When it comes to ensuring that your child receives the best education possible, communication with teachers, administrators, and other school personnel is essential. While much of this communication can be done informally, there are times when it is necessary to put your requests in writing. Having a paper record of your requests can be beneficial in the event of a dispute between families and school districts. If you suspect that your child may need special education services, you can request an evaluation by sending a letter to your school principal or special education administrator.
Below is a sample letter that you can use as a guide when crafting your own request.
Sample Letter Requesting an Evaluation for Special Education ServicesDear [Principal/Special Education Administrator],I am writing to request an evaluation for my child, [child's name], who is in grade [grade] at [school name]. I believe that he/she may have a disability and may need special education services. I understand that the purpose of the evaluation, called an initial evaluation, is to determine if my child has a disability and needs special education services. I am requesting that the evaluation be conducted as soon as possible. If you have any questions or need additional information, please do not hesitate to contact me at [phone number] or [email address].Thank you for your time and consideration. Sincerely,[Your Name]
What Happens After You Request an Evaluation?Once you have sent your letter requesting an evaluation, the school district must respond within a certain amount of time. The school district will then conduct an initial evaluation to determine if your child has a disability and needs special education services.
The evaluation team will review the information collected during the evaluation and meet with parents to discuss the results. It is important to note that requesting an evaluation does not mean that your child will be removed from their normal classroom and placed in an exclusive learning environment. Federal and state laws require that students receive education and services in the least restrictive environment (LRE) to the greatest extent possible to meet their needs.
Additional ResourcesThe Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) provides forms for making special education recommendations which can be downloaded from their website.
These forms include:
- How to Make a Recommendation for Special Education
- How to Make a Recommendation for Special Education Services