How to request an evaluation for suspected learning disability:
Wisconsin DPI Model Notice to Parents and Individuals Required to Make Referrals
Is parent notification or consent required for Multilevel System of Support (MLSS) or Response to Intervention (RtI)?
WI DPI Guidance: Consent and Notification in a Multilevel System of Support (Response to Intervention): Frequently Asked Questions & Definitions No. Federal and state law, administrative rules, and guidance are generally silent regarding the need to provide notification or obtain consent from parents regarding the continuum of instructional supports within the general education curriculum. Notification or consent is not necessary to provide additional or intensified instructional supports or challenges in the general education setting and to determine how students are responding to those supports or challenges. Schools are encouraged to include parent perspectives when adopting curriculum, as well as when determining supports for a particular child.
RTI (Response to Intervention) used to delay suspected learning disability evaluation
Federal Guidance: Office of Special Education Guidance (OSEP) Guidance. 01/21/11
More recent guidance relating to Preschools 4/29/2016.
Parent Tip: If you believe your student was denied an evaluation for a suspected learning disability, you can file a formal complaint under under 34 CFR §300.507 or a State complaint under 34 CFR §300.153
WI Early literacy grades 4K-2
Reading Readiness Screening Requirements:
Current WI State Statute: Wis. Stat. 118.016 Assessment of Reading Readiness requires literacy screening for phonemic awareness and letter sound knowledge.
WI DPI Guidance: Assessment of Reading Readiness FAQ states that assessments are required to be appropriate, valid and reliable indicators of literacy fundamentals which evaluate whether pupils possess phonemic awareness and letter sound knowledge.
Questions to ask your school:
Which assessment the school is using to meet Reading Readiness statutory requirements and the frequency of the testing?
How often is the assessment being performed?
How does the school determine if a student is “at risk”?
Ask for your student’s reading assessment scores and how your student compares to other students in that grade.
Reading Readiness Reporting Requirements:
Current WI State Statute: Wis. Stat. 118.016 requires parent notification. There are no other reporting requirements to WI DPI or the WI legislature.
WI DPI Guidance: According to Assessment of Reading Readiness FAQ, the statute does require that the results of the assessment be shared with parents or guardians. Districts can choose their preferred method of communicating these results to parents/guardians. No timeframe is given in which parents must be notified.
Parent Tip: Most WI schools are assessing reading readiness three (3) times per year. Request in writing your student’s assessment scores and have the school explain how your student compares to other students in that grade.
Services for Students found at risk:
Current WI State Statute: Wis. Stats. 118.016 and Wis. Stats. 121.02(1)(c) Schools and districts are required to provide interventions or remedial services.
WI DPI Guidance: Schools and districts are required to provide interventions or remedial services. Wis. Stats. 118.016 and Wis. Stats. 121.02(1)(c) state that the interventions or services provided to the student shall be scientifically based, and shall address all areas in which the student is deficient, in a manner consistent with the state standards in reading and language arts.
Parent tip: All assessments given by the schools have a benchmark determining at what percentile a student is determined to be “at risk”. Ask for your student’s assessment benchmark scores and publisher’s range for students determined “at risk”.
WI DPI recently created the Foundational Reading Skills Tool (FRST) for schools to evaluate literacy instruction for grades K-2. Make sure your school is using literacy instruction which meets WI DPI’s guidance on explicit and systematic foundational reading skills.