My district is refusing to offer my child special education services even though she is struggling to go to school, keep up with classes, and
homework? What three things should I do?

[ONE PARENT'S EXPERIENCE] In our case," the school district refused to offer any suggestions or remedies for my child's school avoidence, emotional disturbance and other issues.  The first action as parents is to ask the district [by fax or email] to perform an evaluation to determine if they qualify as a child with a disability who is in need of special education.  Second action as parents to take, is to have your family doctor do a complete medical examination to possibly determine a cause(s) and/or refer your child to what ever medical experts are needed.  Third action is to document all communications with the parties involved; doctors, School District and yourselves as parents."

What could I expect then?
[ONE PARENT' EXPERIENCE ] "Much to our surprise our child's guidence counselor in our initial meeting informed us that it was ' not the district edict' to perform evaluations as they are too costly. The principal later informed us that our child's suspected disabilities were not on her list of 'approved' disabilities.  During this process parents can expect to have your child's teachers and administrative staff take a pro-district stand against you as parents.  As parents you can expect very little cooperation from the district, however you can expect delays on all of your requests.  You can expect that the School Psychologist will do a quasi-evaluation and in their conclusions, inform you that your child's problems are the fault of the parents and therefore do not qualify a a student with special needs. As parents you can expect the district to attack your parenting skills, common sense and ability to know what's best for your child.  As parents you must stay the course, persist, and utilize all legal options available, such as State Dept of Education.

** If your district refuses to perform an evaluation or certain tests because it 'costs too much', or says that the child's disability is not on their 'approved list', ask them for the 'properly promulgated policy' that they are relying on to say so, in your hands, in ten days. Then contact a lawyer or advocate to understand your next options. This refusal may trigger your right to an Independent Educational Evaluation at public expense.

    © 2012 Amber Mintz 610-927-9904