Steven A. Greenburg Education Law
Experienced Northern California Education Lawyer
Phone: 831-458-9900
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How does the special education assessment/eligibility process work?

Federal law mandates a commission of relevant school resources applicable to the needs of students with special education requirements.

And the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act does far more than just that. As we note on our website at the California special education law firm of Steven A. Greenburg, IDEA “requires schools to develop appropriate Individualized Education Programs (IEPs) for each child eligible for special education services.”

How does that work exactly? Is there a process for determining IEP eligibility?

Special education process relevant to assessment and eligibility

Indeed, there is a formalized route that provides a detailed guideline for evaluating whether a California child has special educational needs and, if so, how they can best be met through an individualized plan.

The process proceeds via a specified path and timetable, as follows.

First, a written referral for assessment must be made to a school district. This can come from a parent, teacher, doctor or other concerned party.

Next, the district will follow up with a proposed assessment plan that is forwarded to an affected child’s school. Relevant personnel there will conduct the assessment and thereafter schedule a meeting to discuss it.

Does a parent have legal rights throughout the process?

A parent advised by a proven special education attorney will know well that they have a strong say in the assessment/IEP process, and can make a material difference at many junctures.

A parent must consent in writing, for example, to the provision of any services suggested in an assessment. Parents can fully participate in any hearing or meeting. Moreover, a parent disagreeing with an outcome can request an independent assessment. They and their legal counsel can also play an active advocacy role concerning any IEP-implemented action plan.

A parent involved in the process might reasonably have a number of questions and concerns. They can address them to an experienced attorney with a demonstrated record of advocacy on behalf of families receiving special education services.

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