Can Special Education Personnel Pick And Choose Services And What About Waiting Lists?

Have you been told by special education personnel that they do not provide Applied Behavioral Analysis therapy, for children with autism? Have you been told that your school district only provides certain services, due to money issues? Is your child on a waiting list for educational or related services? This article will discuss whether the Individuals with Disabilities Educational Act (IDEA), allows special education personnel to only provide certain services to children with a disability. Also discussed, are children put on waiting lists for related and educational services.

IDEA defines special education as: specially designed instruction at no cost to the parents, to meet the unique needs of a child with a disability…

The purpose of IDEA is to provide an education that meets a child’s unique needs and prepares the child for further education, employment and independent living.

Special Education Personnel cannot pick and choose which services that they are going to offer to children with disabilities. That having been said, many school personnel do try and limit what services that they will give children. This is the reason why it is critical that you stand up to special education personnel, who may ruin your child’s life by not giving them the services that they need.

If special education personnel try and limit your child’s services, ask them to show you, under what authority they have the right to deny your child needed educational services (there isn’t any). Remember what special education is-special designed instruction to meet the unique needs of your child.

Also, consider getting an Independent Educational Evaluation (IEE) of your child to prove what services that your child needs. The evaluator can participate in an IEP meeting by telephone, when the evaluations recommendations are discussed.

Waiting lists are also not allowed under IDEA. The difficulty is that when special education personnel state that they are putting your child on a waiting list, it sounds like it could be reasonable. It is not until you find out that waiting lists are not allowed, that you realize that you have been deceived. Always ask special education personnel to prove to you in writing, that what they are saying is the truth. If they cannot show you in writing that what they said is truthful; it probably is not.

For Example: Your 3 year old child with autism needs Applied Behavioral Analysis Treatment. The special education personnel, tells you that the class is full, and that they are waiting for additional funding for a new class. But in the mean time, your child will be put on a waiting list. Write them a letter, documenting what they said, and ask them to show you where it states in federal or state law, that they are allowed to have waiting lists (they aren’t). File for a state complaint for violation of your child’s rights.

By understanding what special education personnel can and cannot do under IDEA, helps you in your advocacy efforts for your child. Do not give up fighting for an appropriate education for your child, or their life may be forever ruined!