Consenting to Special Education Evaluation and Services

Disability Rights Texas Handout

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Should I Consent to Special Education Evaluation & Services?

When a student struggles academically or behaviorally, some parents request an evaluation for special education. Schools may also request parental consent to evaluate for special education and, if the student is eligible, consent to special education services. This handout seeks to help parents decide if special education is needed and appropriate for their child. Start by considering how your child is doing without special education services and consider the issues below to determine whether to seek services, provide consent for evaluation, or consent to services. Also, keep in mind that you can revoke consent in the future if you begin to believe special education services are more harmful than helpful.

Listed below are things to consider.

Individualized Educational Services
Standardized Tests Don’t Determine Promotion or Graduation

There are students who are not identified for special education services who fulfill all credit requirements for graduation but do not graduate because of challenges with standardized tests. For students in special education, their ARD committees can provide for accommodations on STAAR or determine that satisfactory performance on state assessments is not necessary for promotion or graduation.

Discipline Protections
Transition Services
Other Legal Protections
Potential for Stigma and Self-Esteem Issues
Potential for Lowered Expectations
Potential for Restrictive Placement and Exclusion
Racial Disproportionality
Role of Advocacy

Created: October 14, 2020
Publication Code: ED25

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Disclaimer: Disability Rights Texas strives to update its materials on an annual basis, and this handout is based upon the law at the time it was written. The law changes frequently and is subject to various interpretations by different courts. Future changes in the law may make some information in this handout inaccurate.

The handout is not intended to and does not replace an attorney’s advice or assistance based on your particular situation.