Two new resources to assist families better understand the admission, review, and dismissal (ARD) process and their rights under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) have been developed by the Texas Education Agency (TEA).
A GUIDE TO THE ADMISSION, REVIEW, AND DISMISSAL PROCESS
A Guide to the Admission, Review, and Dismissal Process is a resource to help parents and families of students who are, or may be, eligible for special education supports and services take a more active part in planning their student’s educational program. This guide, written in English and Spanish
TEA has provided Cypress-Fairbanks I.S.D. with enough copies of A Guide to the Admission, Review, and Dismissal Process for each family to receive a copy. Prior to the week of February 3, 2003, copies of this document will be given to parents at their student’s ARD meeting. During the week of February 3, 2003, a copy will be sent home in the backpacks of elementary students whose families have not yet received a copy of this guide. For those secondary students whose families and/or adult students, who have not received this guide, a copy will be mailed home prior to February 28, 2003.
A copy of the guide will also be given to parents who have a student referred for special education testing.
The Procedural Safeguards document addresses the specific rights and responsibilities of the parent in the special education process under the IDEA. The document, written in English and Spanish, defines common terms and explains specific rights related to activities and areas that impact a student’s educational program and services.
Parents will receive a copy of the Procedural Safeguards at with the following activities:
The Procedural Safeguards are being sent home with ARD notices now. During the week of February 3, 2003, a copy will be sent home in the backpacks of elementary students whose families have not yet received a copy of the Procedural Safeguards. For secondary students’ families and/or adult students who have not received the Procedural Safeguards, a copy will be mailed home prior to February 28, 2003. For more information on these two resources, contact your campus diagnostician.
ARD: The letters stand for Admission, Review, & Dismissal committee. This is the name of the committee responsible for making the educational decisions for a student. The parents, or adult students, are members of the ARD committee.
IEP: The letters stand for Individual Education Plan. This is the plan written by the ARD Committee and describes the services that a student will receive from special education.
Scheduling an ARD Meeting
When is an ARD meeting necessary?
An ARD is needed for initial placement or any time the school staff or parents feel a change is needed in a student’s special education program. The IEP must be reviewed at least once a year, but an ARD meeting may be held at other times. For example, an ARD will need to be held to review additional assessment.
When is written notice required for an ARD meeting?
Parents are entitled to receive their written notice at least five school days before the meeting is scheduled to take place.
When may the requirement for written notice be waived?
Sometimes it might be necessary to have an ARD meeting without waiting for the written notice but such situations should not happen very often. This usually happens if there is an emergency but parents can refuse to waive the notice requirement.
Can an ARD meeting be held without the parent?
Parents are strongly encouraged to attend and be involved in their child’s ARD meeting. Great efforts are made to schedule the ARDs during times that are convenient to both the parents and the school. In cases where the parents can not attend, they usually have given permission for the school to proceed without them.
Participants of the ARD Meeting
At a minimum, the committee must include the following:
Participants should have some knowledge of the child to be discussed or some other involvement in the decisions being considered.
DURING THE ARD
Assessment Reports Discussed
The special education assessment reports are the basis for making all decisions in the ARD committee meeting. The reports describe the individual student’s educational competencies and needs as well as recommendations. A comprehensive individual assessment must be done at least every three years.
If the parents have testing from other professionals, it is a good practice to share the information with school personnel prior to an ARD in order for them to understand the information and consider it at the ARD.
The minutes are not a transcript or word-for-word account; they are a summary of the issues and questions raised and discussed during the meeting. These notes definitely should include:
An ARD meeting may be taped by the school district, the parents, or the student, as long as the participants in the meeting are informed that a tape is being made.
An ARD report should be an objective and full account of the business conducted in the meeting.
Signing the Forms
The goal of the ARD is to have parents and school personnel feel like equal partners in developing the IEP.
The ARD forms include a signature page where the participants sign that they participated in the meeting. They also indicate whether they agree or disagree with the decisions. When the parents disagree with the IEP, they will be offered the chance for a recess of the meeting for not more than 10 days, during which all members will have the opportunity to get additional information they might need in order to reach an agreement. Before the ARD ends, members should agree on a time to reconvene.
Parents in our district receive a copy of the ARD papers.
INTERPRETER (IF NEEDED)
I. REVIEW OF ASSESSMENT DATA
II. DETERMINATION OF ELIGIBILITY
DISCUSS/DEVELOP BEHAVIOR INTERVENTION PLAN FOR STUDENTS NOT ABLE TO FOLLOW THE CODE OF CONDUCT
ITP SUPPLEMENT COMPLETED (8TH-12TH)
IV. DETERMINATION OF SERVICES TO BE PROVIDED
V. DETERMINATION OF PLACEMENT
VI. EXTENDED YEAR SERVICES
VII. GRADUATION (8TH-12TH)
VIII. LEAST RESTRICTIVE ENVIRONMENT
XI. (INITIAL CONSENT AT INITIAL ARDS)