Faith M. Morgan-Gaines, B.S. Ed., MPP has been advocating for children and families for over 25 years. She holds a bachelor's degree in Education and a Master's in Family and Child Policy. Faith is a former teacher and administrator of Integrated Classrooms and has received training from Suffolk Law School Advanced Legal Studies, Wilson Reading System, Lindamood- Bell, Wrightslaw and more. She is a trainer for the Federation for Children with Special Needs and an Educational Surrogate Parent for the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. A member of both the Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates and the Coalition to Defend Special Education, Faith is also a member, and former Director, of Special Needs Advocacy Network (SpAN) of MA.
Faith works with families, from Early Intervention through age 22, in navigating the Special Education process. Although she enjoys working with diverse families and students with all types of disabilities, Faith also maintains specializations in Learning Disabilities, Social/Emotional and Behavioral Challenges, and Early Childhood Special Needs.
Faith works from a Letter of Agreement that identifies services to be provided and charged against a five-hour deposit* that must be placed upon entering into the agreement. Typically, services begin with a document review through which Faith begins to become familiar with your child(ren). This may include private or district evaluations as well as other documents deemed relevant to your case. This is typically followed by a meeting or phone call with the parent(s) to discuss steps forward. Faith is available to attend Team meetings, conduct observations, make recommendations (including evaluations) and develop communications with the Team and others. Over time, Faith assists parents in monitoring their child's progress and works to adjust the IEP/Placement, as appropriate. When necessary she has seen parents through the BSEA Mediation and Hearing processes as well as OCR complaints.
*Please call for current rates. Limited sliding-fee and pro bono services are available with documented need.
Let's talk! Many parents/guardians are unsure what an Education Advocate can do for them. That is for good reason as advocates vary greatly in philosophy and approach to supporting families as well as in the services they offer. Faith is happy to speak with you about your concerns to help you decide if advocacy is right for you.
If you're still unsure if you want to move forward with advocacy, you may choose to access a two-hour meeting, at current rates, inclusive of a cursory document review. During this meeting (in person or by phone/video conference), Faith will provide a more in-depth assessment of your current situation, and possible steps forward, than can be provided in the 30-minute, free consultation.
Just as every student is different, every parent is different and parents have a variety of goals and expectations when seeking a Special Education Advocate. Faith is determined to arrive at the best possible balance for each family. Some parents choose to maintain advocacy supports for occasional questions and advice regarding their student(s)' program and needs while others seek on-going document review, advice and attendance at meetings. Still others seek a more extensive representation across the IEP process. Whatever your needs or comfort-level, Faith seeks to deliver a positive, strength-building experience for you and your child. Central to Faith's philosophy is working toward a collaborative process where all parties feel respected and productive.
Your questions are important! I'm happy to speak with you about what's happening with your child(ren) and ways I can help. If I can't help you right now, I'd be delighted to try to refer you to other resources/someone who can! -Faith
164 Cordaville Rd #483 Southborough, MA 01772