One of the Biggest Mistakes Parents Make Is . . .


How can I get the school to provide my child with . . .

How can I stop the school from . . .

How can I get school staff to see that my child needs . . .

One of the biggest mistakes parents make is . . . not getting a comprehensive psycho-educational evaluation of their child by an expert in the private sector. A good comprehensive evaluation will describe the child's strengths and weaknesses, the educational services needed, what will happen if those services are not received - and provide baseline data so you can measure the child's progress over time.

Tip: Be sure the evaluator does not use the terms best or maximize the child's potential in the evaluation report - these terms are fatal. Your child is entitled to an appropriate education (not the best).

For strategies you can use to find an educational consultant, advocate or attorney, read How to Find an Educational Consultant, Advocate, Attorney at:

From : The Special Education Advocate, August 26, 2003 (Issue 226)



This is one of the most imptant pieces of info. out there.

Without and independent evaluation., you simply cannot win. The catch is they can be expensive. However, if the s.d. either refuses to evaluate or their evaluation. is inadequate (by law, not disputed conclusion), parents can request and independent evaluation. at public expernse. Unfortunately, there are no guarantees that s.d. will pay, even if ordered to, but it's always worth a try.

Thanks for this very important information.


Active Member
I absolutely agree. I have always gotten IE's first and taken them to the school. It has worked for us.

Great tip, Alisha.



Active Member
What does a comprehensive psycho-educational evaluation consist of, and what sort of profressionals do them?


Sorry Linda -- missed your question.

A psycho-educational evaluation is the testing utilized to get to IQ's -- such as the WIAT, WISC, Woodcock-Johnson, etc. The subtest scores are important in helping identify academic strengths and weaknesses and flagging for additional testing in specific areas.


New Member
I decided while my daughter was admitted to a psychiatric hospital she get all the evaluations done.

While in-patient at the hospital all evaluations were covered by our HMO insurance (otherwise they would not cover such tests). The other advantage Occupational Therapist (OT) doing them while in-patient, the tests were completed with in a few days instead of dragged out over many weeks.



Former desparate mom
I always did IE's also. The school would do some additional testing but it was never relevant to our IEP.
I also found that the school would sometimes skew the tests, so that they would get the results they wanted. For instance, they would only give the IQ test that was verbal, if the child is lacking in writing ability.


New Member
ok, i'm all really confussed now. i have a complete (and i mean complete, man, they test for everything) diagnositic evaluation scheduled at a hospital center for human developement but the sd said it was unsuitable because it will take too long for results (1-3 months). i requested a school evaluation as the bip committe is sure difficult child is adhd (no formal diagnosis yet) and was told that difficult child does not qualify as he is not Learning Disability (LD). well, how do you know if he isn't Learning Disability (LD) if you haven't tested him yet? i have also requested an hi evaluation but again, sd refused. they refuse everything i request. what to do?


how do you know if he isn't Learning Disability (LD) if you haven't tested him yet?
Excellent question. The answer is, they don't know.

If you haven't requested an initial evaluation in conjunction with IDEA from the school district, it's important that you do so. The request must be in writing. It's important to send it certified mail.

There's a thread in this forum with-Sample Letters if you need help with this.

Interesting that they said one to 3 months would be too long. Most school districts require 90 to 120 days to do their own evaluation. Check your State regs for this timeline -- you'll find a link to all State regs on my home page (url in signature).

I would strongly recommend that you not cancell your private evaluation, and I would hold them to complying with-IDEA.

You might want to suggest to them that you are receptive to emergency accommodations until such time as ALL the testing is completed. Make sure the agreement is in writing.

Another thing you will want to look at on my home page is the "Keeping good records" link.