Granite relocating special needs schools

Published: Thursday, Sept. 13 2012 3:29 p.m. MDT

TAYLORSVILLE — A school serving students who have special needs is relocating within the Granite School District.

After 40 years in their existing building, Hartvigsen — a specialty school serving students aged 5 to 21 with moderate to severe disabling conditions — is relocating to a more central location in the district’s special needs constituency.

The new building, near Taylorsville High School, will feature new medical technologies and education features. The hub will be ready for the 2013-14 school year.

Having the school in close proximity to Taylorsville High and Plymouth Elementary means Hartvigsen students will benefit from having easier access to their general education peers, according to Granite special education director Noelle Converse.

“It opens up a whole new world of opportunities for those who never had the chance to collaborate with the general student population,” Converse said.

Administrators aim to help students with special needs receive vocational training by working directly with general education students in classrooms and extracurricular activities.

Through collaborated efforts, students attending these and other traditional schools also benefit from having special needs hubs within reach.

“Those students are given leadership opportunities by working alongside students with special needs,” Converse said. “All students learn from each other.”

In addition to Hartvigsen, a special needs hub equipped with the latest medical technologies and services will be built inside the new Granger High School, which is currently under construction. A similar hub was added to Whittier Elementary last year.

Both Hartvigsen School and the special needs hub at Granger High are on schedule to open for the 2013-14 school year. Once they are completed, parents of students with special needs will be contacted about their preference as to which site would better suit their needs.

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