Special Education

Special Education at Birch is where students receive the academic and social-emotional supports needed to access the general education curriculum at Birch.

The Special Education Team is comprised of a Speech-Language Teacher, Occupational Therapist, Physical Therapist, Resource Teachers, and School Psychologist. Depending upon a student's needs, specific team members may or may not be involved in assessment or delivery of services, if a student is found eligible. 

Team members do provide services to students identified with special needs and found eligible to receive services, through a legal document called an Individual Education Plan (IEP) that is mandated within the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).

Meet our Special Education Teacher and Para Team

Caitlin Burns

Job Title: Speech Language Pathologist
Phone Numbers:
School: 720-561-8815

Jill Cox

Job Title: Occupational Therapist
Phone Numbers:
School: 720-561-8820

Liana Lucking

Job Title: Special Ed Para
Phone Numbers:
School: 720-561-8011

Nicole Mueller

Job Title: Psychologist
Phone Numbers:
School: 720-561-4122

Delivery of Services

Services are delivered in accordance with each student's individual needs. The special education team collaborates with general education teachers to meet the needs of all their shared students. Services may be delivered within the general education classroom or in a small group, which may be more conducive to the student's ability to attend and learn in the specific environment. The Least Restrictive Environment is always at the forefront of our IEP plan.

The special education team determines the needs and delivery of services at the IEP meetings. 

In all classes, we do use the general education curriculum. The standards are the same in all settings as well. IEP goals and objectives are written with standards addressed and focused upon in our goals. 

Visit the BVSD Special Education Website for more detailed information on the services and support available to all students in the Boulder Valley School District. 


The Intensive Center for Affective Needs (ICAN) Program at Birch Elementary School  provides individualized instruction and related services such as Psychologist/Social Worker, Occupational Therapy, Speech/Language, English Language Development, and other related services according to each student’s Individualized Education Program (IEP.) Additionally, specific supports around social skills, and behavioral and/or emotional management are provided according to each student’s Behavioral Support Plan (BSP.)

The ICAN program is housed within Birch Elementary school where students may access peer models, extracurricular activities as appropriate, as well as rigorous and relevant classroom experiences.

Close communication with families and classroom teachers helps us create an integrated and dynamic support system.  Each student is held accountable for their academic work as well as the behavioral choices they make and supports are augmented or decreased based on events that are occurring in each student’s everyday life.

Our team consists of a special education teacher, 2 paraeducators, and the related service providers.  This allows us to align our supports to any setting within school including the general education classrooms, lunch/recess, or hallway/transitions.  It also allows us to provide direct instruction and behavioral processing in the ICAN Room.