REQUEST FOR ASSESSMENT

If a parent suspects their child has a disability which is impairing the student’s ability to access their education, the parent may make a written request for an evaluation of their student. The written request must contain a statement of consent to evaluate the student. The letter should be sent to the school administration. The school has 15 calendar days, with some exceptions, to propose an assessment plan. The school has 60 calendar days to determine the student’s eligibility and areas of need.

Here is a sample letter which may aid you in requesting an assessment.

 

Dear Name of Principal or Special Education Administrator:

I am writing to request that my child, Name of Child, be evaluated for special education eligibility and services under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).

My child has been struggling with identify your areas of concern, using supporting evidence such as academic work samples, teacher communications, report cards, etc.

Name of Teacher and I have been working informally to help Name of Child We have tried Give examples of tactics that have been tried.

I understand that I am giving written consent for my child to be evaluated. Please notify me of your assessment plan and provide any other information you have regarding the evaluation process.

I would be happy to discuss Name of Child with you. During the day I can be reached as Daytime Phone Number.

Thank you for your attention to this matter.

Sincerely,

Your Name

 

(Note: This Blog/Web Site is made available for educational purposes only as well as to give you general information and a general understanding of the law, not to provide specific legal advice. The website has been designed to be a resource for information on matters that might be of interest to current or potential clients but does not establish that relationship. For further information visit my Disclaimer page- https://specialedlegaljourney.com/about/disclaimer/)

SPECIAL EDUCATION DATA (K-12)

There are many disabilities which can impact a student’s ability to access their education. According to www.kidsdata.org, in 2005, the breakdown for disabilities for which student’s were receiving special education services included:

California Percent
Autism 12.6%
Deaf 0.5%
Deaf-Blindness 0.0%
Emotional Disturbance 3.4%
Hard of Hearing 1.4%
Intellectual Disability 6.1%
Learning Disability 39.6%
Multiple Disability 0.9%
Orthopedic Impairment 1.7%
Other Health Impairment 10.6%
Speech or Language Impairment 22.3%
Traumatic Brain Injury 0.2%
Visual Impairment 0.5%

 The most commonly provided special education service is extra academic support. Other services include speech and language services, physical and occupational therapy, and psychological and counseling services. The schools also provide older students with the transition to adulthood. 

DISABILITIES COVERED BY INDIVIDUAL WITH DISABILITIES ACT

Early Intervention

The Center for Disease Control (CDC) estimates that about one in six, or about 15%, of children have one or more developmental disabilities. The CDC recommends parents educate themselves so they can recognize early signs of a developmental disability. Early intervention can have a significant impact on the need for special education in the school years. The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), Part C, identifies early intervention as infant through age 2. The state is responsible for providing early intervention programs for infants and toddlers.

Disability

IDEA identifies “children with disabilities” as individuals between the ages of three and 22 with one or more of the following conditions:

Autism

Deaf-blindness

Developmental Delay

Emotional disturbance

Hearing impairment (deafness)

Intellectual disability

Multiple disabilities

Orthopedic impairment

Other health impairment

Specific learning disability

Speech or language impairment

Traumatic brain injury

Visual impairment, including blindness

The disability must adversely impact his academic performance. (20 U.S.C. Section 1401(3)) Youth between the ages of three and 22 receive special education services through their local school district if they attend a public institution.

Specific Learning Disability

20 U.S.C. Section 1041(30) identifies children with a specific learning disability as a disorder in 1 or more of the basic psychological processes involved in understanding or in using language, spoken or written, which disorder may manifest itself in the imperfect ability to listen, think, speak, read, write, spell, or do mathematic calculations. Such disorders include: perceptual disabilities, brain injury, minimal brain dysfunction, dyslexia, and developmental aphasia.

Other Health Impairments: ADD and ADHD

Other health impairments include asthma, ADD/ADHD, diabetes, epilepsy, cardiac conditions, hemophilia, leukemia, rheumatic fever, sickle cell anemia, and nephritis. Of these, ADD and ADHD are probably the most common. ADD and ADHD may make a child eligible under IDEA if the disability adversely impacts his or her academic performance.

If a child does not qualify for an IEP under IDEA then the parents may want to look into 504 plans. I will highlight 504 plans in a later blog.

(Note: This Blog/Web Site is made available for educational purposes only as well as to give you general information and a general understanding of the law, not to provide specific legal advice. The website has been designed to be a resource for information on matters that might be of interest to current or potential clients but does not establish that relationship. For further information visit my Disclaimer page- https://specialedlegaljourney.com/about/disclaimer/)

HEADING BACK TO SCHOOL

As students get ready to head back to school there are things parents can do to get ready for the transition.

Know Your IEP.

A student’s Individualized Education Plan (IEP) should be up-to-date and appropriate for the student. An IEP should contain present levels of academic achievement, measureable goals, and list appropriate accommodations. Reviewing the IEP will help identify if there are any missing elements or allow for evaluation on whether it needs to be updated. You can also follow up with the school to make sure that the necessary services have been scheduled.

Write A Back to School Letter to the Teacher.

It is important to establish communication with your student’s teacher early. A back to school letter introducing your student is a great way to share facts about your student. You can highlight your student’s strengths and alert their teacher of the challenges you anticipate your child will face.  It is also important to let them know if any strategies which have worked in the past. It is important to key in on a couple main points. If your letter is too long it may not be read.

 

(Note: This Blog/Web Site is made available for educational purposes only as well as to give you general information and a general understanding of the law, not to provide specific legal advice. The website has been designed to be a resource for information on matters that might be of interest to current or potential clients but does not establish that relationship. For further information visit my Disclaimer page- https://specialedlegaljourney.com/about/disclaimer/)