“And now we welcome the new year. Full of things that have never been.

— Rainer Maria Rilke

Greetings to you!

We have a shiny new year on our hands–and so many continuing challenges to address. The final Buzz of 2021 focused on the need to revisit students’ IEPs to account for how students’ needs may have changed, given the year’s turmoil of fractured schooling and lives amid the pandemic. To do so may necessitate collecting fresh evaluation data about some students.

And that’s why this first Buzz of 2022 shares multiple family-friendly resources about the evaluation process under IDEA. Use the resources as refreshers of what families already know and have experienced in the past, and share these nuts-and-bolts pieces with those new to the process.

Here’s a toast to all of you and the work you do so well!

The CPIR Team


Direct to the Point: Revisiting Evaluation Information

Getting Ready for the 2021-22 School Year: FAQs About Testing Children with Disabilities
As children return to school, it is critical that states and districts gather information on what children with disabilities have learned and where they need more support to meet their learning goals. This FAQ from NCEO addresses some common questions and provides links to useful resources.

Evaluation Basics for Families

Questions Often Asked by Parents about Special Education Services
This CPIR resource includes answers to 26 questions. To zoom in to those pertaining to evaluation, go to Questions 5 and 6.

The School Evaluation Process: What to Expect
(Also available in Spanish: El proceso de evaluación escolar: En qué consiste)
From understood.org, this article is well suited for parents new to the evaluation process, as is the next resource in this list.

Understanding Evaluation Results and Next Steps
(Also available in Spanish: Entender los resultados de la evaluación y los siguientes pasos)

How to Understand your Child’s IEP Evaluations | Preparing for an IEP Eligibility Meeting
Definitely well suited for families new to the special education process and for all who are understandably baffled by the meaning of the data! Includes a 38-minute video.


Communicating with Families with Limited English Proficiency

Many of the students returning to school this year come from homes where English is not the primary or native language. How to ensure that these families can understand and fully participate in revisiting their child’s IEP or existing evaluation data? Consult these 2 resources.

Information for LEP Parents and Guardians and for Schools and School Districts that Communicate with Them
This fact sheet answers common questions about the rights of parents and guardians who do not speak, listen, read, or write English proficiently. Jointly issued by the U.S. Departments of Justice and Education.

Civil Rights Protect Language Access for Parent Participation in Child’s Education
Under state and federal law, all parents have the right to information about their child’s education in a language they can understand. This information is translated on handouts in multiple languages from Washington State’s Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI).


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Publication of this eNewsletter is made possible through Cooperative Agreement H328R180005 between OSEP and the Statewide Parent Advocacy Network (SPAN). The contents do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the Department of Education, nor does mention of trade names, commercial products, or organizations imply endorsement by the U.S. Government or by the Center for Parent Information and Resources.