Referral is the first step leading towards Special Education Services. All referrals are made in writing. They are made either to the District or through a student’s existing school, depending on the child’s enrollment status in Seattle Public Schools. A parent, guardian, teacher or other individual knowledgeable about that child may initiate the referral. When a referral is made, the District must act within twenty-five school days to make a decision about whether or not to evaluate for eligibility.

Materials that may be used to determine whether to evaluate include:

  • Medical, therapy, or school records
  • Report cards or other progress reports
  • Teacher, parent, or provider information
  • Other assessments

Parents/guardians must consent before any records not internal to Seattle Public Schools are shared with the District.

During the referral period, if a meeting is held, the parents/guardians will be invited. The recommendation regarding evaluation will be provided to parents/guardians in the form of Prior Written Notice. If the evaluation is denied, the parents/guardians will be notified of the reason.

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