Referral/Evaluation Process

If a parent is concerned about his/her child having difficulty learning in the same way as his or her peers, he/she should first talk to their child’s teacher and/or school principal. Teachers and school professionals also are responsible for initiating a conversation with parents to decide what kind of extra supports are needed if they observe a child struggling to succeed.

Either party may request a meeting of the child’s parents, teacher(s), principal, school counselors and related staff to consider the needs of the child and to develop a plan to help the child in school. Initially the team will consider what options are available in the general education setting to provide extra support to the struggling student. This may be referred to as Response to Intervention (RTI). Many students respond well to some additional support and instruction and are able to catch up with their peers.

Parents must provide written permission for an evaluation to take place. Once parents give this consent, the school district must conduct an initial evaluation to determine if the student qualifies for special education services
within 60 school days.After trying these interventions, the team may decide that a more formal evaluation is needed to help clarify the student’s needs. This evaluation, along with information about what strategies have been tried, are part of what is needed to determine if he/she has a disability that would qualify the child for special education services.

Evaluation Process 
A team including parents, teachers, a school administrator and specialists would then take a careful look at the child’s abilities, including his or her strengths and weaknesses. Assessments may include a review of academic records and behavior data, classroom observations, a formal evaluation using standardized tests or checklists, and information about the student’s educational needs in a regular classroom.

The evaluation team uses the results to determine whether the child’s disability has an adverse impact on their progress in a general education classroom, and if his/her education needs cannot be met without specially designed instruction. The team also discusses whether the child meets the state’s eligibility requirements for special education services in one or more of the following areas:

  Autism spectrum disorder                  Orthopedic impairment
  Communication disorder Other health impairment
•  Deaf/blindness   Specific learning disability 
Emotional disturbance    Traumatic brain injury 
•  Hearing impairment    Visual impairment 
  Intellectual disability 
 

If the team determines the child is eligible for special education in one or more area, it then has 30 calendar days to convene a meeting to write an initial Individualized Education Plan (IEP). If he/she does qualify, the parents will be asked to provide written permission for their child to begin receiving special education services. If a student does not qualify for special education services, school staff may recommend a variety of other interventions designed to support student progress. The student who is not eligible for special education may be eligible for a 504 Plan that would provide accommodations based on the student’s disability to help them learn more effectively

During these discussions, you may be introduced to a lot of unfamiliar terms. Don’t hesitate to ask your child’s teacher or other specialists attending the meeting to clarify any acronym, phrase or concept that you don’t understand. 



Individualized Education
Plans (IEPs)


The first step in receiving special education services is to develop an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) to address the student’s unique needs. Creating such a plan is a joint effort between the child’s parents and school staff including a general education teacher, a special education teacher, a district representative (the school principal or designee), and other specialists as needed.

The IEP, which is a legal written document, outlines the most appropriate education services for the student. It includes:
 
the student's present level of academic performance
•  annual goals 
  the criteria which will be used to monitor progress 
  specific educational services that will be provided 
•  their classroom placement options 
  what accommodations or modifications may be needed in the classroom and for district or state assessments 

the timeline for providing various services
•  and more 


Children with disabilities are educated alongside children who are not disabled to the greatest extent possible and when appropriate to the needs of both. This “least restrictive environment” may include a variety of options. A child may be placed in a general education classroom with or without supplementary aids and services, or he/she may spend part of their school day in a Learning Resource Center to benefit from individualized and small group instruction. Some students’ needs are significant enough that their educational placement will be in a specialized program for all or part of the day.

Since communication is important to a strong IEP team, parents or staff members may call for an IEP meeting whenever a concern arises. IEPs must be reviewed at least once a year and may be revised as needed according to the student’s progress and changing goals or objectives. An eligibility review takes place every three years and includes a review of all areas of the IEP and a reassessment in all areas of concern.

Contact Us

 Student Services Department
 Phone:  541-766-4857 
 Address:  1555 S.W. 35th St., Corvallis, OR 97333
 Fax:  541-757-5703
Staff:  Kevin Bogatin, Assistant Superintendent