Special Education Due
Process Workshop
Evaluation Reports
Writing the Educational
Interpretation of
Evaluation Results
Evaluation Reports
 Please take the “Evaluation/Reevaluation Report” handout as a
reference for writing evaluation reports
 Today’s focus will be on the “Educational
Needs” and “Interpretation of Evaluation
Results” sections. This PowerPoint is
designed to be an interactive
experience. Most of the teaching will be
accomplished through examples.
What is the goal
of the In-service?
To provide training to assure
that evaluation reports
throughout the district will be
completed in a consistent
manner and comply with state
Why these two sections?
These two sections of the
Evaluation Report were chosen to
work with first, based on survey
feedback from staff at the end of
last year.
These two sections also showed the
greatest amount of variability
among programs and sites
throughout the district.
First, a caveat…
 The examples used today are pulled from
a variety of districts, programs, and
locations. The examples used were
chosen because they reflect patterns
noted in #287 evaluations.
 Confidentiality has been observed. The
examples are intended to be used as
learning experiences. The real-life
examples were chosen because they
represent typical areas of concern and
were not unique to any one individual.
The “Educational
Needs” Section
Some definitions
To start
Educational Needs
Educational needs are based
on existing data reviewed,
current evaluation results
obtained, and the student’s
present levels of performance
based on that evaluation
Educational Needs
The Needs section flows from
the evaluation
(In other words, if it’s not in the
evaluation somewhere, don’t
put it in the Needs section!)
Needs, cont.
They are:
individually determined,
skills, behaviors or compensatory
strategies the student must learn
which cannot be mastered
without specialized instruction.
Needs, cont.
These educational needs identified
by the evaluation team will serve as
the underlying basis for the
student’s IEP goals and objectives.
The Needs section should flow into
the IEP goals and objectives.
Needs, cont.
They should:
Be specific statements
regarding educational needs
Need statements should be
thought of as statements that
address the following: “The
student needs to ______”
Needs, cont.
Using the
following verbs
will assure the
statements you
write will be
Needs, cont.
Educational needs are not:
specific educational materials (PECS,
Orton-Gillingham Reading Program,
Saxon Math)
specific educational methods (Visual
Schedules, Tactile-Kinesthetic
approach to learning)
specific types of special education
service. (OT, Social Work Services,
How are Needs different
than Accommodations?
Needs are student specific.
Accommodations are
additions or modifications to
either special education (or
general education) that are
required so that the student
can meet their goals.
Needs, cont.
Needs must be a part of the
Evaluation Report. Again, Needs
statements flow into the IEP goals.
Things that the program or staff will
do would flow into the
Accommodations section of the
IEP. These can be part of the
Evaluation Report, but should be
clearly separated from the Needs
Needs of the Student:
(where the student
needs to improve)
End up
being IEP
and goals
Program Needs:
what you will program
for the student
End up
Due Process
 When writing the Educational
Needs section, you should
separate student needs from
accommodations by doing the
Educational Needs
Student Needs:
Sally needs to increase her reading
comprehension and fluency.
Opportunities for daily fluency drill
with timed readings. Opportunities
to work in guided reading groups.
Do all needs identified
in the “Educational
Needs” section of the
report have to become
IEP goals/objectives?
No -- the IEP team
decides what
goals/objectives are
reasonable to
accomplish within the
year framework for the
Activity One:
In small groups, critique
the next 4 examples
and decide if they are
needs or
Activity One: Slide One
 Health: Lakreisha needs the
health office staff to be trained
to recognize and care for
asthma or any signs of
respiratory distress and to
administer a nebulizer if
Slide One: Answer
This is an accommodations
Activity One: Slide Two
 Academic: Jackson needs to
master the academic
readiness skills necessary for
math and reading. He needs
to learn letter sounds and how
to write them. He needs to
increase his rote counting and
recognition of numbers, as well
as his ability to write numbers.
Slide Two: Answer
 This is a needs statement.
Activity One: Slide Three
Gross Motor Skills: Maria
currently needs to improve her
ball handling skills in order to
participate in physical
education activities.
Slide Three: Answer
 This is a needs statement.
Activity One: Slide Four
Functional/Sensory: Renee
needs a quiet place to go to
engage in calming activities
when she’s experiencing
sensory overload.
Slide Four: Answer
This is an accommodations
Activity Two
Rate the quality of
the following
Activity Two: Directions
In small groups, rate the
following Educational Needs
1. Looks good.
2. So-so.
3. Needs help (how would you
fix it/make it better?)
Activity Two, A:
 Sherry needs more intensive,
specialized instruction to help her
improve her academic skills so she
is able to function more
independently in the classroom.
These skills include phonemic
awareness, blending and
decoding strategies, sight word
recognition, numeral awareness,
and basic calculation.
Activity Two, A: Answer
Rated as a 2 (so-so). The first
statement is an accommodation,
not a student need. The second
statement is the needs statement.
To make into a 1 (good) separate
the needs statements from the
accommodations statement.
Activity Two, B:
 The student continues to need
EBD services.
Activity Two, B: Answer
Rating: 3 (needs help)
Neither a need or an
accommodation, and would
not be in the needs section.
Can’t make it better, as it
shouldn’t be in this section!
Activity Two, C:
 Based on his recent BASC-2
scores, Tom needs Social Work
Activity Two, C: Answer
Rating: 3 (needs help)
How to make it better:
Tom needs to increase his calming
and coping skills.
(In this example, Social Work services
is a related service and would be
reflected as such in the IEP. Also,
don’t need to mention based on a
certain rating scale, such as the
Activity Two, D:
 Christopher needs to increase
his expressive functional
communication skills with peers
and adults.
Activity Two, D: Answer
Looks good!
Activity Two, E:
 Jessica will benefit from a
routine program. When
possible, she should be made
aware of changes in advance.
Activity Two, E: Answer
3 (needs help)
Not a need, but an
accommodation. Separate out as
an accommodation.
Would be better if written in more
definite language, for example,
instead of “will benefit” write “will
be provided with.”
Activity 2, F:
 Luis needs to improve his ontask behavior and work
Activity 2, F: Answer
Looks good!
(don’t need to be concerned
with how to make it
measurable until it becomes
an IEP goal or objective)
The “Interpretation of
Evaluation Results”
Some definitions and
descriptions to start
Interpretation Section =
Statements documenting the
team’s judgment regarding
determination of eligibility.
Eligibility Criteria:
 The following are the 14
Categorical Disabilities in
which criteria needs to be
addressed in the Interpretation
Eligibility Criteria: (cont.)
 Emotional or
Behavior Disorder
 Specific Learning
Disability (SLD)
 Autism Spectrum
Disorder (ASD)
 Developmental
Cognitive Disability
 Other Health
Disability (OHD)
 Physically Impaired
 Traumatic Brain
Injury (TBI)
 Blind-Visually
Impaired (B-VI)
 Deaf and Hard of
Hearing (D/HH)
 Developmental
Adapted Physical
Education (DAPE)
 Speech or
Impairments (SP/L)
 Developmental
Delay (DD)
 Deaf-Blind (D-B)
 Severely Multiply
Impaired (SMI)
The Interpretation Section
Eligibility determination must
be written for each disability
area evaluated (in other
words, the student’s primary,
secondary, etc.) addressing
the major criteria components.
For example:
if a student is identified as EBD
and Speech Language
Impairment, the evaluation
report must review how the
student met each major
criteria for EBD as well as at
least one of the four criteria for
The Interpretation Section
This section must include
verification that the student met
(or did not meet, in the case of an initial
evaluation where the student didn’t qualify)
the components of the eligibility
and a written summary of each
component of the eligibility criteria
as it applies to the particular
The criteria needing licensed special
education teachers/specialists
 Emotional or
Disorder (EBD)
 Developmental
Disability (DCD)
 Specific Learning
Disability (SLD)
 Physically
Impaired (PI)
 Blind-Visually
Impaired (B-VI)
 Deaf/Hard of
Hearing (D/HH
 Developmental
Adapted Physical
Education (DAPE)
 Speech or
Impairments (SP/L)
Others that need licensed staff with
“experience or expertise” in the area:
Disorder (ASD)
Traumatic Brain
Injury (TBI)
Other Health
Disability (OHD)
A Good Example of
EBD as primary: (next 5 slides)
(addresses each part of the MDE EBD
 Based on available information,
Dustin’s IEP team has determined
that he continues to qualify for
special education services under
the classification of EBD for the
following reasons:
EBD Example, cont.
 1. There is documentation that
Dustin displays aggressive,
hyperactive, and impulsive
behaviors that are
developmentally inappropriate, as
evidenced by verbally abusive
behaviors, and aggressive and
intimidating behaviors, as reflected
in the current data.
EBD Example, cont.
2. Dustin’s pattern of behaviors
adversely affects his
educational performance and
results in his having difficulty
demonstrating social
competence that is age
EBD Example, cont.
3. Documentation exists that
Dustin’s impairments affect the
areas of social skills,
academics, and interpersonal
relationships. Dustin’s
behaviors negatively affect his
educational progress.
EBD Example, cont.
 Information was collected
from standardized behavior
rating scales, standardized
cognitive measures,
standardized academic
measures, classroom
observations, review of
records, and a mental health
The Interpretation section
is not:
A summary of the individual testing
completed in the evaluation
A summary of all the scores
An interpretation of all the scores
(All of the above should be at the
end of their respective sections)
The Interpretation section
is not:
present levels of performance of
each of the areas evaluated or a
summary of each area.
a statement of placement or
a statement of the services the
student will receive.
a statement of the kind of
curriculum or methodology the
student might need.
 Do you need to include
eligibility checklists as part of a
It is not a requirement to include
the Eligibility Checklist (the
separate document in Easy IEP) in a
re-evaluation; however, it is never
wrong to do so.
A good strategy would be to
complete the Eligibility Checklist
first, print it out, and let that guide
the narrative writing of the
Interpretation section (do not need
to attach it to the report).
Two Places to Find the
Eligibility Criteria:
The Eligibility Checklists in Easy
The Minnesota Department of
Education Special Education
web page.
(see Appendix A for detailed
steps for getting this
Can the printed Eligibility
Checklist be used instead of
writing up supporting
statements in the Interpretation
section (the narrative writing of
the Interpretation section)?
 No!
It would not take the place of writing
out the team’s interpretation of
eligibility criteria/criterions (the
narrative writing of the
Interpretation section).
Activity Three
Rate the quality of
the following
Activity Three: Directions
In small groups, rate the
following Interpretation of
Evaluation Results statements:
1. Looks good.
2. So-so.
3. Needs help (how would you
fix it/make it better?)
Activity Three: A
(next two slides)
 The team has determined that
Sally’s services are appropriate and
should continue. She continues to
remain eligible for services through
the DCD program [in #287]. This
program continues to support her
cognitive, academic, and
functional needs. She will receive
communication, OT, and DAPE.
 Sally needs a continuation of
her multidisciplinary support
team, lower student to teacher
ratio, modified curriculum, and
individualized social,
emotional, and behavioral
A: Answer
3 - needs work
Not addressing the eligibility
Activity Three: B
 While administering the CTONI, Fred was cooperative
and respectful. He obtained a
Nonverbal IQ score of 95,
compared to a normed mean
of 100.
B: Answer
3 (needs help)
This information should stay at
the end of the intellectual
functioning section. This does
not address educational
classification criteria.
Activity Three: C
(next four slides)
 Sid’s team has determined the
educational classification of Severely
Multiply Impaired (SMI) best fits his current
level of needs and functioning. Sid is
eligible for the classification of SMI
because he met the entrance criteria for
two or more disabilities, and the team
decided that each was an equal
contributor to his lack of educational
 In Sid’s case, he qualifies
because he meets the
entrance criteria for Autism
and for Developmental
Cognitive Disabilities (DCD) Severe/Profound. The current
evaluation was used to obtain
information to qualify him for
 In this evaluation, Sid met eligibility
criteria for DCD Severe/Profound
due to scoring below the 15th
percentile in adaptive behavior at
home and school, documented
through parent and teacher ratings
on the Adaptive Behavior
Assessment System-II, and
 he demonstrates an extensive level
of needs and support across all
seven adaptive behavior domains.
And he exhibits significantly below
average intellectual functioning, as
evidenced by his scores on the
Wechsler Intelligence Scale, 3rd
Ed., in which he scored more than
three standard deviations below
the mean of the test.
C: Answer
Looks good - very complete.
Activity Three: D
 Based on the results of the above
measures, Don meets the
Minnesota criteria for Autism
Spectrum Disorders. He
demonstrates a qualitative
impairment in social interaction
and communication and has
restricted, repetitive or stereotyped
patterns of behavior, interests, and
D: Answer
2 (so-so)
It addresses item A in the ASD
criteria, but not item B.
To make it a 1 (good), discuss how
this particular student displays
“impairment in social interaction,
communication,” etc. (in this
particular example, this was
discussed under the Needs section,
so it would be more appropriate to
move to this section).
Activity Three: E
 Jasmine continues to need
special educational services in
a self-contained setting with
low student to teacher ratio.
E: Answer
3 - needs work
Doesn’t address the
educational classification
criteria. Statements of
placements do not go in this
Activity Three: F
1. Intellectual Functioning: Diana
has Down’s Syndrome and
functions in the severe DCD level.
She continues to qualify for
special education services.
2. Academic Performance:
Because of her cognitive
functioning level, Diana is
dependent on adults in this area.
F: Answer
3 (needs work)
Not addressing the criteria, just
summarizing the areas and
giving present level of
performance from areas
Activity Three: G
 Summary: Johnny is a 10-year
male student. He is currently in the
4th grade. Johnny receives special
education services for an Emotional
or Behavioral Disability (EBD). He
has received many medical
diagnosis, the most current of
which were Oppositional Defiant
Disorder (ODD), Posttraumatic
Stress Disorder, and ADHD.
G: Answer
3 - needs work
Not addressing the criteria
elements. Having information
about their current program and
psychiatric diagnoses does not
address current educational
disability designation or
classification criteria.
Activity Three: H
The multidisciplinary team
determined, through observation,
review of past evaluations,
checklists, interview with parents,
and review of educational criteria
for ASD, that Sam continues to be
eligible and in need of special
education instruction and related
services. The reassessment data
supports a qualitative impairment in
social interaction, the 1st core
feature of ASD (limited joint
attention, limited use of facial
expressions directed toward others,
significant vulnerability and safety
issues due to naiveté, and appears
to prefer isolated or solitary
activities). Sam also demonstrates
a qualitative impairment in
communication, the 2nd core
feature (uses other’s hands or body
as a tool, shows a lack of
spontaneous imitation and lack of
varied imaginative play, evidenced
a delay in spoken language in the
past, and exhibits limited
understanding & use of nonverbal
communication skills such as
gestures, facial expression, and
voice tone). Sam also
demonstrates restricted, repetitive
or stereotyped patterns of
behavior, interest, and activities,
the 3rd core feature (demonstrates
repetitive hand and finger
lack of imaginative play, and
over/under reaction to sensory
stimuli.) The team also
determined that these ASD
features continue to adversely
affect Sam’s educational
H: Answer
Looks good (does a good job
individualizing the ASD criteria
for the particular student.)
 Can you include more
information in the
“Interpretation of Evaluation
Results” section?
You can, but it is not
Again, the main purpose of this
section is to state how the
student meets criteria for their
categorical disability.
 How about recommendations
that would be outside of the
educational setting, for
example, “Damien would
benefit from participating in a
program such as Big Brothers/
Big Sisters”?
Anything outside of the
educational setting would not be a
part of the evaluation report. It
could be included in a separate
document; however,
One must be very careful in making
recommendations outside of the
educational setting.
Appendix A: One
 Eligibility checklists in Easy IEP:
 go into Easy IEP
 go into a student
 go under the Documentation
 you’ll find checklists for all of the
Appendix A: Two
 To find the Minnesota Department
of Education Special Education
 go to education.state.mn.us/mde
 on the right side, click on
“Categorical Disability Information”
Appendix A: Three
 There is a link to the MDE
webpage from the #287
 go to Special Education,
 then click on Special Education
Forms and Information,
 then click on MDE Homepage.
That’s All

Special Education Due Process Workshop