Below is a simplified list of 15 steps to take, questions to ask to get your child correct dyslexia instruction at school. More resources can be found in the Documents & Links page, and some relevant documents are linked in the following steps.
It is the obligation of Conroe ISD to adhere to the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, also known as IDEA.
It is the obligation of Conroe ISD to meet federal law to provide every student with a Free Appropriate Public Education, also known as FAPE.
It is the obligation of Conroe ISD to meet federal Law to identify every child suspected of having a disability, also known as “Child Find.”
But we as parents are the ones with the burden of enforcing these laws. It is only with the knowledge of how this system works that you can ensure your child receives appropriate dyslexia intervention at school, at any grade level.
1. Request your child’s academic record, this can be done through your principal or, through the CISD Records Department. You do not have to pay to have access to your own child's academic records. If a charge is accessed you can choose to come into the office/campus to review the records instead. You can then scan documents with your cell phone for free.
2. Start keeping a record of all communications you have with your school. See Organizing your child's file.
3. Request a Full Individual Evaluation (FIE) for your child in writing. A dyslexia evaluation alone does not find the strengths and weaknesses of your child and is not completed by a licensed professional that can make a diagnosis of your child. A Licensed Specialist in School Psychology (LSSP), or Diagnostician will complete this eval under IDEA law guidelines. See FIE Request Format, Your Rights for an FIE, and What is SPED.
4. You will be provided with Procedural Safeguards and Parent’s Guide to the ARD Process after making this request, read them. They are important.
5. Review the 2018 Texas Dyslexia Handbook. This is the Texas Education Agency (TEA) guidelines provided to all districts on dyslexia services.
6. Ask to review your FIE before the ARD meeting. The LSSP alone cannot determine if your child qualifies for Special Education (SPED) and this cannot be determined before the ARD meeting (see Parent’s Guide to ARD pg. 4)
7. Do not make any agreements on the phone or have discussions with staff or administrators before your ARD or 504 meeting. All info should be reviewed with you formally at your meeting.
8. You can audio record all ARD and 504 meetings. You can do this yourself with a phone app and also ask that the ARD facilitator record the meeting. Also, you do not have to sign anything at the ARD meeting. You have 1 day to review the information before you have to make a decision.
9. If your child is denied SPED services for dyslexia, you can request an Independent Individual Evaluation (IEE) which the school will pay for from an independent LSSP or LP. The district will pay for the evaluation and you do not have to pay any upfront charges. Also, check with the LP to make sure that CISD has not placed a limit on the scope of his/her independent evaluation. (See Procedural Safeguards pg. 4). See Letter Requesting Full IEE and IEE - BAUS letter.
10. The ARD meeting will determine your child’s Individualized Education Program (IEP). See TEA Guidelines for the IEP, Dyslexia/Dysgraphia
11. For all parents with kids in any dyslexia program. Find out what program is being used! Make sure you are being offered a program which meets the Guidelines of the Texas Dyslexia Handbook. Computerized programs do not meet the handbook guidelines. See Questions to ask Standardized Dyslexia Instruction.
13. For the dyslexia program being provided, request results of all unit tests and passing measures. Request attendance records to see that your child is receiving their intervention with fidelity.
14. If your child is not progressing as expected in a “standardized dyslexia program” start from the top of this list again and request special education.
15. The TEA and Federal Guidance Letters dispel much misinformation that may be provided to you and can back up your position with staff members.