The special education law tasks all public school districts with actively seeking out children with special education needs. The law specifically states, “the District’s obligation [is] to actively and systematically seek out all individuals with exceptional needs, from birth to 21 years of age, inclusive, including children not enrolled in public school programs, who reside in a school district or are under the jurisdiction of a special education local plan area or a county office of education.” This section of the law creates an obligation on the part of the school district to seek out even those children who are transient, homeless, enrolled in private school, reside in the foster care system or are living in any other set of circumstances within their district.
As such, a parent or legal guardian has no obligation to request or inquire with the school district regarding their child’s eligibility for special education. A parent who does not realize that there may be an issue, or recognize the signs of a child’s special needs, cannot be penalized for not bringing the situation to the attention of the district in which they reside. The burden of identification remains with the district, administration and teachers, to actively seek out children with special needs and refer them for an evaluation and assistance.
In the event that you are concerned whether your child is eligible for special education law services, please contact The Southern California Law Office.
Call: (858) 215-4231