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Children with IEPs should be reevaluated at least every three years. This evaluation is often called a “triennial.” Its purpose is to find out if the child continues to be a “child with a disability,” as defined by IDEA, and what the child’s educational needs are.

IDEA was originally enacted by Congress in 1975 to make sure that children with disabilities had the opportunity to receive a free and appropriate public education, just like other children. The law has been revised many times over the years. The most recent amendments were passed by Congress in December 2004. Because the law is continuously changed and updated, school districts must modify how to determine if a child has a disability. Check with your child’s school to see what eligibility criteria they are currently using.

IDEA 2004 states:

  • The local educational agency (your child’s school) is no longer required to consider a severe discrepancy between achievement and intellectual ability in oral expression, listening comprehension, written expression, basic reading skill, reading comprehension, mathematical calculation, or mathematical reasoning.
  • A school may use a process that determines if a child responds to scientific, research-based intervention as a part of the evaluation process.

If informal testing states that a child is working at grade level, the school may feel he or she no longer meets their eligibility criteria. Be an advocate for your child. You are his or her voice at all the meetings you attend. Here are some links to articles that may be helpful.

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