Letter to Request Assessment

Parents may start the assessment process by making a written request for assessment when they have concerns their child, ages 3 through 22, may need special education. A school may also make a referral for assessment by requesting written permission to evaluate your child. The purpose of the evaluation is to see if he or she has a disability and requires special education services. 

To request assessment to determine whether your child is eligible for special education services, submit a written letter to the School District Special Education Director. For a sample letter to request assessment, click here.

You will want to retain proof of the letter’s delivery. Consider sending the letter “return/receipt requested” from the post office. Or hand deliver and ask that your letter be date stamped and a copy of this given to you before you leave. Or fax your letter and print your “successful transmission” fax report and follow up by phone to ensure the letter was received.

A written letter triggers an important timeline under the Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA) law: 

  • From the time the school district receives your letter, the school district has 15 calendar days (not counting calendar days of school vacation in excess of five schooldays) to consider your request. If they refuse, they must provide you with a written notice explaining the reason. If they agree, they will present you with an Assessment Plan for your consent. Schools often invite you to a meeting to discuss the assessment. 
  • From the time you receive an Assessment Plan, you have at least 15 calendar days to ask all the questions you need to feel comfortable to give “informed consent” by signing the plan.
  • From the time you consent to the Assessment Plan, the district has 60 days, including weekends, (not counting calendar days of school vacation in excess of five schooldays) to assess your child and hold the first Individualized Education Plan (IEP) meeting to consider eligibility. 

In an initial IEP meeting, you and administrative, educational, and assessor team members will discuss the assessment results and make a determination whether the child qualifies for special education services. If your child qualifies, an IEP document will be developed.

If your child is currently enrolled by you in private school, you must request assessment from the school district in which the private school is located, even if this is not the district in which you live. If your child is preschool age, send your request to your district of residence. 

Para accesar este documento en español, presione aqui