What Should I Put on the Request for Special Education Services?
Check out OCALI’s letter template for requesting a multi-factored evaluation (MFE) for special education services.
Note: If your child has been identified as having a disability by professionals outside the school system, add the following sentence to the end of the first paragraph, before the Ohio Administrative Code sentence:
(Child's name) has been identified as having (name of disability) by (name of professional). Enclosed is a copy of the reports I have received that explains (child's name) condition.
Then, attach any reports from that professional to your request form.
In most cases, before a child is referred for special education services, many strategies are put in place by the general education teacher, and other support professionals. For some students, based on the nature of their disability, a referral straight to special education services is warranted in order to get the expertise with their disability.
For most students the team must implement the Response to Intervention (RTI) process before a referral for an MFE. RTI is a multi-tiered process in which targeted teaching strategies, or “interventions,” are used to address specific learning challenges students are experiencing at school. In particular, the RTI process will include routine progress monitoring and data collection, which the team analyzes to see if further services and supports are needed in addition to these interventions. Parents are involved in the RTI process. If the team feels that additional support is needed, then a referral for an MFE is initiated (please see the section on MFE for more information).
If the team determines that based on data, an MFE is not the course for your child at this time they usually will have a plan of action they want to implement to collect more data. You may choose to ask for an independent evaluation, or the school may suggest that. Please request a list of evaluators from your school and consider contacting a Parent Mentor from OCECD. They are familiar with the evaluation process and can assist you directly.