Making it Happen Podcast

Making An Impact: The Role of SELPA in the Statewide System of Support

November 03, 2021 SELPA Administrators of California Season 1 Episode 2
Making it Happen Podcast
Making An Impact: The Role of SELPA in the Statewide System of Support
Show Notes

This segment is entitled, “Making An Impact:  The Role of SELPA in the Statewide System of Support,” and it features three extremely talented special education experts.  

Heidi Hata, Director of System Improvement Leads – A lifelong educator, Heidi began her career as a preschool teacher, later becoming a school psychologist, special education director, and SELPA administrator.  Heidi now co-leads the work of the System Improvement Leads (SIL) project from the El Dorado COE SELPA.  The SIL project is a collaborative project between EDCOE SELPA, Riverside County SELPA, and West San Gabriel Valley SELPA that utilizes a continuous improvement approach to increase access and equity for students with disabilities.  

Alex Gonzalez, Executive Director of Special Education for San Jacinto USD - Alex has over 20 years of experience in the field of education serving as a special education teacher, site administrator, and at various levels of special education administration. He believes that by engaging in a focus on equity and continuous improvement, our school systems will be able to ensure that all students have the capacity to achieve at high levels.  He and his team have been closely involved with SIL and Content Lead work.

Melanie Hertig. Melanie has over 25 years of experience working in the education field.  She is currently the  Executive Director of the Irvine Unified School District SELPA which is a single district SELPA.  Irvine USD is one of the only growing districts in the state, currently serving over 36,000 students, and supporting a diverse student population.  Her special education department proudly supports a culture of continuous improvement as a district-wide priority. 

Of possible interest:

System Improvement Leads
Visit the System Improvement Leads website to find resources, professional learning opportunities, online learning opportunities, and to explore the Data Quality Toolkit and the Improvement Data Center, at the System Improvement Leads website.  

Content Leads
SELPA Content Leads will further develop the capacity of SELPAs to support the LEAs they serve in developing and implementing evidence-based practices for students with disabilities in particular areas of need. The SELPA Content Leads are:

Visit the SELPA Administrators of California at and check out our finance pages.   Like us on Facebook at