Special Education Process

Special Education Process 

Special education is specially designed instruction provided to meet the educational needs of unique learners who qualify as students with disabilities.  These students have demonstrated learning needs that cannot be met in the general education program, even with modifications.  The Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA) is a federal law that requires school districts to provide a free, appropriate public education (FAPE) to eligible students, ages 3 to 21.  These services are provided with special consideration to the least restrictive environment, or educating children to the maximum extent appropriate for their learning needs with their general education peers and curriculum.   

Students generally receive interventions through general education before being referred for special education evaluation.  The referral usually originates from the Student Study Teams at each school.  Parents are an integral part of this process.  Students who are referred for special education assessment receive a complete evaluation in the area(s) of suspected disability, with written permission by parents.  Following the evaluation, an IEP Team meeting is held to review the results.  If the student qualifies for special education (see Eligibility), an Individualized Education Program (IEP) is developed with input from all IEP Team members.  The IEP includes annual goals, and services to achieve those goals, as well as accommodations and modifications to enable the student to progress in the general education curriculum, as appropriate for the student's individual needs.  

A Case Manager will be assigned as the primary special education contact for your child.  This staff member is generally the main special education service provider working with your child.

An annual review meeting is held yearly to review progress toward goals, with the student's educational team.  In addition, a triennial evaluation is completed every 3 years.  Parents will receive an assessment plan to sign for any new evaluations to be performed.  Parents receive a copy of their procedural safeguards yearly.

Please access the attachment below ("Dictionary of Special Education Terms") for clarification of terms.

Dictionary of Special Education Terms

DictionaryofSpecialEducationTerms.pdf 174.96 KB