On Tuesday, Aug. 2, the South Colonie Board of Education approved the appointment of Melissa Willman as Director of Special Education. Effective immediately, Willman will transition into her new role overseeing curriculum, instruction, staffing and programming for students with disabilities (ages 3 to 21) that reside within the South Colonie Central School District.
Prior to her appointment, Willman served as the supervisor of special education/CPSE and elementary CSE chairperson at South Colonie. In her role she supervised staff and programming for students grades kindergarten to fourth ensuring high quality instruction and implementation of IEP supports and services. Additionally Willman facilitated CPSE/CSE meetings as the chairperson to ensure that students qualified for the special educational services needed while developing instructional programs to meet the individual needs of each student. Previous positions held include supervisor of special education/district CPSE and CSE chairperson at North Colonie, committee on special education chairperson at South Colonie, and special education school improvement specialist at Capital Region BOCES.
“We are pleased to welcome Ms. Willman in her new role as the Director of our Special Education Department,” said Dr. David Perry, superintendent of schools. “In her time in the district, she has displayed a deep understanding of the needs of our students and families and continues to be a strong mentor to her colleagues. Willman has extensive knowledge of state and federal laws related to special education, is experienced with various models of co-teach, and is well versed in monitoring data to make programmatic decisions. I believe she will continue to complement our commitment to academic success, access to programs, best practices, and compliance for all students.”
Willman’s educational background includes a Bachelors of Science in special/childhood education from SUNY Plattsburgh and a Master of Science in education literacy (birth-grade 6) from the College of Saint Rose. Additionally, she holds the following certifications:
- New York State Professional Certification in School District Leadership
- New York State Initial Certification in School Building Leadership
- New York State Professional Certification in Special Education Grades 1-6, Grades 5-9
- New York State Professional Certification in Literacy Birth-Grade 6
- New York State Professional Certification in Elementary Education Grades 1-6
- New York State Professional Certification in Early Childhood Birth-Grade 2
“I am excited to begin my new role as the director of the special education department, ” said Willman. “I am committed to continuing to work alongside my dedicated colleagues to best support our special education program and ensure that our students and families have the support needed to be successful both in and out of the classroom.”
Willman is replacing Timothy Fowler who recently accepted a position at Niskayuna Central School District.
More information about the district’s special education programming can be found here: https://www.southcolonieschools.org/academics/special-education/.