Evaluation for Special Education

Do you think your child may need special education services at school? You can ask for an assessment to see if they qualify. With this in mind, we recommend requesting an evaluation for special education services in writing. Address the letter to your school’s principal and include your district’s Director of Special Education Services. It is important to obtain proof of delivery, because the process is time-sensitive. That is to say, if you bring the letter to your child’s school, have the office sign and date saying they got it. Send postal-delivered letters via registered mail, return-receipt requested; sending a copy to the district and the school. In either case, make sure you confirm that your letter was sent and received.

special education evaluation iepYour letter should ask for a comprehensive assessment and give your permission to complete it. In your letter, explain the challenges your child is having. You may also choose to include some details you know about the evaluation process. For example, the timeline or that the testing is free to you.

Below is a sample letter that may help give you some ideas on what to write.

If you complete an Evaluation for Special Education with your district and everything works out, great! Unfortuntely, you may find their results to be incorrect or incomplete. In this case, you can request an Independent Educational Evaluation (IEE). Not sure what an IEE is or how to ask for one. Come back Saturday for part 3 of this 4-part blog series! Not sure what an IEP is or if your child may need one? You may want to read Part One in this blog series: What is an IEP and Does My Child Need One?

Sample Request for Evaluation for Special Education

School Principal
Name of School 
City, State, Zip

Re: Educational Evaluation Request for Child’s Name, age (DOB), grade


Dear (Mr., Mrs., or Dr.) Last Name:

Please accept this letter as our formal request for an evaluation of our son/daughter, CHILD’s NAME, for his/her eligibility for special education services and/or Section 504 accommodations.

We are requesting this evaluation because…BRIEFLY include 2-3 sentences that summarizing your concerns that are leading you to request this help for your child. Examples include:

  • Jason has trouble focusing and following directions in class. This impacts his ability to learn information being presented and the quality of his work. As a result, he is failing all of his classes.
  • Maya has difficulty summarizing and answering questions regarding material she has read. She spends more than double the amount of time studying than would be expected for the amount of work she has to complete. Still, she struggles to maintain her grades, understand, and remember information she has learned.

Please complete a comprehensive special education assessment including, but not limited to cognitive, academic, social and emotional, speech and language, occupational, and/or any additional tests the district deems appropriate to examine our son/daughter.

We would like to meet with the examiners before our child’s testing, to provide information on our child that may be helpful in the assessment process. As I understand my rights under IDEA, you have 60 days to complete this evaluation and provide me with your decision regarding my child’s eligibility. I further understand that this evaluation will be provided to me at no charge.

It is imperative that we move forward quickly, as our son/daughter is currently experiencing difficulties in school. Therefore, this letter is intended to serve as our written permission for the educational assessments we are requesting to be completed.

Thank you for your attention to this matter. If you need any additional information from us, please let us know.


Mike and Carol Brady

cc: NAME, Director of Special Education, Name of school district (Do not just put this, remember to send them a copy)

You may also choose to GO HERE to see a sample of this letter formatted for sending.

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