What is the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)?
IDEA is a federal law that requires school districts to provide a “free appropriate public education” to eligible children with disabilities. A free appropriate public education means that special education and related services are to be provided as described in an Individualized Education Program (IEP) and under public supervision to your child at no cost to you.
What is the Notice of Procedural Safeguards?
This information provides you as parents, legal guardians, and surrogate parents of children with disabilities from three (3) years of age through age twenty-one (21) and students who have reached age eighteen (18), the age of majority, with an overview of your educational rights or procedural safeguards.
The Notice of Procedural Safeguards is required under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (in English, referred to as IDEA) and must be provided to you:
• When you ask for a copy
• The first time your child is referred for a special education assessment
• Each time you are given an assessment plan to evaluate your child
• Upon receipt of the first state or due process complaint in a school year, and
• When the decision is made to make a removal that constitutes a change of placement
May I participate in decisions about my child’s education?
You must be given opportunities to participate in any decision-making meeting regarding your child’s special education program. You have the right to participate in IEP team meetings about the identification (eligibility), assessment, or educational placement of your child and other matters relating to your child’s free and appropriate public education.
Where can I get more help?
When you have a concern about your child’s education, it is important that you contact your child’s teacher or administrator to talk about your child and any problems you see. Staff members in your school district or Special Education Local Plan Area (SELPA) may answer questions about your child’s education, your rights, and procedural safeguards. Also, when you have a concern, this informal conversation often solves the problem and helps to maintain open communication.
Included below is a complete copy of the North Orange County SELPA and the Lowell Joint School District Notice to Parent/Guardian/Surrogate – Notice of Procedural Safeguards.