Good Grades: Does My Child Still Need Specialized Instruction?

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In This Issue ...

Circulation: 88,005
ISSN: 1538-320
February 21, 2012

boy in school raising handAs the parent, YOU represent your child’s interests. YOU need to know what the law says. Do not rely on what others tell you.

In determining if your child is eligible for special education and related services, the team (that includes YOU, the child’s parent) needs to answer these questions.

  • Does your child have a disability?
  • Does the disability affect your child’s educational performance?
  • Does your child need special education and related services?

In this issue of the Special Ed Advocate, you will learn the basics about eligibility. Find out what IDEA says about eligibility, who can refer a child for special education services, and what the school is required to do.

Please don't hesitate to forward this issue to friends, family members, or colleagues.

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Good Grades: Does My Child Still Need Specialized Instruction?

Teachers give out grades based on many different factors.

  • Some teachers allow students to improve their grades by doing extra credit work.
  • Other teachers base grades on class participation, a good attitude, or citizenship.
  • Teachers may also give a student a better grade because the child is trying very hard to do good work.

These kinds of grades do not mean a child is learning.

IDEA states that a child does not have to fail or be retained to be considered for special education and related services.

Read Good Grades: Does My Child Still Need Specialized Instruction? by Indiana Advocate Pat Howey.

 

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Who Determines Eligibility? Teachers v. Psychologist

The real question that needs to be answered...

“Does the child have a disability that adversely affects educational performance?” If the answer to the question is “yes,” then the child is eligible under IDEA.

The requirements for eligibility and evaluation are spelled out in IDEA 2004 and the Federal Regulations. Read more about these requirements in Teachers Trump Psychologist? Who Decides Eligibility?

 

Wrightslaw: Special Education Law

What IDEA 2004 Says...

What does the law say about eligibility?

According to IDEA regulation 300.101(c), the school must provide special education to a child with a disability “even though the child has not failed or been retained in a course or grade, and is advancing from grade to grade. (page 204 in Wrightslaw: Special Education Law, 2nd edition)

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Can the School Terminate My Child's Eligibility for Special Ed?

Before the school determined that your child was eligible for special education, they were required to do a comprehensive evaluation and assess all areas of suspected disability.

Before the school can determine that she is not eligible for special education, they are required to do a comprehensive evaluation and assess all areas of suspected disability.

IDEA describes how this evaluation must be conducted and what it must include. For example...

 

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Wrightslaw: Special Education Law, 2nd Edition, by Pam and Pete Wright Wrightslaw: All About IEPs

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