Special Education/Asd and placement


My son has PDD
He's starting K in the fall
My school wants him in self contained class.
They do not have any intermediate options.
I feel like they're judging my son by diagnosis not class
Functioning, they wouldn't know. My son did ok in preschool
But was special Ed preschool. Even though self contained there were
12 kids which is more than some regular preschools.  They're recommending 12:1:1 but
There are only 4 kids in it! My son needs peer models. What can I do? Thanks

Dear Sue,

Thank you so much for writing to me!  I am very sorry for my delayed reply.  I was traveling and forgot to tell the site.  :)

If your son needs more time in the general education setting/classroom but the IEP team has placed him in a separate, special education classroom, there may be a few things you can do.  

1.  Obtain an independent evaluation, focused on his strengths, and ask the examiner if he/she agrees and can write a recommendations for how general education can be successful.  Then you can try to do a mediation this summer, and see if the team will agree to more general education.

2.  Look at the notice that the IEP team gave you, about why the team put him in a special education classroom.  The IEP itself should also contain justifications about removing him from general education.  Write to the IEP team and formally request another meeting, and then provide evidence that disputes the justification statements.

3.  Meet with the Principal of your neighborhood school, and make a case for him to be included there.  Did you know that you can always 'revoke' consent for the IEP all together?  That would mean that he would attend the neighborhood school, but WITHOUT an IEP.  In that case, he could have accommodation through a 504 Plan.

4.  Request a mediation and request a less restrictive setting for kindergarten.  Include all the benefits your child gets from being with his non-disabled peers.  

5. Consult an attorney or someone like me, an expert, for more specific advice for this situation.  

I would really have to understand more of the details of the situation to provide an opinion, but I hope this helps you!  Please, feel free to follow up with more information.  I wish you the best as you advocate for your exceptional child's education!  Thank you again for using this service!

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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.

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