Department of Special Education

Our Mission

Our Mission is to provide each child with the education and skills needed to enter a post-secondary placement that meets their needs, acquire skills necessary to be self-sufficient, encourage the student to self advocate for themselves, and to be a productive citizen.

Our Values

  • The academic achievement and social development of ALL children.
  • An environment conducive to learning that is clean, safe, respectful, and positive.
  • The involvement of parents and stakeholders in the education of their child.
  • The involvement of parents and necessary stakeholders in developing the student’s IEP.
  • Quality teachers and administrators who are competent, passionate, and put ALL children first.
  • Accountability by using sound and accurate data when making educational decisions for students.

Lauderdale County Department of Special Education

The Lauderdale County School System shall provide access to a free appropriate public education (FAPE) to ALL eligible disabled students ages 3-21 who live within the Lauderdale county school zone. The implementation of appropriate academic instruction and special education services shall be in accordance with the current Rules, Regulations, and Minimum Standards of the State Board of Education and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). The IEP team will seek the Least Restrictive Environment (LRE) in which to deliver academic instruction and special education services that were designed by the IEP team.

Students, through the screening, referral, assessment, and eligibility process, must have an eligibility determination in one of the following categories: developmentally delayed (DD), specific learning disability (SLD), intellectually disabled (ID), speech impairment (SI), language impairment (LI), other health impairment (OHI), deaf-blindness (D-B), hearing impaired (HI), autism (AUT), orthopedic impairment (OI), functional delayed (FD), multiple disabilities (MD), traumatic brain injury (TBI), emotional disturbance (ED), visual impairment (VI), and intellectually gifted (IG). Students must meet the Tennessee State Eligibility Standards in order to receive services.

Referral Process

Children may be referred for a special education evaluation by:

  • Parents or legal guardian
  • Other family members
  • Physicians
  • School personnel
  • Child care providers
  • Community agencies
  • Tennessee Early Intervention System (TEIS)

Once the school system receives a referral, we will contact the parent and gather information to determine if their concerns can be met through an intervention program or if a referral needs to be processed. Once parental consent is obtained, the school system has sixty calendar days to complete the testing and schedule an eligibility results IEP meeting. If the student is determined eligible, then an IEP will be developed and agreed upon by the IEP team and implemented immediately.


For more information about special education and the services we provide, contact

Daniel Mobley

Director of Special Education

Lauderdale County Schools

321 Armory Avenue, P.O. Box 350

Ripley, TN 38063