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An initial evaluation is the process used to determine whether your student has a disability and is in need of special education and related services. A full and individualized initial evaluation must be done by the district before the provision of any special education or related services to a student with a disability can begin.

1. What is the district looking for during an initial evaluation?

An initial evaluation involves gathering information from a variety of sources, including any information you have provided, about your student’s functioning and development in all areas of suspected disability. The assessments used during an evaluation may look at cognitive, behavioral, physical, and developmental factors, as well as other areas of suspected disability. All information relative to the presence of a disability is used to determine your student’s educational needs. Check for Educational Evaluations in US at UT Evaluators

2. How much time does the district have to complete an initial evaluation?

The district has 35 days to complete the initial evaluation process from the time written parental consent to evaluate is obtained. If a district needs to complete an initial evaluation due to a request made following disciplinary action, then that initial evaluation timeline must be expedited.

3. What is included in the initial evaluation process?

The initial evaluation process involves

(1) administering the necessary assessments to evaluate your student;

(2) completion of an evaluation report using the results of the assessments and the information gathered through the referral process; and

(3) an evaluation group meeting, which includes the parents/guardians, to discuss the results of the evaluation report and make a determination regarding eligibility for special education.

4. Does the evaluation group have to consider the private evaluations I have paid for and/or any outside medical information provided by my student’s doctors?

Yes. The evaluation report must include information obtained from private evaluations and/or outside sources for the group to consider when determining eligibility.

5. What happens if my student is found eligible?

Once your student is found eligible for special education and related services, the district has 30 days to create an Individualized Education Program (IEP) for your student. The district will also seek your consent for the initial provision of services either before or at the initial IEP team meeting. Your initial consent is for services only, not necessarily for what is in the IEP. Educational Evaluations in US visit here

6. What happens if my student is found ineligible and I disagree with that decision?

If your student is not eligible for special education, you can

(1) request an IEE; and/or

(2) inquire about a process for determining eligibility under Section 504 and/or

(3) utilize one of the dispute options available to you under the IDEA. Even though your student may not be eligible for special education, the school district must still provide FAPE to a qualified student with a disability under Section 504.

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