Formal Identification Procedures

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Formal Identification Procedures

Students with learning disabilities are often not identified until after they have been admitted to DIPS-G. Consequently, the following five-step process is used at DIPS-G to determine eligibility for learning support services:

1 2 3 4 5
Referral to Student Support Team (SST) Evaluation and Determination of Eligibility Development of the IEP, Focus Report, or plan for Learning Support Services Implementation of the IEP, Focus Report, or Learning Support services SST Monitors Student Progress and Reviews Learning Support services

This process is described generally below. Flowcharts then follow for each phase that clarify unique differences for how identification procedures work in the Kindergarten, Elementary School, Middle School, and High School at DIPS-G.


Referral to Student Support Team (SST)

  • Each Phase has a SST, which consists of the phase leader, SEND teachers, and counselors. Homeroom/classroom teachers are included on the SST on a case-by-case basis.
  • The SST will meet regularly to discuss the academic performance of students who are experiencing learning problems and have been referred to the SST.
  • When a student experiences learning or behavior difficulties, or has sensory, medical or physical needs, s/he may be referred by parents, counsellors, leaders, or teachers for an evaluation to determine eligibility for DIPS-G’s SEND program. This referral should be made to a counselor, who will represent the case on the SST.
  • One member of the SST will be designated as the Case Manager. The case manager will be the person primarily responsible for communicating with parents and coordinating conversation with other members of the SST.
  • When it receives a student referral, the SST conducts a review of a student’s academic and performance history, medical history, and (if appropriate) the principal or learning support teacher conducts a classroom observation in the area of concern.
  • SST members make recommendations for pre-referral interventions to immediately improve the student’s academic performance. The SST also begins to monitor the student’s progress and collect data for regular discussion.
  • If the student’s progress is adequate and the Tier 1 or Tier 2 interventions appear successful, the SST can determine that SEND support is not necessary.


Evaluation and Determination of Eligibility

  • If the student’s progress is not adequate (meeting grade level expectations for success), the SST may begin a comprehensive evaluation to determine eligibility for special education programs and related services.
  • When Tier 1 and Tier 2 interventions have been attempted, but they do not sufficiently address the child’s needs, members of the SST will meet with the student’s parents to review why they believe a comprehensive evaluation is necessary and how it will benefit the child. Members of the SST share information with parents about qualified professionals who can assess their child. They further suggest a timeline for completing the assessment.
  • Parents schedule their child’s assessment with a qualified psychologist.
  • Once assessment is complete, parents share written documents with the SST. Members of the SST may also contact the psychologist, with parental consent, to discuss the child’s assessment, as necessary.
  • The SST meets to evaluate the student’s eligibility and determine his or her level of special education program and related services.
  • Members of the SST meet with the student’s parents to share results of the evaluation and to explain the services they are recommending.


Development of the IEP, Focus Report, or plan for Learning Support Services

Students with formally diagnosed learning disabilities or special educational needs as identified by a doctor or educational psychologist will have an Individual Educational Plan (IEP) written for them that will help students, parents, SEND teachers, counselors, and administration identify:

  • Student and parent information including background information
  • Performance background for the student, including strengths and areas of concern
  • Classroom and testing accommodations. Accommodations are changes that do not alter what is being taught but include alterations of the environment, curriculum format, or equipment that allows an individual with a disability to gain access to content and/or complete assigned tasks.
  • Recommended therapies
  • Student goals, strategies, assessment and progress. The IEP will record only that which is different from or additional to the normal curriculum and will concentrate on several targets that closely match the student’s needs. The IEPs are discussed with the parent and the student, if appropriate.
  • IEPs are reviewed during the academic year as needed. The school endeavors to hold the reviews in an informal manner, and parents’ views on their child’s progress are actively sought. Wherever possible or appropriate, the school involves students in this process.


Implementation of the IEP, Focus Report, or Plan for Learning Support Services

  • Special education services are provided to students in accordance with the recommendations of the IEP, Focus Report, or plan for LS services.
  • An IEP should be implemented immediately following written parental approval, but within a one month period.


SST Monitors Student Progress and Reviews Learning Support Services

  • The IEP should be reviewed, and the student’s progress monitored closely by the SST.
  • During the first three months, SST members and teachers may be reconvened to review the progress.
  • The SST schedules an annual review report of all Learning Support services and makes recommendations for the next school year.