Dear ADDitude

Dear ADDitude: Is There a Sample Letter to Request Accommodations?

“I need to request an evaluation from my boys’ school. Is there a template letter I can use containing all the important info?”

ADDitude Answers

Many schools are not proactive about identifying kids with disabilities, and especially kids with ADHD, for special services and accommodations. So frequently it’s the parents coming to the school and saying, “Will you evaluate my child?” A parent always has the right to ask for an evaluation under either IDEA or section 504 whether the school has said there’s a problem or not.

When parents make a formal request for an evaluation, they should always do it in writing and keep a copy of the request and supporting documentation, like doctor’s notes or report cards. They want to ask for an evaluation for eligibility for special ed, or an evaluation for eligibility 504. Typically, if you ask for a special ed plan and the school decides not to do it, they’re supposed to consider a 504 plan as well.

There are some wonderful sample letters and guidelines on the ADDitude site:

Free Download: Sample Accommodations Request Letter

Follow these 12 Steps to Smarter School Accommodations

Posted by Matthew D. Cohen, J.D.
Founder of Matt Cohen and Associates and legal commentator for LDOnline

ADDitude Answers

A letter to request an evaluation should include your child’s name, grade, and current teacher. You also need to include an outline of problems you or his teachers have noted and any medical diagnoses your child may have. You may include backup documentation-letters from his teachers, a statement of diagnosis from his doctor, and schoolwork that shows how your child is struggling. To end the letter, you can request to meet with any person involved in the evaluation beforehand and explain that you want to receive a written report.

Posted by Eileen Bailey
Freelance writer, author specializing in ADHD, anxiety, and autism

A Reader Answers

There is a sample letter at the following link which you can modify to make your own letter: Sample Letter to Request Accommodations for ADHD Students.

I usually also write a letter to my child’s teachers at the beginning of the school year, describing his challenges and strenghths. The majority of my son’s teachers have been appreciative of the heads-up. There is a sample letter at the following url: A Letter Introducing Your ADHD Child to His Teacher

Posted by BDogsMom

A Reader Answers

Most of the teachers at my son’s school already know him and know that he has some issues. They also know me for the most part. I will try to either talk in person or by email early on and just let the teachers know if they need anything or have any issues with my son to please let me know and to keep me in the loop. The school knows I am VERY proactive when it comes to my son. I advocate for him, but I also work close with the teachers, principal, counselor and anyone involved in the Section 504 meeting that we have.

Posted by jromero802

A Reader Answers

If there is no 504 or IEP plan in place, the schools don’t have to do a thing (and they won’t). It’s time to request a 504 or IEP meeting to get accommodations for your son. Do so in writing, then the school is legally bound to comply. Send a copy to the district superintendent and special education coordinator. Also, write a letter to the principal, notifying him/her that you are requesting that your son is evaluated for accommodations and request a 504 or IEP meeting to be scheduled ASAP. Follow the steps in this article.

Posted by ceebee

This question was originally posed during this webinar: Your Legal Rights at School