For School-Age Students

  1. If a child is not receiving his/her IEP-mandated related services:
    • Determine whether the child is on the roster of the related service provider at the school. Sometimes, making sure this has happened will resolve the issue.
    • If you are told that the service provider has a waiting list or the school does not have a service provider, request a Related Service Agreement (RSA) by writing a letter to the Integrated Service Center in the borough where the child lives. The RSA entitles a family to locate a related service provider from a list published by the Department of Education (DOE) and obtain related services outside of school at DOE expense. Click here to find an RSA provider in your borough.

  2. If a child is not receiving the Special Education Teacher Support Services (SETSS) mandated by his/her IEP:
    • Determine whether the child is on the roster of the SETSS teacher at the school. Sometimes, making sure this has happened will resolve the issue.
    • If you are told that the SETSS teacher has a waiting list or the school does not have a SETSS teacher provider, request a P-3 letter by writing a letter to the Integrated Service Center in the borough where the child lives. The P-3 letter entitles a family to locate a SETSS provider from a list published by the DOE and obtain SETSS after school at DOE expense. Click here to find a P-3 SETSS provider in your borough.

  3. If the Committee on Special Education (CSE) has violated the 60-day time line for evaluation, developing an IEP and placement:
    • Request a Nickerson (P1) letter. A Nickerson letter entitles a child’s family to locate a state-approved non-public school by a given date and enroll their child there for one school year at DOE expense. The family is responsible for sending application packets to schools and arranging for interviews. The list of state-approved non-public schools is available on the New York State Education Department website.

      NOTE: Having the Nickerson Letter does not guarantee thee student placement in a state-approved non-public schools.

  4. If the CSE says there is no placement available for a school-age child:
    • Request that the CSE write an Interim Service Plan (ISP) for services appropriate for the child while he/she awaits a placement. The ISP might assign a temporary school placement (e.g., a public school placement while the child awaits a non-public school placement) or mandate services ranging from home instruction to a paraprofessional assigned to work with the child in the current placement.
    • You can also request a Nickerson letter if you feel that a non-public school might be appropriate for the child.

  5. If a child’s IEP or placement is inappropriate:
    • Communicate with the school or the CSE: If the child has an appropriate IEP but is in an inappropriate placement, you can try to speak with the CSE or the Office of Student Enrollment Planning and Operations (OSEPO) to explain the situation and request a new placement. If you are unable to reach someone by telephone, write a demand letter requesting a new placement.
    • Request a CSE Review: If the child does not have an appropriate IEP, submit a written request for a new CSE review to develop an appropriate IEP. If the child is in public school, the request should be sent to the School Based Support Team (SBST) at the school. If the child is in private school or is not attending, the request should be sent to the CSE for the district where the child lives.
    • Request an Impartial Hearing:
      • If possible, consult an education attorney for assistance. However, the DOE, however, does not require that a parent have an attorney to request an impartial hearing.
      • Reference the “Impartial Hearing Process for Students with Disabilities”, published by the New York State Education Department in December 2001.
      • Please note that the IDEA and the New York State Regulations now require that a parent state must request the specific relief they are seeking in an impartial hearing request. In addition, once an impartial hearing has been requested, the IDEA and the Chancellor’s Regulations mandate a resolution session to try and resolve the dispute prior to the actual hearing.