Navigating PAUSD

PAUSD Special Education Department Contacts
General Information

If you have questions about Special Education programs or would like to request a review for assessment, contact Special Education at (650) 833-4257 or infospecial-ed@pausd.org or browse the Department Web Site.

The PAUSD Special Education department offers Parent Education programs, often co-sponsored by the Palo Alto CAC. 

District Leadership

Yolanda Conaway - Assistant Superintendent of Strategic Initiatives and Operations (650) 833-4242 - yconaway@pausd.org

Alma Ellis - Director of Special Education (650) 833-4260 - aellis@pausd.org

Coordinators & Program Specialists (Your path of escalation, after your case manager)

Tara Keith: Coordinator, High Schools. (650) 833-6764 tkeith@pausd.org

Victoria Luke: Coordinator, Middle Schools.  (650) 833-6886 - vluke@pausd.org

Rina Sutaria: Program Specialist for Juana Briones, Barron Park, Nixon, Palo Verde, Escondido, Fairmeadow. rsutaria@pausd.org

Brooke Crosby: Program Specialist for Addison, Duveneck, Greendell, Ohlone, El Carmelo, Hoover, Walter Hays. bcrosby@pausd.org

Mental Health

Megan Cadwell-Brubaker - Educationally Related Mental Health (Office located at Briones) (650) 833-4206 - mcadwellbrubaker@pausd.org

Wendy Goodridge - Supervisor, Educationally Related Mental Health (650) 833-4204wgoodridge@pausd.org

504 Plan Contacts
Your primary and first point of contact is someone at your school. In elementary and middle schools, the 504 leads are the school psychologists. In high school, it's the vice principal. This page on the PAUSD website lists the contacts at each school.
If you need to get additional help, after working with your school contact, the District contact is: Lissette Moore-Guerra, Coordinator of Student Services - (650) 833-4208lmoore-guerra@pausd.org

Family Engagement Specialist Program (FES)
From the PAUSD website: "The Family Engagement Specialist serves as the link between the school, parents, and community.  They will develop and foster community collaborations, as well as provide referrals to community-based services for families.  Also, they will expand opportunities to families for continued learning, voluntary community service, and civic participation.  They will guide parents to understand the educational system so they can become better advocates for their children’s education and empower parents to become decision-makers." Contact: Keith Wheeler kwheeler@pausd.org  650-329-3767 PAUSD page with more information

School-Based Contacts
School-based staff are the ones that work the most directly with students. For contact information, go to your school website. Here is an overview of the people you should look for.

Elementary
All Elementary Schools have a School Psychologist, Speech and Language Specialist, Reading Specialist and a Resource Specialist.  Go to your school’s website to find names and contact information for those people. Barron Park, Briones, Escondido, Walter Hays and Ohlone have Study Centers/Special Academic Instruction Classrooms. Please talk with your case manager about the possibilities.

Middle School
All Middle Schools have a Resource Program/ Study Skills, Speech and Language, Academic Communication/Social Skills Class, Educationally Related Mental Health Services (EMRH) and the Reading 180 reading intervention program. There are classes with co teaching, specialized math instruction, but these vary every year.  Jordan and Terman both have a Futures program which resembles a Special Day Class. In these programs there are reading and math classes and there is some emphasis on vocational training.  The Futures programs run a smoothie business with the help of the students.  Jordan also has a Social Cognitive Class and a Therapeutic Support Class.  Please talk with your case manager about the options.

High School
For staff contact info go to the websites for the Paly Special Ed dept and the Gunn Special Ed dept.  All classes available to high school students are listed in the course catalog on the school's websites. In high school the Futures program emphasis is mostly on vocational training and life skills. Both high schools also have Read 180 programs, Academic Communications & Study Skills classes, and a number of co-taught classes. Talk with your case manager about the options.