Presentation on theme: "Parent Educational Advocacy Training Center"— Presentation transcript:
1 Parent Educational Advocacy Training Center www.peatc.org Welcome to the “Special Education Tour”An overview of the special education process for parents and professionals assisting children with disabilities developed by PEATCParent Educational Advocacy Training Center
2 What is Special Education What is Special Education? Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)Specifically designed instructionAt no cost to parentsTo meet the unique needs of a child with disabilities
3 The Legal Foundations for Special Education in Virginia The Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEA) 2004The Virginia Special EducationRegulations (2009)
4 Legislative Intent IDEA 2004 Education of children with disabilities can be made more effective by –Having high expectations for such children;Ensuring their access to the general educationcurriculum in the regular classroom…. to meetdevelopmental goals and;Supporting, to the maximum extent possible, theirefforts to meet the challenging expectations that havebeen established for all children;Preparing them to lead productive and independentadult lives to the maximum extent possible.Read Quote aloud.Explain that the Congress writes Findings and Purposes of legislation at the beginning of each Bill. This explains what they were thinking when they enacted this Act.They explain that, in the past, IDEA was ineffective becauseLow expectations and an insufficient focus on applying replicable research on proven methods of teaching and learning for children with disabilities.Ask ParticipantsWhat does this language mean to you????As we discuss the new IDEA, it is important to remember what this Bill is all about.
5 IDEA Guarantee: A free, appropriate education for all children (FAPE) Placement in the least restrictive environmentProtection for the rights of children and their parentsParent participation in educational planning
6 The Special Education Cycle From the beginning, there are steps to getting a program for achild with disabilities.
7 ReferralThe Referral is a formal (oral or written) notification to the local school system that a child is experiencing learning or developmental difficulties and may require a full evaluation for early intervention or special education and related services.A referral may be made by a family, teacher or other individual.A written request documents the referral and starts a timeline.
8 Referral DecisionIn Virginia, a school-based team will meet within 10 business days following the receipt of the referral.If the referral information suggests that the child should be evaluated for special education and related services, the team must refer the child to the special education administrator within 3 business days.
9 EvaluationAn Evaluation is the process of collecting information about a referred student’s learning needs through a series of individual tests, observations, and talks with the student, the family and others.This information is used to determine whether the child has a disability as well as the nature and extent of the special education and related services that the child needs.The evaluation is conducted at no cost to parents.Parents are members of the team reviewing the evaluation data and deciding whether more information is needed.
10 Independent Educational Evaluation If parents disagree with a test given during their child’s evaluation process, they have the right to request an independent evaluation (IEE) conducted by a qualified person who does not work for the school.Parents may request that the school pay for the IEE. However, the school may ask for a due process hearing to show that its initial evaluation is appropriate.Even if it is decided that the school does not have to pay for it, parents have the right to an IEE.If parents pay for the IEE, they determine whether or not to share the information in the IEE with the school.
11 EligibilityBased on the results of the evaluation, a team decides if a child is Eligible to receive early intervention or special education and related services.Parents are members of the eligibility team and receive documentation of the determination of eligibility at no cost.
12 Who is Eligible? Children with: Autism Deafness Deaf-blindness Development delayEmotional disabilityHearing impairment, including deafnessIntellectual disabilityMultiple disabilityOrthopedic impairmentOther health impairment, including ADHDSpecific learning disabilitySpeech or language impairmentTraumatic brain injuryVisual impairment, including blindness
13 Eligibility Timeframe Eligibility for special education and related services must be determined within 60 calendar days (65 business days in Virginia) after the special education administrator receives the referral for evaluation.The parent and the eligibility group may agree in writing to extend the 65 day timeline to obtain additional data.
14 Individualized Education Program (IEP) Every child in special education must have an Individualized Education Program (IEP).
15 Individualized Educational Program (IEP) The IEP is a written statement describing the specially designed program developed to meet the needs of the individual child.Parents are to be members ofthe IEP team and participatewith school personnel in thedevelopment of the IEP.The child should also participate in the IEP decision making process as early as possible.
16 When is the IEP Written?For a child NEW to special education, andFor a child who has been re-evaluated- within 30 calendar days after the eligibility decision.For a child who already has an IEP:At the beginning of the school yearAt the end of the year for annual reviewWithin 30 days of a requested update from the parents or school.
17 What is on the IEP?Present levels of academic achievement and functional performanceMeasurable annual goalsPlans for measuring progressParticipation in state and division-wide assessmentsSpecial education, modifications and related services to be provided including dates and locationsParticipation with children without disabilitiesSecondary transition services including rights at age of majority
18 Placement in the “Least Restrictive Environment” A placement decision is made at the IEP meeting – identifying the location of the appropriate school program and services needed to meet the child’s educational goals on the IEP statement.Students with disabilities are to be educated, to the maximum extent possible, with children who are not disabled. This is called the “least restrictive environment” or LRE.The IEP team must consider placement closest to the child’s home, where he or she would attend if not disabled, unless the IEP indicates that another school is appropriate.If the student is not receiving services with nondisabled peers, the school should consider extra-curricular activities or other ways for the student to interact.
19 Related Services partial list of developmental, corrective, or supportive services required for the child to benefit from special education, including:Occupational therapyPhysical therapyTransportationCounselingSpeech and language therapyAudiology servicesInterpreting servicesEarly identificationDiagnostic servicesSchool health/nurse servicesSocial work servicesCrisis InterventionAssistive technologyNon-academic servicesExtra curricular activitiesOrientation/mobility trainingRehabilitation counselingPsychological servicesParent counseling and training
20 Decisions About Related Services Which services are needed and why?How often are they needed?What length of time?Who will provide theservices?
21 Instruction and Monitoring After the IEP is written and a child is placed in a school setting, learning activities begin in the classroom.
22 Instruction and Monitoring Parents and school personnel must work together to make the IEP and placement work for the child.Parents are to be kept regularly informed of their child’s progress as defined in the IEP.
23 Annual ReviewThe Annual Review is a meeting held at least once a year to look at, talk about, and study a student’s IEP.
24 Annual ReviewThe purpose of the Annual Review is to make decisions about changes in the IEP, review the placement, and develop a new IEP for the year ahead.
25 Transition PlanningTransition planning is careful preparation by the student, parents, educators, and other service providers, for the time when the student leaves high school.Required before the age of 16 (by age 14 in Virginia). – or younger if appropriateThe plan is written in the Individualized Transition Plan.
26 Transition Services The IEP Transition goals should relate to: - Education- Training- Employment- Independent living skills (if appropriate)The transition services must take into account a student’s strengths, preferences and interests.By age 16, the IEP must include a statement of interagency responsibilities and linkages.
27 Triennial and Reevaluation Re-evaluation occursat least every three years, (unless the parent and school personnel agree that it is not necessary). OrIf a child is not making expected progress and a parent or teacher requests one (unless the specific evaluation requested is less than a year old).
28 ResourcesParent’s Guide to Special Education, revised 2010, Virginia Department of Education, Division of Special Education and Student Services.The IEP Checklist for iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad on the iTunes App Store. The IEP Checklist is a tool for parents and teachers to consider as they develop the IEP. By the Parent Educational Advocacy Training Center, 2010.
29 Special Education can be a complicated process, but parents have rights. If you have questions or concerns throughout the Special Education Process, call us at