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Christina:  After 2 years of asking for Autism testing through my sons school, they finally did the testing.However they did it 3 weeks into his kindergarten year, the teacher as you know has a big impact on testing, they said he was not on the spectrum, even though his Neurologist who specializes in Autism, his pediatrician,and psychologist say he does.Being a new mom to Special Education I was unsure of all my rights.The school system convinced me to allow them to test him for Emotionally Disturbed because in stressful situations he was acting out and hiding under his desk and when they would try to PULL him out, he would try to hit them.Of course they said he is ED, however the Doctors/Specialist say he is not ED, he is Autistic. What can I do. PLEASE HELP

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12/20/2016 6:07 pm

You can request the district to pay for independent educational evaluation (IEE). You can find out more about IEEs on this homepage. You can ask the IEE evaluator to look at the school’s evaluation that said your son was not eligible. The IEP team only has to consider the IEE, but you can use this as a basis for using the dispute resolution process. Your state parent training & information center can provide information about your rights & this situation.

12/20/2016 3:21 pm

As a parent who is new to special education, it would be important for you to remember that a medical/clinical diagnosis of Autism does not automatically equate to an educational determination of Autism. The two systems (the medical view versus the educational view) look at Autism a bit differently and it is not that uncommon for a child who has a medical Autism diagnosis to not meet criteria for an educational impairment of Autism. My recommendation would be to not sweat the “label” that the school is using to qualify your son for services as long as the services being proposed by the school are matched to what he needs.