Right to Receive a Complete Explanation of IDEA’s Procedural Safeguards
At least one time a year, the parents of a child with a disability must receive from the school system a complete explanation of all the procedural safeguards available to them, as parents, under IDEA. This explanation is called the “Procedural Safeguards Notice.” In this page, we’ll examine the purpose and contents of this notice, the times that parents will receive it, and other aspects of this important safeguard.
Confidentiality and the Right of Parents to Inspect and Review Educational Records
IDEA and other federal laws protect the confidentiality of your child’s education records. These safeguards address the following three aspects: 1) the use of personally identifiable information; 2) who may have access to your child’s records; and 3) the rights of parents to inspect their child’s education records and request that these be amended to correct information that is misleading or inaccurate, or that violates the child’s privacy or other rights.
The Right of Parents to Participate in Meetings
Parents have the right to participate in meetings with respect to the identification of their child; evaluation of their child; educational placement of their child; and provision of free appropriate public education (FAPE) to their child.
The Right of Parents to Obtain an Independent Educational Evaluation (IEE)
If you, as a parent of a child with a disability, do not agree with the results of the individualized evaluation of your child, as conducted by the school system, you have the right to obtain what is known as an Independent Educational Evaluation, or an IEE. This means that you may ask that a professional, competent evaluator who is not employed by the school system conduct another evaluation of your child. If you request an IEE of your child, the school must provide you with information about where you can obtain such an evaluation.
The Right of Parents to Receive Prior Written Notice
Parental rights under IDEA include the right to receive prior written notice from the school each time that the school proposes to take (or refuses to take) certain actions with respect to your child. Specifically, the school must provide parents with prior written notice each time that it:
1) proposes to initiate or change the identification, evaluation, or educational placement of your child; 2) proposes to initiate or change the provision of FAPE to your child (that’s a free appropriate public education); 3)refuses to initiate or change the identification, evaluation, or educational placement of your child; 4)refuses to initiate or change the provision of FAPE to your child.
The Right of Parents to Give or Deny Their Consent
One of parents’ most important rights is the right to give (or not give) their consent for certain actions of the school system with respect to their child with a disability.
Source: NICHCY, December 2010
Parents Have the Right to Disagree
Parents have the right to disagree with decisions that the school system makes with respect to their child with a disability. This includes the school’s decision about the identification of the child as a child with a disability; the child’s evaluation; the child’s educational placement; and the special education and related services that the school provides to the child.
Source: NICHCY, December 2010
The Right of Parents to use IDEA’s Mechanisms for Resolving Disputes
There are times when parents and schools simply do not agree on some issue affecting a child’s education. They may try informal approaches to resolving the conflict, such as reviewing and revising the child’s IEP or holding a facilitated IEP meeting (an approach emerging in the field). When these don’t result in agreement on what represents an appropriate education for a child, the law (IDEA) provides several approaches that parents and schools can use to help resolve the dispute.
Source: NICHCY, September 2012