Special Education Pre-Referral Process

In compliance with Federal and State Law, if a student shows signs of having a learning disability or condition, including speech challenges, which negatively affects his/her ability to work at grade level, the parent or teacher should initiate a pre-referral process, which usually takes 6-8 weeks of documented intervention, observation, evaluation, tracking, and monitoring.

The 6-8 week process for IEP/504 consideration includes formal interventions, testing and assessments, observations, tracking, and monitoring student progress. This thorough process aims to determine if it's a learning disability or some other factor that needs to be addressed (like curriculum choice).

Before beginning, please keep three important notes in mind:

  1. If the full IEP/504 team’s evaluation and assessment process determines that the current curriculum choice being used in a student’s personalized education program is in any way a factor in his/her difficulty to progress at grade level, the student may be required to choose different curriculum providers for core subjects (i.e., K12 Virtual, BYU Independent Study, Edgenuity, etc.).

  2. Services or accommodations outlined in an approved IEP/504 Plan are intended to provide the student tools and strategies to support the student’s progress in general education curriculum (not replace it). IEPs do not alter the state’s high school diploma requirements (nor other program requirements).

  3. The goal of any IEP / Special Ed Services is to help students get to a point (ideally within 3 years of a heavy, initial focus) where they are able to appropriately learn how to deal with their disability so that it no longer inhibits their ability to access regular General Ed curriculum.

Ready to move forward? Please do the following:

  1. Begin collecting student work samples over 3-4 weeks that clearly demonstrate his/her inability to progress at grade level and scan/save them all electronically as a .pdf or .png into a shareable folder (i.e., Google Drive, Dropbox, etc.).

  2. At this time, also begin a formal Monitoring Journal (in digital format) where you record observations of the student during academic study times over 3-4 weeks. Be sure to document the date and time of each observation and, when done, add a copy to the shared folder.

  3. Once you’ve started collecting work samples and begun the Monitoring Journal, email Heather Lessley (sped@mytechhigh.com) with a link to the shared folder for initial review. Heather will then send you instructions on how to log in to a digital learning and assessment tool called iReady (or Study Island), which you will use with your student for at least 5 weeks for both Math and Language Arts.

  4. Be sure to add any other related assessments, notes, commentary, or evaluations into the shared folder for the Special Ed team to review.

  5. Heather will then review all the supporting data and reach out to arrange for more assessments and/or additional video observations (as needed) before submitting a formal referral request to the Special Ed Director at the student’s School of Enrollment.

  6. When appropriate, the school’s Special Ed team will convene an IEP/504 Plan eligibility review meeting to which the parent will also be invited.