Evaluations Part 1: Where to Start When a Student Needs Special Help at School

A Brief Overview Special Education is provided through the Individualized Education Program (IEP) for a student with a qualifying disability. The first step is to determine eligibility through evaluation. This article describes that process. Specially Designed Instruction (SDI) is the “special” in special education. The evaluation determines whether SDI is needed to help a student Read More

Evaluations Part 2: Next Steps if the School Says ‘No’

A Brief Overview If the school denies a request for a special education evaluation or does an evaluation and determines a student is ineligible for services, families have options. Read on for information about some possible next steps. When there is a dispute about a district’s evaluation, one option is to request an Independent Educational Read More

Sample Letter to Request Evaluation

When a student is struggling in school and there is reason to suspect the challenges are disability related, anyone can refer the student for an educational evaluation. The final section of this article includes a sample letter for requesting a no-cost evaluation from the school district. PAVE provides an article with more detail: Evaluations Part Read More

IEP Tips: Evaluation, Present Levels, SMART goals

Getting services at school starts with evaluation. Eligible students get an individualized Education Program (IEP), which describes a student’s present levels of performance and how specially designed instruction supports progress toward annual goals. This article provides a quick overview of the basic IEP process and provides tips for family caregivers to get more involved. PAVE Read More

Long COVID May Cause Disability and Eligibility for Services

Some people infected by the SARS-CoV-2 virus experience long-term symptoms—called Long COVID. If lasting symptoms significantly impact a person’s life, their ability to work, or their access to school, disability laws are in place to protect and support them. Among federal laws that support disability rights are the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the Rehabilitation Read More

Health Information for Families as Schools Reopen During COVID Pandemic

As schools open for the 2021-22 school year, families have decisions to make about health and safety. This article provides information and resources to address some key questions: What measures are schools required to take to keep children and staff safe? What COVID precautions should our family consider? What should we do if returning to Read More

Recovery Services: What Families Need to Know as Schools Reopen

A Brief Overview Students who did not make adequate progress on IEP goals due to COVID-19 may need Recovery Services to get back on track. IEP teams are responsible to make student-centered decisions about this option for additional educational services. Not all students need Recovery Services, but the state has made clear that IEP teams Read More

Early Learning Toolkit: Overview of Services for Families of Young Children

New parents have a lot to manage. Concern about whether a child’s growth and development are on track can be confusing. This toolkit provides places to begin if caregivers suspect that a baby or young child may need services due to a developmental delay or disability. How do I know if my child is developmentally Read More

Early Intervention: How to Access Services for Children Birth to 3 in Washington

A Brief Overview Early intervention services help infants and toddlers with disabilities or delays to learn and catch up in their development. This article covers some basics about services for young children in Washington State. Families concerned about a child’s development can call the Family Health Hotline at 1-800-322-2588, with support in multiple languages. Parents can Read More