Ask the Horizons Team: How much of an evaluation should you share with the school?

8
Feb

Ask the Horizons Team: How much of an evaluation should you share with the school?

Question:

My husband and I recently had a comprehensive neuropsychological evaluation done for our 10-year-old son due to concerns in the areas of attention, immaturity, and reading comprehension. The results were thorough and very helpful to us as parents, especially as we think about how best to support his learning and behavior both in and out of school.

My question is about what I am obligated to provide to the school in terms of the report. The school has not been concerned about our son’s performance for years now, even when we have raised some concerns with them. They have never initiated an evaluation themselves, and didn’t seem very interested when we told them we would be pursuing an evaluation outside of school. However, now that the evaluation has been completed they are demanding to see the final report. They now tell us that they need to see it in order to provide appropriate supports to our son, who is in a general education 4th grade class and doing fairly well.

There is no need for an IEP and we are not requesting that they do anything specific at this point. I would like to share some of the information with them, especially related to strategies that might benefit our son in the classroom. However, I am very hesitant to share the entire report as it contains a lot of specific and personal information about our son and family. Also, I don’t want our son to be labeled or judged by teachers now and in the future based on the information in the report. Do you have any thoughts on how we could proceed?

Thanks,
Kiera in Michigan

Answer:

Hi Kiera,

This is a good question, and definitely something many parents are faced with when receiving evaluation results outside of school. Based on the circumstances you describe I do not think it is necessary for you to provide the entire neuropsychological report to the school. It sounds like you have valid reasons for wanting to keep some of the details of the evaluation confidential, and that is certainly your right and your son’s right to do that.

Since you are not asking the school to do anything specific right now, such as look at special education eligibility, there isn’t a pressing need for them to have the report. However, you may want to consider providing them with a summary of the information and recommendations that pertain to your son’s school involvement. That way they can understand and support your son appropriately, without being privy to all the details from the evaluation. You could write up a summary yourself or ask the evaluator to write a summary letter to the school for you.

I think it is a good idea to provide them with the information relevant to his school performance, since it sounds like some of the concerns that prompted the evaluation pertain to his learning and behavior in school. However, you should feel free to pick and choose what information is divulged and to whom.

Best Wishes,
Dr. Beurkens

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