Identification of Student Needs - Process

Ongoing communication with parents is one of the roles and responsibilities of teachers.

Consultation with parents is to begin as soon as academic or behavioural difficulties arise. If there are further concerns after initial consultation, parents will usually be invited to attend an In-School Conference.

Accommodations and adjustments by the classroom teacher

The REGULAR CLASSROOM continues to be the primary learning environment for all students including those with special education needs.  It is within the regular classroom that most students with special education needs will work through the Ontario Curriculum and/or the Alternate Curriculum based on their needs.  Classroom teachers will, through the delivery of differentiated instruction using the philosophy of universal design, provide quality programming for students with IEPs to maximize their learning potential.  They will determine the appropriate programming for students using pre-, on-going-, and post- assessment.

An IEP is a legal document that is developed for each child where there is enough assessment information gathered over time to determine that he/she requires specific learning strategies, accommodations and/or modifications to the curriculum and special education services in order to be successful at school.

The IEP must be developed for your child, in consultation with you. It must include:

  • Statements of the student’s strengths and needs
  • Specific curriculum expectations, accommodations and/or alternative programming
  • An outline of the special education program and services that will be provided
  • For students 14 years of age and older (except those as identified as solely on the basis of giftedness), a plan for transition to appropriate post-secondary school activities, such as work, further education and community living.

For students on the Autism Spectrum or other students with significant transition Skills and/or Social Skills needs, a program page for each of these areas will be created.

The IEP must be completed within 30 school days after the start of the school year, typically early October and the principal must ensure that you receive a copy. For every student the classroom teacher will update and review the IEP as required.

An Identification, Placement and Review Committee (IPRC) is a legal committee of the Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board. It is mandated under Regulation 181 of the Education Act.

The committee will:

  • Decide whether or not your child should be identified as exceptional
  • Identify the areas of your child’s exceptionality according to the categories and definitions of exceptionalities provided by the Ministry of Education
  • After considering the options available, the committee will also decide an appropriate placement for your child, based on individual strengths and needs
  • Review the identification and placement at least once in each school year

Students do not need to be identified through the Identification, Placement and Review Committee (IPRC) process in order to have an IEP

In Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board an identification through an IPRC meeting is not required in order for a student to have an IEP developed or to receive Special Education Services. Your child will have an IEP developed for him/her when there is enough ongoing assessment information to determine that it is needed in order to experience success. A student must, however, have an IEP in place in order to proceed to the IPRC.

You, as a parent, have the right to request an IPRC meeting. The request must be written and sent to your child’s school principal. The Principal shall submit the request for an IPRC meeting and inform you in writing of the meeting date.

The principal of your child’s school must request an IPRC meeting for your child upon receiving your written request within 15 days of receiving your request, or giving you notice, the principal must provide you with a copy of this guide and a written statement of approximately when the IPRC will meet.

Before the IPRC meeting will be held, the Principal or Chair will provide you with written notice of when the IPRC meeting shall meet (location, date and time). If the date is not convenient, you may request an alternate date or time and the Principal or Chair will try and accommodate your request. Let the School Principal know as soon as possible if you cannot attend. If you do not want to attend, the Principal will forward to you a copy of the IPRC meeting minutes which includes the decision of identification and the recommendation of placement after considering the options available.

What happens at an IPRC?

The chairperson of the committee will introduce everyone, explain the purpose of the meeting, and encourage parents to participate fully in the discussions. The chairperson will ask that a summary of all information be presented to the committee. The members will: 

  • Consider an educational assessment of your child
  • Consider, subject to the provisions of the Health Care Consent Act, 1996, a health or psychological assessment of your child conducted by a qualified practitioner, if they feel that such an assessment is required to make a correct identification or placement decision
  • Consider any information that you submit about your child or that your child submits if he or she is 16 years of age or older

Parents will be invited to ask questions and to join in informal discussion.

A placement decision will usually be made immediately. The chairperson will explain it carefully.

Parents will be given a written record of the recommendations of the committee.

What will the IPRC consider in making its placement decision?

The IPRC must consider your child’s strengths and needs. A regular classroom placement should be considered the first option. Before recommending a placement the IPRC must decide whether the placement will: 

  • Meet your child’s needs
  • Be consistent with your preferences

The IPRC will look at options and explain their choice of options. You are encouraged to participate fully and make your choice(s) known. The IPRC should describe the nature of the congregated class or mainstream option to you. Options may include provincial or demonstration schools run by the Ministry of Education and Training. 

What will the IPRC’s written statement of decision include?

The IPRC’s written statement of decision will state:

  • Whether the IPRC has identified your child as exceptional
  • The categories and definitions of any exceptionalities identified, as they are defined by the Ministry of Education
  • The IPRC’s description of your child’s strengths and needs
  • The IPRC’s placement decision
  • The IPRC’s recommendations regarding a special education program and special education services

What happens after the IPRC has made its decision?

If you agree with the IPRC decision, you will be asked to indicate, by signing your name that you agree with the identification and placement decisions made by the IPRC.  If any additional information determined at the IPRC meeting needs to be added to the IEP, the principal will facilitate this.

Once a child has been declared exceptional through the IPRC process, the placement can be reviewed.  A review IPRC meeting will be held within the school year, unless the principal of the school at which the special education program is being provided receives written notice from you, the parent/guardian, dispensing with the annual review. 

You may request a review IPRC meeting any time after your child has been in a special education program for 3 months.  An IPRC review would consider the progress your child has made in relation to the IEP. It will consider the same type of information that was originally considered by the IPRC, as well as any new information.  The IPRC will review the placement and identification decisions and decide whether they should be continued or whether a different decision should now be made.