Evaluations are the first step in getting your child the help he needs to learn and progress in school. The evaluation tells you and the teachers what your child needs to learn and how he may learn. This information is then used to build an Individualized Education Program or IEP.
The IEP states exactly what your child's special education should look like - whether it will take place in a general education classroom, what services will be given, when and how often they will be provided, and what will be taught. If it is found that your child is eligible for special education services, you will be asked to attend an IEP meeting to discuss the evaluation results and to plan your child's educational program.
You and your child must be given choices when planning his IEP, such as the possibility of your child receiving special education or related services in a general education class (referred to as "Inclusive Education"). Inclusive Education should be your first choice, because it is the least restrictive environment for your child.
To find out more about the advantages of inclusive education, read the PBS Parents article, Inclusive Education..
Real Life Story: Learn how one child's evaluation set a new direction for his education.