If your child has an IEP, the school must do a full re-evaluation every 3 years. This is to see if their needs have changed, and to make sure they are still getting the right services and accommodations.
This is required by law. But sometimes schools ask parents to sign a waiver, which lets them NOT do the re-evaluation. Do not sign this until you think carefully.
The school may say that your child's needs have not changed and there's no need to put them through the hassle of doing the evaluation again.
But we know that kids change so much every year, even in subtle ways:
- Maybe your child has caught up in some of their skills and don't need all the services.
- Maybe you've noticed new challenges that should be addressed with a new IEP goal or service.
- Maybe they are dealing with new social, emotional or behavioral challenges that weren't assessed in the first evaluation.
It's almost always in your child's best interest to do the reevaluation.
If the school tries to get you to waive your right to do it, do not agree right away! Only agree if there is a very good reason, and that you are confident your child's needs have not changed at all.
What you can do:
- Ask the school why they are suggesting waiving this important right.
- Ask for a meeting to discuss it with the whole team.
- Look closely at your child's progress and see if you agree.
When you do get a re-evaluation:
- Make sure that it addresses all of your current concerns.
- You can ask for different kinds of testing than they did before.
- For example, maybe you are now concerned with your child's behavior. You can ask for a Functional Behavioral Analysis, or FBA. (See this section: Helping your child with behavior challenges.)
- Be sure to get a copy of the report and discuss it with the IEP team. Adjust the IEP to address any needs discovered in the new evaluation.
Source: LA DOE