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John: We all know that many IEP related documents (Meeting notice, etc). need to be done within X number of days. My question: calendar days, or school days? Where do Holidays fall? Do you count holidays in the” X #” of days or not?

I just got a student, and the interim IEP is due the first 30 days of enrollment, but with the holidays, this gives me scant little time to prepare. Thanks!

  1. I live in Kansas and the district is telling me that we don’t have enough time in the year to do testing. I know they have 60 days to do testing, but does it take the whole 60 days? Where would I find the statue to determine if the 60 days can be done in the summer?

    • Julia, IDEA requires school districts to complete the initial evaluation and determine eligibility within 60 calendar days of receiving parental consent unless the state adopted a longer or shorter timeline. The timeline is calendar days, not school days, so all days count, including school breaks, holidays and weekends.
      Some states have longer or shorter timelines. (see page 135 in Wrightslaw: Special Education Law, 3rd Edition) The clock begins when the district receives the parent’s consent (not date of the request).

      To get a clear answer to this question, check your state’s special ed regulations.

  2. I have a question regarding effective dates. I have always been instructed to record the IEP effective start date as the same date as the meeting date. In other words when the team meets to hold the IEP meeting and everyone signs off in the Iep it becomes effective that day. Is this standard or can the IEP effective date be the next day?

    • I am in Ca and the effective date is the date of the IEP meeting which implies that upon consent the IEP will be implemented without delay.

      I am advocating for a student in NY and they have IEP’s written for the school calendar year (12 months is they have esy). For example the annual held on March 20, 2024- this IEP is effective the first day of the next school year and goes through the summer of 2025. So the previous IEP is worked on through summer of 2024. This is very odd and difficult to track. 1. When reviewing goals at the annual you may not yet know of the goals is met because you have until June to complete the goal. You are also projecting new goals based on the assumption previous goals are met and to what extent and new goal will begin, in this case 6 months later.

  3. You will need to check your state regulations. Where I work (Wisconsin), we use a combination of “calendar” days and “business” days in the IEP process and it’s important to know which type of day applies to which part of the process.

    I’m sure different states have different rules, so I can’t provided a specific answer. How about connecting with your district’s special education director?

  4. Hi John: Wrightslaw is in Virginia and VA state regulations are quite specific about defining timelines – calendar days or business days or school days, etc. (You’ll also find the definition of “Day” in IDEA, so check your law book.

    You must check your own state regulations for specific timelines. Let us know if you don’t know where to find them. Tx

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