School Counselors

The mission of the Nevada Virtual Academy's Counseling department is to provide a comprehensive guidance program that will assist all students in acquiring the skills, knowledge, and attitudes needed to become effective students, responsible citizens, and lifelong learners. The student services program is an integral part of Nevada Virtual Academy’s total program with a commitment to individual uniqueness and the maximum development of human potential. The program addresses the personal/social, educational, and career needs and desires of all Nevada Virtual Academy students. The department's ultimate goal is for students to graduate with competencies necessary to be able to make self-directed, realistic, and responsible decisions and to be successful contributors to society.

Middle School:

Mrs. Crystal Shay 

Mrs. Michelle Berger

High School:

Ms. Kara Lavoie

Mrs. Dion Duckett

Mrs. Heidi Ongbongan

Ms. Somara Netherly

Mrs. Sasha Scott

NVVA Counselor Website:

Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973:

Our Mission:

All identified students are free from discrimination and are provided with the accommodations, related services and development of strategies necessary to support their success. The Section 504 office will provide ongoing monitoring of, and support and training to school-based teams to ensure compliance with the federal mandate.

What is Section 504?

Section 504 is a broad civil rights law protecting the rights of individuals in programs and activities that receive federal funding from the U.S. Department of Education. The law protects all school-age children who qualify as "handicapped" according to the definitions described in the regulations. Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 states:
No otherwise qualified individual with a disability in the United States … shall solely by reason of his or her disability, be excluded from the participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance …” 29 U.S.C. § 794 (“Section 504”)

Each school district is required to designate an employee who will be responsible for ensuring compliance with Section 504 regulations. At Nevada Virtual Academy, each counselor serves as the 504 Coordinator for their student cohort.


In compliance with state and federal law, Notice is hereby given by Nevada Virtual Academy that it will conduct ongoing identification activities for the purpose of identifying students who may be in need of special educationand related services. Prior to any referral of a student for evaluation, Nevada Virtual Academy utilizes one or more of the following methods to identify possible exceptional students.

1. Annual survey of exceptional children.

2. Analysis of school district achievement test / state assessment results.

3. Parent/guardian or guardian-initiated referral.

4. Referrals to and from other public and private agencies.

5. School staff referral.

If a parent/guardian believes that their school-age child may be in need of special education services and related programs, screening and evaluation processes designed to assess the needs of the child and his/her eligibility are available at no cost to the parent/guardian upon written request.

Nevada Virtual Academy provides for the development and continual analysis of student portfolios. Such portfolios may include written work by students; other demonstrations or performances by students related to specific student performance standards; examinations developed by teachers to assess specific student performance standards; diagnostic assessments; and other measures, as appropriate, which may include standardized tests. Portfolios are available to parent/guardian at conferences or by appointment.

 Students with disabilities will participate in statewide assessments one of the three ways as determined by the IEP team:

• Without accommodations

• With accommodations - accommodations provided must be allowable by
test given and be used by the students as part his/her educational

• Alternate assessments if required by the State Department of Education.

The results of assessments shall be made available to the professional staff so that they may better understand the strengths and weaknesses of their particular students.

If a child is identified by Nevada Virtual Academy as possibly in need of special education and related services, the parent/guardian will be notified of applicable procedures. The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (I.D.E.A.) intends to provide greater access of children with disabilities to the general curriculum. It is the belief of Nevada Virtual Academy, that the majority of children identified as eligible for special education and related services are capable of participating in the general curriculum to varying degrees with some adaptations and modifications.


Nevada Virtual Academy is committed to nondiscrimination in educational programs/activities and employment, as required by applicable federal and state laws and regulations, on the basis of: race, color, national origin or ethnic group identification, marital status, ancestry, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, genetic information, religion, age, qualifying mental or physical disability, based on the Americans with Disabilities Act Amended (ADAA), Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, or the Individuals with Disabilities in Education (IDEA) Act; or Military or veteran’s status. Any claims of discrimination may be submitted as a grievance.

A grievance must be filed as soon as possible, but no longer than 30 days after disclosure or discovery giving rise to the grievance. A parent/student who has a grievance must provide the following information in writing to the Principal and/or Executive Director:

 • The name of the school employee or other individual whose decision or action is at issue.

 • The specific decision(s) or actions at issue.

 • Any board policy or law that the parent or student believes has been misapplied, misinterpreted, or violated, and the specific resolution desired.

 • Upon receiving the written grievance, and/or Head of School will then:

 • Schedule and hold a meeting with the student within five school days of receiving the grievance request.

 • Conduct any investigation of the facts necessary before rendering a decision; and provide a written response to the grievance within ten days of the meeting.


Nevada Virtual Academy is committed to providing an effective means for parents and the community to voice concerns and complaints. In general, the complaint should be received and addressed at the level closest to which the complaint originated. For example, if it involves a teacher, first talk to that individual. If you are still concerned, talk with the principal. Then if you are still concerned, make an appointment to talk with the Head of School.

A grievance is a formal complaint regarding specific decisions made by school personnel. A grievance may be submitted in specific circumstances such as when a student or parent believes that board policy or law has been misapplied, misinterpreted, or violated.

Office of Civil Rights, US Department of Education

504 Resource Guide

Special Education: Rights of Parents & Children-English 

Special Education: Rights of Parents & Children-Spanish

Section 504 of Parent Rights

Tabitha Nettles

Special Programs Director-ADA Compliance Coordinator

702-407-1825 ext 7164