Special Education

All students require support from teachers, classmates, family and friends to thrive and benefit from their school experience. Some students have special needs that require additional supports beyond those in a classroom setting. Some are formally identified through the Identification, Placement and Review Process and have an Individual Education Plan that guides their programming. Others have an Individual Education Plan without the formal identification.

Classroom teachers focus on universal design for learning and differentiated instruction to meet students' needs. Special education programs and services in the Renfrew County District School Board (RCDSB) support classroom teachers in meeting the needs of our diverse group of learners with special education needs.

Special education provides assessment, consultative programming, and direct intervention for exceptional students. We provide opportunities for students to grow and learn in a supportive environment that recognizes individual differences and promotes the full potential of students. We do this by liaising with the school, the home and the community.

In this section of the website, you can read the Parents as Partners guide to special education such as information guides, our programs and services document, and special education plan. You can learn about the Special Education Advisory Committee (SEAC) and access website links that may be of interest to you.

Students and teachers pose in front of truck with signs

Team Members

Central Staff

Itinerant Staff


Jacqueline Poirier

Superintendent of Education

Rachel McKay

ABA Specialist/Community Outreach Facilitator

Jayne Pantuso

Administrative Assistant

Nicola Innes

Speech-Language Pathologist

Bill Smith

Principal, Special Services

Christina Klassen

Speech-Language Pathologist

Hanneke Hardwick

Program Consultant - Elementary

Marcia McDonald

Itinerant Teacher of Students who are Blind/Low Vision

Cheryl Barber

Program Consultant - Secondary

Elizabeth McKendry

Itinerant Teacher of the Deaf/Hard of Hearing

Mitch Blimkie

Program Consultant - Elementary

Jennifer Bawks

Communicative Disorders Assistant

Alison MacDougall-Popke

Math Assistive Technology Coach

Trish Crawford

Communicative Disorders Assistant

Amy Cybulski


Jennifer Mick

Communicative Disorders Assistant

Henry Venema

Consulting Psychologist

Tracey Mackenzie

Communicative Disorders Assistant

Mohammed Ziani-Bey


Jennifer Wasmund

Communicative Disorders Assistant


Renfrew County District School Board

Mary Street Education Centre

480 Mary Street, Pembroke, ON K8A 5W9

T: 613-735-0151 ext. 3300

TF: 1-800 267-1098 ext. 3300