What are Independent Educational Evaluations
There will always be some form of scrutiny throughout your child’s educational career, and in this case, scrutiny is not a bad thing, it is more about monitoring how your child is progressing through education.
From time to time, your child might have to pass certain evaluations. This would most likely happen if there were indications that your child was not developing as expected. In many cases, this indicates a learning disability in the child.
As a parent, you need to be in the loop when your child is being evaluated. Certain rights would apply if you disagreed with the results of an evaluation of the process. Chief among those rights would be the right to request an independent education evaluation from an independent educational evaluator.
What is an IEE?
Under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, you have certain rights in regard to protecting your child. That includes making sure that school evaluations are appropriate and meaningful. After all, the school will use any evaluations they perform to chart the best course for your child’s future education. As we stated above, you do have the right to question school evaluations and request an independent education evaluation.
Upon making the said request, the school or school system is required by law to furnish you with information about where you can get an independent education evaluation (IEE). Furthermore, the school or school system is required to provide funding to cover the cost of an IEE.
An evaluation of your child’s educational achievement and any potential learning disabilities is known as an independent education evaluation. This kind of knowledge is obviously essential to you as a parent. You might decide to spend money, time, and effort to enroll your child in a special education program as a consequence of the information provided.
Who Would Provide an Independent Education Evaluation?
While the school is required by law to provide you with information regarding where to get an IEE, the individual who would perform the evaluation must be completely independent of the school or school system. They must also carry any proper credentials and licensing that the state, city, school system, or school might require. The results of their evaluation would go directly to the school and you as the parent.
Why Not a Private Evaluation?
Your child can be evaluated privately if you suspect a learning disability. Of course, you would be required to cover the costs.
After completing the evaluation, you can share the results with the school or school system. In such cases, most schools would have to consider the results and enter them as part of your child’s official educational record. Nevertheless, private evaluations are not required by law.
Reasons to Request an Independent
After reviewing and discussing the results of the school or school systems evaluation of your child, you might not agree with the results or assessment. Before you impulsively request an IEE, you should make sure your reasons for doing so are compelling. After all, testing can be very stressful for a child.
With that said, here are a few reasons why you might want to exercise your right to an IEE:
- The results of the school’s education evaluation do not indicate the presence of a disability, but you believe this assessment is contrary to what you have experienced.
- You have legitimate questions about the accuracy or validity of the school’s evaluation.
- You feel the evaluation was lacking and not comprehensive enough.
What if the School or School System Objects to an IEE?
Schools or school systems, in general, are receptive to evaluations. An IEE might be necessary if you suspect the original evaluation was inaccurate. However, some schools don’t like being questioned and might have budget constraints that would lead them to push back on your request.
By law, they cannot simply dismiss your request. A hearing is required if an educational evaluation is contested.
It would be the responsibility of the school to demonstrate during the hearing that the first evaluation was in fact accurate and right. They would argue that an IEE would be unnecessary and would not produce a different outcome. You, on the other hand, are under absolutely no obligation. You wouldn’t even need to explain why you disagree with the initial assessment. If you decide to react with a reason why, be prepared to provide the strongest evidence you can.
The hearing officer is not an advocate for either side. Their job is to hear the school or school system’s evidence and make a decision. If the school or school system fails to adequately support the validity of their evaluation, the hearing officer could direct them to pay for an IEE.
For Your Consideration
Since the school or school system is required to consider and pay for an IEE, you are only permitted by law to request one. Also, the results of the IEE may not be used in any future due process hearings. If the results of the IEE are consistent with the original evaluation, you would need to either accept the results or make other plans for your child.
Note: If you feel compelled to contest a school’s education evaluation, you would be well advised to read up on your rights under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act before moving forward.
Independent Educational Evaluations in Phoenix
Our Peoria, AZ & Scottsdale, AZ offices provide independent educational evaluations for intelligence, academic abilities, executive functioning, and obtain parent and teacher feedback to integrate our findings. We have built a process that will give concrete solutions and goals that go beyond merely determining if a child should be granted accommodations under section 504 or individualized assistance as part of an Individualized Education Plan.
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If you are located in the Metro Phoenix Arizona area, Serin Center has two offices located in Peoria, AZ, and Scottsdale, AZ that can provide testing for Dyscalculia and provide Independent Educational Evaluations. Contact us today to discuss how we can help.
Our educational evaluations can provide diagnoses and generate specific goals and treatments to help your child succeed. Completed in Peoria & Scottsdale AZ