Should We Discontinue Services & Terminate the IEP?

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unhappy teen girl studentMy daughter is an 18 year old junior who misses school because of migraines. She has an IEP for reading problems.  The Special Ed teacher doesn’t believe she has headaches, interferes in everything, and tries to control everything my daughter does.

My daughter says she gets nothing from special ed. She wants to quit. Can we discontinue services?

You ask a good question, one that many parents struggle with.

You need more information before making any decisions about discontinuing services and the IEP.

Get an Evaluation

It would be a good idea to have your daughter evaluated by a psychologist in the private sector.

A comprehensive evaluation will give you invaluable information about:

  • where your daughter is functioning
  • how much progress she’s made in the special ed program

The evaluator can also help you decide if it’s time to cut the cord to special ed.

Finding a Qualified Evaluator

Since your daughter’s problems are related to reading and/or language, look for an evaluator who has expertise in that area.

Start your search for a qualified evaluator at the website of the International Dyslexia Association (IDA).

The IDA has provider lists by state.

Terminating Eligibility?

If you do cut the IEP cord, you would be wise to keep your daughter on a Section 504 plan.

Read this article to help you understand the benefits of transitioning from an IEP to a 504 plan.

Your daughter is a junior in high school and may want to continue her education after high school.

A current evaluation will be helpful in getting accommodations for college or continuing education.

Good luck!

  1. We want to discontinue IEP services because we are not satisfied with it.My son joined the IEP Math and English and my son didn’t get any improvement and we joined him in other private Math.My son is better in that private than school.The school conducted the exams in Math ,he got 57% in the school.But they are not allowing us to Quit the IEP,we asked them to take him to the next level,but they are not accepting to it.They are teaching him single digits addiitions and subtractions.What to do?

    • They can not stop you from removing consent for all special ed services. If you are trying to remove some special ed services that may have to be decided by the IEP team. Any time parents wonder about a response, they should request to see the policy that address the issue/topic. Put your request in writing, if you have not done so, & send to a number of school staff. Good luck going forward.

  2. You can withdraw your consent at any time without the schools permission Only five percent of kids are ever released from ieps by the school. You as they parent have the final say,you also are not required to consent to testing,nor do you have to schedule an iep meeting,all you have to do is give a letter to your childs school telling them you withdraw your consent for your child to participate in iep,nor are you required to defend your reason for doing so. Schools try to act as though they own our children because they receive giant amounts of funding for kids with ieps,educate yourself and remember-they are your child and you have all say in what happens.

  3. FYI – In Letter to McKethan, 25 IDELR 295 (OCR 1996), OCR stated that it is impermissible for a student’s parent to refuse to accept IDEA services and require the district to develop an IEP under Section 504. A rejection of the services offered under the IDEA amounts to a rejection of services offered under Section 504.

    • Good point. Courts have issued conflicting rulings on this issue for years. I read about a Missouri case, Lamkin v. Lone Jack C-6 School District, where the district court judge upheld the reasoning in “Letter to McKethan” but haven’t read that decision. In Lamkin, parents objected to placement in a special ed school and revoked consent for services under IDEA, then enrolled their child in her neighborhood school and requested a 504 plan. School retaliated by calling child welfare, accused parents of educational neglect. Judge held that parents failed to exhaust administrative remedies under IDEA. Good discussion of Lamkin Lamkin v. Lone Jack C-6 Sch Dist:

      We are wrapping up work on a new book about legal developments and cases in 2015. Several courts of appeals rejected cases brought under 504, ADA, etc because parents failed to exhaust administrative remedies (request a due process hearing) under IDEA, even in cases where the child was never eligible for special ed svs under IDEA, did not have an IEP.

      In Fry v. Napoleon Comm Sch Dist, the Sixth Circuit held that the parents’ case about their daughter’s service dog had to be dismissed because they failed to exhaust their administrative remedies, i.e., pursue a spec ed due process hearing, although the case was brought under 504 / ADA. Because there is a split between Circuits on this issue, the Supreme Ct is considering whether to hear Fry. Special Ed Advocate newsletter was about the Fry case.

  4. Is there another special ed teacher available at the school? I have found that my child’s success in school is related to the RSP’s ability to work with her. Have you tried asking for another? You can just cite a personality conflict without blaming anyone.

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