO Collaborative will be responsible for student eligibility determination, SESP appointment, and case management and will continue to be known as the Special Education Surrogate Parent Program (SESPP).
Together, we will ensure that students eligible for the SESPP are matched with knowledeable adults who are willing to act in the role of surrogate parents for the purpose of special education decision making.
The vision of the Special Education Surrogate Parent Program is to provide an educational pathway to success for children and youth in state custody.
The mission of the Special Education Surrogate Parent Program is to promote positive educational outcomes for children and youth in state custody by providing volunteers to represent their best interests in the special education process.