Special Education/consult follow up


Thanks for the detailed reply.
But I am confused.
The school can bring in a stranger to observe my son? Without my permission?
Secondly, they asked ME to help select someone. Then they referred me to one person I didn't care for and didn't think my son would. I don't know for sure but I didn't have a good impression. They want to use this person I feel because they're lazy. I signed consent for FBA TWO YEARS AGO and they never did it.  I think they're using the outside consult now as a further stall tactic.

Dear Jane,

Thank you very much for following up with me to see if I can help clarify. Let me say that if you feel that the delay in doing the functional behavior assessment from two years ago has harmed your child (educationally), you may want to reach out to an attorney in your area to see if possibly you can get the district to fund a privately-provided FBA.  For example, my team and I lead the private FBA by directing data collection, attending meetings, and working with the team to develop an appropriate behavior intervention plan (BIP). Sometimes, our private FBA can be funded by the school district.  While I would need more information to comment on your concern about the school using a consult to stall the FBA or your other comments about the district being lazy, I did want you to know that I empathize with your frustration.

If you signed permission for the FBA, then my best guess is that specialists from the school district can observe your son because you gave the school permission to proceed with the FBA if that individual is part of the FBA.  

I am not sure who you are referencing that observed, however. Are you saying the private psychologist who you did not like at first has done an observation?  Unless you have consented and are informed about who is doing the evaluation and what they are doing, I would say that the evaluation should not proceed.  But in my experience, the district itself can send, let's say, a behavior specialist into observe.  

If they are asking your input on the consultant, I feel that is good and that you should try your best to help them find someone with whom you are comfortable. It seems from your questions that you are not feeling like an equal partner with the school and I am happy to help you as much as I can in a general way through this site.  If you would like a more specific consultation, please email me at abc4success@msn.com.

Otherwise, I hope this answer has helped and I continue to wish you all the best as you advocate for your exceptional child's education.  

Special Education

All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Michelle R. Davis, M. Ed.


I can answer questions about disability definitions and criteria for services, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act 2004, No Child Left Behind, 504 plans, how to craft an IEP that drives the appropriate services, school placement, dispute options, and least restrictive environment. I worked in the public school system as a special educator and am now in private consulting practice where we assist parents as they navigate the special education process. I have expertise in all educational disabilities except blind/visual impairments and deaf/hard of hearing. This includes ADHD and other health impairments, medical conditions, dyslexia and learning disabilities, Autism, emotional disabilities, language processing problems, and interfering behaviors.


10 years as special educator and administrator in public school system; Director of ABCs for Life Success since 1998; Expert services such as analysis and testimony; Author: Special Needs Advocacy Resource Book: What you can do now to advocate for your exceptional child's education; Special Needs Advocacy Training Institute; internet radio show Teach Your Children Well: Hot Topics in Education; author School Success for Kids with Emotional and Behavioral Disorders released March 2010 (Prufrock Press).

Masters in Special Education with Emphasis on Inclusive Education (Johns Hopkins University); B.S.in Special Education (James Madison University); Conduct training for Universities, public and private schools, parent groups. Adjunct professor current George Washington University and prior George Mason University.

©2016 About.com. All rights reserved.