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Support Services for Families of Students with Special Needs

Information in English

Servicios de Apoyo para Familias de Estudiantes con Necesidades Especiales

Información en español

Special Education


We are committed to the identification and service of special education students in the least restrictive environment possible. As a member of the North Coast Consortium for Special Education (NCCSE), we offer a full continuum of special education services that appropriately meet student needs. Our dedicated special education staff provides services for students with disabilities ranging from mild learning disorders to severe physical and mental handicaps. Credentialed special education teachers, speech therapists, occupational therapists, adapted physical education specialists, providers for the visually impaired and school psychologists make up our exceptional special education professionals.

For more information on Special Education Activities and Parent workshops, please visit the North County Consortium for Special Education website.


About Special Education


Special Education is specialized instruction provided for children from birth to age 22 who qualify according to the laws and regulations outlined by the state and federal government. A student may qualify for special education services as an individual with special needs in one of thirteen areas identified by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).These are:

  • Autism
  • Deaf
  • Deaf-Blind
  • Emotionally Disturbed
  • Hard of Hearing
  • Intellectually Disabled 
  • Multiple Handicapped
  • Orthopedically Impaired
  • Other Health Impaired
  • Specific Learning Disability
  • Speech-Language Impaired
  • Traumatic Brain Injury
  • Visually Impaired
Martin Luther King Jr. Middle School Special Education Staff

Department Chair:  
Ryan Leighton
(760) 901-8837

Grade 6
Lindsey Howe (Math/Sci)
(760) 901- 8876

Karel Padigos (ELA/SS)
(760) 901- 8873

Grade 7
Rob Pokletar (ELA/SS) 
(760) 901- 8819

Grade 7/8                            Jacob Hancock (ELA/LC)       (760) 901-8890

Grade 8
Cindy Gisbert (ELA/SS)
(760) 901 - 8837

Cynthia Rey (Math/Sci) 
(760) 901 - 8844

MS/SH Teachers
(Special Day Class):

May Bramble (SH)
(760) 901 - 8869

Mark Story                            (760) 901- 8867

Cassie Kerr
(760) 901 - 8810                Fax: (760) 734- 8735                  

Rachel Hovenden               (760) 901- 8829

Speech Therapists:
Celeste Bosio     (760) 901-8845

Amanda Burtner