Student Support Services

We at Murphy Elementary School District #21 Student Support Services Department believe all students can learn given opportunities to build knowledge and skills in all school subjects, events, and activities in an environment of support, understanding, and high expectations. We provide a free and appropriate public education (FAPE) through a continuum of services to general education students that include interventions, reasonable accommodations and/or modifications, supplementary aides and services, and technology. Our goal is to encourage life-long learners and responsible citizens with collaboration of parents and the community.

The Student Support Services Department monitors and supports several programs for students who receive specialized and related services.


Special Education provides instruction and related services for students with disabilities. The district offers a full continuum of services: inclusion, resource, mainstream, self-contained, 1:1 paraprofessional, and out-of-district placement depending on the education/behavioral/social-emotional needs of the student. Whenever possible, students are places in general education classes and study the regular curriculum with support from special education staff. Other related services include physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech and language therapy, hearing impairment and vision impairment therapy, transportation, and counseling. Th Individualized Education Program (IEP) Team determines the level and types of supports and services a student needs to be successful. Certified licensed psychologists review transfer students’ special education records, complete initial and triennial psychological evaluations, and attends IEP/MET meetings.

Special Education Policies and Procedures (English)

Special Education Policies and Procedures (Spanish)

Special Education Services


Murphy School District Special Education preschool program offers specialized services to students from 3 years to 5 years old, and transitions students into kindergarten, either in general education classrooms, resource services, or self- contained classrooms as determined by their IEP transition team. The district offers developmental screenings in August of every year and periodically year-round to children as young as age 2 years 9 months. Screenings include hearing, vision and developmental to determine if further evaluations are necessary. Eligible children identified with significant delays enrolled with Murphy School District will receive special education and related services in the least restrictive environment (LRE) at no cost to the parent/guardian. Screenings and special education services include any student in Head Start who meet the eligibility requirements.

Parents can call Dr. Grizelda Valenzuela, school psychologist at (602)353-5006 or email gvalenzuela@msdaz.org to discuss concerns regarding their preschool-age child’s possible speech or other developmental delays.

Parents can contact Arizona Early Intervention Program (AzEIP) at (602)253-1620 for any concerns regarding their infant age birth to 2 years 9 months of age possible developmental delays.

Special Education Preschool Program



Section 504’ of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 is a federal statute that prohibits discrimination against persons on the basis of their disability by institutions that receives financial federal assistance, such as Murphy School District. An eligible student under section 504 is a student who has physical or mental impairment that substantially limits a major life activity. Qualified students with disabilities have the same rights under the American with Disabilities Act (ADA)as under Section 504. No qualified student with a disability shall be excluded or denied participation in educational opportunities and benefits equal to those provided to non-disabled students. A students covered by Section 504, must be provided accommodations necessary to ensure that the student has equal access to services, programs and activities offered by Murphy School District schools.

Section 504 Eligibility

Parental Rights (English)

Parental Rights (Spanish)

Section 504


Students with special needs can receive any number of related services from certified and licensed therapists in Speech/Language, Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy, and Hearing Impairment and Visual Impairment Therapists. Murphy School District has highly qualified staff of therapists who work collaboratively with special education and general education teachers to assure all eligible students receive their needs services. Murphy School District also contracts with private therapists for specifically designed instruction such as multi-sensory therapy. other related services include counseling and transportation. These services are also accorded students on a Section 504 Plan and students who may meet McKinney Vento requirements as homeless as well as special needs.

Related Services


Murphy School District #21 is required be federal and state law (CFR 330.220.34 CFR 300.121) to conduct a “Child Find”effort as means to locate, identify, and evaluate all Murphy School District resident children with disabilities, including children with disabilities attending private schools, regardless of the severity of their disabilities. The purpose of Child Find it to locate and identify all children in Pre-School-8th grade who needs specialized and related services to support a free and appropriate public education (FAPE). Upon written request, Murphy School District will screen any Murphy resident child as young as 2 years 9 months of age to determine whether a special education referral is appropriate. Children determined to need special education and/or related services will receive specifically designed instruction as a student with special needs. This law applies to EVERY eligible child, regardless of the severity of the disability.

If a child is suspected of having a disability (emotional, mental or physical) and does not receive Special Education services, parents/guardians can contact the special education department with Murphy School District by contacting (via phone, email, or letter) Patricia Blanton, Student Support Services Director, at 2615 W. Buckeye Rd Phoenix, AZ 85009, (602)353-5062 pblanton@msdaz.org. For Spanish please contact Debra Carrillo, Senior Administrative Assistant, (602)353-5063, dcarrillo@msdaz.org.

A physician, nurse, psychologist, social worker, or administrator of social service agency, along with parent/guardian consent has legal duty to report the child tot he resident school district if there is a reasonable belief that the child brought to him or her for services is a child with a disability. The referral must be in writing and include the reason why the individual believes the child has a disability. Parents, teachers, and school administrators may also refer the child. A student can refer themselves personally.

Child Find


The McKinney Vento Homelessness Education Assistance Improvement Act of 2001 defines educational rights and responsibilities to children and youth who are experiencing homelessness. The Murphy School District shall ensure that every homeless and unaccompanied child in PreK-8th grade will have equal access to the same free appropriate public education and other services needed such as transportation, free and reduced lunch, uniforms, eyeglasses, and after-school activities, to ensure that they have all opportunities accorded all students.

McKinney Vento Policies

McKinney Vento


Murphy School District’s Gifted Education program helps qualifying students develop their unique leadership abilities and talents through enrichment activities taught by certified gifted teachers. The program is designed for kindergarten through 8th grade students. Enrichment activities include the use of technology programs such as MobyMax, and attending ASU Project Excellence program.

Gifted Education


Each school has a school counselor on staff to ensure the social and emotional needs of each students are met. The identify academic, behavioral, social, emotional, and growth developmental needs that might interfere with student learning and coordinate the services needed. Services can include one-on-one, small group, whole group, or large group activities specifically designed for students or school-wide needs. Our counselors work with both general and special education needs of students and their challenges that may impede student success. They work with parents, teachers, staff members, and administrators to create a safe and trusting environment for students to thrive and excel.

Counseling Services


CONTACT INFORMATION

Debra Carrillo, Senior Administrative Secretary

(602)353-5063

dcarrillo@msdaz.org

Joann Berry, District Psychologist

(602)353-5022

jberry@msdaz.org

Patricia Blanton, Student Support Services Director

(602)353-5062

pblanton@msdaz.org

Grizelda Valenzuela, District Psychologist

(602)353-5006

gvalenzuela@msdaz.org