Time Factors

Initial evaluation:

By law, once a request for special education evaluation (core evaluation) has been made, the school has 5 school days to send you notice requesting your consent to test your child.

Once the school receives consent to be able to test your child, the school must complete the evaluation on your child within 30 school days.

Every 3 years or sooner if necessary, the school district shall, with parental consent, conduct a full three-year re-evaluation consistent with the requirement of federal law.

Evaluation Reports to be received before your Team meeting:

Call the school and ask for your child’s evaluation written reports. By state regulation, summaries of the school evaluations must be available to parents at least 2 days prior (48 hours) to your Team meeting.


The school must hold a team meeting and develop an IEP by law within 45 school days after completion of the student evaluations.

In addition, within the 45 school days of parent permission, an IEP meeting must be held to determine eligibility and create the IEP.  Placement may be determined in parallel or as a separate process.

Team meetings:

Your child’s IEP should be available immediately at the conclusion of the team meeting.

Guidance: Currently, most districts have the technology or resources that make it possible to present at least the key service components of an IEP to the parents as they leave the IEP development Team meeting. This is referred to as a “summary.” At a minimum, this summary of the decisions and agreements reached during the Team meeting must include:

(a) a completed IEP service delivery grid describing the types and amounts of special education and/or related services proposed by the district, and
(b) a statement of the major goal areas associated with these services.

By providing parents with this summary at the conclusion of the Team meeting, in the Department’s opinion, the district has complied with the requirement to provide the parent with the key decisions and agreements immediately. The district may then take no more than two calendar weeks to prepare the complete IEP for the parent’s signature and for the student’s records (both home and school).

The role of the parent: The parent is under no obligation to wait to receive the complete IEP to begin considering whether to consent to the proposed IEP services and goals. We urge parents to begin their consideration while developing the IEP in the Team meeting and to respond to the district’s request for consent as soon as they are ready to do so. The district’s delivery of a summary at the IEP meeting, and any additional time needed to deliver the complete IEP, does not delay the parent’s right and opportunity to respond promptly to the proposed IEP.

The IEP arrives:

Once you have received your child’s IEP in the mail (keep the envelope, that has the date stamped on it), you have 30 days to respond to the school (inclusive of summer months and holidays).  When signing the IEP you can: accept, reject in part, reject in whole OR postpone a decision until the completion of an independent evaluation (IEE). Note that the parent(s) must state in writing their desire or intent for an IEE.  If rejecting, you may request a meeting to discuss the rejected portions of the IEP or the overall adequacy of the IEP.

Upon parental response to the proposed IEP and proposed placement, the school district shall implement all accepted elements of the IEP without delay.

It is in your best interest to review the IEP and contact the team chair about any issues that you understood differently from the team meeting (refer to your notes, tape recording, or other team members).

Changes can be made to the IEP as long as you respond within the 30 days.

After you receive the revised IEP you need to keep track of how many days it has been since you signed the consent for the initial evaluation or reevaluation. You now have up to the 45 school days since that date. This progress stops when the school district is not willing to make any more changes.

“Stay Put” Rights:

“If you dispute a proposed change to your child’s placement, the “stay put” provision allows him to do just that—stay put. He’ll continue to get the same amount of services while you and the school complete a dispute resolution process.”

Independent Evaluation:

Within 10 ten school days (1-10 school days) from the time the school district receives the report of the independent evaluation, the Team must reconvene and consider the independent evaluation and whether a new or amended IEP is appropriate.

While your waiting for the date of your Team meeting:

  • Gather samples of your child’s school work, in your area of concern.
  • Organize any outside letters and make summaries of your any reports you may have from outside professionals.
  • Find someone who will come and take notes at your Team meeting.
  • You are allowed to bring any number of people, that know your child to your team meeting.
  • If you are bringing a lawyer the school must be be notified prior to the meeting.

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