Special Education Information
Referral, Assessment and IEP Team MeetingThe Sacramento County Office of Education and the public school districts within Sacramento County have programs for any child from birth to age twenty-two with special education needs. The districts cooperate with local agencies to identify students with special needs. Anyone in the community who knows of any child with special education needs should contact their neighborhood school to ask about programs and services. Staff at the schools will assist the parent(s) in determining whether a special education referral, testing and/or services are needed. In addition, the County Office of Education or any of the school districts offices can be contacted regarding special education.
Before a child can receive special education services, an assessment of the child's needs must be conducted. Written parental consent is required before the assessment can begin. Following assessment of the student, an Individual Education Program (IEP) team meeting will be conducted to review the results of the testing and to determine whether the student is eligible for special education. Special education services may be provided in the general education classroom, resource room, special education class or special education school. In rare cases, a non-public placement may be required. Parents may not seek reimbursement for placing their child in a non-public program unless they provide the district with a minimum of 10 (ten) days notice of their intent to do so. However, parents may place their child in a non-public school without seeking reimbursement anytime they wish. Students placed in private schools by their parents still have a right to receive some special education services.
Federal and state laws provide that any individual, public agency or organization may file a written complaint with the State Superintendent of Public Instruction alleging a school district has failed to follow laws governing special education and related services.
If parents believe that their child's special education program rights may have been violated, they are encouraged to contact their school district's special education department. The parent may also contact the County Office of Education or the California Department of Education Complaint Division at (800) 926-0648 or (916) 445-4632. All complaints must be in writing.
Parents who disagree with the district's identification, assessment or provision of a free and appropriate public education for an individual with special needs have the right to request a due process hearing. Directions for requesting a due process hearing are available at the special education office of each school district. In addition, directions for requesting a due process hearing are contained in special education parent handbooks. Additional parent rights are distributed at the time of a special education referral, assessment or at meetings of the IEP team. Directions for requesting a due process hearing are also available by contacting special education staff at the neighborhood school.
Last Modified on March 27, 2020