Summary of the process: working with the school

Your goal is to work together with the school to come up with a plan to help your child.


Remember that the school has the same hopes for your child as you do: they want students to learn, make progress, and be happy and confident. 

But you are an equal partner and have rights:

  • You have a right to make sure that your child is educated, that the school identifies any disabilities that your child may have, and that the school provides specialized services to students who have learning or developmental disabilities.
  • Click here to learn more about your rights. (It will open in a new window.)


Here are the basic steps:

  1. Talk to your child's teacher about your concerns.
  2. Work with the teacher to identify some teaching strategies or adjustments in the classroom to help your child learn.
  3. Keep track of your child's progress. Ask every 2 weeks what the curriculum-based assessments are saying about their progress. See how well the new strategies are working. Ask for different ones if needed.
  4. If your child does not make progress after a month or two, talk to the teacher about getting an evaluation. You have a right to ask this anytime you are concerned that your child may have a disability.
  5. The school will evaluate your child to see if they have a learning or developmental disability.
  6. If they do, they qualify for Special Education services. The school will work with you to create an IEP: Individualized Education Program. This will include specialized instruction and other services or therapies that your child needs in order to make progress.