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Marie:  We have a student that is ED and was placed in a psychiatric facility at the end of the school year due violent behavior at home. He is now back, and we have been trying to get SpEd counseling services for him, but we are receiving backlash from our SpEd department saying they cannot provide services due to LRE. He is drawing and writing disturbing things and beginning to act out again. Can a school request their SpEd department give him counseling?

  1. Counseling is a related service that the IEP team must provide if it is needed to help a student make progress in the general ed curriculum. Administrators cannot veto a team’s decisions.

  2. Marie –

    I’m a little unsure of this student’s circumstances.

    Has the student been evaluated for special education eligibility? If not, you can refer the child for evaluation. If you feel comfortable, suggest that the parent ask for the student to be evaluated – it will probably be quicker. Plus the parent has options if the school district refuses.

    If the student has already been evaluated and was already found eligible, you/the parent can ask that the child be evaluated just in this specific area of need.

  3. Marie, I now realize that you are in TX. I work for the TX PTI (Parent Training & Information Project). You can contact me @ & I can get you in touch with our staff in the area you live in.

  4. Thanks for the reply! It’s not that we want to do anything without an ARD; it’s that we would like for them to consider providing services for him. He’s already had a psych eval, been diagnosed ED and it is affecting his advancement in the Gen Ed classroom. In a nutshell, we would like to take a proactive approach and prevent any violence being exhibited at school.

  5. At the very least, give them a letter from a mental health professional who knows him well, recommending the service.
    Such a letter will be much more effective with
– a phone call from the professional reaching out to the school psychologist and/or social worker
– the personal presence of the professional at the next meeting, or if this is not possible, get the professional on a speaker phone (your cell phone, or a borrowed cell phone, will do the trick) early on in the meeting (but after the preliminaries, so you don’t waste the professional’s time). You might need to pay for the professional’s time out of pocket, but it’s worth it. However, please don’t rely on the school for his ongoing mental health care. Make sure he’s got his own outside therapist. If it’s hard to get in where you live, get him on multiple waiting lists ASAP.

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