During the IEP process, you will hear the term "eligibility" discussed. The IEP Team will decide whether your child is eligible for special education services. A school-age student is eligible for special education services if the student:
- Meets the criteria for one or more of the disability classifications (see list below); and
- The student requires approved special education services and programs.
If the student does not meet the criteria for one or more of the disability classifications that follow, the school-age student is not eligible for special education services. Additionally, a student is not eligible even if he or she meets the criteria of one of the classifications listed, but does not require special education services and programs, based on:
- A lack of appropriate instruction in reading, including explicit and systematic instruction in phonemic awareness, phonics, vocabulary development, reading fluency (including oral reading skills) and reading comprehension strategies; or
- A lack of appropriate instruction in math; or
- Limited English proficiency.
The IEP Team, with your participation, may determine that your child is not disabled and does not need special education services. In this case, an IEP will not be developed. Information gathered from the evaluations will be given to the principal of your child's school, and the principal will work with the appropriate professionals in the school to help your child.
If the IEP Team, based upon the evaluation(s), determines that your child has a disability and that special education services are necessary, an IEP will be developed at the IEP Team meeting. The IEP outlines the special education programs and/or services your child will receive and the goals your child should be working toward.