Each school board and school authority in Ontario must establish a SEAC. For more information, the requirements of SEACs are set out in Ontario Regulation 464/97.
A Special Education Advisory Committee (SEAC) is a committee of a school board or a school authority that provides important advice on special education to that particular school board.
A SEAC is comprised of trustees and representatives of local associations that have formed to further the interests and well-being of groups of exceptional children or adults. Historically, FASworld Canada has also supported these applications. A SEAC may have 12 local associations represented as well as members at large.
A SEAC committee may make recommendations to their board on any matter affecting the establishment, development and delivery of special education programs and services for exceptional students in a board. It must be understood that a SEAC operates only in an advisory capacity. Nevertheless, where there is a good SEAC-board working relationship, the advice of a SEAC to the board can be very valuable and stands to improve Special Education in that board.
Meetings of SEAC committees are held once a month for the 10 months of the school year.
Every organization with membership on a SEAC is encouraged to nominate a member and an alternate so that each organization is represented at each and every SEAC meeting. Each represented organization, as well as members at large, is allowed one vote on any matter to be voted upon. Organizations should be prepared to vet potential SEAC members carefully so that they are able to represent FASD in a calm, prepared, positive and well-founded manner.
In a well-run SEAC, each attending member should be prepared to spend some time between meetings making themselves familiar with any files, documents or background materials that are shared with SEAC members at and between meetings. For example, proposed budgetary documents are often presented in advance of the meeting where the upcoming Special Education budget for the coming year will be discussed.
This position may be of interest to you if you want to help students with FASD, enjoy committee work, like learning about school issues, and are willing to work as a team member. Elementary and secondary school board staff may also be called upon to serve as a resource to the SEAC.
SEAC members must be:
- Over the age of 18 years
- Canadian Citizens
- Residents in the school board area
- Qualified to vote for members of that board
- Not employed by the board
Contact your local school board to inquire about joining SEAC. For more information, please consult the following website www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/elemsec/speced/seac/
Ontario Special Education Committee Application Process for 2018; To Ontarians (Canadian citizens and 18 years of age or older) with an interest in and knowledge of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD):
Please consider joining your local school board’s SEAC (Special Education Advisory Committee) committee to spread your knowledge of FASD to educators at your local Public and Catholic school boards. Slowly but surely more Ontario school boards have SEAC members representing FASD. It is making a difference. School success is critical to life-long success for FASD-affected people.
Every four years there is a municipal election in Ontario and SEAC seats come up for application or re-application.
For those of you who already belong to a SEAC please consider re-applying this year for another term.
October 31 of municipal election year is usually the deadline for applying for a SEAC position for most Ontario boards.
It is vitally important that we have a FASD member on as many Ontario SEAC committees as possible so that
students with FASD will be supported by educators who are familiar with the 21st century brain-based approach to FASD supports. You can be the vehicle of positive change for students with FASD.
HOW TO DO IT:
The attachment above explains how to apply to a SEAC on Ontario. Page 1 explains the process and page 2 is a digital form letter that you personalize and send back to Mary Cunningham who will send it to the board to which you have chosen to apply. It is best if you have some FASD training. And by the way that includes experience parenting a child or children with FASD.
If there are two of you in your community who both want to apply to the same school board you canapply as a primary member and an alternate. Having a FASD partner on a SEAC committee makes your role more manageable and enjoyable. It also means that if you go away for a month there will still be FASD representation on that board’s SEAC committee when one of you is away.
Send your completed letter by e-mail to Mary Cunningham who is the FASD ONE Education Action Group Lead – email@example.com as soon as possible. I will e-mail it to your board using the e-mail in your application letter and keep track of who applies to which board. I hope to set up a group e-mail list of SEAC members in Ontario. It is the intention of the FASD ONE Education Action Group to work on some group communication for the group. We are stronger together.
Feel free to ask questions at firstname.lastname@example.org
If your local organization is interested in applying to membership on SEAC, please contact FASD ONE email: email@example.com
An excellent resource for current SEAC members can be found at PAaC on SEAC – www.paac-seac.ca/