Special Services

The Cassia School District’s Special Education Department stands ready to ensure every student has equitable access to high-quality educational programs.  We provide a full continuum of supports and services to every student in the Special Education program.


We maintain a “Student First” philosophy. We will structure each classroom and educational environment to meet the needs of each and every student. Our students learn, grow, and thrive in innovative programs that build independence and prepare each student for a successful transition to life after school.

Department Staff

Ryun Payne
208-878-6627 or 208-647-8477 

Michele Knopp
Administrative Assistant

Stephanie Best
Medicaid or Preschool Secretary
208-312-6602 (Preschool) 

Mandi Cranney
Special Education Mentor Teacher

What We Do

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Cassia Joint School District Special Services Department facilitates the special education system that locates, identifies, evaluates and supports all children with disabilities, age 3-21.  Programs provide a variety of learning experiences designed to meet a wide range of physical, mental, social and emotional abilities.  For more information, please call 208-878-6627.

Child Find

To make an appointment for a developmental screening,
please contact Stephanie Best at 208-312-6602

Child Find is a continuous process conducted to create public awareness of special education programs. Federal and State guidance exists for identifying and serving children with disabilities.  The Cassia County Special Education Department would like everyone in our Cassia Community to be aware that all children, ages 3 through 21, are entitled to support if they are eligible for special education services. 

Preschool aged children from ages 3 through 5 who demonstrate developmental delays in one or more of the developmental areas may be eligible for special education services:

Speech & Language
Thinking Ability
Self-Help & Social Skills
Motor Skills
Emotional Concerns
Hearing & Vision

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Values & Beliefs

We Value:

  • Providing inclusion opportunities in general education to the highest degree possible

  • Closing the achievement gap for students with disabilities

  • Recruiting and retaining highly-trained special education staff and providing opportunities for professional development

  • Ensuring Special Education practices and curriculum are based on research and longitudinal data

  • Fostering strong parent engagement

We Believe:

Each special education student is a unique individual and has different needs based on their own disability

A quality Special Education Program must be prepared to address the following needs:

  • Instructional Needs (i.e., direct/explicit instruction in reading, math, social skills, life skills, organization)

  • Environmental Needs (i.e., reduced distraction, smaller group)

  • Curricular Needs (i.e., core content, adapted content, functional curriculum)

  • Instructional Delivery Needs (i.e., slower pace, simplified vocabulary, repetition, guided practice)

  • Behavioral needs (i.e. coping strategies, social skills, problem-solving skills)

  • We will have an effective framework for collaborative and continuous improvement that delivers real results for our students

Vision & Provisions

We Envision:

  • All students being seen as general education students first

  • Appropriate intervention, at all levels, taking place in order to provide the most successful educational experience possible

  • All students possessing communication skills that are maximized and students will express their wants and needs using a variety of modalities

  • All students mastering basic functional and academic skills

  • All students being held to high expectations across programs

  • All students being prepared to pursue independence and employment after exiting educational services

  • All students being effective self-advocates

We Provide:

  • Preschool Services for ages 3-5

  • School Age Services for ages 5-21

  • Transition Services for ages 15-21

  • Life Skills Services

  • RISE Behavioral Support

  • Speech and Language Therapy

  • Occupational and Physical Therapy

  • Positive Behavioral Support Services

  • Psychological Services

  • CBRS/BI Services

  • Homebound Instruction

  • And other services deemed necessary by the IEP team