Any member of the IEP team can request a reevaluation before the triennial deadline. This involves a review of the data from the previous evaluation. Parents can request a written evaluation, which should be sent to the child's principal or to the school district's director or special education coordinator. It is important to keep copies of all correspondence related to the child and follow up with the school principal on the status of the request. The federal law, the Education for People with Disabilities Act, as amended in 2004 (IDEA), gives parents the legal right to request a complete, individual, comprehensive, and multidisciplinary evaluation.
This may include data collected by the teacher during the process of monitoring progress through RTI (Response to Intervention). It should also include information from educational and psychological evaluations that show patterns of strengths and weaknesses, as well as input from parents, teachers, and other educational professionals. The law also states that information from an RTI process must be collected before the deadline set before the date of parental consent for a special education evaluation ends. If parents are denied or disagree with an evaluation, they may have the right to an independent evaluation by the school district. RTI is designed to provide students with additional academic support before a school district determines whether they should be referred for a comprehensive special education evaluation. As a parent, guardian, or advocate, you have the legal right to request that your public school evaluate your child for special education.
Regardless of where a child is during the RTI process, IDEA rules give parents the right to request an evaluation of special education services at any time. If the school district refuses to make an evaluation or, after evaluating the child, concludes that they are not eligible for special education services under IDEA, parents have other rights. IDEA requires that school systems have procedures in place to help parents resolve disputes through mediation, a voluntary process. The position of the American Learning Disabilities Association (LDA) is that RTI should never be used to delay a special education evaluation, deny evaluations, or place students in special education centers without the benefit of a comprehensive evaluation.