2013 LEGISLATIVE UPDATE
The Texas Legislature was busy this year and finalized many new pieces of legislation which went
into effect September 1, 2013. Many of these laws have a direct impact on our practices. Don’t be
caught out of compliance!
INITIAL TIMELINES: CONSENT TO FIE: Good Bye calendar days and Hello school days!
• A written report of a full and individual evaluation of a student for purposes of special
education services shall be completed no later than the 45th school day following the date on which
the school district receives written consent.
• Make note-this states the WRITTEN report must be completed by the 45th school day.
▪ If parent consent is received prior to the last 45 school days, FIE is completed within 45 school
days and ARD held within 30 calendar days of FIE date. Timeline can be extended for absences of 3
or more days.
▪ If consent received more than 35 days but less than 45, FIE must be given to parent by June 30th
and ARD held within the first 15 school days of the following school year. The big EXCEPTION to
this scenario: If the student is absent 3 or more days during this time, the timeline is extended
into the next school year.
▪ If consent is received less than 35 school days remaining in the school year, the 45 school days
extends into the next school year and ARD held within 30 Calendar days from FIE completion date.
Absences of 3 days or more extends the timeline day for day.
Food for Thought- Just because we are allotted 45 school days doesn’t mean we have to take 45
school days. Best practices should compel REgPeds to evaluate, complete the FIE and ARD in as few
days as possible. Think of it this way, approximately 12 weeks or 1/3 of the school year could
elapse during the evaluation process. Be diligent in your case management. Students are depending
What DIDN’T Change:
➢ The ARD must be held within 30 Calendar Days of FIE Date.
➢ ECI Rules did not change
➢ Absences do not apply to private/homeschool/or not enrolled preschool age students
****DID YOU KNOW****
If a parent submits written request for evaluation to a district administrative employee, the
district has 15 school days to obtain written consent or send a notice of refusal.
Students with Visual Impairments: An orientation and mobility evaluation must be completed by a
certified O&M specialist in determining a student’s initial eligibility for special education
services based on a visual impairment. The scope of the reevaluation for students with a visual
impairment must include a certified O&M specialist as part of the multi-disciplinary team.
HAVE YOU HEARD?
The STAAR Modified assessments will be administered for the final time during the 2013-2014
assessment cycle. The U.S. Department of Education has informed states that assessments based on
modified standards for students served by special education cannot be used for accountability
purposes after the 2013-2014 school year. Further information regarding plans for the inclusion of
this population of students in the general assessment program beginning in the 2014-2015 school
year will be forthcoming from TEA.
STAAR ALT: TEA may not adopt a performance that indicates that a student’s performance on an
alternative assessment does not meet standards if the lowest level of the assessment is an accurate
representation of the student’s developmental level as determined by an ARD Committee.
Our Board members are:
Chairperson Kaye Allen, Sherman
Vice-Chair Virginia Duran, El Paso
Secretary Lisa Horton, Lewisville
Treasurer/Professional Visability Jeanna Miller, Pampa
Credentials Dee Brown, (Texas Tech University) Lubbock
Continuing Education Debbie Payne, Clifton
Regional Representatives Georgene Moon, Dallas
Legislative Georgene Moon, Dallas
Administrative Assistant Deb Hawkins, Idalou