Areas of Suspected Disability: The Starting Place for a Special Education Evaluation

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My son’s Middle School Principal used to say, “As you climb the ladder, make sure it is leaning against the right building.” There are some lessons in this expression for special education evaluations. I would say, “As you start a special education evaluation, make sure you are evaluating all areas of suspected disability.” After all, it is hard to convince someone that you have all the right answers if they believe that you have not asked all the right questions. In the context of a special education evaluation, asking the right questions has at least three components:

(1) make sure you are starting from -- and staying with -- the definitions of the 13 categories (12 really, plus “multi”) of handicapping conditions; (2) make sure that parents know what categorical “suspicions” are your starting points; and (3) make sure that parents have an opportunity to give you input on whether those starting points are the right ones.

In some situations, a fourth component also may be important...

Please see full article below for more information.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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