Evaluation Requirements

The team then meets to determine what additional testing must be done. The 2014 NH Rules for the Education of Children with Disabilities (PDF) lays out guidelines as to who is considered qualified to diagnose specific categories of disabilities. They also lay other evaluation requirements including that:

  • Evaluations must be nondiscriminatory and generally in the child’s native language or otherboy on benchmode of communication. They are to be provided and administered in the language and form most likely to yield accurate information on what the child knows and can do, academically and functionally
  • Tests must be validated, selected and administered to accurately reflect what the test measures, not the child’s impaired skills, unless that is the purpose of the test
  • Children are to be assessed in all areas of suspected disabilities
  • A single procedure may not be used to determine eligibility or an appropriate educational program; a variety of assessment tools and strategies, including information from the parents, are to be used
  • The child’s present levels of academic achievement and related developmental needs are to be assessed
  • Evaluations must identify all of the child’s special education and related service needs, whether or not commonly linked to the child’s disabilities
  • Evaluation materials must assess specific areas of educational need and not merely provide a single general intelligence quotient
  • In NH, teachers or other specialists who are participating in the evaluation must be certified or licensed for each disability suspected
  • Tests are to be administered in accordance with the test instructions by certified or licensed personnel
  • If an assessment is not conducted under standard conditions (ex: portions of the test were read aloud to the student), a description of how it varied must be included in the evaluation report.
  • If vocational education is being considered, a vocational evaluator must conduct an assessment
  • For students suspected of having a specific learning disability, an observation of the student’s academic performance in the regular classroom setting must be conducted and a written report developed
  • In determining whether a child has a learning disability, a LEA may use either the “discrepancy” model (identifying whether a significant discrepancy exists between the student’s ability and achievement), or they may use a process to determine if the child responds to scientific, research-based interventions.