Unique Needs: IEP NOT MEETING MY SON’S NEEDS

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April: My son has an IEP. We just had a meeting, I told them I felt they weren’t meeting his needs and that I want him transferred to another school that can. The special education coordinator said pretty much I don’t have a choice were my son can go to school. The choice was up to the team to decide if they feel they can meet his needs or not to go to a different school. I live in Wisconsin.

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Sharon L.

You will need to prove that school is not meeting your son’s needs before you can get them to make a change. You can request a standardized test of whatever area there is trouble. If all areas you can request a multifactored evaluation. If you have recently had this done you can use that. You must request this in writing & sign the school’s request form or they do not have to get the testing done in 60 days. Once the test is done you may have your professionals look at it. (ie dr, psychologist, attorney). If you disagree with the test you may request an outside eval at the schools expense. You will need to again send a letter requesting the outside eval. You do not have to use the suggestions that the school gives you on where to get the test. Then you will have proof.

Jill G

April –

The coordinator wasn’t completely accurate. It’s true that the IEP Team makes the determination about your child’s placement. But you are a member of the Team and, as such, have the right to provide information to the Team about your child and advocate for his needs. You also have options to dispute their proposals.

You may want to consider an independent evaluation as your first step. A good evaluation will clarify what his needs are. If you can’t arrange for that, you can ask the school to reevaluate (then request an independent evaluation at public expense, if needed).

I also encourage you to contact your local parent center (http://www.parentcenterhub.org/find-your-center/). They can help you understand how the special education process works and what your options are when you disagree with the school. They may also be able to connect you with an independent evaluator, or another organization that can.