Oct 21, 2017, Jasper (AL) Daily Mountain Eagle: BOE considers new special education classroom http://mountaineagle.com/stories/boe-considers-new-special-education-classroom,13362 The Walker County Board of Education is considering a new classroom that will benefit special needs students in Walker County. Director of Student Services Butch Sargent gave a passionate plea to board members and Superintendent Dr. Jason Adkins about the need for a special needs classroom at Oakman Middle School. He said there are special needs students currently enrolled at the school with “significant needs,” and the school system has also received several special needs transfer students, prompting the need for more specialized instruction in a proper classroom setting. “Over the years, we have been seeing an increasing need for some more specific, specialized instruction in the areas of behavior and special ed,” Sargent said. “Quite frankly, we’re unable to meet their needs the way that things are now.” … Sargent has applied for catastrophic funds through the Alabama State Department of Education in the amount of roughly $340,000 to be used for development of a special needs program at the school. Those funds would include a full-time special needs teacher, three paraprofessionals, a special needs school bus, a bus driver, bus aide, sensory equipment and other associated costs. “Catastrophic funds are monies that are set aside, and if you have an unexpected, costly need in your area, you could apply for those monies,” Sargent said.