My child has been determined eligible for services, what's next?
Developing the initial Individualized Education Plan (IEP) - IEP team must meet within 30 calendar days of the eligibility staffing
If your child qualifies for special education services, the team has 30 days to complete the initial IEP from the date of the Eligibility Determination. Timelines to complete the initial IEP may not be extended.
After completing the IEP, the district must provide a copy of the IEP to the parent within a reasonable amount of time, usually about 20 days. IEPs are sent to the parents through the Special Service Office.
The IEP meeting
An IEP meeting must be scheduled to develop the initial IEP.
IEP Meeting Notification: You must be informed in writing at least 10 days before the date of the IEP meeting, unless you waive this right. The written notice will indicate:
- the purpose of the meeting;
- the proposed meeting date, time, and place it will be held; and
- the names and/or specific jobs of the people who are invited to attend the meeting
- a statement letting you know you have the right to bring anyone to the meeting you feel would have knowledge or special expertise about your child
- a statement indicating how to obtain a copy of your procedural safeguards
The meeting should be held at a date, time, and place agreeable to both you and school staff. If you ask for or agree to meet on an earlier date, the meeting can be held sooner than the 10-day advance notice requirement. You may ask to have the meeting at a different date, time, and place, or to participate in the meeting through a conference call, video conference, or other ways. There can be no extension to the annual review date. While the team must proceed by the annual review date; they can reconvene to review/revise the IEP at a more convenient time upon request.
IEP Team Members: It is important that certain people attend as part of the IEP team. Those that are marked with an asterisk (*) are required members:
- You, the parents* (or educational decision maker)
- At least one of the child’s general education teachers*, if the child is or may be participating in the general education classroom
- At least one of the child’s special education teachers* or special education providers
- Someone who can interpret how test results effect teaching the child*
- A representative of the school district* who
- can supervise specially designed instruction to meet the needs of child with learning differences
- knows about the school courses
- knows about the school’s resources
- Others who have knowledge or special expertise about the child, including related services personnel, when invited by you or the district
- The child at age 16, or earlier, if appropriate
The parent's attendance at the IEP Meeting is important to allow your involvement in the development of the IEP for your child. Every effort should be made by the district to have you attend the IEP meeting. If you cannot attend, you may be part of the meeting by use of a phone call, video conferencing, or other ways. However, the IEP meeting can be held without you if the school shows they tried but were unable to contact you, or you did not want to attend the meeting. Detailed records will be kept showing the date, time, and person making telephone calls, visits to the home, written notices, and other attempts to reach you.
Prior Written Notice (the Notice of Action)
The school district will provide you with a written Notice of Action that describes the team’s offer of placement and services and reasoning for each. Before the school can begin special education and related services for your child for the first time, you must give written permission for those services. Services begin as soon as possible after the school receives your written permission. If you do not respond to a request to provide your consent for your child to receive special education and related services for the first time, or if you refuse to give such consent, your school district cannot place your child in special education.
Revocation of Services (canceling your consent for special education)
Once initial consent (in writing) is received, the parent can revoke (cancel) that consent at any time in writing. It is important to note that once the parent revokes consent, the student is taken out of special education services and loses all rights and protections as outlined in the IDEA. Additionally, the child would have to go back through the initial evaluation process to consider eligibility if the parent later wished to access special education.