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Steps of the evaluation process

1. Concerns are presented-this can be done by anyone who suspects

some may have a disability. This includes teachers, parents, guardians
2. In some schools, pre-referral teams are already in place. Interventions
are tried and documented to determine if general education
interventions can meet students needs. If so, student continues to use
those interventions and referral for evaluation is not needed. If general
education interventions are not successful, the student is often referred
by the Pre-referral team or teacher for an evaluation to determine if they
are eligible for Special Education services. The documentation of the
pre-referral interventions is valuable data as to what worked and what
did not work with the student as well all interventions tried.
3. Once the student is referred for an evaluation by teacher, parent etc. the
parent or guardian (whomever has educational rights for the child) will
sign a consent for evaluation usually presented by the School
Psychologist. Prior to signing the consent, the school must provide the
parent or guardian with Procedural Safeguards (Parental Rights).
Once the consent for evaluation is signed, the school as has a predetermined amount of days to complete the evaluation. The number of
days to complete the evaluation varies state to state.
4. The evaluation team will evaluate the student during the evaluation
period. Depending on the nature of the referral, many professionals
may be involved with this process. It may include School Psychologist,
Speech and Language Pathologist, Occupational Therapist, Physical
Therapist , Special Education teacher etc. Each does their part of the
evaluation and often consults and collaborate with one another as to
evaluation data and overall findings. Parents are often interviewed or
asked to complete rating scales etc. to get information as how the child
functions in all environments.
5. Once the evaluation has been completed, a meeting will be set up
with the parent or guardian to go over evaluation results and determine if
student has a disability and if they are eligible for Special Education
services. The parent or guardian must have at least a 10 day
(calendar) notice before the meeting. This gives them time to invite

anyone they want to go to the meeting with them if they so choose to do

so. This is their legal right.
6. A meeting is then held with all professionals who conducted an
evaluation present along with parent or guardian and it is then eligibility
for special education services is determined. It is important that
parents are involved in the determination as they are part of the
team. If it is determined the student has a disability and is eligible for
Special Education services, an IEP will then be developed to address
the needs of the student.

IEPs can be written for any length of time but often they are written for
one year. They need to be reviewed at least once every year.
Anyone on the IEP team can call an IEP meeting at any time.
Members of IEP team include student, parent, Special Education
teacher, General education teacher and LEA rep (often principal).