Independent Education Evaluations - Why, How, and Who (Ep 151)

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Independent Education Evaluations (IEE) are something that we typically talk about in Special Education under very high-stress situations. With worried parents, stressed school staff, and a scramble to collect all the data needed - it's no wonder all that can lead to stress! In this episode, I'm bringing a couple of solutions to you when it comes to an IEE. 

 

What is an IEE? 

*Remember, I'm not a lawyer and I will not give you any legal advice. The information in the below section comes straight from IDEA law.  

An IEE is any evaluation given by someone not paid for by the school. IEEs typically come about when a parent is unhappy with the current information collected by the school staff. IDEA law states that if a parent requests an IEE and they want the school to pay for it, the school has two choices: 1) the school can pay for it, or 2) the school can file for due process. Yuck. I want to help you stay out of that situation and make sure that we have the best information possible so we're making the smartest decisions about how to build an appropriate education. 

Depending on the situation, an IEE may be required and it may or may not be paid for by the school. The school needs to be responsible for providing an appropriate education, which typically involves things like an IEE. But there are some situations where you might need to seek outside advice and that's okay! 

For example, maybe you're concerned that your child might have ADHD. The school is not going to give an evaluation that confirms this. This is a great time to seek other information to figure out whether your child has characteristics of ADHD. I'm sure there are parents nodding their heads right now, saying, "Yes! I just needed to know. I wasn't asking the school to pay for it or test for it, but I needed to confirm whether these screenings are performed at school." 

 

Consider the IEE 

The biggest role school teams can have in this IEE process is in consideration of the provided information. It is absolutely critical and mandated by IDEA law, that a school consider any IEE brought to the team. An IEE provides recommendations that the team needs to consider when building an appropriate education plan for the child's school day, even when those recommendations aren't the standard at that school. It's really important to work on this consideration part and to do that, we need to make sure that we're bringing quality information and data, not opinions, to the IEP table. 

 

How do I get an IEE for my child?

Here's the bad news: getting an IEE for your child can be a lengthy waiting game to pay a hefty fee that might be covered by insurance, and then the recommendations usually have an additional cost associated with it. Teachers, please understand that this process can be heartbreaking for parents when the information isn't respected at the IEP table. 

For this reason, I want to tell you all about Parallel Learning, whose mission is to make support for students with learning differences more accessible and affordable. Parallel provides Psychoeducational Evaluations, Educational Tutoring, Executive Function Coaching, Speech and Language Therapy, and Behavioral Therapy/Counseling services for students with ADHD, Dyslexia, Dyscalculia, Dysgraphia, Speech Delays, Behavioral Issues, Anxiety, and more starting as young as 3 years old in some areas. It's convenient, affordable, and FAST! You're going to love it!

 

Here's what your journey with Parallel Learning looks like:

First, you can call or schedule a free 15-minute consultation with Parallel’s Care Specialists. This FREE (yes, really, FREE!) 15-Min Consultation is an opportunity for parents to share what is going on with the student and find the best success plan. Care Specialists will help navigate the family in the right direction and get them signed up with services. If you're just looking for some additional information, you are definitely going to want to sign up for your free consultation. 

Once you're signed up, you will have an assigned Care Coordinator who will find the perfect match for the student (psychologist, learning specialist, executive function coach, SLP therapist, behavioral therapist/counselor). As soon as you're matched, you can get started with receiving services (psychoeducational evaluation, tutoring, executive function coaching, speech and language therapy, behavioral therapy). 

The best part? It's FAST! Some parents wait between 4-6 months to receive their evaluation recommendations and finding. But with Parallel Learning, the evaluation process takes about 4-6 weeks from start to finish, and tutoring/executive function coaching/therapy can start within 48-72 hours! 

This is so important because, for many students, the IEE can be a turning point in their education. Bringing in that third-party evaluator is a great resource because they are strictly considering the current performance and needs of this child as well as what concerns the family without getting bogged down in the internal barriers of the school, like staff shortages or available resources. They simply want to best evaluate the child and help them get the information they need to make appropriate decisions about necessary services, accommodations, counseling, or home-school relationships. 

Options like Parallel can really help you get the information that you need to move your child forward. There are experts out there! You just have to go find them. 

IEEs don't have to be a hot topic of division with your IEP team. We just have to get on the same page about what it can do and how we can work together to implement it both at home and at school. 

 

Here's a glance at the episode... 

[2:55] "I want to help you stay out of that situation and make sure that we have the best information possible so we're making the smartest decisions about how to build an appropriate education."

[7:05] "It's really important to work on this consideration part and to do that, we need to make sure that we're bringing quality information and data to the IEP table." 

[14:50] "IEEs don't have to be a hot topic of division with your IEP team. We just have to get on the same page about what it can do and how we can work together to implement it both at home and at school."

Click here to listen! 

*Don't forget to leave a review of the episode on your favorite streaming service.  They mean more than you know! 

 

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