Parents tell us...
"I have had to learn how to advocate for my daughter and learn how to talk to the school to get her what she needs. Sometimes it feels like a new language. Luckily, the teachers want her to succeed too."
"Because he is quiet, teachers sometimes forget him, I have to speak up or he will be ignored."
"My first IEP meeting was insane! I had no idea there would be so many people there."
Special health needs and school
Your child may need help to succeed in school. If so, there are many people who can help you understand how special education works in Oregon. Parents of children in special education recommend that you learn about the rights your child has. You may also need to learn about Individual Education Plans (IEPs) for school-age children and youth up to age 22, or 504 Plans, which provide educational rights for students with certain health conditions.
All of Oregon's public school districts have a process for evaluating students for special education. If you have concerns, talk to your child's teacher and write a letter or email to your local school district. Ask them to test your child. Students with medical conditions, like diabetes or asthma may need extra support in order to attend school. Request in writing that the school work with you to create a 504 plan. You can also request a functional behavioral assessment if your child is being sent to the office or you are being called to pick them up frequently because of behaviors.
Communicating Well with Your School toolkit can help you get started.
Most of our kids attend the neighborhood school along with their peers. But sometimes a different setting is needed. Below is information about some options:
Options for ill or hospitalized children
Special Education Rights and Supports
FACT Oregon: Support around special education rights and planning
Understood.org: Learning your child's basic rights toolkits
Wrights Law: Wright's Law topics A-Z
Steps to Success: Communicating Well with Your Child's School
Special education grievances
Twice-exceptional (intellectually gifted students experiencing a disability)
Many students who are twice-exceptional have a delayed identification. Their disability might be hidden by their intelligence, or their disability could hide their giftedness. Many love to learn, but are not fond of school.
Oregon Department of Education: FAQs about Talented and Gifted Education
Sen Gifted.org: Is My Child Gifted? Checklist
Davidson Gifted.org: Articles on intellectually gifted students who experience a disability