Tue. Jan 25th, 2022

Are you a parent of a child with a disability who would like to write
effective letters, to special education personnel? Would a short list
of things to include be helpful? Letters are important documentation,
of what is happening in your child’s education. This article will
address 7 items that should be included in special education letters,
to make them effective, and easily understandable.

Letters should be one page if possible, and contain these items:

Item 1: You should include your name in the letter, as well as the
name of your child with a disability. If the specil education person
is an administrator, they may not know you or your child. That’s why
it is important to include both in the letter.

Item 2: You should include your child’s birth date. Some school
districts often use a child’s birth date, for identification purposes.

Item 3: You should include the date when you are writing the letter;
month day and year. Letters sent to disability educators become part
of your child’s school record. By dating the letters, anyone looking
at the record can tell when it was written. The date the letter was
sent may be important in the future, if a dispute occurs between you
and your school district.
















Item 4: You should very clearly state the purpose of the letter. For
Example: “I am writing you today to tell you of my concerns for my
child Mary, whom I believe may have a learning disability, in the
area of reading. I am asking that she be tested using a standardized
reading test such as the Woodcock Reading Mastery Test. When the test
results are finished, we can discuss them at an IEP meeting.” or “I am
concerned that my son John may have autism, I would like a childhood
autism rating scale (CARS) to be filled out for him. When this is
completed, I would like to have an individual educational plan (IEP) meeting to discuss the results.”

Item 5: You should include the person’s name that you are sending the
letter to, their title, and school address.

Item 6: The letter should contain a hand signature at the bottom of
the page, by the parent writing the letter. If the letter is used in
the future, it holds more weight if it is signed.

Item 7: The letter should include any written documentation or reports
that help your case. For Example: “I am including a letter from the
Occupational Therapist, about the behavioral difficulties my daughter
Sarah, who has autism, has been having during therapy time.” After the
signature put the word attachments in the left hand margin, and list
the name of all attachments. Be sure to include the attachments with
the letter. If you are like me, you may forget and leave the
attachments out, so double check that the attachements are included.

By including these important items in your letters to school
personnel, you are ensuring that your letter is easy to read and to
understand. Documentation is critical in case of a dispute between you
and disability educators, in the future. Happy Writing!

By rahul