What happens in the eligibility meeting?
The eligibility team is comprised of the special education designee for the school, qualified school evaluators, a qualified special education teacher, the child’s general education teacher (or, if your child does not have a general education teacher, a general education teacher qualified to teach a child of your child's age), a person qualified to conduct diagnostic examinations of children, and the parents.
Eligibility meetings are generally 45 to 60 minutes in length and follow this process:
- Meeting participants are introduced, and the eligibility process is explained
- Each requested evaluation is summarized (parents are offered an opportunity for an interpretive conference prior to the eligibility meeting to discuss the psychological and educational evaluation results in detail)
- Other relevant information including parental input and private evaluation reports are reviewed
- All disability categories are discussed for consideration
- Eligibility criteria for specific disability categories are carefully considered and documented
- The eligibility group works toward consensus while considering data and all state and federal requirements. If the group cannot reach a consensus, it is the responsibility of the Local Education Agency representative (Eligibility Coordinator) to provide a data-based decision in accordance with federal and state regulations
- Parental consent for the eligibility decision is obtained, and copies of the evaluation reports and documentation of the eligibility group's decision are provided