Before any evaluation, a Review of Existing Evaluation Data (REED) must be completed to determine which specific evaluations, if any, are needed.
A REED helps schools decide whether current information in your child’s school file can be used to determine your child’s eligibility for special education. A REED does not have to take place in a meeting. However, it must involve an ARD committee (this includes you, a district representative and other qualified professionals).
- Evaluations and information provided by the parent and other programs (for example, early childhood programs);
- Observations made by teachers and specialists (for example, speech therapists, Classroom-based, local, or state assessments, and classroom-based observations;
- Response to interventions and support services like tutorial, remedial, compensatory, and other services.
This is a good time to share information about your child’s strengths, challenges and interests. You may want to write this information down and attach it to the consent. Sharing this information with the evaluators ahead of time helps the evaluators decide which test, testing items, and accommodations to use, and what changes to make at the evaluation. As a result, the evaluators will be better prepared and can give a better picture of your child.
You should note that a REED is NOT an evaluation. A REED is the starting point of any evaluation.
Based on the review of the existing evaluation data, along with input from you, the ARD Committee must identify any additional information needed to determine:
- Whether your child is or continues to be “a child with a disability” and the educational needs of your child;
- Whether your child needs or continues to need special education and related services;
- The present levels of academic achievement and functional performance of your child (PLAAFP); and
- Whether any additions or modifications to the special education and related services are needed to enable your child to meet the measurable annual goals set out in his or her IEP and to participate, as appropriate, in the general education curriculum.
If the ARD Committee determines that no additional data are needed beyond the REED to complete the evaluation, the parents must be notified in writing of this decision and the reasons for the determination (see Procedural Safeguards). At this point, the school is only required to proceed with further testing at the parents’ request. Therefore, parents should make any requests for further assessment in writing and in a timely manner.
If the school decides not to evaluate:
If the school decides not to evaluate, the school must inform you in writing of the school’s refusal. This is called prior written notice. Parents must also be informed in writing when/if the school:
- decides to do a screening, or
- proposes to provide more intensive instruction instead of an evaluation.
If the school decides not to evaluate your child and you do not agree with that decision, you have due process rights. Filing a complaint with the Texas Education Agency (TEA) or requesting mediation are some of those rights. For information on your options, please see “Dispute Resolution”.
What parents need to remember:
- Always keep copies of ALL written documents for your records.
- You should be part of the Review of Existing Evaluation Data (Reed), if one is done, as part of an initial evaluation.
- You have the right to ask what examinations or tests will be used and how they will be used to develop the individualized education program (IEP).
- The school must send you a written notice when they recommend AND decline a Full Initial and Individual Evaluation or suggest a screening instead of a FIE.
- The school must have your written consent before completing any evaluation.
- You have due process rights in every step of the special education process.
Texas Education Agency Review of Existing Evaluation FAQs
Legal Framework for the Child Centered Process:
Evaluation Procedures – From the TARGET Manual by the Texas Statewide Leadership for Autism – While the information provided is specific in relation to students with autism, ANY parent can use the information to learn about the variety of assessments available.