Special Services Department

Special Services Department

The Special Services Department promotes opportunities for students served under the mandates of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act 2004 (IDEA/Special Education), English as a Second Language (ESL) and/or English language learners (ELL), Section 504, and alternative education programs to fully participate in all appropriate educational activities in order to become productive citizens. The Special Services Department provides supportive leadership to parents, local school administrators and teachers in their efforts to ensure a free and appropriate public education to all students.

The Special Services Department promotes opportunities for English language learners, alternative education learners, and students with disabilities to participate in educational activities designed to facilitate maximum student achievement. A full range of services, meeting the needs of all identified disabled students (K-12), is offered in all schools in the Sheridan Public School System. 

Alternative Learning Environment (ALE)

Assistant Principal – Dee Creed

Clinical Coordinator School Based Mental Health Coordinator – Ryane Sorey

510 West Church Street
Sheridan, AR  72150
Fax- 870-942-1675

Alternative education is an instructional approach under the control of a school committee that is offered to “At risk” students in a nontraditional setting. “At-risk” students, though intelligent and capable, may include those who exhibit two or more of the following characteristics:

  • Disruptive behavior
  • Drop out from school
  • Personal or family problems or situations
  • Recurring absenteeism
  • Transition to or from residential programs.
  • Ongoing, persistent lack of attaining proficiency levels in literacy and mathematics
  • Abuse: physical, mental, or sexual
  • Frequent relocation of residency
  • Homelessness
  • Inadequate emotional support
  • Mental/physical health problems
  • Pregnancy
  • Single parenting
  • Returning drop-out under age 21
  • Students with frequent suspensions – or expulsion

The ALE programs in Sheridan operate as a program within the school district. The overarching program goal for all students is that they experience a positive program exit. Positive program exit may include returning to the student’s sending school, completion with a diploma from the ALE program, or receiving credit through the credit recovery program.

Special Education

510 West Church Street
Sheridan, Arkansas  72150
Phone – 870-942-9861
Fax – 870-942-4801

The Sheridan School District Special Education program provides services to the students that have been identified as having a primary disability as found under the Individuals with Disability Act. The services are available for students in grades K-12 and include speech therapy, occupational therapy, physical therapy, academic support through the resource and co-teaching programs, and academic, social, and functional support through the self contained program. The district strives to provide an appropriate education in the least restrictive environment and to integrate students into the general education program to the maximum extent possible. Teachers and therapist receive ongoing professional development. Referrals to the special education program can be made at any Sheridan School District campus.

For additional information regarding the special education program please contact Laura Daniel at LauraDaniel@SheridanSchools.org or 870-942-9861.

Section 504

District Coordinator - Laura Daniel

510 West Church Street
Sheridan, Arkansas  72150
Phone – 870-942-9861
Fax – 870-942-4801

Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 focuses on non-discrimination. The denial of public education participation or enjoying the benefits offered by the public school’s programs because of a student’s disability is prohibited.

Unlike special education, under Section 504, there is no list of “approved” disabling conditions. A “handicapped” person is one who (1) has a physical or mental impairment which substantially limits one or more major life activities, (2) has a record of such an impairment, or (3) is regarded as having such an impairment.” 34 C.F.R.Sec.104.3(j)(1).

Physical or Mental Impairment means (A) any physiological disorder or condition, cosmetic disfigurement, or anatomical loss affecting one or more of the following body systems, neurological; musculoskeletal; special sense organs; respiratory, including speech organs; cardiovascular; reproductive; digestive; genitourinary; hemic and lymphatic, skin and endocrine; or (B) any mental or psychological disorder, such as mental retardation, organic brain syndrome, emotional or mental illness, and specific learning disabilities.” 34 C.F.R. Sec. 104.3(j)(2)(i).

Major Life Activities means “functions such as caring for one’s self, performing manual tasks, walking, seeing, hearing, breathing, learning, and working.” M34 C.F.R. Sec. 104.3(j)(2)(ii).

Dietary Reasonable Accommodations

The Sheridan School District under the guidance of the Arkansas Department of Education and the United States Department of Agriculture, Food and Nutrition Service is committed to ensuring that all children have access to healthy meals that meet their dietary needs. Regulations and guidance require program operators to provide reasonable accommodations for children whose disability restricts their diet for all meals and snacks when supported by a licensed medical statement signed by a licensed physician.

A state recognized medical authority is a state licensed health care professional who is authorized to write medical prescriptions under State law. These professionals meeting the guidelines include:


  • Including those licensed by the Arkansas State Medical Board;
  • The Arkansas State Board of Chiropractic Examiners;
  • The Arkansas Board of Podiatric Medicine

Nurse Practitioners (APRN in family or pediatric practice with prescriptive authority)


Physician Assistants

A Registered Dietitian Nutritionist may make recommendations for alternate foods for children whose disability restricts their diet, but the medical statement must be signed by one of the professionals listed above.

For additional information and to request a meal accommodation contact your child’s building 504 Coordinator or the Special Service Department.

East End Elementary
Rodney Williams, 501-888-4264

East End Intermediate
Dennis Wolfe, 501 888-1477 

Sheridan Elementary School
Beverly Long, 870 942-3131

Sheridan Intermediate School 
Tom Cypert, 870-942-7488

Sheridan Middle School 
Angela Douglas, 870-942-3813

East End Middle School
Alan Westfall, 501-261-6565

Sheridan High School
Nick Soapes, 870-942-3137

Special Services
Laura Daniel, 870-942-9861