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Strength and Needs Committee (SNC)     

What is a Strength and Needs Committee?

The SNC is a school-based problem-solving team. Through an ongoing, collaborative process, the team, in consultation with students and parents/guardians, provides strategies and assistance for supporting individual students. SNC meetings to discuss students with special education needs are held regularly and the record of the meeting is shared with parents/guardians and saved in the student’s file.

Parent’s role in SNC    

Parents/guardians have the ability to request an SNC. Creating a statement of the strengths and needs of your child is an important tool for planning appropriate remedial help at all stages of your child’s education. Attend the SNC meetings held for your child at school when you can. Share your thoughts about your child’s personal strengths, which will help in developing resiliency at school, and their most important needs, which will help in the development of future goals. Previous SNC notes may help determine the appropriate assessments that may be implemented at school, which will also be recorded on the individual education plan (IEP). SNC notes are included in the Identification, Placement and Review Committee (IPRC) process.

Who are the members?   

The core members of the committee can include:

  • Parent/guardians and/or the student;
  • Principal or Vice-principal;
  • Regular Classroom Teacher (RCT);
  • Referring teacher (if different from above); and,
  • Special Education Resource Teacher (SERT).

Additional members may include:

  • Designated Early Childhood Educator (DECE);
  • Educational Assistant (EA);
  • Child and Youth Worker (CYW);
  • Board Support Staff;
  • Service providers/community agencies; and,
  • Family/friend.

For students in secondary school, the committee may also include:

  • Guidance Counsellor; and,
  • Student Success Teacher.

What Information Should be Included in an SNC record?   

The three main components addressed during the SNC and documented in the record are: Presenting Concerns, Summary of Discussion, and Action to Follow.  

Presenting Concerns
Description of the areas of concern - reason(s) for having the SNC (including strengths, needs, current level of achievement, and interpretation of current data.)

Summary of Discussion  
Description of the measurable, observable, and achievable goals for the student, describes the goal(s) that are being set, and the strategies that will be used to provide intervention for the student.

Action to Follow 
Description of the actions for implementation of strategies required, the individual responsible for each action, the timeline for implementation, and how the achievement for each goal will be assessed. 

How often are SNCs necessary?  

SNCs should be held whenever a school team deems it necessary to collaboratively support a student in order to ensure that the student’s needs are being met, with the intention of helping that student reach his/her full potential.
It is necessary to hold an SNC at least twice during the school year for students who have an IEP. Students who require higher levels of support will greatly benefit from the collaborative problem solving approach that additional SNCs will provide. The information shared and discussed for students with IEPs during an SNC may include the topics discussed above.

It may also document the level of support and timelines required in order for the student to reach the goals outlined in the IEP.

What are your child’s strengths?   

Your child, regardless of their specific exceptionality, has some areas of strength. These may include such information as their innate abilities, talents, accomplishments and interests. These need not all be cognitive or academic skills, but should also cover artistic, athletic and/or any other talents and interests.

What are your child’s needs?    

There are many different kinds of needs which can include: physical, intellectual or cognitive; educational or academic; emotional and/or behavioural; social; and also cultural. You can be the best advocate for your child and it’s important that your school team understand all of your child’s needs. The school will describe those areas of needs that have been learned through ongoing classroom assessment and instruction.