Special Needs Children: What Qualifies a Child for Special Education

Trying to figure out what qualifies a child for special education?

Not sure exactly how to determine if your child is eligible?

Well, in this article we will take a look at everything you need to know, in order to help your child receive special education, if he needs it.

Keep reading to inform yourself of the 13 categories of IDEA, the evaluation and eligibility process, and much more.

Special Needs: Overview

A special needs child is a youth who has been evaluated and determined to be of the requirement for special attention and accommodations, which other children are not needed in.

Each state declares the status of special needs for the purposes of offering various assistance and benefits to support the well-being and growth of the child.

Special needs can also be legal identification, for locales of foster care of adoption, where both the child and legal guardian will receive support to help them lead fulfilling and productive lifestyles.

What Qualifies a Child for Special Education?

In the cases of classifying and qualifying a child for special education, there are various impairments and conditions that partake in the process. These can include terminal and chronic illnesses, cognitive impairments, and physical issues.

Medical attention and assistance that is required to improve the quality of life for a special needs child add-up and can quickly become expensive. The extent of a condition can account for over-extensive medical support to allow a child to thrive.

They might or might not need to be monitored regularly, in case that the ailments become worse. Support equipment may be needed to provide mobility to the child, and support animals can also be used to assist the child in therapy.

Let’s take a look at the 13 categories that fit in the IDEA (Nation’s Special Education Law), which allow your child to be evaluated later for special education.

  1. Intellectual impairment or disability
  2. Hearing disability (including deafness)
  3. Speech or language disabilities
  4. Visual disabilities (including blindness)
  5. Serious emotional impairment
  6. Orthopedic disabilities
  7. Autism
  8. Traumatic brain disability or injury
  9. Various other health impairments
  10. Specific learning impairments

Nonetheless, the presence of one of these disabilities – does not mean your child qualifies for special education. To become eligible, a child must:

  1. Have a disability from the list.
  2. And as a result of the disability need special education to make progress in school.

The Process of Evaluation

If you, teachers, or anyone else notices that your child is having a hard time at school can request an educational evaluation. No matter who requests the evaluation, the school will need your permission to proceed further.

Conditions like ADHD are not learning ailment but can interfere with traditional education. The condition is diagnosed by an expert or doctor, and not a school. If you think this is your situation, you can prove the diagnosis by presenting documentation to the school.

Nonetheless, the school will most likely perform their own evaluation to gather additional information that you cannot provide.

In most cases, the school educators and psychologist will provide your child with tests, and proceed with a review of records. In conjunction with classroom observance.

The evaluation will be completed by an evaluator who will write up a report. It will include the various scores, summary, and recommendations for assisting your child. You will have a meeting with the team to take a look at the results.

The most important finding will be a determination of your child being or not being troubled with a disability from the IDEA category list.

If your child has a different condition, which is not listed – but makes learning tedious, it might be covered by the “other health impairment” criteria of the IDEA.

If the evaluation results in your child proving eligibility for special education, you will proceed to the next phase. If not, there are other options for you to consider.

For example, you can work with a special education attorney, who will help you stand up for your child and help him receive the care and special education that he needs. Get more information about this here.

Determining Eligibility

If the school determined that your child will be needing assistance and services, the next phase will be an IEP (Individualized Education Program) creation.

Nonetheless, if your child has an IDEA disability, they might not still be eligible. The school will determine whether the disability is keeping the child from learning properly in a regular education classroom. Only, in that case, the school will not provide special education.

With the completion of an IEP, you can proceed with helping your child integrate into the new form of education, which will help them excel, and not stagnate in learning.

Whatever phase of the process you are in, knowledge is critical to the success of your child. So it’s best that you educate yourself on your responsibilities, rights, and other options you can take to help your child acquire special education.

A Look at Special Considerations

A special needs child will require some sort of alternative approach to accommodate their trouble with traditional learning, which will help them to create and further the development of their own learning and potentiated capacity.

For example, a child with a physical disability or verbal communication troubles might need to be trained in a specific way, to help them apply new skills in the class, and real-world scenarios.

Or if a child has a cognitive impairment, the education system will look for methods to get through to the child and help connect with them.

Public education is open to everyone, but not all teachers are trained to present their education material to everyone, in order to accommodate for special needs children. This means that you might need to acquire private lessons, special ed classrooms, or address their education in some other form.

The Bottom Line

Now that you understand the process behind what qualified a child for special education, you are well on your way to helping your child play to his strengths, and acquire the special assistance that will help him thrive and grow in this world.

The bottom line is:

  1. The definition of special needs covers a wide variety of elements, illnesses, disabilities.
  2. Guardians and parents can receive tax credits and deductions to help manage the costs of raising a special needs child.
  3. Some special needs children can go to a regular school if they offer various emotional support and educational programs.

For similar topics, check out our other blogs.

Good luck!