1. I am moving into the district and my student has an IEP, what do I do?

  1. You can find information about enrolling with the district here. You will enroll at your neighborhood school. When you complete the enrollment paperwork, be sure to check the box indicating your student has an IEP. Once your enrollment has been processed, the school team will reach out to you to discuss the IEP and plan for your student’s services at the school.

2. How do we get started with special education services?

  1. If you have a concern about your student, begin by talking with their teacher(s). You can also include the school counselor and/or school psychologist. If there is a suspected disability, a special education evaluation may occur. An evaluation must occur before a student can begin receiving special education services. Learn more about the evaluation process here.

3. What is an IEP?

  1. An Individualized Education Program (IEP) is a written plan for a student (age 3-21 years) eligible for special education that is developed, reviewed, and revised in accordance with state and federal laws. It can be amended or changed as needed, but at minimum, is reviewed and updated annually. The IEP guides your student’s learning while in special education. It includes the following:
    1. Present levels of performance
    2. Measurable annual goals
    3. Appropriate accommodation and modifications based on areas of need
    4. Recommend services and minutes that will best meet the child’s needs

Learn more about IEPs here.

4. What happens at an IEP meeting?

  1. It may be held virtually or at a school site and usually lasts about an hour.
  2. Be prepared to discuss your child’s strengths and difficulties, your concerns for their education, and your thoughts on their goals. If you feel you need more time at the end of the meeting, it is your right to ask for an additional meeting.
  3. An IEP team generally consists of: a special education teacher, a general education teacher, an administrator (or their designee), related service staff (as applicable), a school psychologist, parents/legal guardians, and the student if appropriate. You can also invite who you would like to the meeting.

5. What is a 504 Plan?

  1. A 504 plan ensures that students with a disability have equal access to educational programs, services, and activities. It lists the accommodations a student needs for equitable access but is not an educational service plan and does not have goals. Learn more about Section 504 plans here. Learn about the difference between a 504 plan and an IEP here.

6. We had my student evaluated by a private clinic; do we still need an evaluation done with the school?

  1. Yes. To determine eligibility for special education services, the school must complete an educational evaluation. During the evaluation, the school must review outside evaluation reports that you provide and consider recommendations, but these do not determine eligibility or services.

7. Does my student need a medically diagnosed disability to be referred for special education services?

  1. No. A student with a suspected disability can be evaluated through the school to determine eligibility for special education services without a medical diagnosis.

8. I have a concern about my student’s special education services, who should I talk to?

  1. You should first start with your student’s teacher or case manager. If it’s not resolved, you can then contact the assistant principal and/or principal. If it is not resolved at that level, you can contact one of the special education directors. At any point in this process, you can also contact the district’s Special Education Family Liaison for support and guidance. Access the Procedural Safeguards here.

The Bellevue School District acknowledges that we learn, work, live and gather on the Indigenous Land of the Coast Salish peoples, specifically the Duwamish and Snoqualmie Tribes. We thank these caretakers of this land, who have lived and continue to live here, since time immemorial.