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Special Education & Alternative Learning

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Special Education

The Francis Howell School District provides a free and appropriate education to every child who has been identified as eligible according to the criteria outlined in the Missouri state education plan for Special Education. Special Education and related services for preschool-aged children are referred to as Special Education.

Special education services are available to eligible students from ages 3 through 21 who experience disabilities and require specially designed instruction. Individual special education programs are cooperatively developed by an individual education planning (IEP) team which includes parents, teachers, administrators and, when appropriate, other specialists. The IEP team reviews an individual student's functional and academic performance to develop appropriate individual long-term goals and short-term objectives for the child to achieve during a one-year period. Learn more about Special Education at FHSD.

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Westwood Trail Academy

Westwood Trail Academy was created by the Francis Howell School District to provide a supportive educational environment for students who have been diagnosed with significant emotional and behavioral issues and have not been successful in their local high schools and middle schools. Historically, these students have been served in private agencies. The students who attend Westwood range from grades 6-12. The program has expanded and is accepting students from other districts on a contractual basis. All students enter the program through the IEP process. All schools follow a specific referral procedure. This procedure is in place to make sure that all students are appropriate for this program. Visit the Westwood Trail Academy Website for more information.

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Gifted Education

Spectra is the Francis Howell School District’s program for students identified as gifted. The program is an educational intervention for qualifying students, which provides a differentiated, rigorous, cognitive curriculum. Spectra students have the opportunity to interact with intellectual peers in a supportive environment that meets their particular social and emotional needs. The Spectra program begins in first grade and continues through a student’s senior year of high school. The program provides a significant, meaningful, and engaging curriculum that is challenging and rigorous for the student. Learn more about Gifted Education at FHSD.

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Francis Howell School District’s mission is to prepare all students, including students who enter the school system with a primary language other than English, for life in this global society. The English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) program teaches students to master the communication skills of reading, writing, speaking, listening, viewing, and presenting in English. The ESOL support program moves students along the continuum of English language acquisition and provides English Language Learners a bridge to full access of the District’s curriculum. Learn more about ESOL or view translations.